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Lemon-Basil Chicken-Pasta Salad

 25 Ratings
5 Comments
  • Prep Time 25 min
  • Total Time 1 hr 25 min
  • Servings 4
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Make a chicken pasta salad for dinner tonight. A homemade dressing with garlic, basil and Parm makes it delicious.

Ingredients

1/2
teaspoon salt (for cooking pasta), if desired
2
cups uncooked rotini or rotelle (spiral) pasta (6 oz)
10
asparagus stalks (about 8 oz)
1
clove garlic or 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
5
oz cooked chicken or turkey
1/2
cup fresh basil leaves
1/2
cup shredded Parmesan cheese (2 oz)
1/4
cup olive or vegetable oil
1
tablespoon grated lemon peel

Directions

  • 1 Fill a 4-quart Dutch oven about half full of water. Add 1/2 teaspoon salt if desired. Cover with lid; heat over high heat until water is boiling rapidly. Add the pasta. Heat to boiling again. Boil uncovered 9 to 11 minutes, stirring frequently, until tender but not mushy. While water is heating and pasta is cooking, continue with recipe.
  • 2 Break off and discard the tough ends of the asparagus stalks where they snap easily; wash asparagus. Cut asparagus into 1-inch pieces to measure 2 cups. Add asparagus to the pasta during the last 2 to 3 minutes of cooking.
  • 3 Peel and finely chop the garlic. Cut the chicken into 1/2-inch cubes to measure about 2 cups. Tear the basil leaves lengthwise into narrow strips.
  • 4 Place strainer or colander in the sink. Pour pasta and asparagus in the strainer to drain. Rinse with cold water; drain.
  • 5 In a large glass or plastic bowl, toss pasta, asparagus and chicken. Stir in garlic, basil, cheese, oil and lemon peel. Cover with plastic wrap; refrigerate 1 to 2 hours or until chilled.

Expert Tips

Substitute ham for the chicken and shredded Swiss cheese for the Parmesan cheese.

Cut edges of basil leaves turn black very quickly which is fine when adding to a sauce or mixture. Carefully tear the basil leaves just before adding to this salad to prevent the edges from darkening as quickly.

Rub the lemon peel over the small holes of a grater. Grate only the yellow peel because the white part (pith) is bitter.

Nutrition Information

NUTRITION INFORMATION PER SERVING

Serving Size: 1 Serving
Calories
440
Calories from Fat
190
% Daily Value
Total Fat
21g
33%
Saturated Fat
5g
26%
Trans Fat
0g
Cholesterol
45mg
15%
Sodium
250mg
10%
Potassium
270mg
8%
Total Carbohydrate
39g
13%
Dietary Fiber
3g
13%
Sugars
1g
Protein
24g
% Daily Value*:
Vitamin A
15%
15%
Vitamin C
4%
4%
Calcium
20%
20%
Iron
20%
20%
Exchanges:
2 Starch; 0 Fruit; 0 Other Carbohydrate; 0 Skim Milk; 0 Low-Fat Milk; 0 Milk; 1 Vegetable; 0 Very Lean Meat; 2 1/2 Lean Meat; 0 High-Fat Meat; 2 1/2 Fat;
Carbohydrate Choice
2 1/2
*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

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