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Southwestern Grilled Vegetable Pasta

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In my house we all love pasta and I especially love grilled vegetables, every kind. So a favourite dish of mine is this Southwestern Grilled Vegetable Pasta.

Many pasta recipes can be used as a guide…adjust freely based on the ingredients in your fridge, what vegetables are in season and your personal taste. The sauce in this recipe is an unusual combination of Southwestern and Asian cuisines. It is a guide from the cookbook Hot Pasta by Hugh Carpenter, one of my favourite authors. So even if you are missing one ingredient give it a try and see what you think.

Grilling Onions for Grilled Vegetable Pasta

My husband does the majority of grilling in our house but I generally do the prep. My tip for grilling onions is to use skewers. I peel a whole onion, hold it on it’s side then put the skewers in. I imagine cutting the onion into four thick rings and push the skewers in between those imaginary lines. The skewer just goes in until it hits the cutting board but that is enough to hold it together for the cutting. Skewering the onion slices makes them easier to manage.

Marinade vs Sauce

The sauce in this recipe doubles as a marinade, a brilliant step that makes this dinner a little bit easier. Measuring the ingredients right into a pyrex measuring cup decreases the amount of dishes used in the prep. Since there is no raw meat involved you can brush the marinade on the vegetables right from the cup leaving the sauce ready to be added to the hot pasta. These little practices help to get dinner on the table in less time and make clean up easier.

Chipotle Chiles

Chipotle chiles are smoked jalapenos in a spicy adobo sauce. They are readily available but if you are not familiar with them you can read my post on Flank Steak with chipotle-honey sauce or homemade chipotle mayo for more information.

I hope you create your version of this Southwestern Grilled Vegetable Pasta soon. Let me know in the comments below what changes you made.


6 large cauliflower florets, halved
12 asparagus spears, trimmed
4 carrots, peeled and cut lengthwise
1 red or yellow pepper, quartered
1 yellow or green zucchini sliced lengthwise into thick slices
½ red onion, sliced and skewered to hold it together
½ cup white wine
1/3 cup olive oil
1/3 cup lime juice
¼ cup GF soy sauce
2 tablespoons pureed canned chipotle chiles in adobo sauce (or 1-2 chiles, minced)
2 Tbsp brown sugar
1 tsp ground cumin
1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped


VEGETABLES - Cut and set aside on a platter while making the marinade.
MARINADE - Combine all marinade ingredients in a large pyrex measuring cup. Reserve about half to toss with cooked pasta.
Brush all the vegetables with remaining marinade and set aside for about 30 minutes.
GRILLING - Cook vegetables in batches on preheated barbecue, brush with additional marinade if desired. Remove vegetables from grill as they are cooked to your liking.
Cut vegetables into bite size pieces. Can be prepared several hours in advance.
PASTA - Bring water to boil and cook pasta according to package directions. Drain and rinse to stop cooking process.
Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in the pasta pot. Add grilled vegetables, stir gently to reheat. Add pasta and reserved marinade, toss to evenly combine. Taste and salt if needed.
SERVING - Sprinkle each dish with goat cheese, cilantro and pumpkin seeds. Serve immediately.


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