Noodles are convenient, comforting, and pretty cheap, making them an excellent ingredient for easy weeknight meals and leftover lunches. And thanks to the many varieties of gluten-free noodles-like chickpea, brown rice, and quinoa-you don't have to get down with wheat to indulge. These 23 gluten-free pasta recipes are as good as their gluten-full counterparts-if not better.
1. Simple Lemon Olive Oil PastaShare on Pinterest
Though it's tempting to reach for premade pasta sauce, making your own takes flavor the extra mile. Made with pan-roasted tomatoes, basil, garlic, lemon zest, and nutritional yeast, this sauce couldn't be simpler (despite its robust flavor). Use gluten-free spaghetti or another long noodle variety, and top with vegan Parmesan and red pepper flakes.
2. Crispy Harissa Tofu With Sesame NoodlesShare on Pinterest
Baking tofu can be tricky business. This recipe keeps the protein shapely and crispy with a cornstarch and sea salt coating, which also does an amazing job making the harissa sauce bind to the tofu like a champ. Use pad Thai noodles as the base, drizzle with toasted sesame oil, top with garlic sauce and the harissa tofu, and enjoy every minute of your gluten-free masterpiece.
3. Chickpea Caesar Pasta SaladShare on Pinterest
Many pasta salads emphasize the pasta and are scant on the salad. This vegan dish throws that notion out the window, with chickpea pasta complementing the greens instead of stealing the show. The vegan dish is filling on its own but also tastes great with hard-boiled eggs, grilled chicken, or salmon-if you're not vegan, of course.
4. Spinach and Ricotta Keto RavioliShare on Pinterest
Calling these ravioli “pillowy soft bites from heaven” doesn't quite do the homemade pasta justice. The keto-friendly dough is made from almond and coconut flour, apple cider vinegar, salt, and egg, and stuffed with ricotta, Parmesan, spinach, pine nuts, and nutmeg, making them incredibly rich yet still soft. Top with thyme butter sauce and enjoy a little slice of (keto) heaven.
5. One-Pot Ratatouille SpaghettiShare on Pinterest
File this under one-pot wonder. Zucchini, eggplant, onion, and red bell pepper are sautéed with garlic and olive oil to begin, and then pasta, water, balsamic vinegar, and chopped tomatoes are added to the pan so the pasta cooks in the sauce, which becomes thicker by the minute. Top with nutritional yeast to keep it vegan or some fresh Parmesan.
6. Spicy Chicken Sausage PastaShare on Pinterest
Cream cheese as a pasta sauce? Yes, please. Though it's hard to improve upon creamy cheese sauce, this recipe gets even better with a splash of white wine, sliced chicken sausage, and spice from jalapeños. Sneak in some veg by adding onion and tomatoes (we love cauliflower too) and top with fresh basil and salt and pepper.
7. Kale and Brussels Sprout Miso Mustard Noodle BowlsShare on Pinterest
If mustard isn't part of your pasta repertoire, boy do we have a treat for you. This tangy noodle dish is full of greens-kale and Brussels sprouts-and sauced with a savory mix of miso paste, Dijon mustard, and tahini. We're not sure what's better: that it's incredibly easy to make or that the flavor is so delightfully unexpected.
8. Hidden Veggie Mac and Cheese With Pecan Bread CrumbsShare on Pinterest
This mac and cheese sauce is not only packed with veggies, but it also has a sneakily veggie-filled sauce. Butternut squash, cauliflower, cinnamon, and mustard blend with Parmesan and cheddar cheeses for a super comforting but not overly rich sauce, and broccoli hides in the cheesy, gluten-free noodles. Adult-friendly, kid-friendly, and plain ol' tastebud-friendly.
9. Brown Rice Caprese SpaghettiShare on Pinterest
And just like that, we realized we've been eating Caprese salads all wrong. This twist on the Italian classic mixes bursting roasted tomatoes with bite-size mozzarella balls and brown rice pasta, creating a fresh and easy salad-meets-pasta dish that doesn't disappoint. Top with sliced basil and an extra drizzle of olive oil.
10. Edamame Pesto PastaShare on Pinterest
This recipe is as simple as cooking the pasta-chickpea pasta is used but any gluten-free variety will do-and mixing it with sauce. OK, the sauce is made from scratch, but all you have to do is blend together edamame, garlic, basil, lemon, olive oil, and sea salt to create the protein-packed, vegan pesto. Top with hemp seeds, and if you're craving a bit more veg, toss in chunks of roasted broccoli.
