Photo Credit: Elizabeth Newman
Smoked cheese and creamy white beans make this pasta a super hearty meatless main – and you can sub the chicken stock for veggie stock to make it fully meatless!
Pasta with Creamy White Beans
- 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt plus more for the pasta
- 1 pound shell pasta
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 carrot peeled and diced
- 1 small red onion diced
- 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
- One 15-ounce can cannellini beans drained and rinsed
- 1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
- 8 ounces smoked provolone or smoked mozzarella grated (about 2 cups)
- One 5-ounce container baby spinach chopped
- This recipe originally appeared on Giada Entertains: Pasta Party.
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Season well with salt. Add the pasta and cook for 3 minutes less than indicated in the package directions, about 7 minutes. Drain well reserving 1/2 cup pasta water.
- Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat until hot. Add the oil, carrot and onion to the skillet. Season with 1 teaspoon salt and cook, stirring often, until fragrant and beginning to soften, about 3 minutes. Add the pepper flakes and thyme and cook another minute. Stir in the drained beans and chicken broth. Reduce the heat to medium to maintain a simmer and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Use the back of a spoon to gently mash some of the beans. Set aside.
- Add the cooked pasta to the sauce. Sprinkle the grated cheese over the pasta and toss to coat well. Stir in the remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt and add the 1/2 cup pasta water as needed to maintain a creamy, broth-like sauce. Sprinkle in the spinach and cook until wilted.