Gruyere, Asparagus & Pea Baked Pasta


This healthy casserole recipe contains tons of veggies alongside whole-wheat pasta for a satisfying dinner kids and adults will enjoy.

Cook Time:
45 mins
Additional Time:
1 hrs
Total Time:
1 hrs 45 mins
8 servings


  • 12 ounces whole-wheat rotini

  • 5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided

  • 2 cups sliced leeks, white and light green parts only

  • 1 pound asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1/2-inch pieces

  • 2 cloves garlic, minced

  • 1 ½ cups peas, fresh or frozen (thawed)

  • 5 tablespoons all-purpose flour

  • 4 cups reduced-fat milk

  • 2 teaspoons dry mustard

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • ½ teaspoon ground pepper

  • 2 cups shredded Gruyère or fontina cheese

  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh tarragon

  • cup whole-wheat panko breadcrumbs


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Coat a 9-by-13-inch baking dish with cooking spray.

  2. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Cook pasta for 2 minutes less than the package directions. Reserve 1/2 cup of the cooking water, then drain and rinse the pasta. Transfer to a large bowl.

  3. Meanwhile, heat 1 tablespoon oil a large skillet over medium heat. Add leeks; cook, stirring occasionally, until very tender, 6 to 8 minutes. Add asparagus and garlic; cook, stirring, until the asparagus is tender-crisp, 2 to 4 minutes. Add peas; cook 1 minute more. Transfer to the bowl with the pasta.

  4. Add 2 tablespoons oil to the pan and return to medium heat. Sprinkle in flour; cook, whisking, until it starts to brown, 2 to 3 minutes. Whisking constantly, slowly pour in milk, then the reserved water, mustard, salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer and cook, whisking, until the sauce thickens, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from heat; whisk in cheese and tarragon. Pour over the pasta mixture and stir until coated. Transfer to the prepared baking dish.

  5. Combine breadcrumbs and the remaining 2 tablespoons oil in a small bowl and sprinkle over the casserole. Bake until steaming hot, 30 to 35 minutes. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.


Make Ahead Tip: To make ahead: Prepare through Step 4 and refrigerate for up to 1 day; uncover and let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes before topping and baking (Step 5).

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

489 Calories
21g Fat
55g Carbs
23g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 8
Calories 489
% Daily Value *
Total Carbohydrate 55g 20%
Dietary Fiber 9g 32%
Total Sugars 10g
Protein 23g 46%
Total Fat 21g 27%
Saturated Fat 8g 41%
Cholesterol 40mg 13%
Vitamin A 1606IU 32%
Vitamin C 18mg 20%
Folate 139mcg 35%
Sodium 566mg 25%
Calcium 476mg 37%
Iron 3mg 18%
Magnesium 84mg 20%
Potassium 489mg 10%

Nutrition information is calculated by a registered dietitian using an ingredient database but should be considered an estimate.

* Daily Values (DVs) are the recommended amounts of nutrients to consume each day. Percent Daily Value (%DV) found on nutrition labels tells you how much a serving of a particular food or recipe contributes to each of those total recommended amounts. Per the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the daily value is based on a standard 2,000 calorie diet. Depending on your calorie needs or if you have a health condition, you may need more or less of particular nutrients. (For example, it’s recommended that people following a heart-healthy diet eat less sodium on a daily basis compared to those following a standard diet.)

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a special diet for medical reasons, be sure to consult with your primary care provider or a registered dietitian to better understand your personal nutrition needs.

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