This one-pot pasta is an easy and healthy pasta dinner that you can get on the table in less than 30 minutes! It’s creamy, hearty and filled with all the flavors of the perfect dinner.
One pot pasta? Do you love them, or hate them? Lemme guess. You love them and you make one at least once a week? Perfect. Meee toooo!
Whenever I think about quick, easy and healthy pasta recipes, one pot pasta shoots to the top of my list. Usually, because time is the one major thing I’m looking to get back pretty much every night.
One Pot Pasta With Peas and Bacon
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When I first heard about one-pot pasta, I think we can all thank Martha Stewart for that, I was skeptical. I’m a professional chef and all I could think was, this won’t work properly. The pasta will be undercooked, the sauce will get too thick, all the ratios will be off. But, nope. I was wrong. It’s now pretty much my go-to method for cooking pasta all the time.
Let me walk you through making a one-pot pasta step by step
- You’ll be using garlic and onions to make pretty much every pasta dish. Sweat them off first in some olive oil (or bacon fat, like this recipe) and leave them to sit in a bowl while you make the rest of the pasta. I have found that by leaving them in, they absorb too much of my pasta liquid and the onions get too big and my sauce reduces too quickly.
- Like in this recipe, if we’re browning bacon then set that aside with the onions and add them back in at the end. You want to keep your bacon crispy.
- This tip is a biggie… when you add your liquids and pasta to the pan to cook, don’t over season. I fell into this mistake the first couple of times I made an easy one-pot pasta recipe! We’re so used to salting pasta water generously that it can sometimes be a reflex and you’ll end up overseasoning your pasta sauce and it’ll become inedible. The last thing you want when you’re short on time.
- When you add the liquids and pasta to the pan, trust your judgment. I know some of you are looking for exact measures and precise timings, but most often cooking doesn’t work that way. It takes a little intuition and a lot of trusting yourself. If it looks like you need to add some extra water, broth or milk to get your pasta cooked, then add it. Yes, even if the recipe doesn’t tell you to. Like I said, intuition.
For this recipe, the step by step is really easy.
As I said, it’s the easiest one-pot pasta!
- Cook the bacon in the pan over medium heat. Once it’s browned and crispy, set it aside on a paper towel to drain and pour half the bacon fat away (into this bacon trap if you’ve got one) and leave the rest in the pan.
- Sweat the onions and garlic in the bacon fat. Because it’s delicious and a little bacon fat once in a while won’t hurt you! Set them aside in a small bowl. I do this so that they don’t absorb all my pasta water, as I mentioned before.
- Add the milk and the chicken broth to the pan and bring to a boil. Add the dry pasta and let simmer away until the pasta is cooked. This should take about 15-20 minutes. I don’t have my liquids at a full boil, as it reduces too quickly that way and you’d need to add more water diluting your sauce. A gentle simmer is perfect here.
- At the very end of cooking that pasta, add the frozen peas and let them heat up. There is absolutely no need to defrost them. They’ll take about a minute to get hot.
- Add the lemon juice and zest, some chopped mint and top with the bacon.
My personal preference is to serve dishes in the middle of the table and let everyone help themselves. I just love the generosity and feel of that style of eating. But you can certainly dish it up if that works better for you.
Looking for more simple pasta recipes? Try these favorites!
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One Pot Pasta With Peas and Bacon
- Cook the bacon in the pan over medium heat. Once it's browned and crispy, set it aside on a paper towel to drain and pour half the bacon fat away and leave the rest in the pan. Sweat the onions and garlic in the bacon fat. Set them aside in a small bowl. *See Note 1
- Add the milk and the chicken broth to the pan and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and add the dry pasta and let simmer away until the pasta is cooked. This should take about 15-20 minutes. *See Note 2
- At the very end of cooking that pasta, add the frozen peas and let them heat up. There is absolutely no need to defrost them. They'll take about a minute to get hot. Add the lemon juice and zest, some chopped mint and top with the bacon. *See Note 3
- Set aside the onions and garlic so that they don't absorb all the pasta water while the pasta cooks.
- I don't have my liquids at a full boil, as it reduces too quickly that way and you'd need to add more water diluting your sauce. A gentle simmer is perfect here.
- No need to defrost the peas here. They only take seconds to heat up when they're snuggled into the pasta.
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