Tag: Pasta

3 Easy Pasta Dishes That’ll Have Guests Asking for Seconds

This article was created in partnership with Barilla® as part of Together at the Table.

It’s easy to get overwhelmed when you’re planning a dinner party. Do you play up your skills and cook something trés fancy? Do you make multiple entrées to satisfy every diet preference? Yes—but you do it the smart way and make pasta!

Pasta is one of those simple, universal foods that everyone loves. It pairs perfectly with all kinds of ingredients and flavors, and is the ideal staple of any plant-based diet (vegans, pescatarians, and Mediterranean diet lovers, rejoice!). Not to mention it’s super easy to get on the table, even on a weeknight.

Since our friends at Barilla® know a thing or two about pasta, we teamed up with Barilla’s executive chef, Lorenzo Boni, to create three delicious, crowd-pleasing recipes that don’t require hours in the kitchen. In fact, these can all be made in 30 minutes or less (Monday night dinner party, anyone?). Pick your favorite, make them all, or get more recipe inspo here. Then sit back and enjoy all the happy faces around the table asking for seconds.

1. Rigatoni With Meatless Bolognese

Barilla Rigatoni Vegan Bolognese

Ingredients

1 box Barilla® Collezione Rigatoni
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup white onion, chopped
12 ounces brown lentils, cooked
2 cups cremini mushrooms, ground
1 tablespoon tomato paste
Almond flour, toasted (optional)
1/4 cup Italian parsley, chopped

Directions

1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Cook pasta for one minute less than indicated in package directions, reserving 1/2 cup of the cooking water.

2. Meanwhile, heat extra-virgin olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add chopped onions and cook until softened.

3. Increase heat to medium. Add brown lentils and stir frequently, until heated through.

4. Add ground cremini mushrooms and tomato paste, and cook until softened. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.

5. Stir cooked Barilla® Collezione Rigatoni and reserved pasta cooking water into the lentil-mushroom mixture, and continue cooking for 2-3 minutes, until heated through.

6. Remove skillet from heat. Sprinkle with toasted almond flour (if desired) and garnish with Italian parsley before serving.

2. Thick-Cut Spaghetti With Lobster, Cherry Tomatoes, Zucchini, and Bottarga

Barilla Thick Cut Spaghetti With Lobster

Ingredients

1 box Barilla® Thick Spaghetti
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup garlic, sliced
12 ounces lobster, cut into small pieces
2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
2 cups zucchini, diced
2 tablespoons bottarga (optional)
1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped

Directions

1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Cook pasta for one minute less than indicated in package directions, reserving 1/2 cup of the cooking water.

2. Meanwhile, heat extra-virgin olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add garlic and cook until softened.

3. Increase heat to medium-high. Add lobster and cook, stirring frequently, until opaque.

4. Add cherry tomatoes and zucchini, and season with salt and pepper, to taste.

5. Stir cooked Barilla® Thick Spaghetti and reserved pasta cooking water into the vegetables, and continue cooking for an additional 2-3 minutes, until softened.

6. Remove skillet from heat. Sprinkle with grated bottarga (if desired) and garnish with fresh basil before serving.

3. Quick Seafood Paella With Orzo

Seafood Paella With Orzo

Ingredients

1 box Barilla® Orzo
4 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 white onion, diced
1 quart vegetable broth
6 ounces shrimp
6 ounces mussels
1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
1 cup red pepper, diced
1 pinch saffron
1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

2. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Cook pasta for one minute less than indicated in package directions. Drain Barilla® Orzo when it has finished cooking.

3. Meanwhile, heat extra-virgin olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add diced onion and cook, stirring frequently, until softened.

4. Pour vegetable broth into skillet and add cooked orzo.

5. Reduce heat to low. Add shrimp and mussels, and cook until heated through.

6. Stir in cherry tomatoes, red pepper, and saffron. Cook 2-3 minutes, stirring frequently.

7. Cover with aluminum foil and bake in the oven until thoroughly cooked, approximately 10 minutes.

8. Allow to cool and garnish with fresh basil before serving.

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9 Ways to Use Leftover Pasta Sauce So It Never Goes to Waste Again


Raise your hand if you’ve ever opened a jar of marinara sauce, placed the leftovers in the fridge, and then a month later realized it’s grown little blue fuzzballs. We get it. The intention to use the leftovers is there, yet you find yourself face-to-face with wasted sauce. Again.

