This dish comes together quickly as one of our vegan pasta recipes that would satisfy anyone. Vegetable Pasta shines because we’ve brought together a nice blend of veggies that absorb the flavors well. Oven roasted tomatoes make for a quick sauce, while zucchini and yellow squash provide texture and body to the dish without overpowering, and allow the quick garlic oil to shine through – in fact like tofu, they soak up the flavor. Read on because I provide many options to jazz it up below for those not looking for a vegan dish. I’m getting hungry just thinking about it!
This recipe heralds from my days in Boston. A little restaurant in my little borough of Roslindale used to serve this dish (or rather, a very similar dish that is far too high in calories for me to eat on the regular) to Eric and I on many occasions. To be honest, this was more frequently in Eric’s order rotation while I focused more heavily on my Penne Boscaiola Woodsman style. I would always have to steal a bite though – I’m a joy to dine out with, can’t you tell?
I always try to tell you about my stars of the dish, that’s because I want you to understand how I’m creating recipes. Or more importantly how I am breaking down recipes when I am thinking about them. In this case we have two. The garlic oil, and the oven roasted tomatoes. Yum and yum!
To make garlic oil, we will simmer the garlic and extra-virgin olive oil over a low to medium heat for approximately five minutes. Then we will let it rest. This will create our ad hoc garlic oil for the purposes of this recipe. Simple, right? It will also create a garlic oil that we can use without overpowering the dish with too much oil, something I’m worried about here since we don’t want to overdo it.
Why am I concerned about the oil? Glad you asked. That brings us to the second star of the dish, oven roasted tomatoes. Oh they come out delicious, the roasting really brings out the flavor of these grape or cherry tomatoes (whatever you can find). Then we gently pop those that didn’t already, and we’re ready to use them to create our sauce. I don’t use any oil to roast these babies because I’m using a silpat. If you don’t have one of them I highly recommend you pick one up. They are great to have around and you can use them in many different ways (baking, roasting, etc).
Zucchini and yellow squash are perfect for this dish. Like I mentioned earlier, they are like tofu here. They absorb the flavors of whatever you put with them. They offer their own subtle flavors, a delicious buttery sweetness from the squash can’t be missed. And let’s not forget that they will cook at the same time, and quickly – perfect for our needs. We understand the need for simple dishes that come together quickly in today’s fast-paced world.
You’ll want a large saute pan to make this dish in so everything fits and you can toss it together nicely. My Woll saute pan has been a trusted friend for many years, highly recommended.
This is a great meal to make on weeknights, for a lunch meal prep as it reheats well, or for a large gathering because you can serve it to just about anyone and they won’t complain (there’s always the one amiright?). Some suggestions for optional modifications are below.
- Want to make it vegetarian? Then I would suggest adding little mozzarella balls to it. Make sure they are room temperature so that they begin to melt and ooze just as you are serving it. Doesn’t that sound divine?
- Want to add protein? You might think about having a bar of toppings such as chopped tofu or tempeh. How about chickpeas, or even some hummus? You could even toss it in the pasta itself if you know your guests all like the same thing.
- Want to add more veggies? You could do this easily! Some other veggies that would cook quickly would be baby spinach, without changing the flavor profile too much. Or some baby arugula, adding a slight peppery taste. I would add either green at the end and just wilt it slightly. Avocado, diced and tossed in at the end would add a nice creamy texture to the dish as well.
So many options to jazz up this dish, folks – but you needn’t do it at all because it is jazzy on its own; that’s how I eat it. But you know me, I love to give you some options!
The recipe awaits. Don’t forget you can always scale it up with the handy scaling button. And please be sure to let us know what you think in the comments below–we love hearing from you and how you made out!
- 8 ounces whole wheat spaghetti or any pasta really
- 1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes
- 2 tablespoons olive oil extra-virgin
- 3 cloves garlic pressed
- 3 cups zucchini halved and sliced 1/4" thick
- 3 cups yellow squash halved and sliced 1/4" thick
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- Fresh cracked pepper 2-3 grinds
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
- Place the tomatoes on a silpat on a sheet pan and plate in the oven to roast (don’t have a silpat? Get one! Or use a foil lined sheet pan sprayed lightly with oil) for 20 minutes.
- Cook pasta according to directions on the box, in salted water.
- Plate the oil and garlic in a large saute pan and cook over medium to low heat until fragrant. Let rest for 5 minutes to flavor the oil.
- In the same pan, add the zucchini, squash, salt and pepper. Saute, moving around constantly for even cooking, until fork tender.
- Add the tomatoes, any juices, and stir to combine.
- Add the pasta, stir to combine.
- Do a final seasoning and serve immediately.
- This dish is as good cold as it is hot, so it makes a perfect pasta salad option too!