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One of our favorite vegetarian or vegan recipes, this flavor-packed vegetable pasta is sauced with a rainbow of roasted Mediterranean vegetables, herbs, and crumbled feta cheese. Use spaghetti or any type of dried pasta shape you have on hand to make this simple, vibrant pasta dinner in about half an hour.
Think of this roasted veggie pasta recipe as a gateway to the garden! The sauce is made in one sheet pan with plenty of colorful vegetables, garlic, herbs, and extra-virgin olive oil.
There’s a genuine rainbow of vegetables in this dish. It’s one of the best easy pasta dinner ideas you can make, and it’s a snap to make vegetable spaghetti all year round, with fresh vegetables from your grocery store.
I love to make vegetables the focal point of whatever I set out to eat or cook, sometimes the main element of the plate. That could mean a tangle of Mediterranean roasted vegetables on top of creamy polenta or a roasted vegetable salad.
About the ingredients
- Sweet bell peppers: Use a variety of colors for the prettiest presentation — you can sometimes find bell peppers packaged in trios, with one red, yellow, and orange. Otherwise, use all red ones.
- Cherry tomatoes: Available year-round, these little guys pop with juice and sweetness in the oven. Grape tomatoes are a good substitute.
- Zucchini: A perfect pasta partner, green zucchini squash appears in my lemon zucchini pasta and vegetable pasta primavera recipes. I add the squash to the roasting pan toward the end of the process so it doesn’t become too mushy.
- Red onion: I find red onion a bit sweeter than yellow onion, plus it adds another color to the mixture of vegetables. If you don’t have a red one, the recipe works just as well with yellow onion or even sliced leeks or scallions.
- Feta cheese: Briny and creamy, soft feta cheese is made with sheep’s milk, goat’s milk, cow’s milk, or a combination. Look for authentic feta cheese sold in blocks made in France, Israel, or Greece — I think they taste better than pre-crumbled cheese. Similar cheeses to try in this recipe are ricotta salata or Mexican cotija.
- Dried pasta: Any type of pasta shape, long or short, pairs especially well with this colorful assortment of roasted vegetables, kissed with a little smoky char from the oven. Whole wheat pasta has a rustic, full flavor and a very pleasurable chew, but you can use any type of dried pasta you enjoy, made with durum wheat, spelt, or gluten-free pasta made with chickpea flour.
Veggie pasta recipe steps
Roasted Veggie Pasta with Feta Cheese
- 1 each red, yellow and orange bell pepper, sliced into 1 ½-inch pieces
- 1 pint (283 g) grape or cherry tomatoes, halved
- ¼ cup (45 ml) extra-virgin olive oil
- Kosher salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 2 small zucchini, sliced into 1½-inch pieces
- 1 (120 g) small red onion, thinly sliced
- 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme or oregano, or 1 teaspoon dried
- ¼-½ teaspoon crushed red pepper
- 12 ounces (340 g) dried pasta, such as spaghetti or penne
- ⅓ cup (80 g) feta cheese
- ¼ cup chopped parsley
- Heat the oven to 425 (220C) degrees.
- On a large rimmed baking sheet just large enought to hold the vegetables in on layer, toss the peppers and tomatoes with the olive oil, ½ teaspoon salt and freshly ground pepper to taste.
- Roast in the oven 15 minutes. Add the zucchini, red onion, garlic, thyme and red pepper and stir around to mix. Continue roasting 10-12 minutes, until the edges of the peppers are brown and the onions are softened.
- While the vegetables are in the oven, cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water until al dente. Scoop out and reserve ¼ cup of the cooking water before draining.
- When the vegetables are done, pour the reserved pasta water over the vegetables, scraping the bottom of the sheet pan to release any crusty bits into the sauce. Taste and season with more salt and pepper to taste, if needed.
- Transfer the pasta to a serving bowl. Tip the roasted vegetables and the pan sauce over the pasta and toss. Crumble the feta cheese over the pasta, sprinkle with the parsley and serve.
Karen’s Notes and Tips
- To avoid burning them, be sure to slice the bell peppers into about 1-1/2 inch pieces.
- You can sometimes find bell peppers packaged in trios, with one red, yellow, and orange. Otherwise, use all red ones.
- Red onion is a bit sweeter than yellow onion, plus it adds color to the mixture of vegetables. If you don’t have red onion, the recipe works just as well with yellow onion or even sliced leeks or scallions.
- Make ahead tip: The roasted vegetables can be cooked up to 3 days ahead and stored refrigerated. Cook the pasta when you’re ready to eat. Heat the veggies in a saucepan using about 1/4 cup of the pasta water or vegetable broth as needed to make it saucy.