Food… I love it! Really, who doesn’t? And if there is the occasional person who says

they don’t enjoy the joys food has to offer, they’re LYING! Not only do I enjoy eating

food, I love to cook it as well. As a matter of fact, I am writing this blog in the middle of

cooking chocolate peppermint cupcakes for a few Christmas parities I will be attending

over the next few days. One of my very favorite things to cook, other than sweet treats,

is PASTA! It it’s really quite sad that an average size person such as myself can

consume such large portions of complex carbohydrates, especially when said person

has a medical condition that says it would behoove them not to eat 5lbs of pasta in one

sitting… But my love cannot be tamed. It is a fine challenge to go into the kitchen, see

what you have available to work with and then create a beautiful and unique dish from

nothing more than a few ingredients. I find this challenge easiest when pasta is

involved! After all, pasta goes with everything: chicken, fish, shrimp, beef, and an

endless amount of vegetables, sauces and herbs. Earlier this year I was in the kitchen

and as per usual when in the kitchen, I was hungry. It was summer and we had a vast

supply of fresh tomatoes, I put some pasta on to boil and went to the fridge to see what

we had to add to the dish. There I found some shrimp, a little spinach and a lime… I

threw it all together with a few spices and voila… Chili Lime Shrimp Pasta was born and

it was DELICIOUS! A few days after my experiment in the kitchen I received an email

from the “Aetna Healthy Food Fight”, they were sponsoring a recipe contest featuring

health conscious recipes. After thinking over all the ingredients in my head I thought

“Hey, that’s got to be pretty healthy” so I filled out the forms and entered. Well, low and

behold after a few weeks of online voting, I was chosen to cook my recipe at the “Taste

of Atlanta” where judges would taste my dish and determine if it would advance to the

final round. It was a fun and exciting experience (you can read more about it in my blog:

Aetna Healthy Food Fight (A.K.A My Brief Stint as a Wanna Be Food Network Star)) and

even though I didn’t advance to the final round my recipe was featured on the nationally

syndicated show “The Daily Buzz”, pretty cool I think:) Anyway, the moral of the story is

this, cooking + pasta = 2 of my favorite things and in an effort to share those things with

you this holiday season you can find my “Chili Lime Shrimp Pasta” recipe below. I’d love

to cook it for all of you, and if you stop by my house I probably will, but for now you

should try it on your own, I promise it will make your holidays merry and bright (and give

your thighs a break from all the high calorie Christmas food). And for todays winner, a

whole cookbook full of wonderful pasta dishes… that lucky person (who gets to cook me

dinner all next week) is… Haley Mckenzie! Congratulations Haley!!! I hope you enjoy

cooking all of these delicious dishes:) Check back tomorrow for more prizes and

winners, it could be you!!!




Chili-Lime Shrimp Pasta


Preparation Time

10 minutes

Cook Time

20 minutes


  1. •Put whole grain pasta on to boil. I use water with olive oil, lemon juice and lots of salt and pepper for well flavored pasta. Remove the tails from the shrimp. In a large skillet, heat olive oil and garlic. Add shrimp, lime juice, salt, pepper, garlic salt and chili powder. Cook until shrimp are heated well and juice begins to thicken. Add chopped tomatoes, allow to cook until tender. Add chopped spinach, stir and remove from heat as spinach will wilt quickly. The pasta should be ready to serve at this point. Place pasta into a bowl and top with cooked shrimp and sauce, toss together. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.


  1. •4 servings Whole Grain Thin Spaghetti Pasta – Barilla 40 medium (shelled) Shrimp
  2. •4 Tbs. Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  3. •1 Juice of
  4. •1 lime (2″ dia.)
  5. •2 cups chopped or sliced Tomatoes
  6. •2 cups Spinach
  7. •1 Tbs. Black Pepper
  8. •1 tsp. Chili Powder
  9. •1 tsp. Minced Garlic
  10. •1 fl. oz. Lemon Juice 0.5 serving Garlic Salt – Lawry’s
  11. •1 oz. Parmesan Cheese (Fat-Free Topping) 0.5 tsp. Salt