Saturday, August 20, 2011

Spinach Pasta Salad and Organic Greens Sale/Coupon Alert!

I love pasta salads and green salads as main dishes in the summer--they are light but filling and easy too. I got a great deal on two packages of organic spinach today, so I am frantically coming up with some new ways to use it, especially since I still have another coupon to use for two more before next Wednesday when the sale is up. If you have a Hy-Vee near you, select varieties of their Earthbound Farm Organic salad greens in the 5-7 oz clamshell are on sale two for $5. If you redeem your Recyclebank points for a $2 off two Earthbound Farm Organic products, which is what I did, that makes them only two for $3! Or you can take Earthbound Farm Organic's organic farming quiz and earn a coupon for $1 off, making them two for $4, still a great deal. I didn't want to cook the spinach, as my family enjoys it raw, and I didn't want a plain spinach salad, so I decided to combine a green salad and pasta salad, and here you have it.

I have written the recipe so that it is easy to tailor the flavor to what you and your family like. Use whatever vegetables and herbs you prefer. I used a few organic baby carrots since they were on sale, and then I used what was available in the garden tonight, which was green beans and tomatoes. I forgot I had wanted to add some scallion, that would have been a nice flavor in there. Even just some slivered baby carrots would be great--no need to get fancy, use what you like, what you find in the garden, at the farmers market or on sale at the grocery store. My parsley is about done, so I picked some chives and basil tonight. We ate this as a meatless main dish, though we plan to enjoy it with sliced grilled chicken breast added as well. It's great for either a side or main dish, and you can easily adjust it if you need more or less. This recipe is not heavy on the dressing, as I can't stand soggy spinach, but if you need more, add another tablespoon or two of oil and/or vinegar or even a little vegetable or chicken stock.

This salad with no meat or cheese (I actually intended to add cheese and forgot), combined with a $2 (on sale) pineapple and four of my 100% whole wheat buns with a little honey (the baby and I did not partake) brings the grand total for tonight's supper to $4.62! I will also show the cost for me to add chicken and/or cheese to the recipe just for reference, though depending on what you buy, you could certainly add chicken or any other meat for much cheaper (Hy-Vee has split chicken breasts on sale for $.88/lb this week too).

Spinach Pasta Salad

6 oz dry pasta
2 cups baby spinach, torn if necessary
2 cups chopped fresh vegetables
4 Tbsp olive oil
4 Tbsp red wine vinegar
1 clove garlic, finely minced
1 Tbsp onion, finely minced
2 Tbsp fresh herbs, chopped (about 2 tsp dried)
1/2 tsp salt (or to taste)
1/2 tsp black pepper (or to taste)
Optional: 2 cups diced/shredded chicken, turkey beef or pork
Optional: 2 oz shredded Parmesan or crumbled Feta cheese  (about 1/2 cup)

Directions: Before preparing pasta according to package directions, combine olive oil, vinegar, garlic, onion, herbs and salt and pepper in a small bowl and let sit. When pasta is finished, place it in a large bowl and add dressing, stirring until the pasta is well coated. Add vegetables, spinach, cheese and meat if using and stir. Check  for any additional salt/pepper needed. Serve slightly warm or chill in fridge before serving.


Pasta (whole wheat rotini): $1.22/13.6 oz box, used 1/2 = $.61
Baby spinach (organic): $1.50/pkg after sale and coupon, used 1/2 = $.75
Baby carrots (organic): On sale $1.50/1-lb bag, used 1/5 =$.30

Total Cost: $1.66
Six Servings: $.28 per serving

Add meat and/or cheese:

Chicken breast (veg-fed/no antibiotics): On sale $5.49/lb, use 3/4 lb = $4.12
Feta cheese: $3.29/pkg, use BOGO free coupon ($1.65 each), use 1/2 of one pkg = $.83


  1. This is FANTASTIC. I'm going to have to make this for sure.

    Thanks for your sweet comment. Following back! :)

  2. Yum, thanks for sharing! I'm a new follower!

  3. That looks really good! Too bad I don't have a Hy-Vee nor a Publix near me.

    P.S. thanks for stopping by my site :)