I love big giant bowls of pasta as much as the next person. There’s something so comforting about a giant bowl of carbs, however, it’s not the most nutritionally balanced meals. Everyone knows how to cook pasta, so a fault new-vegetarians run into is only knowing how to make pasta, so they end up feeling weak due to the lack of protein. Even though I’ve gotten considerably better at incorporating protein into vegan meals, sometimes I just want pasta for lunch and that’s okay too. This protein-packed meat-free pasta will save your poor, culinary challenged ass!
What you need:
- Chickpea pasta
- Wholewheat pasta
- Pesto of choice
- Mixed peppers
- Sunflower seeds
I make a single portion with 20grams of chickpea pasta to 80 grams of wholewheat pasta. Around 1/4 jar of pesto per person, half a tablespoon of sunflower seeds per person, and a good serving of veggies & spinach.
Regular pasta takes 10 minutes to cook, chickpea pasta takes 9 so you have to time this recipe well. Boil your water with your wholewheat pasta, once it starts bubbling bring it down to a simmer and add the chickpea pasta.
In the meantime, start cutting up your peppers, and any other veggies you might want to add. If you use frozen sweetcorn like me, add it to the pasta a minute or two before it’s finished cooking to defrost it. You’re more than welcome to boil the peppers, but personally, I prefer to leave them raw because raw veggies pack an extra nutritional punch.
Once 9-minutes are up, drain the water from the pasta then add your pesto, veggies, and sunflower seeds. I’m not going to give an exact measure of things because it’s entirely up to you, but I recommend a 1:4 ratio of chickpea pasta to brown pasta.
Be warned that chickpea pasta tastes nothing like wheat pasta, so you will be grateful for the pasta which covers the taste so well, it blends perfectly with the brown pasta.
There we have it! This protein-packed, meat-free pasta is so simple but comforting!
Chickpeas are such a staple in vegan and vegetarian diets, so you might also enjoy these spicy crunchy chickpeas.
What do you think of this protein-packed, meat-free pasta? Will you be trying it? Do you prefer red pesto or green pesto?
I’d love to DIY pesto someday, but for now, store-bought will do!
The exact breakdown of this meat-free protein pasta will depend on what pesto you use, and your ratio of chickpea pasta to brown pasta, but it should roughly fall close enough to the breakdown of mine which is below: