Recipe – Baby Pasta Shells with Asparagus and Marinara Sauce

I found this on my favorite site,  I hope you enjoy it, I definitely think that I will…

A light Spring pasta dish the whole family will enjoy; baby shells are tossed with chopped asparagus and a light marinara sauce.  Quick and easy, perfect for vegetarians or meatless Fridays.

I wish there was more variety in pasta shapes for high fiber and whole wheat pastas. If you prefer to use a high fiber pasta, low carb or gluten-free pasta you can use elbows instead.

Baby Pasta Shells with Asparagus and Marinara Sauce

Gina’s Weight Watcher Recipes

Servings: 4

Serving Size: 1-1/4 cups

Old Points: 5 pts

Points+: 7 pts

Calories: 282.5

Fat: 3.6 g

Carbs: 52 g

Fiber: 4.2

Protein: 11.2 g


8 oz baby pasta shells (gluten free use brown rice pasta)

1 bunch thin asparagus, tough ends removed

1 1/2 cups homemade marinara sauce (recipe follows)

1/4 cup Pecorino Romano

salt and fresh pepper to taste


Boil about 4 inches of water in a large pot, when boiling add asparagus and cook about 2 to 3 minutes, or until tender crisp.  Drain and chop into small bite sized pieces.

Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil (you can use the same pot from the asparagus not to dirty too many dishes).  Cook pasta according to package directions for al dente.

While pasta is cooking, in a medium saucepan heat 1-1/2 cups marinara sauce.  Drain pasta and RESERVE a cup of the pasta water.

Return pasta back to the pot and toss with marinara, asparagus, grated cheese, salt and pepper and a 1/4 cup of the pasta water or as needed to loosen the sauce.  Divide between four bowls and top with fresh pepper and more grated cheese if desired.

Quick Marinara Sauce

Gina’s Weight Watcher Recipes

Servings: 6

Serving Size: 1/2 cup

Old Points: 1 pt

Points+: 1 pt

Calories: 51.5

Fat: 0.8

Carbs: 9.0 g

Fiber: 1.1

Protein: 0.1 g


1 tsp olive oil

2-3 large cloves garlic, smashed

28 oz cans crushed tomatoes (I love Tuttorosso)

1 small bay leaf

1 tsp dried oregano

2 tbsp chopped fresh basil

salt and fresh pepper to taste


In a medium pot, heat olive oil over medium heat.  Add garlic and saute until golden, careful not to burn.  Add crushed tomatoes, salt, pepper, oregano, and bay leaf.  Stir and reduce heat to low.  Cover and let simmer about 15 – 20 minutes, add basil just before done.


Posted on March 22, 2012, in Recipes and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.

  1. Reblogged this on Inspiredweightloss.

  2. Ola! Myjourneythroughthickandthin,
    Thanks for your thoughts, Who doesn’t love a good dish of pasta? I know I do.
    All the Best

  3. Great sounding dish and it’s always appreciated that the WW points are included…less counting for my wife. 🙂

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