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Tomato Spinach Pasta

This spicy cheesy tomato spinach pasta is a quick and easy vegetarian meal. Melty cheese, tangy olives and healthy spinach. A meal in a skillet.

Have only 20 minutes or so to put dinner on the table?  Cutting back on meat meals for the week? This pasta recipe fits the bill. It has great flavor combined with the comfort food factor, namely melted cheesy pasta.

Cheesy Tomato Spinach Olive Pasta

I upgrade the health profile with extra tomatoes, spinach and high-fiber pasta. The briny olives and chili flakes give it a nice kick, but feel free to leave one or both out if you’re not a fan.

Apart from boiling the pasta, this whole dish is prepared on the stove in one skillet in about 20 minutes, assuming you have a homemade or bottled prepared tomato sauce on hand. Hard to beat that for a quick homemade meal.

Serve this easy vegetarian pasta recipe with a nice hot crusty bread, garlic bread or a simple fig salad, followed by a fresh no-bake Berry Crumble .

Tailor To Your Taste

  • Cheese: I use grated Mozzarella cheese from a package. Fresh small mozzarella balls (Bocconcini) would be even better.
  • Pasta: Use any kind of pasta such as penne, fusilli, ziti. 
  • Lower calorie version: Use low fat cheese if you want to reduce calories and fat. 
  • Add-ins
    • Add cooked sausage or chicken chunks for a bulkier meat meal.
    • Use black or green olives. Or leave them out if you don’t like them. 
    • Feel free to saute other vegetables before adding the tomatoes. Good options are peppers, mushrooms, zucchini or whatever you have around. 
    • Add 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil.

Shortcuts 

  • Leave out the tomatoes and the extra step of sauteing them if you want (I like the extra chunkiness in the sauce so I add them).
  • Use garlic from the jar or frozen cubes.

Make Ahead

  • The pasta warms up beautifully in the microwave over the next few days.

Other easy vegetarian pasta dishes you might like

All these recipes can be made in 30 minutes or less, just like the tomato spinach pasta. 

How to make tomato spinach pasta

pasta, salt, pepper, grated cheese, garlic, olives, tomato sauce, tomatoes, spinach
Ingredients: dry pasta, salt, pepper, grated mozarella cheese, garlic, olives, tomato sauce, chili flakes, tomatoes, spinach, Parmesan cheese
tomatoes and sauce sauteed in pan
Saute tomatoes for a few minutes, then add garlic and tomato sauce.
spinach added to sauce in pan
Add baby spinach and olives. Cook for a minute or two until spinach is wilted.
tomato spinach pasta in skillet
Add cooked pasta, mozarella and parmesan. Stir to combine until cheese is melted.
tomato spinach pasta on plate with bread p1
Serve with extra shaved Parmesan cheese on the side if you like.
Cheesy Tomato Spinach Pasta on plate with bread fff
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4.62 from 13 votes

Tomato Spinach Pasta

This spicy cheesy Tomato Spinach Pasta is a quick and easy vegetarian meal. Melty cheese, tangy olives and healthy spinach. A meal in a skillet.
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Total Time20 mins
Course: Main Vegetarian dish
Cuisine: Italian, Vegetarian
Servings: 4
Author: Cheryl

Ingredients

  • 1.5 cup dry fusilli (or other) pasta
  • 2 teaspoon olive oil
  • 2 small tomatoes, chopped (or 4-5 cocktail)
  • 2 teaspoon garlic, minced (2 cloves)
  • 1 1/2 cup tomato sauce (we use White Linen from Costco)
  • 5 cup fresh baby spinach (or 1 cup thawed and well-drained frozen spinach)
  • 1/3 cup chopped black olives
  • 1/4 teaspoon chili flakes (or more to taste)
  • 1 cup grated Mozzarella cheese (regular or low fat) (or balls, cubed)
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  • BOIL PASTA: Boil pasta in salted water according to package directions. Drain and set aside.
  • MAKE SAUCE: Heat oil in a skillet to medium high. Add chopped tomatoes. Saute for 3-4 minutes. Add garlic and olives and saute for another minute. Add tomato sauce, then spinach and stir until wilted and heated through, about 2 -3 minutes. Stir in chili flakes.
  • FINISH PASTA: Add Mozzarella and Parmesan cheeses and stir until melted (or leave Parmesan to pass on the side). Add salt and pepper if needed (olives are salty so may not be needed). Serve with warm crusty bread and butter or garlic bread. This pasta is also great reheated the next day.

Notes

Variations
  • Cheese: I use grated Mozzarella cheese from a package. Fresh small mozzarella balls (Bocconcini) would be even better.
  • Pasta: Use any kind of pasta such as penne, fusilli, ziti. 
  • Lower calorie version: Use low fat cheese if you want to reduce calories and fat. 
  • Add-ins
    • Add cooked sausage or chicken chunks for a bulkier meat meal.
    • Use black or green olives. Or leave them out if you don't like them. 
    • Feel free to saute other vegetables before adding the tomatoes. Good options are peppers, mushrooms, zucchini or whatever you have around. 
    • Add 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil.
Make Ahead: The pasta heats up beautifully in the microwave over the next few days.
 
Nutrition values are estimates. 

Nutrition

Nutrition Facts
Tomato Spinach Pasta
Amount Per Serving
Calories 300 Calories from Fat 126
% Daily Value*
Fat 14g22%
Saturated Fat 6g38%
Cholesterol 33mg11%
Sodium 1641mg71%
Potassium 760mg22%
Carbohydrates 28g9%
Fiber 4g17%
Sugar 7g8%
Protein 17g34%
Vitamin A 4805IU96%
Vitamin C 26mg32%
Calcium 349mg35%
Iron 3mg17%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
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