This light pasta salad makes a great side dish or snack. It features flavorful herbs and veggies tossed in a light, olive oil dressing.
6 oz. (or about 1 3/4 cups dry) whole-wheat fusilli
8 oz. cooked chicken breast, skinless and cut into thin strips
1 medium red bell pepper, chopped
2 medium tomatoes, seeded and diced
2 cups lightly steamed broccoli florets
2 scallions, thinly sliced, including green stem
1 clove garlic, minced
3 Tbsp. chopped kalamata olives (capers may be substituted)
2 Tbsp. chopped fresh basil
1 tsp. Italian herbs
1-2 Tbsp. chopped fresh parsley
Salt and pepper to taste
2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
1/2 avocado, pitted, peeled and diced small
Cook pasta al dente per package directions. Transfer to colander to drain and rinse thoroughly with cold water to cool.
Gently mix all ingredients together in large salad bowl, except oil, lemon juice and avocado. (If not serving immediately, refrigerate.)
Drizzle with olive oil and lemon juice. Toss gently again until pasta is well coated.
Add avocado and give the salad a final gentle toss immediately before serving.
Makes 4 servings (about 2 cups per serving).
Per serving: 407 calories, 15 g total fat (2 g saturated fat), 45 g carbohydrate, 27 g protein, 9g dietary fiber, 174 mg sodium.