Trader Joe’s Spicy Thai Style Pasta Salad with Chicken Breast

I had been eyeing thisSpicy Thai Style Pasta Salad with Chicken Breast at Trader Joe’s the last few times I’ve been to the store. I finally picked it up and decided to give it a try.
The meal is ideally made to be eaten cold, but I did pop my serving (which is half the container) into the microwave for 30 seconds just to take the chill off it – primarily off the chicken. I will say half a serving is not a lot of food, so I did have some steamed broccoli and carrots on the side to help “bulk” up the dish.  Flavor wise it’s very good, but as the package states it’s definitely spicy.  It’s not burn a hole in your mouth spicy, but it will make your lips and tongue tingle for a while as and after you finish eating it. There’s more pasta, scallions (green onions) and carrots in the dish with a very minimal sprinkling of chicken.  If this were to be someone’s lunch or dinner I’d suggest some additional protein or a vegetable on the side to help satisfy.
A serving is 290 calories and is 8 points plus values.  Not the greatest of stats for what you get, but for a different sort of meal once in a while – I say, why not?
What is your favorite take and make meal from Trader Joe’s?

Pasta Salad

When spring and summer roll around this is one dish that is highly requested from me to bring to cookouts (as well as my simple tossed salad for some reason) and it’s such a simple recipe.  My boyfriend LOVES my pasta salad and if I ever mention the phrase “pasta salad” we typically end up having it that week in the fridge to pair against all of our meals.
It takes about 20 minutes to whip together and it does taste delicious straight out of the bowl after making it, but if you allow the flavors to marinate overnight in the fridge it really tastes 100% better.  If I do make this and have it for the next day, I do add a little more dressing to it just to make it wetter – but otherwise it’s perfect.
This is a great side to bring to a barbecue because this way you can rely on at least one side dish that you know is point friendly.  It’d also be great to have as a side dish with any meat – chicken, steak, sausage, hamburger, etc.
5 Points Plus Values per serving.  Serves 14.  Serving size is roughly ¾ to 1 cup.
Bring a seasoned (with salt) pot of water up to boil and boil your pasta until al dente.
While your water is boiling dice up your red peppers (you can use red and green if you wish or green, I change it up depending what I have on hand) and set aside.  Dice up your red onion and set aside.
Drain your beans and rinse with water to get all the starchy water off and set aside. Drain your corn and set aside.  Add your frozen peas to the bowl and set aside.
When your pasta is finished boiling, drain and shock with cold water to stop the cooking process.  Drain well and add to a large bowl.  Add in chopped up fresh vegetables and stir to combine.  Add in canned beans, corn and peas and stir to combine.
You can begin to season with the McCormick Perfect Pinch Salad Supreme seasoning.  This is where you can use your own discretion. I season my pasta salad in 3 layers.  A sprinkle after I add in my veggies and combine.  I add in ½ cup of salad dressing and stir to combine – then start seasoning with additional salad supreme.  Once all mixed I add the remaining ½ cup of salad dressing and sprinkle in more salad supreme.  I don’t measure because I go by looking at the color of the mixture … I’d say I use about 1/5 to 1/4th of the container at a time.
Stir to combine and serve straight away or let the salad sit in the fridge for at least 30 minutes to let it get nice and cold.