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Garden Pasta with Spinach and Cece al Forno

June 30, 2010


Gluten free, vegan 20 minute meal

Garden Pasta with Spinach and Cece al Forno

You will need

Equipment:  a bread pan, foil, a 3 qt sauce pan, olive oil spray


  • 2 oz quinoa pasta, rotini or garden pagodas (more if you eat more)
  • 1 15 oz can chick peas, drained and rinced
  • 1 cup of your favorite red sauce
  • 2 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1.5 tbsp tahini
  • .5 tbsp lemon juice
  • black pepper
  • salt
  • garlic powder
  • 2 cups baby spinach



  1. Turn oven to 400* F. Line bread pan with foil, spray with olive oil and pour chick peas in. Pour over 1/2 cup red sauce. Bake for 5 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, get a covered pan of hot water on the stove for pasta. Salt to taste.
  3. Mix together tahini, lemon juice, nutritional yeast, a pinch of salt, a pinch of garlic powder and a few grinds of black pepper. If needed, add some water. Pour on top of chick pea bake. Set timer for another 5 minutes.
  4. With another piece of foil, create a try by folding the sides up and crimping so it doesn’t fall apart. Spray with olive oil spray and spread out baby spinach.
  5. Add pasta to boiling water (cook for package directions or to desired done-ness)
  6. Turn oven to broil. Keep chick pea bake on top shelf but move it over to make room for the spinach. Broil for 4 minutes.
  7. Drain pasta, pour on to plate with another 1/4 cup of the sauce.
  8. Toss cooked spinach with a pinch of salt, pepper, and garlic. Toss on to pasta.
  9. Scoop out chick peas on to plate. Serve with the last little bit of sauce. Save leftover chickpeas for lunch.



Dishes to clean: 2 (your plate and the pot for pasta)

Health benefits: allergen free, healthy fats, B vitamins, Vitamin C, fiber, protein, rich in minerals.



If I show you photos of graduation, do you promise you won’t make fun of me?


Woo, it’s graduation day everyone pose for pictures.


So. much. fun. So my truck turned into a cow. So what? hahaha


Yup, we also crossed out “College of Charleston” and replaced it with “Uni Cornell”… totally normal.

I still haven’t removed the cow spots from my truck.

I love hearing strangers talk about how stupid it looks as I approach it in the parking lot. hahaha


Left: Mr. McC (Track coach and amazing AP Chem teacher) with me; Right: Parents and me


Vegan ice cream and finger lakes champagne to celebrate. Happy graduation! 🙂

What did you do to celebrate graduation (high school or college!)

13 Comments leave one →
  1. gina g permalink
    July 1, 2010 1:10 am

    aww i love your cow truck! i think its adorable 🙂 i just graduated (and started a summer class, boo haha) but i have just been spending time with my friends and family! Their are/have been so many grad parties, so it has been a blast! i love it!

  2. July 1, 2010 1:36 am

    haha, your cow truck is too adorable! 😉 Glad you had such a wonderful graduation experience!! Your pasta dish looks wonderful and I love that it’s gluten free!! 🙂

  3. July 1, 2010 2:35 am

    That truck is super cute…congrats on graduation!! 🙂

  4. July 1, 2010 4:21 am

    So happy for you! You’ve got the world at your fingertips!! I won’t tell anyone you had champagne 😉


  5. July 1, 2010 4:31 am

    The pasta sounds like a great recipe to try!

    Aww you look beautiful in that dress, and so happy! Love the cow truck 🙂

  6. Jenna Quick permalink
    July 1, 2010 6:32 am

    Woo! Finally, we did it!!! 😀

  7. July 1, 2010 7:49 am

    Your truck is so cute!
    When I graduated, we had a big family lunch 🙂

  8. July 1, 2010 9:15 am

    Mae- can you come over and make me dinner, please? I would also like a ride in your cow truck. Thanks. I’ll pay you with wine (shh-don’t tell anyone!)

    ps- you looked beautiful on your graduation day! Why would anybody laugh at you!?

    Uncommon Grounds soon, please!

    • July 1, 2010 2:21 pm

      Yesss ma’am!! 🙂

      • Jenna Quick permalink
        July 2, 2010 5:29 am

        Ha! You started ma’am-ing!! 😀 That made my day.

  9. July 3, 2010 11:24 am

    Cow truck = aweeeesome! Nice pasta, too. If I fed it to my parents (who think veganism, etc. are strange), the fact that it is vegan would never even cross their minds. I think that’s the way to get people to open their minds.

  10. July 7, 2010 3:07 am

    Happy belated graduation to you girl, isnt it such a great feeling! Now we are off for the summer, and then back to hittin the books in the fall! I cant wait 🙂

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