This quick and easy caprese pasta with tomatoes, mozzarella and basil is the perfect speedy dinner – only 6 ingredients and ready in 15 minutes!
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Who is ready for tomato season? I sure am! We plant a garden every year and the one thing I must absolutely have is at least half a dozen tomato plants. The older girls are old enough now to know not to pick the tomatoes until they’re ripe, and they run to the garden every day to check on their progress. Once the tomatoes are even somewhat ripe they beg to eat them every day until finally I agree. Not many tomatoes actually make it from the yard into the house to cook with, but oh well, that’s what the farmer’s market is for, right? I can’t complain too much because they’re enthusiastically eating produce, got to take advantage of that while it lasts! Whether you grow your own or buy them at the store, this recipe for quick and easy caprese pasta is a simple way to enjoy tomatoes.
I know I often say that my recipes are quick and easy, but really, this is one of the quickest and easiest. We’re talking about just 6 ingredients, and out of the pan and onto your table in about 15 minutes.
I use a ditalini noodles (also known as short or salad macaroni) for this recipe because it’s really fun for the kids to eat. It’s readily available at my local grocery stores but if you can’t find it, you can substitute a different small pasta shape.
This pasta has all the ingredients of a classic caprese salad – fresh mozzarella, olive oil, basil and tomatoes, with a little garlic for extra zing. When you make this, be sure to let the noodles cool for a few minutes before you add the mozzarella. You want the mozzarella to soften but if it gets too hot it’ll completely melt and make your pasta clumpy and stringy.
So six ingredients. Fifteen minutes. And you won’t have to turn on your oven on a hot summer day. Sold? I sure am. I will be repeating this all summer long, both as a meatless main course and an easy side dish. Maybe I can even convince the girls to hand over some of our garden tomatoes this year!
Quick and Easy Caprese Pasta
- 12 ounces of small short pasta such as ditalini
- 8 ounces of fresh mozzarella cheese cut into 1/2 inch pieces
- 6 ripe tomatoes I used roma, cored, seeded and chopped
- 2 cloves of garlic finely minced
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/2 cup fresh basil leaves roughly chopped
- kosher salt and ground black pepper
- Bring a large saucepan of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and cook according to package directions. Drain.
- Meanwhile, in a heavy large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the garlic and saute until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the tomatoes and saute just until heated through, about 2 minutes. Add the cooked pasta. Remove the skillet from the heat. Add the cheese and basil, and toss to coat. Season the pasta, to taste, with salt and pepper. Serve.