This Creamy Penne Pasta Primavera is the perfect vegetarian Pasta dish. It's packed with veggies and tossed in a simple cream sauce for a lighter version of fettuccine alfredo. You will love this recipe & it comes together in just 35 minutes!
Did you know Primavera means Spring in Italian? I was so excited to learn this since it's Spring and I wanted to share this recipe. Perfect Timing!
This pasta is packed with veggies, but the cream sauce makes it delicious for those who maybe don't care for vegetables.
My dad is a vegetarian and he ate two large portions of this recipe. It truly is the perfect vegetarian comfort food or make it for dinner on Meatless Monday. If you prefer meat with dinner, serve beside this Crispy Chicken Fritta Recipe or these Baked Boneless Chicken Thighs.
Why You'll Love This Recipe:
- It is packed with healthy vegetables.
- The cream sauce is full of flavor, but not in a heavy way.
- This recipe is the type of recipe where you can use whatever veggies you have in the fridge. I love making this before I have to throw produce away. It's a great way to use all of it up!
- You can create this recipe in about 30 minutes.
Penne- The perfect pasta to toss with this creamy sauce and veggies. If you love penne, make sure to check out my Four Cheese Penne Pasta recipe too!
Vegetables- Celery, carrot, zucchini, yellow squash, red pepper, broccoli and kale come together to create an excellent vegetable medley in this recipe
Olive Oil- To sauté the vegetables
Garlic- Just a touch to add flavor to the cream sauce
Butter and Heavy Cream- Forms the ideal base for the cream sauce
Parmesan Cheese- A nutty, delicious cheese that thickens the sauce
Pasta Water- To turn the thick cream sauce into dreamy creaminess
How to Make Penne Primavera:
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Here are the Step by Step Instructions for this easy Pasta Primavera.
Step 1: Cook the Pasta
Begin by boiling water and cooking the penne noodles al dente according to package. *MAKE SURE TO SAVE ¼ CUP OF PASTA WATER BEFORE DRAINING*
Step 2: Sauté the Vegetables
In a dutch oven or large saucepan over medium heat, add in olive oil. Allow it to heat up, then add in the vegetables, except for the Kale or Spinach. Add a pinch of salt.
Cook the vegetables for 6 to 7 minutes with the lid on, stirring every few minutes. Add in kale or spinach and cover for 2 more minutes.
Uncover and set dutch oven to the back of the stove, off heat.
Make the Easy Cream Sauce:
In a pan over medium-low heat, add in the butter. Once melted, add in garlic and cook for 30 seconds.
Turn heat to low, and add in the heavy cream. Stir constantly for 3 minutes. You want it hot, but not boiling.
Toss in salt and pepper and parmigiano reggiano cheese. Continue to stir until cheese melts.
Add in a touch of pasta water, a tablespoon at a time, until it gets nice and creamy. You may only use half the pasta water.
Toss the pasta and cream sauce into the veggies.
Serve with a sprinkle of parmigiano-reggiano and black pepper. I love a lot of black pepper on mine!
Enjoy this delicious Pasta Primavera.
- Be sure to add the pasta water slowly until you reach the desired consistency of the sauce. If you add it too fast, it could get thinner than you would like.
- You want to use parmigiano reggiano cheese for this recipe or a similar fresh block cheese. Do not use pre-shredded cheese in a bag. They add an anti-caking agent to bagged cheese and it doesn't melt as well.
You can use this recipe with any kind of pasta. Penne is a favorite choice in our family, but any pasta will work!
Primavera sauce is very similar to Alfredo sauce and uses heavy cream, garlic, butter, parmesan cheese and sometimes chicken stock. I have left out the chicken stock and added pasta water to make this recipe vegetarian friendly.
How To Reheat Leftovers:
This recipe tastes best fresh, but if you want to heat up leftovers, put it into a saucepan and heat on low stirring often until heated. The cream sauce has soaked into the pasta at this point, but it still tastes good.