Meatless Monday | Eggplant & Cherry Tomato Pasta

Even with my family’s crazy schedule, I still make it a priority to make home cooked meals whenever possible. Not only is it less expensive but it’s healthier, too!

As you may know, I’m a huge believer in “Meatless Mondays.” Even if it’s just once a week (I like to do more!) cutting meat out of your diet can make a huge difference. There are so many yummy and satisfying plant-based proteins available. So, why wouldn’t you?! Quinoa, lentils, beans, spirulina, tofu … just to name a few! It can be hard at first, especially if you are a meat-lover, but start by gradually adding in more veggies and healthy grains into your diet when you can. When you feel comfortable, try replacing at least one full meal a day with a plant based option!

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I’ll be honest, I am OB-sessed with a pasta dish. I can’t indulge as often as I like but when I do I try to make it as healthy as possible! This fall, the eggplants in my garden are in full swing. I definitely wanted to try to implement these purple beauties in some recipes.

This jam-packed veggie pasta dish inspired by Real Simple is perfect for a “Meatless Monday” paired with a glass of red wine. Enjoy!

Ingredients:

  • ½ pound of penne (gluten-free of some sort)
  • 1 medium eggplant
  • ½ pound cherry tomatoes
  • ¼ extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, sliced
  • ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • Kosher salt
  • Crushed pepper
  • ½ pound fresh mozzarella
  • ¼ cup mint leaves

Steps:

  • Cook the pasta according to the package directions. Reserve ¼ cup of the cooking water. Drain the pasta and return it to the pot.
  • Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat.
  • Add the eggplant. Cook, tossing occasionally, until golden brown and tender, 8 to 10 minutes.
  • Add the tomatoes, garlic, red pepper, ¾ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon black pepper. Cook, tossing, until the tomatoes soften, 2 to 3 minutes.
  • Add the tomato mixture to the pasta, along with the mozzarella and reserved cooking water. Toss to combine. Sprinkle with the mint.

 

Actress, model, active humanitarian, & Mom! Author of 'Everyday Chic'.