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/ Source: TODAY

Giada De Laurentiis seems to have endless ideas for quick and easy pasta dinners that go way beyond boring jarred sauce. This fresh and healthy pasta dish is served with pesto made with nutrient rich kale and good-for-your-heart olive oil and walnuts. Shredded rotisserie chicken adds substance, but feel free to omit it and toss in an extra handful of walnuts if you'd prefer a vegetarian dinner. The recipe calls for gemelli pasta, but you can use any shape you have on hand. Up the nutritional value even more by using whole wheat pasta. Boil the pasta while you make the pesto and dinner can be on the table in under 20 minutes! If you want to dress it up, add a salad, such as the pan-grilled lettuces recipe below the pasta recipe, but don't feel like you have to — the pasta is really a complete meal on its own!

Courtesy of Giada de Laurentiis
Gemelli with Kale Pesto and Olives

This article was originally published Mar. 19, 2015 at 10:53 a.m. ET.