15 5-Ingredient Pasta Dishes You'll Want to Make Forever

Baked Spinach & Feta Pasta
Photo: Jason Donnelly

You need just five ingredients to make one of these delicious, flavorful pasta recipes for dinner—which means no last-minute run to the grocery store. Whether you love a stuffed pasta with fresh veggies or a creamy pasta topped with protein, there's something here to dig into. Recipes like our Fresh Herb Shrimp Linguini and Baked Spinach & Feta Pasta will soon be regulars on the dinner table.

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Pesto Ravioli with Spinach & Tomatoes

pan of Pesto Ravioli with Spinach & Tomatoes

Looking for a new way to turn a bag of frozen cheese ravioli into a satisfying and healthy dinner? This easy pasta recipe calls for just five ingredients but is loaded with fresh flavors. By using grape tomatoes, prewashed spinach and prepared pesto, we eliminate all prep work, making this 15-minute Caprese-inspired ravioli the ideal weeknight meal.

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Spinach-Artichoke-Sausage Cauliflower Gnocchi


Hearty and piquant, this quick cauliflower gnocchi dinner incorporates several healthy convenience ingredients, including turkey sausage and tender artichoke hearts, so dinner is on your table fast.

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Fresh Herb Shrimp Linguini


Have this fresh shrimp and pasta meal on the table in 30 minutes.

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Chicken Sausage & Onion Pasta

Chicken Sausage & Onion Pasta

Convenient fully cooked chicken sausage is a great flavor starter for this easy pasta recipe with just three ingredients you can keep stocked in your freezer or pantry for fast dinners. Just add some sautéed onions and pasta and you have a super-simple meal that the entire family will love

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3-Ingredient Tortellini with Sausage & Kale

3-Ingredient Tortellini with Sausage & Kale
Photo by: Carolyn A. Hodges, R.D.

Precooked chicken sausage is a handy shortcut ingredient because it heats up quickly and adds lots of flavor without a lot of fuss. A roasted garlic variety pairs perfectly with cheese tortellini and sautéed leafy greens.

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Baked Spinach & Feta Pasta

Baked Spinach & Feta Pasta
Jason Donnelly

Feta softens in the oven before it's combined with spinach and pasta, with the pasta cooking right in the baking dish. Enjoy this one-pan dish on its own as a vegetarian main or serve with sautéed chicken breast for a boost of protein.

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Shrimp Oreganata Cauliflower Gnocchi


This cauliflower gnocchi dinner is ready in just minutes on busy nights. A simple flavor-packed sauce marries the tender pasta with cooked shrimp. If you don't eat shrimp, use rotisserie chicken instead.

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Cacio e Pepe

Cacio e Pepe
Ryan Liebe

When making this elemental Roman pasta, most people focus on the cheese (cacio), with purists arguing for youngish pecorino Romano. But the peppercorns (pepe) are also essential to this dish, so it's a great time to try a single-origin variety. Boiling down some reserved pasta-cooking water before mixing with the al dente spaghetti concentrates the starch for an even more luscious sauce. Look for a hard grating cheese made without rennet if you want to keep it truly vegetarian.

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One-Pot Pasta with Tuna

One-Pot Pasta with Tuna

Use the one-pot pasta cooking method to make this tuna pasta recipe that calls for just 5 ingredients and is ready in just over half an hour. For extra crunch and a tuna noodle casserole feel, sprinkle this speedy pasta dish with toasted whole-wheat panko breadcrumbs.

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Creamy Salmon & Sugar Snap Cauliflower Gnocchi

Creamy Salmon & Sugar Snap Cauliflower Gnocchi

Tender cauliflower gnocchi combine with a quick cream sauce, tender peas and flaky salmon for an unforgettable weeknight dinner. This one is so good you might make it for special occasions. If you don't like smoked salmon, use fresh.

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3-Ingredient Goat Cheese Pasta with Broccoli

3-Ingredient Goat Cheese Pasta with Broccoli
Carolyn Hodges, M.S., RDN

Swap out regular pasta for pasta made with chickpeas and you'll more than triple the fiber and double the protein in this simple, satisfying dish. Be sure to save some of the pasta water to make a sauce. Feel free to use frozen broccoli in a pinch (you can blanch the broccoli in the same water you use to cook the pasta).

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Monticello's Macaroni

A dish of baked macaroni and cheese
Jerrelle Guy

This is the macaroni and cheese recipe that would have been used in the kitchens at Thomas Jefferson's Monticello. The popularization of this iconic American dish can be traced to Black cooks who helped spread the dish throughout the United States.

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3-Ingredient Cheese Tortellini with Tomatoes & Basil

3-ingredient tortellini
Sara Haas

This Italian-inspired dish is made with just three ingredients—roasted tomatoes, tortellini and fresh basil—to create a delicious, easy dinner. Roasting the cherry tomatoes coaxes out their natural sweetness. It's worth the time—trust us!

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Spaghetti Genovese

Spaghetti Genovese

Traditionally, this Italian pasta recipe combines pasta and pesto with potatoes and green beans. In our recipe for Spaghetti Genovese we give pesto a nutritional boost by adding spinach and toss it all together with fiber-rich whole-wheat pasta for a warm, comforting weeknight meal. Serve with escarole and radicchio salad.

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Cauliflower Gnocchi with Asparagus & Pesto

Cauliflower Gnocchi with Asparagus & Pesto
Carolyn Hodges, M.S., RD

While the cauliflower gnocchi crisp up in a sauté pan, steam fresh asparagus in the microwave to keep it bright green and crisp-tender. Substitute frozen asparagus (or green beans or peas) in a pinch. Toss them together with prepared basil pesto for a satisfying supper.

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