This Roasted Garlic and Tomato Penne is simple, flavorful, and great for busy weeknights!
Are you looking for a simple, homemade pasta sauce that is mostly hands-free? I’ve got you covered!
The core of this sauce is only three ingredients (garlic, tomatoes, and olive oil!), with a few extra flavorings tossed on top.
Simple sauces are my favorite thing to throw on pasta. A few vegetables, a sprinkle of cheese, and a splash of pasta water is all you need to make a simple supper.
If you have leftover roasted garlic sitting around you can absolutely use that, but I’ve altered that recipe to allow the garlic to cook alongside the tomatoes. I have a few green little bulbs sprouting on the tomato plants in my garden and my basil is straight up out of control (in such a good way), so I’m excited to keep making this garden fresh recipe for the rest of the summer!
This Roasted Garlic and Tomato Penne is easy to customize! Here are a few ideas:
- Use any type of fresh tomato, but cut into chunks if large
- Use a 28 ounce can of crushed tomatoes and leftover roasted garlic for an even faster sauce
- Use whatever pasta you have on hand such as rigatoni, bucatini, or even lasagna
- Roast other vegetables alongside, such as zucchini or eggplant, for an even more nutritious sauce
- Add your favorite protein such as white beans, shrimp, or chicken
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- 1 head garlic
- 2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for the garlic or as desired
- 1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes
- Coarse kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 pound penne
- 1/4 cup fresh basil, torn
- Freshly grated Parmesan Cheese for topping
Preheat the oven to 400ºF. Cut the top quarter off the head of garlic, drizzle the bulb with olive oil, and wrap tightly in a square of aluminum foil. Place in the oven on the middle rack and bake 50 minutes or until soft and brown.
Meanwhile, place tomatoes on a rimmed baking sheet, drizzle with 1 tablespoon olive oil, and season with salt and pepper. Place in the oven and bake 40 minutes, stirring once or twice to make sure they don’t burn.
While the tomatoes and garlic are roasting, bring a large pot of water to a boil and cook the penne according to package directions, reserving 1/2 cup cooking water just before draining. Return the pasta to the pot.
Once the tomatoes and garlic are done, remove from the oven and mash the tomatoes with a fork. Squeeze the garlic out into the tomatoes, add another tablespoon of olive oil, and mash it all together with the fork. Add the tomato sauce to the pasta along with a splash of the reserved cooking liquid and stir to coat completely. You can add more pasta water or olive oil if you prefer to loosen the sauce up a bit. Add the basil and stir one more time, then serve topped with Parmesan cheese.