Elbow Salad with Avocado Courtesy of Passion For Pasta

It’s that time of the year, again! When your taste buds start asking for something refreshing and light, instead of the heavy and warm dishes you usually crave during the wintertime.

However, getting into the spring and summer food trends doesn’t necessarily mean giving up an all-time favorite: pasta. Pasta is a highly versatile ingredient that is affordable and can provide quick meals the whole family can enjoy.

Dried pasta has a shelf life of about 1-2 years past printed date, meanwhile, cooked pasta can last in the fridge for up to 7 days! That makes for great dinners that turn into bring-to-work or school lunches.

Because at Latin Times we want to make your life easier, we have gathered a couple of Latin-inspired recipes that you can try next week and enjoy with your family members.

They are extremely easy to make and call for basic ingredients such as tomato, avocado, fresh mozzarella, to name a few, and of course, they are also healthy and delicious!

Check our favorites below and for more delightful options go to

Elbows Salad with Avocado Courtesy of Passion For Pasta

1) Elbows Salad with Avocado

Serving: 7 people


1 box elbows

7 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil divided

1 teaspoon brown mustard

1 lemon juiced and zested

3 cups avocado, diced

2 cups plum tomatoes diced

½ lb. baby mozzarella cubed

1 tablespoon oregano chopped

Salt and black pepper to taste


1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil, season with salt.

2. Cook pasta 1 minute less than packaged directions.

3. Drain and toss pasta with 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large mixing bowl.

4. Place pasta on a sheet tray to cool down.

5. Combine mustard with lemon juice and zest in a separate large mixing bowl.

6. Drizzle in the remaining olive oil slowly to make a creamy dressing, season with salt and black pepper.

7. Add pasta, tomatoes, avocado and mozzarella, stir to combine.

8. Add in the chopped oregano before serving.

Pasta 2
Shells with Cherry Tomatoes Courtesy of Passion For Pasta

2) Shells with Cherry Tomatoes

Serving: 6 people


1 box shells

4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

½ small onion diced

2 pints cherry tomatoes halved

6 leaves basil julienned

½ cup Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese grated

Salt and pepper to taste


1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil.

2. In a large skillet, cook onion in olive oil for 3-4 minutes or until translucent.

3. Add tomatoes and sauté for 3-4 minutes until blistered.

4. Season with salt and pepper.

5. Cook pasta 1 minute less than package directions, drain and toss with sauce and ½ cup pasta cooking water.

6. Remove from heat and add basil and cheese.

7. Stir to combine and serve.

pasta 3
Three Chile Chicken Mac Courtesy of Passion For Pasta

3) 3 Chile Chicken Mac

Servings: 8 persons


1 box elbows

2 poblano peppers, roasted and peeled

2 serrano peppers, roasted

3 dried guajillo peppers, seeded and charred

1 jar roasted garlic tomato sauce

3 cups pulled rotisserie chicken meat

½ cup toasted pumpkin seeds

6 ounces queso fresco cheese, crumbled

1/2 cup chopped cilantro


1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Cook the pasta according to the directions, drain.

2. In a dry skillet char the peppers. Peel and deseed the poblanos and cut into strips.

3. Char serranos whole and cut off stem.

4. In a blender add guarjillo and serrano peppers with a small amount of water and puree.

5. In a saucepan, add poblano strips, chicken meat, and chile pepper puree to the tomato sauce and simmer about 8 minutes.

6. Add cooked pasta and stir to blend, cooking for about 2 minutes.

7. Divide among 8 portions and top with crumbled queso fresco, toasted pumpkin seeds and chopped cilantro.

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Shrimp Cocktail Pasta Courtesy of Passion For Pasta

4) Shrimp Cocktail Pasta

Servings: 8 people


1 box ditalini pasta

24 medium shrimp, peeled and deveined, 21-25 count

2 tablespoons olive oil 1 cup red onion, diced 2 cups diced Roma tomato

1 cup avocado, diced

1 tablespoon minced Serrano pepper, seeds removed

8 sprigs fresh cilantro

8 lime wedges


2 ounces light lime vinaigrette dressing

¼ cup fresh cilantro, minced

1 ½ cups Bloody Mary mix

½ ounce Silver tequila


1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil; cook the pasta according to the directions, drain 
2. Heat a 12-inch skillet with olive oil and sauté shrimp for 6 minutes or cooked through; season with salt and pepper; chill shrimp in refrigerator for at least 2 hours.

3. In a large mixing bowl combine lime vinaigrette dressing, Bloody Mary mix, and tequila.

4. In a large mixing bowl combine cooked pasta, diced tomatoes, diced red onions, Serrano pepper, and dressing mixture and toss gently.

5. To assemble, portion pasta into pasta bowls; top with vegetable mixture and shrimp.

6. Garnish with a fresh sprig of cilantro and a lime wedge.

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