How do you make a classic Italian dish healthier? Take out half the cheese and add a ton of veggies!
I love this dish and it’s most affordable in the summer time when the produce is plentiful. It makes me feel accomplished when I make a dish that is full of nutrition that people enjoy too. I feel like it’s a nice slap in the face to pizza or cheeseburgers and it does a lot more good for the bodies of the people you love!
Baked Ziti and Summer Veggies– slightly adapted from Cooking Light
6 oz. uncooked whole wheat ziti noodles
1 tbsp. olive oil
1 medium sized eggplant, chopped
1 medium sized zucchini, chopped
1/2 cup chopped white onion
2 cups chopped tomato
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup (4 oz.) shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
2 tbsp. chopped fresh basil
2 tsp. chopped fresh oregano
3/4 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. crushed red pepper
3-4 oz. part-skim ricotta cheese
1 large egg, lightly beaten
- Cook pasta according to package directions.
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add oil to the pan. Add squash, zucchini and onion, saute 5 minutes. Add tomato and garlic, saute 3 minutes. Remove from heat, stir in pasta, 1/2 cup mozzarella, herbs, 1/2 tsp. salt and pepper.
- Combine ricotta, remaining salt, and egg. Stir into pasta mixture. Spoon into a 13×9 baking dish coated with cooking spray. Sprinkle top with remaining 1/2 cup mozzarella.
- Bake at 400 degrees for 15 minutes or until bubbly and lightly browned.