Healthy grains on the menu at Pazzi Pasta

Everyone loves pasta. But from carbophobes to  celiac disease, it gets a bad rap. But  pasta doesn’t always have to be bad for you. Made with the right   ingredients and some TLC, it can be a nutritious part of your diet.

In a cute spot in Cobble Hill, Pazzi Pasta (227 Smith St.) is serving just this sort of Italian food. Walk in and you’ll notice a Chipotle-esque setting they call “fast-elegant.” Get in line, pick your pasta, then your sauce; eat in or take out.

Every pasta on Pazzi’s menu is made in house every day using the finest ingredients to ensure it’s free of preservatives that you may find in boxed varieties. 

There’s a traditional semolina and a pillow-soft gnocchi; the nero di sepia (a cuttlefish ink pasta) offers a briny flavor that works well with the smoked salmon and gorgonzola sauce. The brisket ravioli with creamy mushroom sauce is also outstanding.

Along with the classics, the restaurant also offers a variety of alternative grains. I especially love the chewy kamut pasta — an ancient grain packed not just with fiber and protein, but selenium, magnesium and zinc, too. It sticks perfectly to any sauce, each tiny rib holding tight to San Marzano tomatoes, ragu bolognese or the four-cheese sauce with emmental, fontina, gorgonzola and asiago.

Of course some offerings may be more calorie-laden than others (like said four-cheese sauce), but to the owners, husband-and-wife Giovanni Campanile and Sandra Cammarata, both doctors, fueling your body with nutrient-dense ingredients cooked with love is about as healthy as you can get.

Ariel Kanter is an editor at Gilt City.

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