Lifesaver Recipe: Easy One Pot Pasta

Do you ever find a recipe so good that you make it over and over? This One Pot Wonder Tomato Basil Pasta is one of those recipes for me. The first time I tried it, I loved it so much, that I made it again later that same week.

What I like so much about this recipe is that it’s very easy, I usually have the ingredients on hand, and most importantly, it’s super delicious. Basically, you throw all the ingredients into one pot – including the pasta – and cook everything together. It’s the perfect meal to make in summer when you don’t want to be standing over a hot stove.

One Pot Pasta with Fire-Roasted Tomatoes, Olives, and Feta

The recipe is easy to customize, as well. For the pictures shown, I used fire-roasted tomatoes in place of regular diced tomatoes, and I added about a cup of olives. I didn’t have fresh basil, so I used dried. When the pasta was cooked, I tossed everything together with some feta. It was so good!

One Pot Pasta with Fire-Roasted Tomatoes, Olives, and Feta

Here are some other ideas:

  • Use a large package of cherry tomatoes in place of the canned tomatoes.
  • Try other pasta shapes. I’ve used shells, and they worked great.
  • For a puttanesca style sauce, leave out the basil and oregano and add a 1/2 cup quartered kalamata olives and 2 tbsp. capers.
  • Replace the basil and oregano with dried thyme and add a can of drained and rinsed chickpeas.
  • Add a jar of marinated artichoke hearts to the pot along with the other ingredients. Toward the end of the cooking process, stir in a bag of baby spinach leaves.

The possibilities are endless!

Do you think you will try this recipe?

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Lentil Brown Rice Salad + Weekly Meal Plan

As I’ve mentioned before, I like to create a weekly meal plan. If I’m staring into our refrigerator at 7:00 pm trying to come up with dinner ideas, I will most likely end up on the phone with our favorite Mexican place instead of cooking a healthy dinner.

Walking on the beach in Chacala, Mexico - www.HelloLittleHome.comIt doesn’t take much to put me in the mood for a Mexican vacation dinner!

I like to keep it super easy during the week. Some of my favorite time saving meals are hands-off crock pot recipes, big salads (ala Elaine from Seinfeld), and one pot dinners, such as soups or curries.

Or, I’ll cook a big pot of brown rice early in the week and use it for multiple meals. That’s what I did when I came up with this week’s meal plan:

Here is my totally customizable recipe for brown rice salad:

Lentil brown Rice Salad

Lentil Brown Rice Salad

  • 1 cup black lentils
  • 3 cups cooked brown rice (cold)
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 tbsp. balsamic vinegar
  • 1 clove garlic, minced or pressed
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 large cucumber, diced
  • 4 oz feta, crumbled
  • 1 pkg cherry tomatoes, halved or quartered, depending on size
  • 5 basil leaves, chopped

Lentil Brown Rice Salad

Cook lentils in boiling, salted water until tender but not mushy. Drain and set aside to cool.

Combine olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and garlic in a small bowl. Whisk to combine and season with salt and pepper.

Combine lentils, rice, cucumber, and tomatoes in a large bowl. Mix well. Add dressing, feta, and basil. Toss until well mixed. Adjust seasoning, adding additional salt and pepper, if necessary.

Notes: This recipe is very flexible. Try adding nuts, olives, roasted peppers, or marinated artichoke hearts. Replace the lentils with garbanzo or black beans. Substitute quinoa for the brown rice. The possibilities are endless!

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Farfalle with Roasted Asparagus, Lemon, and Parmesan – Easy Seasonal Meal, Part 1!

Happy Earth Day! As I’ve mentioned before, I’m lazy, but I still want to do my part when it comes to saving the planet (cue the cheesy music). Instead of investing in a 100% hemp wardrobe, I’m making small changes to be a little more eco friendly.

I’ve found that one of the easiest ways to go green is to carry my own bags when I go shopping. I’ll admit that I forget them at home half of the time, but at least I’m trying!

Another easy way to go green is to cook seasonal meals. I took my bag to the grocery store this past weekend and picked up asparagus and strawberries.

This Farfalle with Roasted Asparagus, Lemon, and Parmesan is what I whipped up!

This Farfalle with Roasted Asparagus, Lemon, and Parmesan is an easy and deliclious seasonal meal! | Hello Little Home

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