This creamy one-pot pasta is made with whole-milk ricotta, parmesan cheese, fresh spinach, artichoke hearts, lemon zest, and toasted garlic! The best part: this quick and easy recipe is ready in under 30 minutes making it the perfect weeknight dinner!
I am not exaggerating when I tell you this Lemon Ricotta Pasta is SO easy to make, and so incredibly delicious. If you like spinach and artichoke dip you’re going to love this recipe! Whole-milk ricotta cheese, spinach, and artichoke fold together seamlessly for a creamy, and flavorful pasta that is a total crowd-pleaser. Toasted garlic, parmesan cheese, and lemon zest really bump up the flavors in this dish. If you like a little heat serve with crushed red pepper flakes on the side or on top!
Ok, I know I should’t say this in a post about “Ricotta Pasta” but here it is anyway… I usually don’t like ricotta cheese in pasta! I know, I know! That was, until I tried it like this. So what’s the difference? Pasta water! When combined with starchy pasta water the ricotta cheese melts into a smooth, velvety sauce. It’s like magic!
Looking for the perfect pairing? Serve lemony ricotta pasta with a simple side salad or Calabrian chili broccolini!
Ingredients You’ll Need
Here’s everything you’ll need to make this creamy lemon ricotta pasta: fresh spinach, garlic, olive oil, canned or jarred artichoke hearts, pasta (and shape), full-fat ricotta cheese, parmesan cheese, and lemons.
Recipe Step by Step:
Step 1. Cook the Pasta
Cook the pasta but reserve a cup of the cooking liquid before draining.
Step 2. Toast the Garlic
Toast the sliced garlic in olive oil. This step infuses the pasta with the flavor of roasted garlic!
Step 3. Toss All Ingredients Together
Fold the ricotta, parmesan, spinach, artichokes, lemon juice and zest together. Use the pasta water to thin out the sauce as needed.
Step 4. Serve
Divide between bowls and serve immediately! Serve with crushed red pepper flakes on the side.
FAQs and Expert Tips:
Yes, you can use frozen spinach. Use one 6oz bag of frozen spinach.
Yes, you can use marinated artichokes just drain them well and pat dry with a paper towel before using.
You can absolutely make this pasta ahead of time. I recommend using a short cut pasta like penne or rigatoni because they are easier to reheat. Use water or cream to rehydrate when reheating.
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Lemon Ricotta Pasta with Spinach and Artichoke
- ¼ c olive oil
- 4 cloves garlic thinly sliced
- 1 14 oz can artichoke hearts in water or frozen artichoke hearts drained and quartered
- 6 oz baby spinach about two heaping cups
- 1 lb pasta any shape you like
- 16 oz whole milk ricotta cheese
- 2 lemons
- ½ c grated parmesan cheese plus more for serving
- crushed red pepper flakes optional
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook the pasta according to the instructions on the package. Reserve one cup of pasta water before draining.
- Return the pot to the heat then add in the olive oil and sliced garlic. Cook the garlic, stirring frequently until it's golden brown and aromatic.
- Turn the heat to low and add in the spinach, artichokes, ricotta, grated parmesan, cooked pasta, and zest and juice from two lemons. Gently fold the ingredients together, use the pasta water to thin the sauce out as needed. The spinach will wilt and cook as you stir.
- Turn off the heat, taste, and season with salt or extra lemon juice as needed. Divide between bowls and serve with crushed red pepper flakes on the side.
- Spinach: substitute fresh arugula or even frozen spinach.
- Artichoke Hearts: I prefer artichoke hearts packed in water or brine but you can also use marinated artichoke hearts or frozen. If using frozen be sure to defrost before using.
- Pasta: You can use any shape of pasta you like or you can use your favorite gluten-free pasta.
- This pasta will stay fresh in the refrigerator for up to four days. Sprinkle the pasta with a little bit of water then reheat in the microwave or on the stovetop.
Enamel Pot | Olive Wood Spoon | Measuring Cups