Penne Rosa is delicious and super simple Italian Pasta in Tomato Cream Sauce. This comforting pasta dish is filled with colorful veggies, tangy tomato sauce and touch of cream. You will love this Instantpot one pot wonder recipe for busy weeknights.
Delicious al dente penne pasta, chunks of mushrooms for that perfect umami, spinach and tomatoes for burst of colors and freshness ! This delectable Italian pasta is a rockstar of weeknight dinner scene.
This meatless, vegetarian pasta dish has only 8 main pantry ingredients and takes 20 minutes to make! Stovetop and InstantPot instructions are included below to make this gourmet family friendly meal in jiffy.
THE RECIPE CARD IS LOCATED TOWARDS THE END. Amazon affiliate link disclosure is below as well. Before scrolling to the recipe card, do check the HELPFUL RECIPE TIPS in the post.
“Noodles and Things” restaurant style penne rosa recipe is one of our family favorite. And once you realize how easy and simple it is to make, chances are, it will be your’s too.
This pasta also works beautifully for meal prep. I often make a big batch for dinner and pack leftovers for lunch.
You will love that this colorful recipe is fairly versatile. Here are some suggestions to make it uniquely yours.
- Half-and-half, cream cheese or Greek yogurt can easily replace the heavy cream. You can use vegan cream to make this recipe vegan and dairy free.
- Spinach adds a boost of nutrients and beautiful color contrasts. You can use kale, turnip greens, chard or your favorite greens.
- For the perfect umami and meaty texture, I am adding mushrooms. You can use your favorite protein.
- Choose a good quality marinara sauce. I like the sweet and tangy Italian San Marzano marinara sauce. Adding a splash of wine won’t be bad choice either !
- Last but not least, instead of penne, you can use any short pasta like fusilly, rigatoni, macaroni or rotini. All good choices !!
WHAT ARE THE INGREDIENTS OF PENNE ROSA?
Penne pasta : I am using gluten free penne pasta.
Veggies : Mushrooms, tomatoes and baby spinach for freshness and wholesomeness. Couple of cloves of minced garlic as the aromatics.
Olive oil, Heavy Cream and Parmesan Cheese: The cream and Parmesan cheese add quite a bit of richness to the dish. We are only using 1/2 cup of each so it’s not heavy calorie laden either.
If it’s easily available, toss few fresh basil leaves on top just before serving. It adds immense sense of vibrant freshness to this rich dish.
CHECK OUT OTHER EASY AND DELICIOUS PASTA RECIPES TO MAKE FOR WEEKNIGHT DINNER
WHAT TO SERVE WITH PENNE ROSA
Pair this pasta with full bodied red wine for ultimate gourmet dining experience.
Garlic bread or a sliced baguette with olive oil dip.. heavenly!
Simple salad. toss together all leftover veggies from the refrigerator and make a delicious salad.
WHY YOU’LL LOVE THIS CREAMY ITALIAN PASTA
- It’s easy 20 minutes recipe that tastes amazingly delicious and rich.
- Works perfectly for meal prep so make a big batch to pack for lunch too.
- Healthy and full of nutrients recipe with lots of veggies. Spinach, mushrooms and tomatoes taste amazing when combined together!
- Looks and tastes restaurant style yet very easy to make. The contrast of colors make this beautiful pasta dish truly gourmet quality!
HOW TO MAKE PENNE ROSA / PASTA IN CREAMY TOMATO SAUCE
1. Cook pasta – make pasta according to package instructions. If using InstantPot, choose Manual or Pressure cook setting and choose half the time suggested on the box.
2. Saute Mushrooms in olive oil. Add cooked pasta, tomato sauce, bit of water and heavy cream.
3. Stir in baby spinach. Finish off with fresh cracked black pepper, shredded parmesan cheese and red pepper flakes. And ta da !!
Your penne rosa is ready for dinner !!
- 1.5 cups (12 oz) Penne Pasta - I used gluten free pasta
- 3 cups (25 oz ) Marinara sauce
- 1 teaspoon Olive Oil
- 2-3 cloves garlic minced
- 2 cups fresh baby spinach leaves
- 2 Roma Tomatoes - diced
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 1/2 cup shredded parmesan cheese
- 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- Salt and freshly cracked black pepper -per taste
- 1 cup water ( for InstantPot method only)
Start the instant pot in sauté mode and heat oil in it. Add the mushrooms, salt and garlic and cook for few minutes. Cancel Saute.
Add the pasta and water and mix well. Scrape if anything is stuck to the bottom of the pot. Most of the pasta should be covered in the water.
Pour marinara sauce over the pasta. Do NOT stir.
Close the instant pot lid with vent in sealing position. Choose MANUAL or PRESSURE COOK mode at high pressure for 4 minutes. ( do half of the time suggested on pasta box cooking time )This will result in al dente pasta.
When the instant pot beeps, quick release the pressure manually by moving the valve from sealing to venting. Open the lid.
Stir in the cream, tomatoes and spinach and mix well. Taste and adjust the salt if needed. Penne Rosa is ready to be served.
Garnish with grated parmesan cheese, crushed red pepper flakes and black pepper. Serve warm. Bon Appetit!!
Cook pasta according to package directions.
Meanwhile, heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add in minced garlic, sliced mushrooms and salt. Sauté for few minutes, until mushrooms are soft and tender. You should sense the garlic aroma too.
Stir in cooked pasta, marinara sauce , tomatoes and spinach. Stir to combine.
Stir in heavy cream. Gently mix everything well together. The pasta starts to soak up the liquid and sauce. Adjust the salt if needed.
Sprinkle parmesan cheese and crushed red pepper flakes and black pepper on top. Serve warm. Bon appetit!!
InstantPot pasta cooking Tips:
Remove the steel insert from the instant pot, so the bottom does not continue cooking from the heat.
For al dente pasta, cook for 1 minute less than half the time recommended on the box.
For well done pasta cook for half the time suggested on the box. For example, if the pasta box says 10 minutes, then I would pressure cook for 4 minutes for al dente and 5 minutes for well done pasta.
If pasta is not the exact consistency you like, start the sauté mode again and cook for a couple of extra minutes till sauce gets thicker.
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- San Marzano Sugo Di Pomodoro Marinara Sauce 24 Oz.
- Barilla Gluten Free Pasta, Penne, 12 Ounce (Pack of 8)
- Real Italian Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil. First Cold press. Imported from Italy. Awards Winner 16 Fl Oz Bottle
- McCormick Gourmet Organic Crushed Red Pepper, 1.12 oz
- Salt and Pepper Grinder - Premium Stainless Steel Salt and Pepper Mill with Adjustable Coarseness - Salt Grinder and Pepper Shaker Mill (Single package)
- Instant Pot DUO Plus 60, 6 Qt 9-in-1 Multi- Use Programmable Pressure Cooker, Slow Cooker, Rice Cooker, Yogurt Maker, Egg Cooker, Sauté, Steamer, Warmer, and Sterilizer
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 275Total Fat: 12gSaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 29mgCarbohydrates: 34gFiber: 5gSugar: 5gProtein: 10g
Nutritional values are provided as a courtesy and the values are approximate. The values will change depending on the exact ingredients, measurements and brands used. As always. for specific health issues and dietary requirements please consult medical professional.