Okay, we all know that most people if asked would call this a Chinese food blog, so we know that you may not get as excited when you see summer pasta recipes turn up instead of an authentic Hunan stir-fry or a plate of northern-style dumplings.
Which is why we don’t post tons of pasta dishes…Buuuuut, when we do, you can rest assured that they are definitely worth our time and attention!
These summer pasta recipes are some of our favorites from over the years, especially during the summer, when you don’t really want to spend so much time chopping and prepping for a spread of Chinese dishes.
And while you might be in summer salad mode (swimsuit anxiety, anyone?), we say pause your diets and pick one of these summer pasta recipes so you can relax in the sun with a simple and comforting bowl of delicious, tomato-y, herbacious, cheeeeesey, carbalicious goodness.
13 Summer Pasta Recipes
1. Salmon Pasta with Green Goddess Pesto
Green Goddess Pesto is one of THE top reasons why I tolerate the summer heat. That is, lots of fresh herbs like basil, scallions, chives, dill, and oregano go into this lovely green pesto, spiked with cloves of garlic. Gentle flakes of seared salmon and green peas round out the party, and you’ve got a full meal. Seriously, people, I drool as I type. I may be a leetle biased given this is my creation, but it’s my *favorite* pasta on the blog. Make it! Today! Or Tomorrow! But definitely do it!
2. Spaghetti with Tomato, Capers, Mint and Parsley
We whipped this up in Santorini after a day of baking on black sand beaches and hiking through old ruins. The simple combination tomato, capers, and parsley might be recognizable, but the real game changer is the ample amount of mint, which adds a Mediterranean flair. You’ll feel very exotic and European and enlightened–we did!
3. Roasted Ratatouille Pasta
This was one of our first popular recipes on the blog. Packed with plenty of summer veggies, you can roast the veggies in the oven or put them in a pan and set it over the grill! Voila, your house is kept cool and you have a delicious, vibrant summery pasta.
4. Spaghetti with Breadcrumbs and Anchovies
When you want to feel fabulous and like you’re lounging somewhere on the Italian coast, make this Spaghetti with Breadcrumbs and Anchovies. Briny anchovies and capers are complemented by crushed red pepper flakes, plenty of parsley, and of course the crunchy breadcrumbs. A little parm, maybe a squeeze of lemon, and a cold glass of white wine or prosecco, and you’ve got summer pasta nirvana!
5. Basil Mint Pesto Pasta with Tomatoes and Strawberries
Seems like a strange combo, but summer means foods chock full of tomatoes, berries, and fresh herbs, so why not combine them into one bowl of deliciousness?
6. Roasted Cherry Tomato Pasta Puttanesca
We made this one summer when we had a huuuuge tomato harvest but didn’t want to spend hours over the stove making sauce with teeny tomatoes. This Pasta Puttanesca was a great solution, and satisfies my mother’s militant need for plenty of “fruits” and veggies in her pasta.
7. Penne alla Rosé
Whether you be woman or man (brosé, anyone?), young or old, rosé is the default drink of the summer. This recipe is a little bit similar to penne alla vodka, but just lean over and pour a few glugs of the rosé you popped open into the light tomato sauce instead. Plus it’s just so delightfully pink. BRB while I am shamelessly girly and (Insta)gram-y.
8. Orange Pasta
This Orange Pasta is a retro recipe from my dad’s childhood. Made with simple ingredients, the bright citrus flavor really shines through. Plus, it’s perfect for that carton of orange juice languishing at the back of the fridge.
9. Soy Sauce Butter Pasta with Shiitake Mushrooms and Shrimp
This pasta is proof that the combination of soy sauce and butter is *always* a good idea. Mushrooms get perfectly caramelized and mellowed with white wine, soy sauce and butter. We like this pasta with seared shrimp, but who’s to say you couldn’t do grilled chicken?
10. Thai Basil Pesto Pasta with Spicy Shrimp
This Asian fusion uses plenty of Thai basil to make a thick pesto, topped with perfectly seared and spicy shrimp. We made it with big rigatoni but you can make it more of an Asian noodle experience by using spaghetti!
11. Chinese Spaghetti Bolognese
If you’re looking for lots of Chinese flavors but aren’t quiiite committed to going full hog with one of our more authentic noodle dishes, this recipe is your man. The use of ground beef makes it ridiculously simple, but bonus points if you use fresh summer peas!
12. Shiitake Mushroom Tortellini with Soy Cream Sauce
Okay, so maybe this isn’t the lightest and summeriest of pastas, but it is pretty wonderfully decadent if you’re cooking for a special occasion. Shiitake mushroom tortellini are made with ricotta cheese and *wonton* wrappers, and they got tossed in that luscious soy cream sauce. Treat yo self!
13. The Perfect Spaghetti Carbonara
There’s something wonderfully simple about spaghetti carbonara, especially in the summer when you want no-fuss recipes that will get on the table fast (i.e., with minimal heat expenditure from stove/oven). Golden eggs mix with cream, cheese, and perfectly crisped pits of guanciale or pancetta (bacon will suffice for those of us who can’t get our hands on the authentic stuff), and we have the perfect techniques to make sure you end up with a perfect creamy carbonara and not a mess of scrambled egg and spaghetti!
Enjoy the rest of summer, everyone! Preferably with pasta. :)