This is quite possibly the easiest, fastest dinner because the spaghetti noodles and sauce all cook together in the same pan at the same time.
What you get is a light pasta dinner with minimal effort that needs little more than a glug of olive oil and parmesan cheese. Of course, don’t forget to tear in some fresh basil, too.
Since the flavor is light, I’m pretty generous with the cheese and red pepper flakes, and I particularly love the little pops of sweetness that come from the cherry tomatoes.
After sharing my homemade end-of-summer tomato sauce recipe, I decided to show you an even simpler method for using up handfuls of those ripe cherry tomatoes.
Let’s get cookin!
Top 3 Tips for Making an Easy Spaghetti (with Sauce) Dinner
Tip 1: Use a pan not a pot.
While you could use a pot, I actually prefer to use a large sauté pan for this recipe because you want the water to reduce down for flavor. More surface area means more evaporation.
Tip 2: Measure that water.
Rather than guess, it’s best if you use exactly 4 1/2 cups water, which is enough to boil the pasta but not so much that you can’t reduce it later.
Tip 3: Make it taste good.
With such a light sauce, it’s a good idea to work in extra torn basil, olive oil, and shaved parmesan cheese right at the very end. I’ve found that you can be very generous with these toppings.
Which tomatoes are best for this sauce?
You really need a tomato that has a ton of concentrated flavor, so that’s why I like the cherry or grape varieties for this recipe.
More Pasta Inspiration To Explore:
SPAGHETTI WITH TOMATO AND BASIL
- 12 ounces spaghetti
- 12 ounces cherry or grape tomatoes halved
- 1 medium yellow onion thinly sliced
- 4 garlic cloves thinly sliced
- ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 2 sprigs basil plus torn leaves for garnish
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil plus more for serving
- Freshly ground pepper
- 4 ½ cups water
- ½ cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese for serving
- Simmer. In a large sauté pan, combine the spaghetti, tomatoes, onion, garlic, red pepper flakes, basil, oil, 2 teaspoons salt, ¼ teaspoon pepper, and the water; bring to a boil over high heat. Cook pasta, stirring frequently with tongs, until al dente and water has nearly evaporated, about 11 minutes.
- Serve your dish. Season with salt and pepper, and garnish with torn basil. Serve with olive oil and cheese.
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I’ve made this but I add a bunch of cubed ham or medium shrimp. I am also considering using shallots or a mix of onion shallots as well as chopped green onion for color and flavor. Even red or green bell pepper pieces would add to this recipe. I tbink this is really versitile.