After being gluten free for over two years I have learned a thing or two about how to still enjoy pasta! Here are some of the things I have learned along the way about going out for dinner, shopping at the store, and cooking at home.
When you are eating out:
When I first went gluten free I thought I would never be able to order pasta at a restaurant again, but I was wrong! Here is a list of the places in my area where I enjoy ordering gluten free Pasta!
1. The Cheesecake Factory
PHOTO: TCF Co. LLC
When ever I go to The Cheesecake Factory I order "Evelyn's Favorite Pasta" and I request that they use gluten pasta (I think most locations offer gf). I love this in particular because it is full of veggies and has a lot of flavor! They actually sub out most of their pastas for gluten free, but this one is my favorite!
2. Fuzio Fuzio is a restaurant in the Bay Area that will also replace any of their pasta dishes with gluten free pasta. The down side is that most of their pastas have meat in them, but if you are a meat eater there is definitely a lot of options for you. I personally order their Angel Hair pasta & Fresh Tomatoes without cheese and with gluten free pasta!
3. The Olive Garden
PHOTO: The Olive Garden
Okay so I have never actually been to The Olive Garden but they do offer several gluten sensitive options. This is cool because there are Olive Gardens all over the U.S. so it could be convenient at an airport or something!
What to buy from the Store:
Not all GF pastas are created equal. Overtime, I have learned what pastas I like and what I don't. I tend to shy away from rice based pastas because they do not really hold an authentic shape or texture. I also need to consider if I want a high protein pasta or just a regular one!
1. Ancient Harvest Quinoa Corn Super Grain Pasta
PHOTO: Ancient Harvest
This is the pasta I always buy when I want the most authentic pasta flavor and texture. This pasta is so yummy, and some of my friends have said that it is even better than regular pasta. It is available in the pasta section or gluten free section of most grocery stores (Safeway, Whole Foods, or Stop and Shop!)
2. Banza Chickpea Pasta
This pasta is very unique because it is made out of chickpeas! It does not taste exactly like regular pasta but it is pretty darn close. My favorite thing about it is that one serving has 25g of protein which is about half the protein that I need in a day, so it is perfect for all my vegetarians out there! I usually get Banza pasta at Safeway or Target!
3. Red Lentil Pasta
Another type of pasta that I love is Red Lentil Pasta. It has a very authentic pasta texture but it has slightly more flavor. It is also pretty high in Protein! I am not really loyal to any one brand for this type of pasta but I tend to get either Explore Cuisine brand or the type from Trader Joes. I also love how this pasta has such a fun color, sometimes it boils out when it cooks, but sometimes the red stays!
What to serve the pasta with:
One of my favorite combos is Pasta with Brussel Sprouts, the textures balance each other out perfectly! I am planning to share my Brussel Sprout recipe soon!
This recipe is so yummy and has a
very different texture. It saves very well so it is perfect to pack in lunches or on picnics. I made a blog post about it here!
Anyone who follows my Instagram knows that I eat pesto pasta on a regular basis. It may be the food I eat the most out of any food on the planet. I make pesto about every Monday and then I save it for the rest of the week, for my recipe click here. Bonus points if you serve your pesto pasta with pomegranate seeds (best combo ever!)
Second place to pesto, my signature is pasta with sautéed balsamic onions. This is my big sister, Annie's absolute favorite. To cook the onions I put two tablespoons of olive oil in a cast iron skillet, add a whole diced onion, and two tablespoons of balsamic vinegar. I then cover and cook them for about 20 minute, and stir every few minutes. If they start to burn, reduce heat and add vinegar, Cook until the onions are slightly brown and translucent!
One rather edgy recipe my sister and I tried recently was vegan avocado Mac and Cheese. I used the Zena 'N Zaatar recipe. Click here to check it out
My last suggestion is pretty simple. I like to sauté spinach and garlic, then add some tomato sauce and mix into the pasta. This dresses up your classic pasta with red sauce a little but is still super easy!