This simple and delicious one pot vegetable pasta recipe is loaded with fresh veggies, tender noodles, and lots of melty cheeses. It's quick and easy vegetarian weeknight pasta dinner that the whole family will love, just like ours!
Why we love this vegetable pasta recipe?
This one pot vegetable pasta recipe is a weeknight dinner dream! It's easy to make in only about 20 minutes with a great combination of fresh veggies and pantry staples.
We feel so good about serving a veg pasta meal that takes minimal prep, but is still a delicious home cooked dish loaded with nutritious goodness.
Like many of your favorite pasta dishes with vegetables, this is a perfect recipe to customize! You can use whatever leftover veggies are sitting in the fridge. Keep it vegetarian or add meat if you prefer.
Use dairy-free ingredients for a totally vegan meal. Make it gluten-free with one easy swap. Just to name a few options!
You will love that it's a hearty and healthy dinner that takes little effort to cook. (With no extra dishes to wash. Yay!) And the kids will of course love the yummy noodles and cheese. In short, my simple and easy pasta recipe with vegetables is the definition of a family-friendly meal!
*For more quick, easy, and satisfying meals, also try these great recipes:
- Creamy Avocado Pasta
- Butternut Squash Pasta
- Mushroom Rice (Easy One Pot Recipe)
- Instant Pot Chicken Alfredo Pasta
- Tomato Pasta Soup
Ingredients you will need
Olive Oil: Use a quality EVOO to sauté the garlic, onion, and veggies.
Garlic: Mince the garlic during prep for ease when you start cooking.
Tomato Paste: Sharp and tangy condensed tomato enhances the Italian flavors.
Canned Tomatoes: I suggest unsalted if available.
Spices: Italian seasoning, salt and pepper, and a bit of red pepper flakes for some heat (optional).
Veg Stock: The flavor will be locked into the pasta, so use a high-quality broth for the best flavor.
Pasta: Your choice of small noodle shape. I use rotini here, but fusilli or penne are also great options.
Mozzarella: Shredded mozz is melty, with a nice mild flavor.
Parmesan: Grated fresh parmesan has the best taste and texture.
Basil: Use fresh or dried basil. Fresh has a brighter flavor even when baked.
- Onion: White onion has a nice, sharp bite. Alternatively, you can use sweeter yellow onion.
- Mushrooms: Cremini mushrooms give this pasta with vegetables dish a meaty, savory flavor.
- Zucchini: I like a combination of yellow and green zucchini for taste and pretty color.
- Corn: Use fresh or frozen kernels. There is no need to thaw if using frozen corn.
- Bell Peppers: Any color peppers you like are fine!
- Olives: Sliced black olives add a fun pizza-like twist to the vegetables and pasta.
How to make vegetable pasta?
1. Heat olive oil in a pot over medium heat. Add minced garlic, chopped onion and cook for 2-3 minutes until translucent.
2. Turn the heat to high, add diced mushrooms and cook for 2 minutes.
3. Now, add diced zucchini, corn, bell peppers, and cook for 1 minute.
4. Add tomato paste, canned tomatoes, Italian seasoning, salt and freshly ground pepper.
5. Toss until tomato paste dissolves and everything combines well.
6. Pour vegetable stock, mix and bring to a boil.
7. Reduce to the heat to medium low, add pasta and mix.
8. Cover the pot with lid and cook for 7-8 minutes or until the paste is al dente.
9. Stir-in the grated parmesan, sliced black olive and roughly torn fresh basil.
10. Top the pasta with mozzarella cheese and bake for 8-10 minutes in preheated oven at 350℉ until cheese is bubbly.
NOTE: Alternatively, you can skip this baking step, cover the pot with lid and let it sit for 1 minute until cheese is melted.
Garnish the best vegetable pasta with chopped fresh parsley, fresh basil and serve immediately.
- Use a heavy bottom pot. This one pot vegetable pasta recipe requires the mixed pasta and veggies to simmer for several minutes. Without a heavy-bottomed pot you run the risk of ingredients sticking and/or burning.
