Summer cookouts go hand in hand with potato salad, coleslaw, macaroni salad … and mayonnaise! We don’t consider ourselves to be “anti” mayonnaise, but whenever there’s an opportunity to add extra nutrition to our recipes we go for it. Our newest recipe for Macaroni Avocado Salad calls for zero mayo. To replace it, we use our super-healthy homemade Green Goddess dressing; it’s made with avocados fresh from the Golden State, low-fat Greek yogurt, fresh herbs, olive oil, lemon juice, and garlic. And for the pasta, we add extra fiber by switching from the usual white to a whole wheat blend. Oh, and to health-ify this classic side dish even more, we toss in the summer’s best tomatoes and corn.
Macaroni Avocado Salad
- 3 cups dried whole wheat blend macaroni
- 3 ripe avocados, halved, peeled and seeded
- ½ cup low-fat plain Greek yogurt
- ¼ cup fresh basil, packed
- ¼ cup fresh mint, packed
- 3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 3 Tbsp lemon juice, divided
- 1 tsp lemon zest
- 1 small clove garlic
- ½ tsp kosher salt
- ¼ tsp black pepper
- 1 pint grape tomatoes, halved
- 1 cup fresh corn kernels (or frozen and thawed)
- Basil and mint, chopped (garnish)
Cook the pasta according to package directions.
While the pasta is cooking, place an avocado half in the bowl of a food processor or blender. Add the yogurt, basil, mint, olive oil, two tablespoons of the lemon juice, lemon zest, garlic, salt and pepper and process until smooth and creamy. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.
Drain the pasta and place in a large bowl. Cool completely. Stir the dressing into the pasta until well combined. Meanwhile, cut the remaining avocados into ¾-inch dice. Gently stir into the pasta with the tomatoes, corn and the remaining lemon juice.
Season with salt and pepper to taste, garnish with additional chopped herbs, and serve.
Serves 8. Per serving: 370 calories, 44g carbs, 10g protein, 19g fat, 140mg sodium, 10g fiber
About the Author
Liz Weiss, MS, RD and Janice Newell Bissex, MS, RD are The Meal Makeover Moms, and together they’re on a mission to help busy families eat better. For more recipes, check out their new cookbook, No Whine with Dinner, read their blog, Meal Makeover Moms’ Kitchen, or listen to their free radio podcast, Cooking with the Moms.