Whether you’re yearning for a classic lasagna or baked ziti or a more unconventional taco pasta or cream cheese spaghetti, these easy pasta recipes won’t let you down.
Pasta is Italy’s greatest gift to mankind.
The combination of firm and chewy noodles or shells, thick flavorful sauce, and loads of shredded cheese is absolutely unbeatable.
I also love how versatile it is. Whether it be an intimate dinner for two, a casual family lunch, or a fun birthday party, there’s a pasta recipe for every occasion.
Here’s the kicker: pasta is deceptively easy to make, especially the dishes on this list!
With this round-up, expect minimal effort, but maximum flavor. That’s a promise. Let’s dive into it.
30 Best Pasta Dinner Ideas
It’s the classic lasagna made easier. Here you’ll still get the full flavors of al dente lasagna, meat sauce, and a medley of cheeses, but minus the hours of labor.
The secret? Store-bought marinara. With this key ingredient, there’s no need to simmer your tomato meat sauce for hours – just a mere 5 minutes will do. Awesome, am I right?
Garlic and parmesan join forces to make a powerful pasta dish. It’s wickedly creamy, cheesy, and garlicky, one serving isn’t enough.
Seriously, I don’t know what it is about the combination of garlic and parmesan, but it’s just so darn addictive. The diet starts tomorrow.
Chicken parm is a timeless classic, for good reason. Chicken and parmesan are simply a match made in heaven.
The only trouble is that it takes a while to make. Not with this recipe, though!
This one-pot chicken parmesan pasta has all the flavors and textures you love about the classic but is ten times easier to whip up.
Cheeseburger and lasagna are combined to make one of the most epic culinary mash-ups known to man.
This old-fashioned hamburger casserole is just… *chef’s kiss*
Filled with layers of egg noodles, tomato sauce, cheesy sauce, and melted cheese on top, this is the casserole of your dreams.
It’s a sure hit with both kids and adults alike.
Here’s another beloved classic right here.
Ziti shells are doused with sweet and savory red sauce, Italian sausage crumbles, and three kinds of cheese. That’s Italian comfort food right there.
It’s such a delectable treat, but shockingly a breeze to make. Oh, and it can easily feed a crowd, too… unless the crowd includes me, that is.
Too busy to whip up something complicated for dinner? I hear you, see you, and feel you. Don’t worry, you’ve got this.
All you’ll need is this simple tomato spinach pasta recipe. I’m not exaggerating, this recipe is extremely simple.
The sauce comes together by the time the pasta cooks.
And the flavor? Divine. How can it not be when there’s pasta, tomatoes, cream cheese, spinach, and parmesan involved?
You had me with lemon and garlic.
Even without reading the recipe card, I could tell based on these two ingredients alone that this pasta will be a certified hit.
So here’s how it goes: spaghetti noodles are bathed in a lemon garlic butter sauce. Need I say more?
You’ll love how the flavors of the lemon, butter, and garlic perfectly complement and balance each other out. It’s rich, creamy, and earthy with a zing!
Pasta, veggies, cheese, and a creamy dressing are tossed together to create a hearty and refreshing pasta salad.
This is more than just your average pasta salad, though. Combining ingredients from both Greek and Italian pasta salads, this dish is a delightful infusion of two great cuisines.
Also, this blog wasn’t lying when they said this pasta salad was quick and easy. It’s definitely a breeze to make.
9. Pasta Bake
Penne pasta is bathed in meaty marinara, covered in a medley of cheeses, and baked to perfection.
I love recipes that call for baking pasta. It creates a melted cheese and a crispy outer crust that’s simply impossible to resist.
Creamy and cheesy white sauce coats firm and al dente penne. That alone sounds ridiculously delicious, but it doesn’t end there.
Going on top of this umami-rich dish is a refreshing bruschetta made of olive oil, balsamic vinegar, tomatoes, basil, and garlic.
The contrast between the creamy pasta and fresh bruschetta is absolutely delightful.
American goulash is a hearty dish of elbow macaroni, ground beef, and tomato sauce. It’s a feel-good treat that can easily turn a frown upside down.
It’s also affordable and a cinch to make. It’s so easy, it all comes together in one pot.
12. Taco Pasta
Tacos and pasta in one dish? I won’t say no to that!
Italy, say hello to Mexico. This taco pasta has everything you love in both dishes, and then some.
Pasta shells are coated with a taco meat sauce loaded with tomatoes, green chilies, sour cream, and cream cheese.
Everything you love in pizza and pasta is used to create this outrageously mouthwatering casserole.
First of all, look at it. Can anyone even resist its charm? I, for one, have completely fallen for it.
Al dente noodles, smoky Italian sausage crumbles, meaty pepperoni, tomato sauce flavored with an array of herbs and spices, melted mozzarella cheese – I mean, how can anyone say no?
