Americans love pasta. And we encourage everyone to eat what they love while giving their body what it needs. That’s why we call it a win-win!

So why not substitute one of your pasta dishes with this one. Here’s why:

It’s bursting with antioxidants from the pesto herbs and vegetables, protecting your body against free radicals. It also contains lycopene from the tomato, which is another powerful antioxidant preventing against digestive system and reproductive system cancers. And finally it has soy protein from the tofu and whole grain from the pasta itself, which help in the healing of tissues.

Powerful Pesto Pasta

1 lb. whole grain or whole-wheat pasta
12-15 asparagus spears
1 zucchini or squash slivered into thin discs
6-8 ½ thick slices of tofu

Pesto for Tofu:
2-3 cloves of finely chopped garlic
2 cups of fresh basil leaves
¾ cup extra virgin olive oil
1 fist full of pine nuts (alternative: walnuts)

Pasta Sauce:
1 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp. sea salt
¼ tsp. fresh ground black pepper
2 juiced lemons or limes (alternative: ¼ cup of lemon juice)
¼ cup goat cheese
¼ cup white wine
1 medium tomato, diced

1. Place the tofu between paper towels and squeeze to remove the extra water.
2. Cook the pasta according to the provided instructions.
3. Blend pesto ingredients in a food processor. Dip the tofu slices into the pesto for maximum flavor.
4. Option: Preheat the oven to 350°F to bake the tofu for 20 minutes or place on a skillet to grill until golden brown.
5. Option: To keep your veggies firm, blanch or boil them lightly.
6. For the pasta sauce, sauté tomatoes, with salt and pepper in olive oil. Mix in the goat cheese to melt. Pour in the white wine and lemon juice and let the sauce simmer for about 10 minutes.
7. Toss tofu into the pasta with the vegetables and the sauce.

Serves: 4
Preparation time: 30-35 minutes

Remember: By eating what you love AND making small substitutions like this one, you’re on your way to creating your own long-lasting style to staying fit and feeling great.

“Enjoy Healthy!”
Michele Risa
Beyond Body Mind Spirit NYC

P.S. If you’re interested in other successful tools for weight loss, check out Gourmet Fitness.

Author's Bio: 

Michele Risa is a Health Consultant with a BA from New York University and a MA from Columbia University. She is certified as a Kundalini Yoga teacher by the Kundalini Research Institute and certified in Therapeutic and Hatha Yoga by Satsang Yoga Center. Risa has certifications in Breathwalk, Conflict Resolution, Divorce Mediation, and Yoga for Children, and has completed courses in Vipassana and 16 years of White Tantric Yoga with Yogi Bhajan.
Since 1989, she founded Beyond Body Mind Spirit (, which offers her four main areas of expertise - weight-loss, anti-aging, stress management and yoga, using non-traditional approaches. Risa has produced her own yoga TV show since 1998, has been a frequent radio guest, and has co-authored a book, “Conscious Entrepreneurs: A Radical New Approach to Purpose, Passion and Profits,” Winner of the National “Best Books 2008″ Awards.
She has lectured at corporations such as Boeing, Viacom, and Forbes and produced a 6 month program at NYSE where she reduced stress and lowered health care costs. Although the majority of Risa’s clients are in NYC, she has conducted seminars as far west as California and as far east as Russia.
Her motto for healthy living is, “When you find your personal formula for self love through body, mind and spirit, you create the life you want.”