Cream/ Lunch/ Pasta

Creamy Tomato Pasta (2 ingredients!)

December 29, 2021 by Chris Collins

This Creamy Tomato Pasta Sauce takes 2 minutes to make and requires just 2 main ingredients!

This recipe really is the perfect illustration of ‘why choose when you can have both?’. There’s something special about a pasta that’s doused in a sauce that’s both tomatoey and creamy. Today I’m sharing with you a tomato cream pasta sauce that’s just pure magic! Follow me…

close up shot of tongs twisting pasta in pan

Creamy Tomato Pasta Ingredients

I promised a two ingredient sauce, and that I keep too. Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Sun Dried Tomato Pesto – This works great because you not only get an intense tomato flavour, but you also get a load of other goodies packed in too. You’ll find this readily available in most stores, or you can make your own Homemade Sun Dried Tomato Pesto.
  • Mascarpone – Technically a cheese, mascarpone has a very creamy flavour and texture. This works great instead of regular cream, not only to add a rich and slightly cheesy flavour, but it’s also much thicker, meaning you don’t have to simmer the sauce to thicken it.

Can I sub Cream Cheese?

Cream cheese has a much cheesier flavour than mascarpone, so I don’t recommend subbing it. Mascarpone has a much more subtle flavour which allows the flavour of the pesto to shine through, whilst still offering a creamy texture/flavour.

Can I sub regular Cream?

This is your next best bet, you just miss out on a touch of flavour and you’ll have to simmer to thicken it. You’ll need Heavy/Double Cream.

What kind of Pasta to use?

I recommend a long-cut pasta. The sauce oozes around it so beautifully! Here I’ve used a Bucatini Spaghetti, which is essentially a tubed spaghetti.

creamy tomato pasta ingredients with text labels

Creamy Tomato Pasta

To make the sauce it’s really as simple as you’d imagine. Just gently simmer both the pesto and mascarpone, stirring as you go to marry them together. I recommend a fairly low heat – don’t rapidly simmer or you run the risk of the pesto splitting and the mascarpone curdling.

Starchy Pasta Water

When the pasta is cooked, don’t drain it. I recommend adding it straight from the pot into the pan. This way you gain some of the starchy pasta water, which will help thin out the sauce and help create a creamy/glossy sauce.

Process shots: spread pesto out in pan (photo 1), add mascarpone (photo 2), stir to melt and combine (photo 3), add pasta and toss (photo 4), add more starchy pasta water if needed (photo 5), season and serve (photo 6).

6 step by step photos showing how to make creamy tomato pasta

Serving Creamy Tomato Pasta

If you want to keep it simple you can serve right up. If you want to add a little ‘something something’ then fresh basil, chilli flakes and parmesan all work nicely to serve (they work well tossed in the pasta too!).

What else could I add to this pasta?

If you want to add any fillings then here’s some ideas for you:

  • Smoked or Italian Sausage
  • Chicken
  • Pancetta/Bacon
  • Spinach

Alrighty, let’s tuck into the full recipe for this creamy tomato pasta shall we?!

overhead shot of tomato cream pasta in large grey bowl

How to make Creamy Tomato Pasta (Full Recipe & Video)

close up shot of tongs twisting pasta in pan

Creamy Tomato Pasta (2 ingredients!)

This Creamy Tomato Pasta Sauce takes 2 minutes to make and requires just 2 main ingredients!
Print Pin Rate
Servings (click & slide): 3
Course: Lunch
Cuisine: Italian
Prep Time: 2 minutes
Cook Time: 8 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Calories per serving: 926kcal
Cost per serving: £1.50 / $2

Equipment:

  • Large Frying Pan & Wooden Spoon
  • Large Pot & Tongs
  • Mug (for scooping pasta water)

Ingredients (check list):

  • 12oz / 350g Long Cut Pasta (here I use Bucatini Spaghetti)
  • 3/4 cup / 190g / 6.7oz Sun Dried Tomato Pesto (see notes)
  • 3/4 cup / 150g / 5oz Mascarpone
  • Salt & Pepper, as needed

Instructions:

  • Pop your pasta in salted boiling water and cook until al dente. Don't drain.
  • A couple of minutes before the pasta is done, add the pesto to a pan over low heat. Once it starts very gently bubbling, add in mascarpone and stir until melted and combined with the pesto.
  • Using tongs, transfer the pasta straight from the pot into the pan. Toss to combine, adding the leftover starchy pasta water in the pot to thin out the pasta sauce as needed.
  • Season with salt and pepper then serve up and enjoy!

Quick 1 min demo!

Notes:

a) Sun Dried Tomato Pesto - you can find this in most stores, or you can whip up some homemade sun dried tomato pesto! I know 190g / 6.7oz is a specific amount, but in the UK most jars of pesto are 190g so it makes sense.
b) Starchy Pasta Water - Make sure the water is heavily salted so you don't dilute the flavour of the sauce. Also make sure you boil the pasta in fairly shallow water, just so it's nice and starchy. This will help create a nice creamy/glossy consistency.
c) Heat - Try and keep the heat fairly low to avoid the pesto splitting or mascarpone curdling.
d) Additions - A bit of inspiration for additions based on what I've added in the past:
  • Smoked Sausage
  • Chicken
  • Spinach
  • Fresh Basil
  • Chilli Flakes
  • Parmesan
e) Calories - whole recipe divided by 3 with no additions.

Your Private Notes:

Nutrition:

Nutrition Facts
Creamy Tomato Pasta (2 ingredients!)
Amount Per Serving
Calories 926 Calories from Fat 485
% Daily Value*
Fat 53.88g83%
Saturated Fat 15.595g78%
Polyunsaturated Fat 8.251g
Monounsaturated Fat 26.823g
Cholesterol 56mg19%
Sodium 831mg35%
Potassium 520mg15%
Carbohydrates 96.92g32%
Fiber 13.5g54%
Sugar 2.3g3%
Protein 18.86g38%
Vitamin A 1448IU29%
Vitamin C 2.7mg3%
Calcium 200mg20%
Iron 2.9mg16%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Nutrition is based on the absence of salt unless stated as a measurement in the ingredients. Cost is worked out based on ingredients bought from UK supermarkets, then divided by the number of servings. In both instances these values are just for guidance. Please check out my FAQ Page for more info.
Tried this recipe?Show me how you got on by tagging @dontgobaconmyheart_ on IG and #dontgobaconmyheart!

If you like the look of this recipe check out my Creamy Tomato Sausage Pasta in a Mascarpone Sauce!

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