Recipe Rave

I made Giada's Penne with Spinach Sauce for dinner tonight and it was so good I just had to share it with you. This recipe is fast, easy, and healthy - the week night dinner trifecta. Even Brian, who will usually dismiss anything he suspects of being good for him as "okay for healthy food" loved this. I think you might too.

Fair warning - because of the raw garlic in the sauce, you're left with some kickin' breath after you eat this. Maybe not the best meal to make for that new guy you're trying to impress.

Giada's Penne with Spinach Sauce

1 pound whole wheat or multi grain penne (I use Ronzoni Smart Taste)
3 garlic cloves
2 ounces goat cheese
1 ounce reduced fat cream cheese
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
6 ounces fresh baby spinach leaves
8-10 basil leaves (my addition)
2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan

*I served with grilled chicken on top.


Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Add the penne and cook until it is tender but still firm to the bite, stirring occasionally, about 12 minutes.

Mince the garlic in a food processor. Add the goat cheese, cream cheese, 3/4 teaspoon of salt, 1/2 teaspoon of pepper, and half of the spinach leaves. (I tossed the basil in here.) Blend until the mixture is smooth and creamy. Set the cheese and spinach mixture aside.

Meanwhile, place the remaining spinach leaves in a large bowl. Drain the pasta, reserving 1 cup of the cooking liquid. Spoon the pasta atop the spinach leaves in the bowl. Scrape the cheese and spinach mixture over the pasta mixture and toss to coat, adding enough reserved cooking liquid to moisten (I didn't add any pasta water - didn't seem to need it). Season the pasta, to taste, with salt and pepper. Sprinkle the Parmesan over and serve.

If you try it, let me know how you like it!


Erin said...

That sounds SO good!

Kassie said...

Looks so good! Anything with a ton of garlic is good with me. ;)

Julia said...

yum, yum, and yum! gonna try it soon.

also, good luck at your soon-to-be big sonogram. getting excited for you!

Atlanta, Food and Love said...

This been in my rotation for a while and you are right it is so good,"man friendly" especially for a Giada recipe weeknight friendly. Alot of times I feel like her recipes are complicated. I like it with grilled shrimp, too.

the girl in the red shoes said...

Wow, fast easy and healthy! Sounds perfect. Thanks for sharing!

Sweet Simplicity said...

It looks delish! I starred it in reader, so I can come back to it.

Kate said...

My mouth is watering!!

Natasha said...

this looks SOOO tasty my friend...thanks for posting--anything with pasta is right up my alley!!!

Danielle said...

I saw this somewhere else recently and bookmarked it immediately. It looks so yummy and like you, I had plans to pair it with chicken or shrimp. Yum!

California Wife said...

YUM! Goat cheese, pasta, and garlic... I'm sold!!!

Tiffany said...

I'm totally making this! Maybe even tonight. :) We did have whole wheat spaghetti last night...Dave might think I'm trying to turn him Italian.

Nelle Somerville said...

This looks great!

d.a.r. said...

Did someone say cream cheese?!?!?! This looks great!