I love me some pasta. Picture the Cookie Monster going to town on some chocolate chip cookies, and that’s pretty much me every time I’m around macaroni and cheese or spaghetti pomodoro. It’s delicious, filling, and works with all kinds of sauces as well as in soups and in casseroles. So what’s a girl to do when trying to cut back on refined white flour?
There are a lot of gluten-free pasta options available. Always read the ingredients on the back of the box so that you know exactly what it’s made from. I was too naive the first few times I bought gluten-free pasta, only to get home and see that the pasta I had bought was made with corn or rice flour. There’s nothing inherently wrong with those ingredients, but the rice pasta sat in my stomach like a rock, and the corn pasta came apart into a mushy mess when cooked. I also tried a few brands of lentil pasta but it didn’t hold its shape and created a slimy foam when I cooked it.
Then one day I walked down the pasta aisle at the grocery store and a light from heaven shone down over a box of Tolerant brand red lentil penne. Actually, it wasn’t that dramatic — my best friend recommended the brand to me. But it did end up being a game changer. NOTHING can really be a substitute for real pasta, so I recommend saving that for your favorite recipes. But for a quick and healthy (Lentils provide protein!) mid-week meal, throw together some Tolerant red lentil penne with marinara, or their green lentil elbow macaroni with pesto. You can find it at most natural food grocery stores, or on Vitacost.com. And skip the spiral shape kind which is too dense and hard.