Boil a pot of pasta, toss with a simple sauce, and dinner is served! Here are our top picks for comforting pasta dishes that come together in a flash, all featuring the best of fall produce. Look to these recipes during the holiday season, whenever there are busy nights or unexpected dinner guests.
|Rigatoni with Broccoli Rabe and Chickpeas|
The secret to your best broccoli rabe ever? Boil the greens in salted water before sauteing to mellow their bitter edge and tenderize the stalks. Here, they’re tossed with hearty rigatoni and and chickpeas for a satisfying vegetarian meal.
|Pasta with Fennel, Tomatoes, Olives and Shrimp|
This innovative pasta dish starts with a quick shrimp and fennel stew is enhanced with fragrant fennel seeds and shiny black Kalamata olives. Start the meal with a salad of purchased roasted red peppers, fresh mozzarella and herbs.
|Pasta with Lamb and Rosemary|
Ground lamb and zucchini cooked with fresh rosemary and tomatoes create a succulent—and unexpected—sauce for pasta. Slightly salty pecorino cheese is the perfect garnish.
|Spaghetti with Arugula-Mint Pesto|
In this super simple recipe, peppery arugula and fresh mint are combined to create a zesty pesto that’s tossed with spaghetti.
|Steak and Mushroom Stroganoff|
There are countless versions of this old-world dish, but this one is particularly noteworthy: tender chunks of steak, sweet shallots, loads of sauteed mushrooms and an outrageously rich sour cream sauce.
|Broccoli Rabe, Feta and Mint Pasta|
Broccoli rabe, sharp feta cheese and refreshing mint perk up tomato sauce in this inventive meal (omit the pancetta for a meatless version). The dish is so satisfying, you won’t need anything on the side.
|Penne with Mushrooms and Turkey Sausage|
Here, porcini mushrooms and sausage are combined to add earthy, hearty flavor to pasta. Begin the meal with a shaved fennel salad topped with extra-virgin olive oil and Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese.
|Rigatoni Salad with Cauliflower and Saffron|
Rigatoni is the perfect pasta shape to capture the bright saffron dressing in this recipe, but you could also use fusilli or rotelle, if you like. The dish is served at room temperature, so it’s easy to prep ahead.
|Pappardelle with Quick Bolognese Sauce|
Peppery pancetta, robust Italian tomatoes and fresh thyme embellish this quick version of the traditionally long cooking sauce. Serve it over egg pappardelle or fettuccine, with a mixed greens salad alongside.
|Fettuccine with Wild Mushrooms|
Here’s a wonderful way to enjoy wild mushrooms: sauté them with shallots and herbs, toss with tender pasta and crown the dish with Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese.
|Penne with Ricotta Cheese and Greens|
Hearty greens are bountiful in autumn. Here, earthy Tuscan kale adds freshness to pasta, while fresh ricotta makes an easy but elegant sauce.
|Whole-Wheat Spaghetti with Roasted Squash|
Whole-wheat pasta is denser and firmer than regular pasta, with a pleasant bite that stands up well to sturdy vegetables. Paired with a sauce of caramelized onions and roasted squash, it makes a beautiful and unexpected main course.
|Spaghetti with Radicchio and Bacon|
The classic version of this dish is meatless, but our recipe includes bacon. It’s sweet, smoky flavor pairs so well with the bold radicchio and a generous dusting of freshly ground pepper.
|Penne with Chard and Sausage|
This pasta dish will taste like you slaved over it for days, when it really only takes half an hour to come together. Use any greens you like in place of the chard.