Easy Lunch Ideas Pasta

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This is a guide on easy lunch ideas pasta. Menu planning can sometimes be a challenge. It can feel like you are constantly stuck on the same boring meals. Also, it can be difficult to come up with lunches that your kids will actually eat instead of complaining about. I’ve got some easy lunch ideas pasta I’d like to share with you so that you’ll have some new quick and easy go-to meals for your family. I’ve included a few easy lunch ideas pasta recipes just because they go so well together with sandwiches or sliced cheese. There’s also the choice between some vegetables, you could also add on some ham strips and corn chips into your sandwiches if you want to go even further with your creations.

Easy Lunch Ideas Pasta

Looking for healthy pasta recipes? Whether you’re on the 5:2 diet or want to find nourishing midweek meals, we have plenty of healthy pasta dishes for you to try.

When eaten in moderation, pasta can easily form part of a balanced and healthy diet. Whether a meat eater or a vegan, you can support your health with delicious and nutrient-rich toppings or sauces which add more vitamins and minerals, protein, calcium and good fats. Adding herbs to your pasta dishes, such as basil, thyme or oregano, is also an excellent way to boost the nutritional density of your dish, as they are naturally anti-inflammatory and provide benefits against heart disease and diabetes.

From lighter linguine to super-simple low-fat spaghetti, we have the best pasta ideas to make healthy meals with spaghetti, penne pasta, pasta shells and more.

Best healthy pasta recipes

A blue plate of baked orzo with harissa prawns, dill, garlic and lemon, and a fork
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1. Baked Orzo With Harissa Prawns

Flavour prawns with harissa, dill, garlic and lemon, then serve swirled through orzo pasta for a speedy but sophisticated midweek dinner

Ingredients

olive oil 1 tbsp

onion 1, finely chopped

garlic 1 clove, sliced

cherry tomatoes 200g

orzo 100g

vegetable stock 200g

harissa paste 1½ tbsp

kale, cavolo nero or spring greens 100g, sliced

dill ½ a small bunch, chopped

raw peeled prawns 250g

lemon 1, ½ juiced, ½ cut into wedges

Method

Step 1

Heat the oil in a medium ovenproof frying pan and fry the onion over a medium heat for 8-10 minutes or until soft and lightly golden. Add the garlic and fry for 30 seconds, then stir in the tomatoes with a splash of water. Simmer for another 5-10 minutes or until the tomatoes start bursting and turn saucy. Heat the oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4.

Step 2

Stir the orzo, stock, 1 tbsp harissa, greens and half the dill into the tomatoes, and bring to a simmer. Transfer to the oven, uncovered, for 8-10 minutes or until the orzo is just tender and the liquid has been absorbed. Toss the prawns with the remaining ½ tbsp harissa and a squeeze of lemon. Scatter over the orzo, and bake for another 5-8 minutes or until pink and cooked through. Serve scattered with the remaining dill and lemon wedges to squeeze over

Chicken Pasta Salad Recipe
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2. Chicken Pasta Salad

Throw together this quick and easy pasta salad using leftover chicken, tomatoes and greens for a protein-packed lunch or midweek dinner

Ingredients

fusilli 150g

olive oil 1 tbsp

red wine vinegar 2 tbsp

Tabasco a few dashes

red onion 1/2, thinly sliced

cherry or baby plum tomatoes 200g, halved

cooked chicken breasts 2, torn into pieces

rocket a handful

basil a handful, torn

Method

Step 1

Cook the pasta in a large pan of salted boiling water following pack instructions, then drain well. Put the oil, vinegar, Tabasco and lots of seasoning in a bowl, tip in the hot pasta and mix well. Once cooled slightly, add the red onion, tomatoes and chicken, and mix again. Chill.

Step 2

When ready to serve, stir through the rocket and basil, and divide between bowls.

Nutritional Information

Kcals 339

Fat 6.8g

Saturates 1.3g

Carbs 38.9g

Sugars 4.1g

Fibre 4.5g

Protein 27.7g

Salt 0.1g

Avocado and spinach fusilli
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3. Avocado Fusilli Pasta

Avocados make salad dressings and ice creams super-creamy, so why not put them in a pasta sauce? It’s a great way of using up overly ripe avocados

Ingredients

fusilli 350g

garlic 2 cloves, peeled

baby spinach 200g

avocados 2 small ripe, halved and stoned

extra-virgin olive oil for drizzling

roasted cashews 30g, chopped

roasted almonds 30g, chopped

coriander a small bunch, chopped

limes 2

feta 50g, (optional)

Method

Step 1

Cook the fusilli in a large pan of boiling, salted water following pack instructions.

Step 2

Meanwhile, put the garlic and spinach in a blender with the avocado flesh. Add a drizzle of oil and season. Blitz a little, add a splash of the pasta cooking water and blitz until smooth. Leave the lid on the blender and put to one side.

Step 3

Put the chopped cashews, almonds and coriander in a bowl. Squeeze over the juice of 1 lime, season and drizzle with oil.

Step 4

Cut the other lime into wedges. Drain the pasta, reserving a cupful of the cooking water, and tip back into the pan, adding a few splashes of the water. Pour over the sauce and toss together, seasoning to taste. Divide between plates, spoon over the nut dressing, crumble over the feta (if using) and serve with lime wedges for squeezing over.

