Tuscan White Bean Pasta is the perfect example of how simple ingredients can shine when prepared correctly. Tender spaghetti is tossed with perfectly seasoned white beans, blistered tomatoes, fresh spinach, and olive oil, for a simple pasta recipe that comes together in under 30 minutes.
I firmly believe that simple, high-quality food is often the most delicious food. That is when it is treated RIGHT.
Often the most celebrated meals are something as simple and classic as roasted chicken. When done right--PERFECTION. When treated carelessly--not so tempting.
Pasta falls into this category as well. Just watch a Chopped episode or two and you will see that those that attempt pasta either fail miserably or knock it out of the park.
This recipe for Tomato and White Bean Pasta KNOCKS it out of the park.
It is simple, easy, and always devoured by my family--and did I mention it is done in 30 Minutes?? We all love 30 Minute Meals, right?!
Not to mention this pasta recipe is perfectly balanced with whole grains, healthy fats, nutrients, and fiber.
Notes on Ingredients
- Pasta: I recommend using thin spaghetti for this pasta, as the delicate strands of pasta are a perfect pair for the simple flavors of this dish. Use regular or whole grain pasta--whichever you prefer.
- Tomatoes: Cherry or Grape tomatoes are perfect for this recipe, as they can be found ripe all year-round and don't require much prep. Simply wash and cut in half.
- White Beans (AKA Cannellini beans): Use a 16-ounce can of rinsed and drained cannellini beans or 2 cups of prepared dried white beans.
- Spinach: Fresh Spinach will add nutrients and flavor the pasta, but feel free to omit if you have picky eaters. You can use
- Garlic: What's a Tuscan inspired pasta dish without garlic, and a lot of garlic? Use 1-2 tablespoons of minced garlic based on your preference. And freshly minced or jarred minced garlic both work equally well.
- White Wine: This is an optional ingredient, but I find it adds so much flavor to the dish. Use a good-quality dry white wine, such as a Chardonnay or Pinot Grigio. Serve the leftover wine with dinner.
- Olive Oil: Be sure to use really good quality extra-virgin olive oil as it is one of the few main ingredients featured in this recipe.
- Lemon Juice: Fresh lemon juice will make this recipe POP with flavor. Do not be tempted to overlook this addition to the pasta, and DO NOT use jarred lemon juice.
- Crushed Red Pepper Flakes: I like the bit of heat that crushed red pepper flakes add to the pasta, but you can omit if you are sensitive to spice.
Bring a large pot of water to a rapid boil. Once boiling season with 2 tablespoons of kosher salt. Trust me on this--it is a lot of salt but it is the only opportunity to season the pasta well.
While the pasta is cooking, heat a large nonstick pan over medium-high heat. Be sure to select a pan that will hold both the pasta and the sauce together.
Add in olive oil and then the minced garlic and tomatoes. Season with a pinch of salt and crushed red pepper flakes and saute until the garlic begins to toast and the tomatoes break down slightly. This only takes a couple of minutes.
Add in dry white wine and turn the heat to high. Let the wine cook off for 2 minutes, or until reduced by half. Add in the white beans and spinach to tomato garlic mixture.
At this point, the pasta should be just al dente. Drain the pasta, being sure to reserve ½ cup of the cooking liquid. THIS IS KEY to forming the sauce for this Tuscan Pasta.
Add the pasta directly over the spinach and beans and then add in the reserved cooking liquid. Toss to coat, cooking for 1 minute longer to incorporate the flavors together.
Turn off the heat and add the juice of the fresh lemon to finish the pasta perfectly. Serve with an additional drizzle of olive oil and Parmesan cheese if desired. of fresh lemon juice.
- Leftovers? Store leftover pasta in a sealed container for up to 4 days. Add a splash of vegetable stock or water before reheating so that the pasta does not dry out.
- Be sure to quality ingredients as that is key to these simple flavors. If your tomatoes aren't ripe, the dish will not taste the same. Using canola oil will not yield the same flavor as using good extra virgin olive oil. Jarred lemon juice is not the same as fresh.
- If you are not dairy-free or vegan, finish this dish with freshly grated Parmesan cheese for additional flavor.
More Quick Pasta Recipes
- 15 Minute Thai Noodles
- One-Pot Skinny Fettuccine Alfredo
- One-Pot Macaroni and Cheese
- Kale Pasta
- Taco Pasta
When dinner needs to be quick or you are looking for a delicious vegan pasta recipe, give this Tuscan White Bean Pasta a try. It is easy to make and the flavors are perfection. Try this recipe? Be sure to leave a review!
Tuscan Pasta with White Beans and Tomatoes
- 16 ounces spaghetti noodles
- ¼ cup quality olive oil divided
- 2 tablespoons minced garlic divided
- 1 pint grape or cherry tomatoes halved
- ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- ⅓ cup dry white wine or vegetable stock
- 2 cups cannellini beans rinsed and drained
- 16 oz fresh spinach leaves stems removed
- Kosher salt and pepper
- 1 lemon juice only
- ⅓-1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan Cheese optional
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil.
- Put pasta in boiling water that has been heavily salted. Set timer to cook for 1 minute less than package directions.
- While the pasta is cooking, heat 2 tablespoons of oil over medium heat in a large nonstick saute pan. Add in garlic, a pinch of salt, red pepper flakes, and halved tomatoes. Saute for 2-3 minutes until the garlic begins to just toast.
- Add in the dry white wine and allow to simmer until the alcohol has been reduced by half.
- Add beans to the skillet and toss well to season. Simmer just until the beans are warm and then add the spinach to the pan.
- At this point, the pasta should be cooked, drain reserving ½ cup fo the cooking liquid.
- Add the cooked pasta, along with ½ cup reserved cooking liquid to the skillet and toss well. Allow the pasta to simmer for 1-2 minutes longer, for the pasta to finish cooking.
- Remove pasta from heat. Top with remaining olive oil and the juice of the fresh lemon.
- Serve the pasta warm with Parmesan Cheese if desired.
- Feel free to use white pasta or gluten-free pasta in place of the whole wheat pasta. I do recommend spaghetti noodles for this spinach and tomato recipe, as the pasta and vegetable ratio is perfect in each bite.
- If you are not vegan, top this pasta with freshly grated Parmesan cheese.
- Be sure to use quality extra virgin olive oil for optimum flavor in this white bean pasta.
- Feel free to omit red pepper flakes if you do not like spice–but the little bit called for in this Tuscan pasta makes the flavors pop.
- For the wine, use a dry white wine like Chardonnay or Pinot Grigio. Or use stock in place of the wine if desired.