Let’s face it. We all love Italian cuisine for its delicious, satisfying flavors. Unfortunately, traditional Italian recipes can be loaded with carbs, calories, and unhealthy fats. Luckily, there are plenty of healthy Italian recipes out there that are just as tasty (if not more!) than their less nutritious counterparts. In this article, we’ll explore five of the best healthy Italian recipes to help you satisfy your cravings without sacrificing flavor or nutrition.
1. Spaghetti Squash Carbonara
Carbonara is a classic Italian dish that typically consists of spaghetti noodles, bacon, egg yolks, and lots of cheese. While it’s undoubtedly delicious, it’s also incredibly heavy and high in calories. Thankfully, you can recreate the flavors of carbonara with a few healthy twists. One of the best ways to do this is by swapping out the noodles for spaghetti squash.
Spaghetti squash is a healthy alternative to traditional pasta that’s low in calories, high in fiber, and packed with vitamins and minerals. To make spaghetti squash carbonara, start by roasting your spaghetti squash in the oven. While it’s cooking, sauté some diced bacon or pancetta in a pan until it’s crispy. Remove the bacon from the pan, leaving the fat behind. Whisk together some egg yolks, grated parmesan cheese, and a bit of black pepper. Once the spaghetti squash is done, scrape the flesh out of the squash and add it to the pan with the bacon fat. Toss everything together until the squash is coated in the bacon fat, then pour the egg yolk mixture over the top. Stir everything together until the eggs are cooked and the sauce is creamy. Top with the crispy bacon and additional parmesan cheese if desired.
2. Zucchini Lasagna
Who doesn’t love lasagna? Unfortunately, traditional lasagna is loaded with calories and carbs thanks to all of the noodles and cheese. Thankfully, there’s a healthier alternative: zucchini lasagna.
Zucchini lasagna is made by swapping out the noodles for thin slices of zucchini. You can either use a mandoline slicer to get even, thin slices, or use a vegetable peeler to create wider, ribbon-like strips. Layer the zucchini slices in a greased baking dish, alternating with tomato sauce, ricotta cheese, and your choice of protein (we recommend ground turkey or lean ground beef). Sprinkle with shredded mozzarella cheese and bake in the oven until the cheese is melted and bubbly.
3. Grilled Eggplant Parmesan
Eggplant parmesan is a classic Italian dish that’s typically breaded, fried, and loaded with cheese. While it’s delicious, it’s also incredibly unhealthy. Thankfully, you can recreate the flavors of eggplant parmesan with a much healthier twist: grilling.
To make grilled eggplant parmesan, slice an eggplant into 1/4 inch rounds. Brush them lightly with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Grill the eggplant rounds over medium-high heat until they’re tender and lightly charred. Once the eggplant is done, top each round with tomato sauce and a slice of fresh mozzarella cheese. Return to the grill and cook until the cheese is melted and bubbly. Serve hot.
4. Chicken Cutlet with Arugula Salad
Chicken cutlet is a beloved Italian dish that’s usually breaded, fried, and served with a side of pasta. While it’s delicious, it’s not exactly healthy. To make a healthier version of this classic dish, skip the breading and frying and opt for a simple grilled chicken cutlet instead.
To make chicken cutlet with arugula salad, start by marinating your chicken breasts in a mixture of olive oil, lemon juice, and herbs. Grill the chicken until it’s cooked through, then slice it into thin pieces. Toss some arugula with lemon juice, olive oil, and a bit of salt and pepper. Serve the grilled chicken on top of the arugula salad.
5. Cauliflower Pizza Crust
Pizza is a staple of Italian cuisine, but traditional pizza crust is loaded with carbs and calories. Thankfully, there’s a healthier alternative: cauliflower crust.
Cauliflower crust is made by pulsing raw cauliflower in a food processor until it’s finely chopped. You can then mix the cauliflower with egg, cheese, and seasonings to create a pizza crust that’s low in carbs and calories. Top with your favorite healthy toppings (we recommend veggies and lean proteins) and bake in the oven until the crust is crispy.
There you have it – five healthy Italian recipes to satisfy your cravings without sacrificing nutrition or flavor. Whether you’re in the mood for pasta, pizza, or a classic Italian dish, these recipes have got you covered. So next time you’re craving Italian cuisine, give these healthy recipes a try – your taste buds (and your waistline) will thank you!
Thank you for reading this article – we hope you found it informative and inspiring. Try out these recipes and let us know which one is your favorite!