One Pot Puttanesca Recipe
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Nutritional Information

Kcals 536

Fat 20.9g

Saturates 3.6g

Carbs 65.8g

Sugars 2.6g

Fibre 9.8g

Protein 16.4g

Salt 0.1g

Spicy Prawn Linguine Pasta Recipe
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4. Spicy Prawn Linguine

Healthy food doesn’t have to be boring. This spicy prawn linguine has a spicy chilli kick to keep it interesting. It’s so delicious you’ll forget that you’re being virtuous

Ingredients

olive oil

shallots 2, diced

ginger 1cm piece, peeled and grated

garlic 1 clove, crushed

chilli flakes a large pinch

chopped tomatoes 400g tin

linguine 150g

flat-leaf parsley ½ bunch, chopped

raw peeled prawns 150g

rocket salad to serve

Method

Step 1

Heat 1 tsp oil in a large frying pan, add the shallots and fry for 2 minutes before adding the ginger, garlic and chilli flakes.

Step 2

Fry for another 2 minutes. Add the chopped tomatoes and simmer for 20 minutes until saucy.

Step 3

Cook the linguine in boiling salted water until just tender, then drain.

Step 4

Stir the parsley and the prawns into the tomato base, season well and cook until the prawns turn pink.

Step 5

Add the cooked linguine, toss and serve.

Turmeric Broth With Chicken And Ginger Dumplings. Bowl of turmeric broth with chicken and ginger dumplings
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Nutritional Information

Kcals 326

Fat 4.1g

Saturates 0.3g

Carbs 46.6g

Fibre 2.8g

Protein 24.1g

Salt 0.6g

Green Linguine Recipe
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5. Green Linguine

Ingredients

frozen peas 125g

frozen broad beans 50g

olive oil 1 tbsp

leek 1 small, finely sliced

dried chilli flakes 1 tsp

ricotta 75g

parmesan (or veggie alternative) 20g, grated, plus a little extra to serve

lemon 1/2, zested and juiced

linguine 150g

mint a small bunch, shredded

Method

Step 1

Put the peas and broad beans into a bowl and pour over a kettle of boiling water. Leave for 1 minute, drain, and pod the broad beans. Take about ¾ of the peas and blend in a food processor or with a hand blender with 1 tbsp of water until smooth.

Step 2

Heat the olive oil in a frying pan and fry the leek with some seasoning for 8-10 minutes until soft. Stir in the chilli flakes, broad beans and remaining peas, and fry for 2 minutes. Cool slightly and put into a bowl with the pea purée, ricotta, parmesan, lemon zest and juice and some seasoning, and mix well.

Step 3

Cook the linguine following pack instructions, reserving some cooking water.

Step 4

Tip the pasta back into the pan and add the pea and leek mix, and a splash of the cooking water. Mix well and serve with the mint and more parmesan, if you like.

Linguine Pasta Recipe With Prawn Butter Sauce
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Nutritional Information

Kcals 520

Fat 14.9g

Saturates 5.7g

Carbs 67.9g

Sugars 7.7g

Fibre 10.2g

Protein 23.5g

Salt 0.4g

Penne Alla Norma Recipe
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6. Pasta alla norma

Ingredients

aubergine 1 small, cut into 3cm cubes

extra-virgin olive oil 2 tsp

onion ½, finely chopped

garlic 1 large clove, crushed

dried chilli flakes a pinch

plum tomatoes 400g tin

gluten-free penne 150g

parmesan (or veggie alternative) 20g, finely grated

basil a handful of leaves

Method

Step 1

Put the aubergine into a large bowl and toss with the olive oil. Heat a non-stick frying pan over a high heat and tip in the aubergine. Cook, tossing regularly, for 5 minutes or until the aubergine is charred. Tip into a bowl.

Step 2

Turn down the heat and fry the onion with a splash of water for 5 minutes or until translucent (add a little water if it starts to catch). Add the garlic and chilli, and cook for 2 minutes, then tip in the tomatoes and ½ a tin of water. Season well and use a masher to break up the large tomato pieces. Tip the aubergine back in and simmer gently for 20-30 minutes or until thickened and the aubergine is soft.

Step 3

Cook the pasta following pack instructions, then drain well, reserving some of the cooking water. Tip the pasta into the sauce and toss well, adding a little pasta water if it’s too thick. Add ¾ of the cheese and toss well, divide between bowls then top with the remaining cheese and the basil.

No-churn banana ice cream
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Nutritional Information

Kcals 286

Fat 5.1g

Saturates 1.8g

Carbs 48.3g

Sugars 8.6g

Fibre 5.7g

Protein 8.7g

Salt 0.2g

Two bowls of salmon and pea pasta with lemon zest on the side
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7. Healthy Salmon Pasta

Ingredients

wholewheat penne or other wholewheat pasta 240g

salmon 3 x 120g fillets

extra-virgin olive oil 1 tbsp

onion 1, thinly sliced

garlic 2 cloves, crushed

vegetable stock 125ml

reduced-fat crème fraîche 100ml

frozen peas 200g

dill ½ a small bunch, roughly chopped

lemon 1, zested

Method

Step 1

Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil and add the pasta. Reduce the heat to medium, cover with a metal colander or tiered steamer and add the salmon. Cover with a lid and leave the pasta to cook and the fish to steam for 10 minutes. Drain the pasta and flake the salmon, removing the skin.

Step 2

Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large frying pan over a medium-high heat. Cook the onion, stirring, for 5 minutes or until the onion is golden and softened. Add the garlic, cooking for 1 minute until fragrant.

Step 3

Add the stock, crème fraîche and peas, stirring together then simmering for 2 minutes until the peas are just cooked through. Add the pasta and toss to coat. Add the salmon, half the dill and lemon zest, and toss to combine, seasoning well. Serve in warm bowls with more dill scattered over.

Two plates of Fettuccine Alfredo
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Nutritional Information

Kcals 508

Fat 19.5g

Saturates 5.3g

Carbs 47g

Sugars 5.9g

Fibre 10.1g

Protein 31g

Salt 0.2g

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