Every parent needs to have a recipe for pasta alfredo in their back pocket. If you don’t have one yet, I highly recommend this one.
Butter, cream, and cheese – nothing screams comfort food more than this creamy combination. It’s a simple sauce, yet incredibly heavenly and sinful.
Elevate the classic meaty spaghetti by swapping the noodles for penne and ground beef to Italian pork sausage.
I’m telling you, this Italian sausage pasta might just be your newest favorite.
Plus, don’t you just love dishes that all come together in one bowl or pan? They make clean-up such a breeze.
Broccoli in pasta? The kids may protest at first, but once you get them to take a bite, they’ll surely get hooked.
This pasta is creamy and cheesy with a lovely lemon zing. The broccoli bits give it an inviting flavor and a nice crunch.
Altogether, they get a 12/10.
Why stuff the shells when you can simply coat all of them with dressing and call it a day? It tastes the same and is 10 times easier.
You’ll love how the beefy, creamy, and cheesy sauce coats every nook and cranny of the shells. It’s really just like eating stuffed shells without the effort.
This cream cheese spaghetti is the comfort food you didn’t know you needed.
Make it once, and you’ll surely crave it again and again… and again.
Thankfully, this recipe only calls for seven ingredients, and couldn’t be easier to make. It’s a perfect addition to your weekly meal rotation!
I’ll say yes to this creamy beef pasta anytime, any day.
My goodness, take a look at how sinful those noodles are coated in that thick sauce.
It’s hearty, creamy, cheesy, and meaty – all the words that describe the perfect comfort food.
Pappardelle is a Tuscan pasta of flat noodles. They’re like fettuccine, but thicker.
Thicker noodles need a thicker and heavier sauce, which is exactly what you can expect from this recipe.
The sauce is loaded with Italian sausage crumbles and roasted tomatoes, bell peppers, and onions. It’s ridiculously rich and meaty, to say the least.
Five ingredients for a pasta dish? It’s hard to believe, but it’s true, and it’s insanely delicious.
Your favorite pasta is tossed in an umami-rich butter garlic sauce, spinach leaves, and parmesan cheese.
It’s a simple yet spectacular meal that will surely satisfy.
This pasta salad is fully loaded with grilled cherry tomatoes, onions, bell peppers, and zucchini.
Orzo noodles add a lovely textural variety, while the simple red wine vinegar dressing gives it that extra oomph.
Also, let’s set the record straight: while orzo does look like rice, it’s considered pasta.
23. Pasta Primavera
Pasta primavera is another vegetable-filled pasta dish that’s ultra colorful and refreshing.
The combination of pasta and veggies makes this dish both hearty and refreshing at the same time.
You’re free to add as many different kinds of vegetables as you can, so go slice up whatever you have on hand.
Puttanesca, which literally means “in the style of prostitutes,” may not have the most appealing name.
However, it does have one of the most wonderful colors, flavors, and aromas you can ever imagine.
Spaghetti noodles are tossed with a sauce of garlic, olives, anchovies, and capers. It looks, smells, and tastes heavenly – a feast for the senses, indeed.
Manicotti is an Italian word that means “little sleeve.” These pasta shells are shaped like penne, but a lot bigger.
What’s the best way to fill up the spaces inside those large tubes than with lots and lots of cheese?
This manicotti is stuffed with not just one, but three kinds of cheese – mozzarella, parmesan, and ricotta. This is the ultimate cheese lover’s delight!
Need a quick and easy meal for dinner? This recipe for spaghetti and meatballs has you covered.
While it’s always fun to experiment with new flavor profiles, nothing beats the classic combination of spaghetti, tomato meat sauce, and gigantic meatballs on top.
It may look plain, but don’t let its appearance deceive you. This dish is far from basic.
Delicate angel hair pasta is bathed in butter garlic sauce seasoned with fresh herbs and parmesan.
You’ll love the contrast between the thin strands of pasta and the rich, buttery, and earthy sauce.
Grandma’s macaroni salad is the ultimate guilty pleasure! While technically a side dish, it can easily steal the spotlight.
Firm and chewy macaroni noodles are coated with a wildly creamy sauce.
Served chilled, it makes for a refreshing summer dish. I don’t mind eating it any day of the year, though.
Looking for a quick and easy, yet hearty dish that can feed a crowd? Garlic parmesan linguine is the solution to all your troubles.
The sauce is made primarily with cream cheese, cream, and parmesan, so it’s creamy and cheesy, to say the least.
The garlic cuts through the richness and provides a strong and wonderfully pungent flavor.
The thick sauce coats the long and thin strand of linguine beautifully.
It may look plain at first glance, but hold your judgment until the first bite.
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