Creamy Spinach Ricotta Pasta Recipe Is a Luscious Vegetarian Dinner by Jan Mostrom

Creamy Spinach Ricotta Pasta Recipe Is a Luscious Vegetarian Dinner

This creamy ricotta and spinach pasta dish comes together so quickly! The creamy pasta is filling, and a wonderful vegetarian meal for those busy days. This quick and easy pasta recipe is also nutritious. The health benefits of spinach are undisputed, and ricotta has health benefits, too. A win-win!

To make this vegetarian pasta recipe you will need fresh ricotta cheese, olive oil, apple cider vinegar, salt, black pepper, fresh baby spinach, rigatoni pasta (or your favorite pasta), Parmesan cheese and optional crushed red pepper flakes. This pasta dish cooks up in about 15 minutes. The luscious ricotta sauce clings to every pasta noodle and tastes heavenly. 

Serve this creamy pasta recipe for lunch or dinner with your favorite side dishes. We like a garden salad and hot bread. Try my no-knead French bread recipe!

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Cuisine: Italian
Prep Time: 10 Minutes
Cook Time: 15 Minutes
Total Time: 25 Minutes
Servings: 6


  • 1 pound fresh buffalo, cow, goat or whole-milk ricotta cheese, reserve 2 tablespoons for serving (see Recipe Notes)
  • 6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (divided)
  • 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons salt (or to taste)
  • 2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper, plus more for serving (or to taste)
  • 6 ounces fresh baby spinach, washed
  • 1 pound rigatoni pasta (or your favorite pasta)
  • 4 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • crushed red pepper flakes, to taste (optional)

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Recipe Notes

  • Instead of ricotta cheese you could use robiola. Robiola is a soft Italian cheese made with cow's, goat's and sheep's milk. It's from the Langhe region of Italy. 
  • No equipment is needed, but if you have a blender it will make mixing the ricotta a bit faster. If you don't have a blender, use a mixing bowl and whisk.
  • I  used rigatoni, but rotini, fusilli, cavatappi, penne, bowties, elbows or even fettuccine or spaghetti noodles would work.
  • Instead of spinach, try this recipe with kale, arugula or your favorite greens. 

Here's how to make it: 

  1. In a large bowl or blender add ricotta, 2 tablespoons olive oil, salt and pepper, and vinegar. Blend or whisk until smooth and like yogurt. If it seems too thick, add 1 to 2 tablespoons warm water. Add spinach. (If you used a blender pour mixture into a large bowl, add the spinach and set it to the side.)
  2. Cook pasta to al dente according to package directions. Save 2 cups of pasta water and then drain pasta. Add the pasta to the ricotta mixture mixing well. 
  3. Add the grated Parmesan and a bit of the pasta water, if needed, to smooth out the sauce.
  4. Serve warm in bowls topped with a dollop of ricotta and a few grounds of fresh pepper and crushed red pepper flakes, if desired.

Nutrition Facts Per Serving

Calories: 603

Total Fat: 35.3g

Saturated Fat: 15.3g

Cholesterol: 71mg

Sodium: 1180mg

Total Carbohydrate: 38.3g

Dietary Fiber: 3.7g

Total Sugars: 2g

Protein: 37.6g

Vitamin D: 0mcg

Calcium: 903mg

Iron: 4mg

Potassium: 661mg

Recipe cooking times, nutritional information and servings are approximate and provided for your convenience. However, 30Seconds is not responsible for the outcome of any recipe, nor may you have the same results because of variations in ingredients, temperatures, altitude, errors, omissions or cooking/baking abilities. This recipe has been analyzed by VeryWellFit. However, any nutritional information is provided as a courtesy and it is up to the individual to ascertain accuracy. To ensure image quality, we may occasionally use stock photography.

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Elisa Schmitz
I was just thinking about what to make with the spinach in my refrigerator, and now I know. How easy and delish, thanks!

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