Pasta, Greens, and Beans: 5 Easy Dinners

As long as I have a can of beans and some kind of pasta in the pantry, I know I can pull a meal together—and these combos are among my favorites for go-to weeknight dinners.

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Ziti With White Beans, Cabbage, and Prosciutto

Peter Ardito

Ziti With White Beans, Cabbage, and Prosciutto

Adding greens gives a nutritional boost, and beans supply protein and fiber. Finally, rounding off the dish with a savory meat such as prosciutto deepens the flavor while keeping the sodium and fat at a healthful level.

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2 of 6

Rigatoni With Chickpeas, Spinach, and Ground Lamb

Peter Ardito

Rigatoni With Chickpeas, Spinach, and Ground Lamb

Replace the cabbage with chopped spinach, and use rigatoni for the pasta. Add chickpeas and ground lamb (beef works too) in place of the beans and prosciutto.

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3 of 6

Shells With White Beans, Chard, and Bacon

Peter Ardito

Shells With White Beans, Chard, and Bacon

Mix it up this time with shells and chopped chard. Bacon boasts serious flavor in the dish.

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4 of 6

Family Dinners: 4 Tips To Make Them Better

5 of 6

Farfalle With Chickpeas, Spinach, and Sausage

Peter Ardito

Farfalle With Chickpeas, Spinach, and Sausage

Add chickpeas, spinach and sausage to bowtie pasta—a kid favorite—for a filling meal.

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6 of 6

Fusilli With Lima Beans, Cabbage, and Shrimp

Peter Ardito

Fusilli With Lima Beans, Cabbage, and Shrimp

If your family loves seafood, try the pasta with shrimp. Serve garnished with freshly grated Parmesan cheese.

Originally published in the April 2011 issue of Parents magazine.

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