Low-Sodium Pasta Recipes for a Hearty, Healthy Meal

Updated: May 17, 2024

Want a hearty dinner that is also hearty healthy? These lower sodium pasta recipes are just the ticket!

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Blushing Penne Pasta

I reworked this recipe from an original that called for vodka and heavy whipping cream. My friends and family had a hard time believing a sauce this rich, flavorful and creamy could be light. —Margaret Wilson, Hemet, California
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Authentic Pasta Carbonara

I learned on my culinary internship in Tuscany that real Italian cuisine is simpler than you think! This carbonara is quick, simple and delicious, just the way they like it in Italy. —Lauren Brien-Wooster, South Lake Tahoe, California
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Slow-Cooker Short Rib Ragu over Pappardelle

An irresistible sauce gives the beef in this short rib ragu another dimension of flavor. Nearly any starchy side, such as potatoes or polenta, will work in place of the pasta. Short ribs are my crowd-pleaser weekend meal for all occasions. —Missy Raho, Morristown, New Jersey
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Thai Chicken Pasta Skillet

This gorgeous Bangkok-style pasta has been a faithful standby for many years and always gets loads of praise. For a potluck, we increase it and do it ahead. —Susan Ten Pas, Myrtle Creek, Oregon
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Harvest Bow Ties

Spaghetti squash and bow ties make this meatless dish hearty and filling. Add a can of black beans if you'd like more protein, and switch up the tomatoes for variety. Try using Italian diced tomatoes or diced tomatoes with mild green chiles. —Anne Lynch, Beacon, New York
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Spicy Pork and Butternut Squash Ragu

This recipe is a marvelously spicy combo that's perfect for cooler fall weather and satisfying after a day spent outdoors. —Monica Osterhaus, Paducah, Kentucky
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Lemon Shrimp Linguine

I like recipes with elegant taste and easy technique like this lemony shrimp pasta. Bring on the Parmesan and a sprinkle of red pepper flakes. —Patty Walker, West Des Moines, Iowa
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Summertime Spaghetti with Grilled Meatballs

After Hurricane Sandy, we were without power for two weeks. I learned what you can make on a grill, such as these smoky meatballs and tomato sauce. —Andrea Rivera, Westbury, New York
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Chicken and Shrimp with Lemon Cream Sauce

My kids love this creamy pasta. Whenever I make it, I know that they will happily clean their plates. —Joe Milholland, Smelterville, Idaho
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Pepper Ricotta Primavera

Garlic, peppers and herbs top creamy ricotta cheese in this meatless skillet meal you can make in just 20 minutes. —Janet Boulger, Botwood, Newfoundland and Labrador
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Mushroom Pork Ragout

Savory slow-cooked pork is luscious served in a delightful tomato gravy over noodles. It’s a nice change from regular pork roast. I serve it with broccoli or green beans on the side. —Connie McDowell, Greenwood, Delaware
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Cajun Chicken & Pasta

This kicked-up pasta dish is a family favorite and my most-requested recipe. It's easy to adapt too. Substitute shrimp for the chicken, add your favorite veggies and adjust the spice level to your family's taste—you can't go wrong! —Dolly Kragel, Sloan, Iowa
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Lemony Shrimp & Snow Pea Pasta

This pretty pasta is a family favorite —the kids love the light lemony flavor and I love that they devour the fresh veggies. You can use other types of pasta for variety, like bow ties or corkscrews. —Jennifer Fisher, Austin, Texas
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Butternut Squash and Sausage Stuffed Shells

I rarely invite friends for dinner without someone requesting this easy pasta casserole. The sweet squash complements the spicy sausage, and the creamy goat cheese makes it all just melt in your mouth! You can substitute manicotti or even rolled lasagna noodles for the shells. The stuffed shells and sauce can be prepared a day ahead and assembled just before baking. —Taylor Hale, Sonoma, California
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Mushroom Hunter's Sauce

Hunter sauce is a rich brown sauce with an accent of tomato. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
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Gluten-Free Chili Beef Pasta

After I got married, my aunt gave me her recipe for skillet spaghetti and told me it was ideal for a quick weeknight meal. Over the years I’ve tinkered with the ingredients and played with the seasonings to make it healthier. It's a dish my family truly loves. —Kristen Killian, Depew, New York
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Vegetarian Linguine

Looking for a tasty alternative to a meat-and-potatoes meal? Try this colorful pasta dish, which is the brainchild of my oldest son. It’s a stick-to-your-ribs meal that includes loads of fresh veggies as well as basil and provolone. —Jane Bone, Cape Coral, Florida
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Rosemary Shrimp with Spaghetti

I came up with this recipe on a busy weeknight when I was pressed for time. Now it’s my go-to dish whenever I need a quick, nutritious meal. Serve this with garlic bread so you can scoop every last bit of goodness off your plate! —Candace Havely, Sterling, Colorado
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Steak & Mushroom Stroganoff

This homey recipe of steak and egg noodles in a creamy sauce is just like what we had at my gran's house when we visited. It's one of my favorite "memory meals," as I call them. —Janelle Shank, Omaha, Nebraska
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Chicken Curry Lasagna

My family loves Indian food, and I thought the creamy tomato-based sauce in our favorite curry would be tasty as part of a lasagna. This is a yummy and exciting comfort food for our family! —Elisabeth Larsen, Pleasant Grove, Utah
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Stuffed Pasta Shells

These savory shells never fail to make a big impression, even though the recipe is very easy. One or two of these shells makes a great individual serving at a potluck, so a single batch goes a long way. —Jena Coffey, St. Louis, Missouri
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Beef Burgundy Over Noodles