- Stick to short pasta. This recipe is based on cooking with smaller noodles like rotini, fusilli, or penne. Using different-sized pasta will change the cooking time and liquid quantity.
- Stir the pasta every few minutes. This will help avoid it sticking at the bottom.
- Pasta too firm? If the pasta is al dente with a lot of liquid left in the pot, simply simmer without the lid for another 2-3 minutes.
Hearty veggies that can stay tender when simmered are best. Here we primarily use a combination of mushrooms, peppers, and zucchini. However, nearly any firm vegetable will do. (Keep reading for some other tasty options!)
Carb-heavy pasta is not considered a health food. But the fresh vegetables and tomato sauce base are very nutritious! Personally, I feel this dish is a great balance between hearty and healthy.
Veggies: Swap or add your choice of vegetables to the pasta. Other types of hearty veg that hold up well in this one pot recipe include cherry tomatoes, chopped carrots, broccoli, or cauliflower florets.
You can also stir in fresh baby spinach or chopped kale at the end of cooking, right before adding the cheese.
Cheese: Use bagged shredded Italian blend cheese to save yourself the step of shredding and grating the cheeses by hand.
Feel free to change up the flavors here and swap Italian cheeses with shredded cheddar or spicy pepper jack.
This veggie pasta has everything you need to enjoy as a complete meal on its own.
But it also makes a great vegetarian main or side dish! Enjoy bowlfuls with a warm hunk of toasted sourdough or garlic bread. And a fresh green salad is always great to pair with pasta. For a full Italian meal you might consider serving with a caprese or simple tomato basil salad.
To store leftovers: Cool the vegetable pasta before sealing in an airtight container. Keep in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
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If you made my recipe for pasta with vegetables, please be sure to rate and review it below! I always love hearing from my readers and take your suggestions into account.
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Vegetable Pasta Recipe
- 2 tablespoons Olive Oil
- 3 cloves Garlic (minced)
- ¾ cup Yellow Onion
- 6 oz Mushrooms (halved, sliced or quartered)
- 1 cup Zucchini (diced)
- 1 cup Yellow Zucchini (diced)
- ¾ cup Corn
- 1 cup Bell Peppers (diced)
- 3 tablespoons Tomato Paste
- 14 oz Canned Tomatoes (chopped)
- 2 teaspoons Italian Seasoning
- 1½ teaspoon Salt (or to taste)
- ½ teaspoon Freshly Ground Pepper
- 2½ cup Vegetable Stock
- 10 oz Short Pasta (uncooked - rotini, fusilli, penne, farfalle.. etc)
- ¼ teaspoon Red Pepper Flakes
- ¼ cup Parmesan Cheese (grated )
- ½ cup Black Olives (sliced)
- ¼ cup Fresh Basil (plus for garnish)
- 1 cup Mozzarella Cheese
- Fresh Parsley (for garnish)
- Heat olive oil in a pot over medium heat. Add minced garlic, chopped onion and cook for 2-3 minutes until translucent.
- Turn the heat to high, add diced mushrooms and cook for 2 minutes.
- Now, add diced zucchini, corn, bell peppers, and cook for 1 minute.
- Add tomato paste, canned tomatoes, Italian seasoning, salt and freshly ground pepper. Toss until tomato paste dissolves and everything combines well.
- Pour vegetable stock, mix and bring to a boil.
- Reduce to the heat to medium low, add pasta and mix.
- Cover the pot with lid and cook for 7-8 minutes or until the paste is al dente.
- Stir-in the grated parmesan, sliced black olive and roughly torn fresh basil.
- Top the pasta with mozzarella cheese and bake for 8-10 minutes in preheated oven at 350℉ until cheese is bubbly. Alternatively, you can skip this baking step, cover the pot with lid and let it sit for 1 minute until cheese is melted.
- Garnish with copped fresh parsley and serve immediately.