A quick and easy pasta dish— linguine with a simple creamy lemon sauce, fresh tomatoes, and basil.
Of all the meals I make for my family, this one right here is the one I frequent the most. It’s the meal I keep in my back pocket for nights when I’m too tired or busy to come up with anything else.
Pasta is always my ace in the hole dinner because it’s so easy to throw it together with a simple sauce and whatever vegetables, meat, cheeses, etc. I have in the fridge. And this combo is my most favorite— with plump seasonal tomatoes, basil picked fresh from my herb garden and the easiest creamy lemon sauce.
I have to confess that I can’t take all of the credit for this recipe. It originally comes from Smitten Kitchen, but over the years I’ve changed a few things to make it my own. But it’s still just as easy and delicious!
It’s a meal that comes together in under 30 minutes, but it’s also sophisticated enough for dinner guests. So what are you waiting for, make it tonight!
Tips for boiling pasta:
- Use a big pot— you want one that can hold 5-6 quarts of water.
- Generously salt the water— use 1-2 tablespoons of salt per 5-6 quarts of water for .
- Stir the pasta as it cooks— to avoid clumpy pasta or pasta that sticks to the bottom of the pan, give it a good stir every few minutes.
- Save some of the pasta water— when you drain the pasta, reserve roughly 1 cup of the water just in case your sauce is a little too thick once you’ve combined it with your pasta. Add the water a few tablespoons at a time until your sauce is the right consistency.
Watch the video
Lemon Pasta with Tomatoes and Basil
- 1 lb spaghetti or fettuccine pasta (455 grams)
- 2 lemons , zest and juice
- ⅓ cup olive oil (80 ml)
- ⅓ cup heavy cream (80 grams)
- 1 teaspoon salt , or to taste
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper , or to taste
- 1 cup shredded Parmesan cheese (100 grams)
- ½ cup fresh basil , chopped (20 grams)
- 1 lb cherry or grape tomatoes , halved (450 grams)
- Boil pasta in salted boiling water till al dente. Drain, reserving 1 cup pasta water.
- Add the lemon juice and zest, olive oil, heavy cream, and salt and pepper to the now empty pasta pot. Bring to a boil over medium high heat. Simmer for 3-4 minutes until slightly thickened, stirring often.
- Add the drained pasta back to the pot along with the parmesan cheese and stir until coated. Add enough pasta water to make a loose sauce. Adjust seasonings as needed.
- Serve pasta topped with tomatoes and basil.