We’re helping you turn those half-used jars of pasta sauce into some seriously tasty and healthier options. We’ve broken down the recipes into fast and easy (a win-win), single-servings (sometimes we just want to cook for ourselves), and those for feeding a crowd (because we like to party).

Fast and Easy

Pasta Sauce Recipes: One Pot Three Bean Chili

Photo: The Healthy Maven

For a quick and hearty meal that will serve a large crowd (or make for lots of leftovers), this one-pot beef and three-bean chili couldn’t be easier. Chop up onions, bell peppers, and tomatoes; combine with ground beef, sauce, and spices; and dinner is on its way. And because it makes everything better, top with some avocado.

Pasta Sauce Recipes: One Pot Chicken Cacciatore

Photo: Jessica Gavin

As the name suggests, this recipe is easy, quick, and will leave you with just one pan to clean up (score). Toss in mushrooms, peppers, and zucchini along with pasta, chicken, and that extra tomato sauce for a colorful, light pasta dish that will be ready in half an hour, tops.

Pasta Sauce Recipes: Vegan Tempeh Sloppy Joes

Photo: Dietitian Debbie Dishes

If the phrase “Sloppy Joes” brings back awkward summer camp memories, we don’t blame you. But give this updated vegan version a chance, especially on nights when your heart says burger, but your brain says bring on the veggies. This spicy sandwich is filled with tempeh, a great vegetarian substitute for ground beef, as well as onions and peppers. Swap out the tomato paste for your leftover tomato sauce, and you’ll feel like you’re at a grown-up cookout in no time.

Single-Serving

Pasta Sauce Recipes: Eggplant Parmesan For One

Photo: Betsy Life

When eating by yourself, it can be tempting to just toss something frozen in the microwave. But with just a little extra effort, you can have a meal that’s way more satisfying and nutritious. This easy eggplant parm recipe will have you wishing you could cook for one for the rest of your life.

Pasta Sauce Recipes: Single Serving Shakshuka

Photo: Seek Satiation

Don’t be fooled: This dish is a lot easier to make than it looks—and can be done using a single pan for minimal cleanup (we won’t judge if you eat straight out of the steaming pan either). Called shakshuka, it’s a classic Middle Eastern dish that’s high in protein and spices. Eat shakshuka for breakfast, lunch, or dinner, or put it on top of fiber-rich crackers or Ezekiel bread as a post-gym snack.

Pasta Sauce Recipes: Lasagna in a Mug

Photo: Bigger Bolder Baking

So you want lasagna, but you don’t feel like going through the hours-long process of cooking a whole pan, especially when it’s just you tonight. We’ve been there. With this mug recipe, you’re just 10 minutes away from warm, saucy comfort food in a cup. If you want a slightly less-rich version, substitute cottage cheese for the ricotta.

Feeding a Crowd

Pasta Sauce Recipes: Pizza Hummus

Photo: Sinful Nutrition

Who doesn’t love pizza? The crowd-pleaser can get a bit messy (and expensive) when served whole, so welcome an easy, dippable solution: pizza hummus. This dish is the perfect last-minute addition to a party—just blend chickpeas, tomato sauce, and spices; top with diced tomatoes; and serve. Pair it with veggies, fresh bread, or pita chips… and maybe make a second batch, just in case.

Pasta Sauce Recipes: Avocado Chicken Meatballs

Photo: The Wholesome Dish

Avocado adds a fun surprise to this cold-weather classic. Even your pickiest guests will appreciate the simple ingredients that go into these meatballs—all you need is an egg, ground chicken, tomatoes, chilies, sauce, and spices. If you want to take the health factor up a notch, sub in rolled oats or crushed flax for the bread crumbs.

Pasta Sauce Recipes: Quinoa Pizza Bites

Photo: Jessica in the Kitchen

This recipe combines two of our favorite finger foods: pizza and muffins. And while the bites taste indulgent, they are packed with protein from the quinoa, making them a healthy alternative that guests will love on game days. Chop up some of your favorite toppings (olives, broccoli, or mushrooms sound good to us) and toss them into the muffin tins for an even more filling snack.

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