This recipe was sponsored by the National Pasta Association, but my love for pasta is all my own!
Remember pasta? Not rice pasta, or buckwheat noodles, or even zoodles, but real, honest to goodness, before the days of gluten-free just because it’s fashionable, or Paleo madness – PASTA. Insert long sad sigh here…
Well, here’s some news folks. This mostly healthy eating RD hasn’t given up pasta, and I never plan to. I love it because it’s a quick and inexpensive meal that can be dressed up for company, or down for just me and you, and prepared in a matter of minutes. Perfect for a busy lifestyle.
I also love pasta because it’s a perfect base to pair with protein and vegetables, to make a really healthy high energy meal. Finally, I love it because sometimes there’s nothing else that satisfies me like a big bowl of pasta.
My family has always loved Pasta Carbonara, so it’s the inspiration for today’s recipe. Traditional Carbonara is a luscious dish full of butter, cream, eggs, Parmesan cheese and bacon.
It’s a fabulously delicious breakfast-for-dinner kind of pasta. I lightened it up just a bit, boosted the protein with more eggs, and turned the entire dish into one of my favorite easy weeknight meals – a frittata. This Pasta Carbonara Frittata is a bake-it-ahead-of-time-and-eat -it for-dinner-with-leftovers-for-breakfast kind of meal. Wait – did I just say pasta for breakfast? Happy sigh…
I used whole-wheat pasta in today’s recipe because I love the whole grain goodness and extra fiber and nutrients it provides. It’s not the way they would do it in Italy, but makes it just a little bit healthier.
OK and while we’re on the subject, I don’t think they add leeks either, but I like the green-ness, and crunch. I thought about adding some spinach for even more veggies… Let me know if you try it. I’ll bet it’s delicious.
Pasta Carbonara Frittata
- 6 slices of uncured turkey bacon
- 2 leeks rinsed well, sliced into thin rounds
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/2 pound whole wheat or regular angel hair pasta or thin spaghetti cooked al dente
- 6 eggs lightly beaten
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
- 1/4 cup 1% milk
- 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/8 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
- 3 tablespoons fresh chopped parsley
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Prepare an 8×8 inch baking pan or saute pan with cooking spray and set aside.
- Place bacon strips on paper towels and cook in a microwave about 4-5 minutes, or until crisp. Crumble bacon and set aside.
- Cook leaks in olive oil until wilted, and just starting to turn brown in spots.
- Mix together beaten eggs, cream, milk, parmesan cheese,salt, pepper and parsley in a medium bowl. Add bacon and leeks and stir well to combine.
- Lay pasta on the bottom of the baking or sauté pan. Pour egg mixture over all to cover.
- Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until frittata is puffed and lightly golden.
- Let sit for 5 minutes before cutting into slices.
- Serve hot or at room temperature.
What’s your family favorite pasta dinner?