11. 15-Minute Sesame Ginger NoodlesShare on Pinterest
This recipe is a great to way clean out the fridge in a healthy and delicious way. Got leftover broccoli? Chuck it in. Snap peas, mushroom, bell pepper… basically, anything you'd throw into a stir-fry, you can throw into this. The six-ingredient sauce takes about a minute to make, meaning the hardest part of the recipe is waiting for the pasta water to boil.
12. Paleo Pasta CarbonaraShare on Pinterest
Carbonara without cheese may seem like blasphemy, but this Paleo-friendly recipe is so delicious, we decided to make an exception. Made with diced pancetta, shallots, garlic, white wine, chickpea pasta, green peas, and black pepper, it's so darn tasty it makes us wonder why we drenched carbonara with cheese in the first place.
13. Spicy Lemon Pasta With ShrimpShare on Pinterest
Shrimp linguine is one of those low maintenance dishes that's perfect for dinner parties, date nights, or times when you simply want to treat yourself to a little something special. Using garlic-infused olive oil means you don't have to worry about garlic fingers for a week, and the taste is a bit more mellow. Throw in spinach for extra greens and top with herbs galore.
14. Spicy Peanut Soba Noodle SaladShare on Pinterest
Spicy, creamy, full of protein… now this is a salad we can get behind. The key to the dish is the spicy peanut sauce, which can be punched up as needed (just add more Sriracha) and tweaked as desired. In fact, the entire recipe is customizable. Feel free to sub tofu for chicken, cashew butter for peanut butter, bell pepper and cabbage for snap peas and bok choy… just don't mess with the soba, as buckwheat noodles are perfect for soaking up that creamy sauce.
15. Creamy Tomato Penne PastaShare on Pinterest
It's true: Mayo isn't exactly the healthiest condiment on the block, but Paleo mayo isn't so bad (and is super tasty). This recipe mixes stewed tomatoes with eggs, Paleo mayo, garlic, and red pepper flakes to create a spicy, creamy bowl of goodness. Mix in chicken or sausage for added protein or spinach for extra veg, and top with plenty of fresh basil.
16. Paleo Sweet Potato Gnocchi With Spinach Cream SauceShare on Pinterest
Homemade gnocchi may sound like a hassle, but this two-ingredient recipe keeps things easy as can be. Made with mashed sweet potato and cassava flour-a gluten-free flour staple-the dough is simply rolled, cut, then boiled (really, it's that easy). Drench with the addictive herb sauce and wipe your drool as needed.
17. Easy and Healthy Mushroom PastaShare on Pinterest
It's easy to go overboard with pasta ingredients. But sometimes, less truly is more-and this mushroom pasta proves it. Made primarily with brown rice pasta, mushrooms, parsley, garlic, and Parmesan cheese, it cooks faster than you'll be able to eat it (and that's saying something). If you do want more, throw in some greens like spinach or kale and a dash of white wine to the cooking shrooms.
18. Chicken StroganoffShare on Pinterest
Similar to many pasta dishes, stroganoff may not have the healthiest reputation, but a few simple tweaks go a long way in this modified dish. Quinoa pasta adds extra protein and fiber, Greek yogurt provides protein-packed creaminess (so much that you don't even need the sour cream), and a few spices and dash of a secret sauce bring it all together. And as always, top with herbs for that extra special touch.
19. One-Pot Spring Pesto Pasta With Peas and AsparagusShare on Pinterest
This pesto pasta couldn't get more green. Filled with asparagus, green peas, artichoke, and herb-infused pesto sauce, it's basically a salad (minus the lettuce). With only seven ingredients-including the garnish-this vegan dish could hardly get simpler. Psst… make leftovers, because next-day pasta is next level.
20. Chicken Chickpea Pasta BakeShare on Pinterest
Pasta bakes are like lasagnas but require much less work-a.k.a. a dream come true. This recipe mixes chickpea pasta (though any variety will do) with ground chicken, zucchini, onion, garlic, and marinara sauce (store-bought is a-OK!) and is baked with cheese on top so it melts straight down the middle. Feel free to experiment with proteins-like ground turkey or sausage-and all kinds of veggies. Our guess is it'll taste pretty freakin' good no matter what you do.
21. Creamy Pumpkin Sage Alfredo With PenneShare on Pinterest
Puréed pumpkin and coconut cream combine to create one of the most comforting Alfredo sauces we've ever tasted. Despite its rich taste and the impressive addition of fried sage leaves, this seven-ingredient dish is surprisingly simple. Perfect for a fall or winter night or when you're simply craving some pumpkin-that's a thing, right?-all it requires is cooking the pasta, quickly mixing together the sauce, and giving the leaves a quick toss in oil.