Healthy pasta salad with crayfish in 15 minutes

My culinary twist on a WeightWatchers salad that packs lots of greens and is ready in just a few minutes!

 

When I grew up I was a chubby little German… I started doing WeightWatchers, which was one of the reasons why I ended up cooking in the first place. Through changing my eating habits I was able to shed about 70 pounds in 1.5 years. One of my all time favorite WeightWatchers dishes to make was a particular pasta salad. But this salad is not your regular plate of green leafs with a boring dressing. It’s a complete filling meal that helps you to get your 5 portions of vegetables a day in.

Usually pasta salads in Germany are drenched in mayonnaise and fat. Luckily this salad is the complete opposite but packs a ton of flavor! Pasta with cucumber, tomatoes, peas, carrots, corn and drumroll please… crayfish! It’s the perfect side dish for a nice warm evening barbecuing with friends. No one will ever know, that they are eating something healthy! At least my friends surely didn’t notice…

The salad is so easy to make and most ingredients are almost always in my pantry and fridge anyway. While the pasta cooks, you will be able to cut up all your vegetables, so you’ll be eating in less than 15 minutes!

If you don’t have crayfish at hand or want to substitute it with something cheaper try a small portion of cut-up sliced ham or chicken! All kinds of small pieces of pasta work for this dish – penne, elbow macaroni, farfalle, etc. Everything will work, except for spaghetti I guess…

Though I haven’t counted WeightWatchers points for years, this whole salad should come down to about 5 points. However, you also still have to add the points for the pasta, which varies quite a lot, depending on the WW point system you are following.

As with all pasta salad, this one tastes better the next day. But hey, who has time for that – eat it right away if you are hungry!

My take on a WeightWatchers pasta salad

 

(For 4 people as a side salad, or as a full meal for 1 person)

Ingredients
  • 1 cup of pasta, any kinds of small pasta will do
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon herbal vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon sambal or any other hot sauce
  • 1 tablespoon ketjap manis (Indonesian thick sweet soy sauce), alternatively use regular soy sauce
  • 1/3rd cucumber
  • 1 red onion
  • 2 tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoons corn, from the can, drained
  • 3 tablespoons peas and carrots, from the jar, drained
  • 100g cooked crayfish
Cook your pasta, cut your veg and throw it all together. Done!

Bring water to a boil and cook your pasta with some salt according to the instructions. The cooking time varies a lot per pasta type, but it should be somewhere around 10-12 minutes.

In the meantime, grab a big salad bowl and make the dressing by adding the oil, vinegar, oregano, sambal and ketjap (or soy sauce). Mix well to combine.

Cut the cucumber lengthwise and scrape out the seeds with a spoon. This will make the salad less watery. Dice cucumber and the red onion. Cut the tomatoes into small chunks.

Add all your vegetables to the dressing, including the corn, peas, carrots, as well as the crayfish.

Once your pasta is cooked, put it in a strainer and rinse with cold water to cool it down. Add it to your salad. Season the salad with salt and pepper and give it another good toss to mix everything together.

Give the salad another good toss right before serving it with a smile!

 

Please let me know in the comments what you think of the recipe! Too much greens to count as a pasta salad? Do you have a better alternative for crayfish? Are you missing the mayo? Did your friends and family notice that you served a dish that will let them loose pounds? I want to know it all!

PS: If you are actually doing WeightWatchers right now, let me know what the actual amount of points is. We are in this together!

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