A quick and easy weeknight pasta with goat cheese and fresh spring vegetables.
- 1/2 pound pasta (we used fettuccine)
- 2 Tablespoons olive oil
- 1/2 large yellow onion, thinly sliced (about 1 cup)
- 2 cups chopped asparagus
- 1 cup green peas (fresh or frozen)
- 2 ounces goat cheese (about 1/4 cup)
- 2 Tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 cup reserved pasta water (see recipe instructions)
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Cook pasta in very salty water until al dente. Reserve 1 cup pasta water, then drain pasta and set aside.
- Return pot to stove over medium heat. Add olive oil.
- When olive oil is hot, add sliced onion. Sauté, stirring occasionally, until onion has softened and begun to brown, about 3 minutes.
- Add asparagus to pot and sauté until brightened in color and very slightly softened, about 1-2 minutes.
- Reduce heat to low.
- Add peas, goat cheese, lemon juice, and cooked fettuccine to pot.
- Add a few turns of fresh cracked black pepper, but no salt yet!
- Use tongs to toss everything together until the goat cheese has mostly melted. It should still be a bit clumpy and rough.
- Add reserved pasta water a splash at a time, using tongs to toss in between each addition, until goat cheese has fully melted and you have a smooth, silky sauce. You likely won’t need the full cup of reserved pasta water!
- Taste and add salt if necessary.
- Remove from heat and serve immediately! Garnish with a lemon wedge, a few turns of cracked black pepper, or some extra goat cheese if you like.
Substitutions. Use ricotta, cream cheese, brie (rind removed), or another easy-melting soft cheese in place of the goat cheese. Use heavy cream, milk, chicken stock, or cauliflower cream in place of the pasta water. Swap the veggies for whatever you have on hand (see “additions” section below).
Additions. Add spinach or kale, pesto, garlic or garlic scapes, broccoli, tomatoes, corn, bell pepper, herbs, mushrooms, or summer squash in place of or in addition to the vegetables here. Add roasted or grilled chicken, salmon, or shrimp for extra protein. Add a pinch of red pepper flakes, a dash of fish sauce, or a handful of shredded parmesan cheese for extra flavor.
Taste as you go! Lemon juice and goat cheese can vary in flavor and strength across brands (or across lemons!) Some of our recipe testers preferred this recipe as written, and some wanted even more goat cheese to amp up the tangy, tart flavor. Make this recipe as written, then give it a taste and add more goat cheese, lemon juice, and/or salt and pepper as necessary. With so few ingredients, seasoning becomes extra important here. Trust your taste buds and don't be afraid to make adjustments!
We cook our veggies very lightly here so they retain a crisp bite in the pasta. Feel free to cook them longer if you prefer softer, well-done veggies!
This post was updated in 2020 to simplify the sauce and add additional notes.
Keywords: weeknight, one pot,