One-Pot Creamy Tomato Pasta

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A one-pot pasta recipe, written for lockdown times. It’s completely adaptable – use whatever tomato-based product you have on hand to make this. I wrote it using tomato paste, because that was all I had, but you can also make this creamy tomato pasta using canned tomatoes or your favorite jarred tomato sauce.

One-Pot Creamy Tomato Pasta 

Servings 2 people

Ingredients

  • 1 large shallot or 1 small yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced, or 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 (6-ounce) (4.5-ounce) tube tomato paste
  •  1/2 pound (about 2 1/2 cups) rotini or other pasta 
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan
  • Optional additions: cooked or thawed frozen vegetables, such as broccoli or cauliflower; soft greens, such as spinach or escarole; and/or cooked protein, such as chopped or shredded chicken, or ground beef, turkey, or chicken

Instructions

  • Combine shallot, garlic, tomato paste, pasta, milk, water, salt, and pepper in a large pot. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce to medium to simmer. Do not walk away! You need to stir very frequently to prevent the pasta from scorching. 
  • Cook according to the cooking time on your package of pasta, until the pasta is tender (take a bite!) and the sauce is thick and creamy. If your sauce gets too thick before the pasta is cooked, stir in another splash of water.
  • Stir in Parmesan cheese and any optional additions if desired. Serve. 
  • 1 large shallot or 1 small yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced, or 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 (6-ounce) (4.5-ounce) tube tomato paste
  •  1/2 pound (about 2 1/2 cups) rotini or other pasta 
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan
  • Optional additions: cooked or thawed frozen vegetables, such as broccoli or cauliflower; soft greens, such as spinach or escarole; and/or cooked protein, such as chopped or shredded chicken, or ground beef, turkey, or chicken

Notes

  • No shallots, onions, or garlic? Just omit them! This pasta is still great without them. 
  • If you can’t find tomato paste, you can use canned tomatoes or even a premade jarred tomato sauce here Use 1 1/2 cups, reduce the amount of water to 1 1/2 cups, and reduce the salt to 1 teaspoon to account for the salt that will be in the pasta sauce. 
  • I made this recipe using chickpea pasta and do not recommend it—it altered the texture of the pasta sauce, making it grainy and unpalatable. 
Author: Caroline Chambers

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