Prepping meals can feel overwhelming and intimidating, but it doesn’t have to be. A flavorful pasta dish is always a reliable go-to when you’re short on time. Here are three delicious, time-saving pasta recipes from food bloggers that can all be whipped up in 30 minutes or less. It’s also the perfect time to try these dishes since today (October 17) is National Pasta Day. Whether you’re looking for an elevated recipe with a seafood twist or a dish with a hint of nostalgia, we’ve rounded up a selection of low-maintenance pasta recipes to cook up in honor of today’s holiday.
3 Pasta Recipes That Take 30 Minutes or Less
Speedy Salmon Pasta
This 12-minute salmon pasta from Anna Stanford of Anna’s Family Kitchen is the perfect dish for a busy weeknight. If you’re really in a time crunch, you can even prepare this meal in advance. Simply pop it in the microwave or oven to warm it up at dinnertime. While Anna uses Swiss chard in her recipe, she says spinach works just as well.
- 1 small onion, finely chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- 4 salmon fillets (approximately 1lb.)
- 1 cup frozen peas
- ½ cup roughly chopped fresh chard or spinach
- 3½ cups pasta
- ⅔ cup crème fraîche
- Juice and zest of a lemon
- Fresh parsley, chives and ground pepper to serve
- Cook your pasta according to packet instructions.
- Meanwhile, heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large pan and add the onion. Soften for a couple of minutes, then add the garlic and push to one side to continue softening.
- Add the salmon fillets skin side down to the other side of the pan. Cook for 3 minutes before turning over and cooking for another 3 minutes.
- Lift the salmon out and peel off the skin.
- Add the frozen peas and chard to the pan, squeeze in the lemon juice and add the zest.
- Let the peas cook through and the chard wilt for a couple of minutes, then add the cooked, drained pasta, flake in the salmon, and stir in the crème fraîche.
- Serve with the fresh herbs on top.
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Avocado Pesto Pasta
This avocado pesto pasta from MunchMeals By Janet is creamy and filled with delicious greens. The no-cook sauce in particular calls for asparagus, spinach, basil and lemon juice. The best part? Steps for this recipe can be done simultaneously. Janet recommends cutting your asparagus and roasting it while you wait for the pasta to cook.
- ½ pound pasta
- 1 medium bunch asparagus
- Oil for roasting
- Salt and pepper for roasting
- 2 avocados
- Juice of 1½ to 2 lemons to taste
- 3 tablespoons packed fresh basil leaves
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- 1 large handful baby spinach
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- Fresh basil leaves for serving
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
- Cook pasta according to directions until al dente in salted water. Drain and set aside.
- Meanwhile, line a baking tray with parchment paper.
- Remove tough bottom ends from asparagus by breaking them off gently.
- Cut remaining stalks into thirds or quarters (preference).
- Place asparagus pieces onto baking sheet. Drizzle with oil, gently toss, and season generously with salt and pepper.
- Roast 12 to 14 minutes until fork tender, then remove promptly from oven.
- Meanwhile, place remaining ingredients into a food processor. Blend, scraping down sides, until smooth. Add 2 teaspoons olive oil or water, if desired, to thin.
- Transfer pasta, asparagus, and sauce to a large mixing bowl. Gently mix to incorporate. Serve and top with fresh basil.
Skillet White Cheddar Mac-n-Cheese
This skillet white cheddar mac-n-cheese from Elizabeth Jordan-Flight of The Jam Jar Kitchen puts an elevated twist on a classic dish. Just like the boxed macaroni you may have eaten as a kid, cooking time is minimal. Not to mention the optional crispy top that can be added when broiled … yum! Elizabeth even recommends eating the dish straight from the pan.
- 12 oz. Banza chickpea pasta shells (about 1½ boxes). Elizabeth likes chickpea pasta, but you can also use regular wheat pasta.
- ⅔ cup green peas, frozen
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 2 cups milk
- 1 cup white cheddar cheese, freshly shredded
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon Dijon mustard
- ½ teaspoon onion powder (optional)
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 2-3 tablespoons Panko bread crumbs (optional)
- Fresh parsley, chopped (optional)
- Cook pasta according to the package instructions. When there are about 1.5 minutes left on your pasta timer, add frozen green peas straight into the boiling water and boil together for the remaining cook time.
- Drain pasta and peas and then pour back into the cooking pot. Set aside on the counter.
- While the pasta is cooking, melt butter in a small saucepan. Add 2 tablespoons of flour and cook over medium/medium-high heat for 1 minute.
- Turn the heat down to low and slowly stream in 2 cups of milk while whisking continuously to get rid of any lumps.
- Turn heat back up to medium/medium-high heat and cook while whisking frequently for 6-9 minutes until thick and bubbly.
- Remove from heat and add in white cheddar cheese. Stir until smooth. Add in salt, pepper, mustard and onion pepper. Stir to combine.
- Pour cheese sauce over the cooked pasta and peas, and gently fold to combine.
- Transfer the mac-n-cheese to an ovenproof dish or skillet.
- Turn the oven on the broil setting.
- Sprinkle the top of the pasta with 2-3 tablespoons Panko bread crumbs.
- Broil for 2-4 minutes until the breadcrumbs brown and get crispy. Be sure to keep an eye on it as it can burn easily.
- Remove from oven and sprinkle with fresh chopped parsley. Enjoy!
We hope these recipes help you celebrate National Pasta Day accordingly. Bon appétit!
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