I got this delightful beef burgundy recipe from my sister-in-law many years ago and have used it ever since. Whenever I serve it to guests, they always request this. The tender beef, mushrooms and flavorful sauce are delicious over noodles. —Margaret Welder, Madrid, Iowa
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Rustic Summer Vegetable Pasta

My veggie pasta proves you can’t have too much of a good thing. Feel free to change it up with whatever fresh veggies are in the garden or farmers market. —Bryn Namavari, Chicago, Illinois
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Cheese Tortellini with Tomatoes and Corn

Fresh corn and basil make this dish taste like summer. I think it's a good one for bringing to picnics or gatherings, but it's great along with any side dish for a weeknight dinner! —Sally Maloney, Dallas, Georgia
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Shrimp Orzo with Feta

Tender, hearty and flavorful, this recipe is one of my favorites! Garlic and a splash of lemon add to the fresh taste and heart-healthy benefits of shrimp. —Sarah Hummel, Moon Township, Pennsylvania
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Mushroom Bolognese with Whole Wheat Pasta

A traditional Bolognese sauce is meat-based with everything from pork to pancetta. Skipping the meat, I loaded this pasta dish with baby portobellos and veggies. —Amber Massey, Argyle, Texas
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Ricotta, Tomato & Corn Pasta

I love to make healthy meals with produce from my latest farmers market trip. This pasta takes just 30 minutes from pantry to dinner table. You can easily make it a meat entree by adding cooked, shredded chicken. —Jerilyn Korver, Bellflower, California
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Meatball Tortellini

I combined some favorite staples from our freezer and pantry to come up with this easy dish. It has few ingredients and little preparation. —Tracie Bergeron, Chauvin, Louisiana
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Jiffy Ground Pork Skillet

Some people call it dinner hour, but many of us call it rush hour. Slow down the pace with this so-simple mouthwatering ground pork meal. The only thing you'll have left over is time to share with your family at the table. —Brigitte Schaller, Flemington, Missouri
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Sweet Onion & Sausage Spaghetti

Sweet onion seasons turkey, adding rich flavor to Mary Relyea’s wholesome pasta dish. At home in Canastota, New York, she tosses it together with light cream, basil and tomatoes for a quick, springy meal in minutes.
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Light Linguine Carbonara

When we have to rush off at night, I make this speedy pasta with veggies and bacon. Serve with breadsticks or garlic toast, and dinner's done. —Mary Jo Miller, Mansfield, Ohio
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Broccoli Mac & Cheese Bake

My husband made a version of this casserole for me on our first date. Over the 11 years we’ve been married, we’ve made several changes to the ingredients and now it’s even better than the original. —Lisa DeMarsh, Mount Solon, Virginia
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Asian Pork Linguine

Peanut butter, ginger and honey make an easy, authentic-tasting sauce for Asian pork and noodles. If I have fresh ginger on hand, I grate 1/4 teaspoon to use in place of the ground ginger. —Lisa Varner, El Paso, Texas
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Mediterranean Pork and Orzo

On a really busy day, this meal in a bowl is one of my top picks. It's quick to put together, leaving a lot more time to relax at the table. —Mary Relyea, Canastota, New York
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Ravioli with Snap Peas & Mushrooms

Topped with the toasty texture and flavor of hazelnuts, this pasta makes an easy, earthy weeknight dinner. I serve it with an herb and lettuce salad and white wine. —Charlene Chambers, Ormond Beach, Florida
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Italian Spaghetti with Chicken & Roasted Vegetables

When I get a craving for homemade tomato sauce, I make a zesty batch to toss with chicken and veggies. The flavors do wonders for penne, too. —Carly Curtin, Ellicott City, Maryland
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Greek Salad Ravioli

Turn the fresh flavors of a Greek salad into a warm dish for cold winter nights. I like to make a large batch, freeze it, then simply drop ravioli into simmering water for dinner in five minutes! —Carla Mendres, Winnipeg, Manitoba
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Christmas Eve Confetti Pasta

This easy Christmas dinner has become a holiday tradition in our home. All the prep is done before we attend Christmas Eve service. On returning, I just boil water and saute. It's so colorful with a tossed salad and garlic bread — and always gets raves! — Ellen Fiore, Ridgewood, New Jersey
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Italian Turkey Skillet

It's a challenge to find imaginative ways to use leftovers, especially for turkey after Thanksgiving. Here's a favorite of mine that you can easily make ahead for another dinner option. Prepare the recipe as directed, then transfer to a casserole dish and freeze up to three months. —Patricia Kile, Nokomis, Florida
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Grilled Shrimp & Tomatoes with Linguine

This pasta came about one night when I started making up dinner as I went along, using what I had on hand. We knew it turned out amazing with the very first bite. —Lisa Bynum, Brandon, Mississippi
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Pear & Turkey Sausage Rigatoni

The sweet pear, salty sausage and creamy blue cheese are a wonderful combination in this dish. It tastes just like something you'd get at a great restaurant. —Debby Harden, Williamston, Michigan
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Chicken Broccoli Shells

This cheesy entree is a make-ahead dream. Just assemble it ahead of time and put it in the oven when company arrives. I round out the meal with a tossed salad and warm bread. —Karen Jagger, Columbia City, Indiana
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Bow Ties with Sausage & Asparagus

We love asparagus, so I look for ways to go green. This pasta dish comes together fast on hectic nights and makes wonderful leftovers. —Carol Suto, Liverpool, New York