Juicy cherry tomatoes and cooked pasta are mixed together in an easy, low fat, ultra creamy dressing, served over a bed of sweet buttercrunch lettuce, and sprinkled with crispy bacon.
Think of this as your favorite BLT sandwich not only in pasta form but healthy too!!! Each hearty serving is only 213 calories. Is that even possible? I mean look!
That creamy dressing….. That crispy salty bacon…. Hmmmm bacon. In my house, I can pretty much guarantee a dish will be devoured without question if it involves bacon or cheese. So how on earth is this salad healthy? First off, let’s discuss the pasta. I used Barilla white fiber pasta. I’m not being sponsored by Barilla or anything, I just love that they make a yummy pasta packed with fiber. You can also use whole wheat pasta, but be aware that the pasta will have a slightly nutty flavor to it. Second, we have the dressing. Plain yogurt, light mayonnaise, salt and pepper. Seriously, it’s so easy, I’m almost embarrassed. Sometimes though, simple and easy is just the way to go and now is such a time;) Real quick though, the yogurt I use is very thin. If yours is thicker or you are using Greek yogurt, you may need to thin it out with a teaspoon or two of milk. And then there’s the bacon. I feel like bacon gets a bad rap. A little can go a long way and it’s a great way to add that little something extra to a dish. I love using center cut, smoked bacon. One slice is only 20 calories and 1.25 grams of fat and provides so much FLAVOR! Totally worth it in my opinion. Check the notes at the bottom of this post for an easy, no mess way to cook it.
Last but not least, the buttercrunch lettuce. I recently discovered this stuff and am IN LOVE. It’s called Living Buttercrunch Lettuce and you buy it with the roots still attached in the package. (again, I’m not being sponsored by anyone. I just love the product!) It’s so sweet and fresh. You can certainly use any variety of lettuce you have on hand, it won’t make a huge difference but if you come across this, I definitely urge you to give it try. I had a package of it in my refrigerator for about 5 days before I used it and it was still so fresh! Super yum. So there you have it. A rather in depth breakdown of such a simple salad. I think this would be a great dish for a lunch date with friends. Or a lunch date with your 3 and 6 year old. You know, whatever works 🙂
- 5-6 ounces dry (3 cups cooked) medium pasta shells (I used Barilla white fiber pasta)
- 1/2 cup plain nonfat yogurt
- 1/4 cup light mayonnaise
- 1/8 teaspoon coarse garlic salt
- 1/4 teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper (or to taste)
- 1 1/2 cups halved cherry tomatoes
- 4 slices center cut bacon (cooked)
Boil pasta shells in salted water until soft.
Drain pasta and rinse with cold water. Set aside.
In a medium bowl, combine yogurt, mayonnaise, salt, and pepper.
Add pasta and tomatoes and mix well.
Chill until ready to serve.
Serve over fresh buttercrunch lettuce and sprinkle with bacon. (1 slice of bacon per serving)
Nutrition Facts Servings 4. Amount Per Serving Calories 213 Total Fat 6g Saturated Fat 1g Monounsaturated Fat 1g Polyunsaturated Fat 2g Trans Fat 0g Cholesterol 6mg Sodium 277mg Potassium 99mg Total Carbohydrate 35g Dietary Fiber 5g Sugars 3g Protein 9g