Sometimes, all you need is a little pasta and vodka. But not the college style (is that a thing? I don’t know). I’m talking a tasty sauce enhanced with vodka, mixed in with vegetable pasta, and topped with protein-rich roasted chickpeas.
What’s funny about this recipe is that I’ve made it so many times, I almost don’t need the actual recipe. But when I searched for it on the blog, I realized it wasn’t there! So, for my sake and your benefit, here you go. This puts a healthy spin on an old classic. Vegetable-infused pasta, Greek yogurt in place of heavy cream, bell pepper in place of onion and roasted chickpeas instead of prosciutto all add up to a wholesome dinner the entire family can enjoy. Top it with a few marinated mozzarella balls for a cheesy twist and enjoy!
Pasta alla Vodka with Roasted Chickpeas
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 bell pepper, diced small (or use a small onion if you prefer)
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 28 oz can diced tomatoes in their juices
- 1 tbsp dried minced onion
- 1/3 C spicy pepper vodka (plain vodka also works)
- 1/2 tsp red chili pepper flakes
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 2 tsp organic cane sugar
- 1/2 C nonfat plain Greek yogurt
- 1 lb vegetable pasta, like shells, penne, or rotini
- 1 can chickpeas, rinsed & drained
- 1/2 tbsp grapeseed oil
- 1/2 tbsp Italian seasoning
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- marinated mozzarella balls (optional)
- dried or fresh parsley, to garnish
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a small baking sheet with foil and spray with olive oil PAM – this will be to roast the chickpeas.
Heat olive oil in a saucepan over medium high heat. Saute diced bell pepper and minced garlic for about 5-7 minutes.
Add the diced tomatoes with their juices, vodka, spices and sugar; raise heat to simmer for 8 minutes. Then mix in the Greek yogurt. Reduce heat to medium-low and let warm through.
Meanwhile, mix the chickpeas with grapeseed oil and spices. Spread onto a single layer on the prepared baking sheet. Bake for 10 minutes, stir, and bake another 10 minutes.
While the sauce simmers and the chickpeas roast, bring a large pot of heavily salted water to boil. Cook pasta according to package directions. Reserve 1/2 C of pasta water before draining.
Now it comes all together! Stir the drained pasta into the vodka sauce. You may not want to use all of the pasta, especially if you like it really saucy 😉
Spoon the pasta alla vodka into bowls. Top with roasted chickpeas and sprinkle with parsley. Garnish with a few marinated mozzarella balls, if desired (and not vegan!).
Eat and enjoy, especially with wine!