20 Minute One Pot Pasta with Fresh Tomatoes and Basil

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20 Minute One Pot Pasta with Fresh Tomatoes and Basil recipe by Barefeet In The Kitchen

This garlicky, saucy pasta filled with basil and tomatoes is made from start to finish in about 20 minutes; does dinner get much better than that?

Everything is combined in the pot along with the cooking water and it reduces down into a perfect one dish meal as it cooks. It sounds almost too good to be true, right?

I’ve seen versions of this recipe floating around online all summer and I finally had to try it. With rave reviews from everyone who has tried it, I still doubted that the dish would live up to the hype. I was wrong.

This pasta is unbelievably rich and creamy and saucy, without any cream or actual “sauce” in the recipe. The recipe just begs to be played with; there are countless variations already running through my mind.

20 Minute One Pot Pasta with Fresh Tomatoes and Basil recipe by Barefeet In The Kitchen

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20 Minute One Pot Pasta with Fresh Tomatoes and Basil

5 from 1 vote
Recipe slightly adapted from and with thanks to Martha Stewart
Pin Print Review
Servings: 4 -6 servings


  • 12 ounces spaghetti linguini or fettuccine *
  • 1 large onion very thinly sliced, about 2 cups
  • 4 - 6 garlic cloves very thinly sliced
  • 12 ounces or 3 cups grape tomatoes halved
  • 10 basil leaves torn in half
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt plus more to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper plus more to taste
  • 4 1/2 cups water
  • Topping: Freshly grated Pecorino Romano or Parmesan cheese several basil leaves thinly sliced


  • Combine all ingredients in a straight sided large skillet or pot. Bring to a high boil and then reduce heat just enough to keep it boiling without splattering you as you stir and toss it constantly with tongs for about 8-10 minutes. The water and tomatoes will reduce down and the pasta will release starches that thicken it and make it creamy.
  • Do not wait for all of the liquid to evaporate. Taste the pasta as it finishes cooking. When it has softened to your liking remove from the heat. Taste and adjust salt and pepper if needed. Scoop into serving bowls and top with fresh cheese and additional basil. Enjoy!
  • * I used gluten free, brown rice fettuccine noodles and they worked just as well as traditional pasta.
Tried this recipe?Mention @barefeetkitchen or tag #barefeetkitchen!
20 Minute One Pot Pasta with Fresh Tomatoes and Basil recipe by Barefeet In The Kitchen

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Mary Younkin

Mary Younkin

Hi, I’m Mary. I’m the author, cook, photographer, and travel lover behind the scenes here at Barefeet In The Kitchen. I'm also the author of three cookbooks dedicated to making cooking from scratch as simple as possible.

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  1. Jamie Lynn says

    I made this last night and it was DELICIOUS. I too followed your recipe exactly, but added just a pinch more of red pepper flakes cuz I love me some heat to my pasta! So much flavor in such a little amount of time! I am definitely saving this for another busy weeknight. Thank you so much for sharing this with us. 🙂

  2. Anonymous says

    I've made this several times and it always turns out great. Try adding some other things you like, such as zucchini or olives.

  3. The Radford Six says

    I am sick with the flu and was browsing through recipes. I saw this one, and sick or not, had to try it right away! The fam loved it! I made a few changes, because of what I had on hand – whole wheat egg noodles, a can of crushed tomatoes instead of fresh, some chopped yellow peppers and slices of some leftover turkey sausages added at the end. It was so delicious and just the warm, homey meal I needed to start feeling better. We will make this again, and again for sure!

  4. Frank says

    I made this Friday, and it was a hit at my home. I will never go back to making pasta the conventional way. It is soooo delicious this way. I added cilantro to mine.

  5. Anonymous says

    My mom used to make her goulash of macaroni, tomato,onion , garlic ground beef in a crockpot..it was so good..this would be the same concept..

  6. Sharon says

    I am a cook and caterer, so sometimes I just want something easy and quick for home! I have now made this 3 times, with 3 different variations and I LOVE it! So does my family. I have substituted canned tomatoes, even jars of puree for the fresh tomatoes, changed up the type of pasta, stirred in cream cheese at the end, added cooked chicken breast or slices of cooked sausage at the end, etc. It is very adaptable and a meal my kids can learn to make easily. Excellent for students in university with little time or incentive to cook! Love it!

  7. Mary says

    We had this for dinner tonight, I always mix it up a little bit and add chicken and use chicken broth. It's quick and easy, everyone loves it and after I worked 10 hours today I didn't have to spend a ton of time in the kitchen.

  8. Aleisha says

    I make this all the time!! The only thing I do different is I use vegetable broth instead of water and I are some fried kielbasa or polish sausage into it because my husband is big on meat. Lol

  9. Robin says

    Its become a staple in this house. I use 3 1/2cups of chicken broth and 1 cup of white wine instead of water. And add fresh cracked black pepper ( about a 1/2 tsp) 1/2 tsp oregano, 5 sprigs italian parsley and chives to taste. I also left about an inch of liquid in the bottom of the pot ( cooked it to al dente) and did not add any cheese before serving as the dish didn't need it.