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Low-Glycemic Summer Pasta Salad

Pasta is one of the toughest foods to incorporate into a low-glycemic diet because most pastas fall into the high-glycemic category. But you can go low-glycemic and still enjoy pasta if you’re smart about it:

  • Use low- to medium-glycemic pastas like whole-wheat spaghetti, tortellini, and vermicelli in place of some of the higher-glycemic choices like penne, linguini or fusilli.

  • Add vegetables and lean protein sources to your pasta so you eat less pasta per serving.

  • Enjoy high-glycemic pasta in moderation while balancing out the rest of your day with low-glycemic food choices.

In the meantime, enjoy this tasty pasta salad that carries a medium glycemic load:

Low-Glycemic Summer Pasta Salad

Preparation time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: 13–15 minutes

Yield: 8 servings

6 quarts of water

One 16-ounce package whole-wheat or regular spaghetti

1 cup broccoli florets

1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved

1 large orange or yellow bell pepper, chopped

1/2 cup chopped onion

1/4 cup chopped fresh basil

Italian-style lowfat salad dressing to taste

  1. In a large saucepan, bring the water to a boil over medium-high heat. Add the spaghetti, reduce the heat to low, and cook the pasta until it’s tender, about 8 to 10 minutes. Drain and set aside.

  2. While the pasta is cooking, steam the broccoli in a separate pan until it’s just tender, about 5 minutes. Set aside.

  3. In a large bowl, combine the spaghetti, broccoli, tomatoes, bell pepper, onion, and basil. Stir in about 1/4 cup of the salad dressing, gradually adding more to taste until everything’s well coated. Either serve warm or refrigerate and serve cold later.

Per serving: Calories 244 (From Fat 41); Glycemic Load 18 (Medium); Fat 5g (Saturated 1g); Cholesterol 0mg; Sodium 130mg; Carbohydrate 46g (Dietary Fiber 8g); Protein 9g.

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