Family Friendly Recipes

15 Minute Pasta Pomodoro for Busy Weeknights

True story…14 years ago, when I met my husband, my cooking skills were lackluster.

A while after we started dating, I invited him to my condo for dinner. I had planned this elaborate Fondu dinner that was a total bust. NO JOKE! The fondu ended up having a watery, chunky consistency, tasting like I dipped stale cheese into cheap, day-old beer.

I knew immediately the meal was a bust, but being the man that he is, my husband tried to power through with a smile on his face. After a few miserable bites, he put his hand on my back and sweetly said, “honey, what do you think about ordering pizza?”

With a large, traditional Italian family, who cooked delicious pasta recipes that were passed down through the generations, I knew my practice of using a jarred sauce doctored up with ground beef and diced peppers was not going to cut it (I still hear about my tragic version of spaghetti at least once a month).

So, I watched, listened, and learned from his beloved aunts, to cook many of their Italian family recipes. With practice and even experimentation, I have added to this recipe to our arsenal of dishes. And since we eat pasta weekly at our house, I need plenty of options to keep things fresh and interesting!

This Pasta Pomodoro recipe is a Bonicelli family favorite, but a bit abbreviated, which makes it a quick and easy weeknight meal.

15 Minute Pasta Pomodoro:

The beauty of this dish is that it takes exactly 15 minutes. Prepping and cooking the “sauce” takes as long as the pasta needs to boil. I’m not lying, just be sure that your first step is boiling the water for the pasta.


  • 1 lb. cherry tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp. minced garlic
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • Fresh basil finely chopped
  • 1 lb. pasta (spaghetti or fettucini noodles are our favorites)
  • Salt and pepper to taste


Begin by boiling water for the pasta. While the pasta is boiling, coarsely chop the cherry tomatoes. Add the olive oil and garlic to pan and heat sauté until the garlic becomes fragrant. Then, add the tomatoes to the pan, season with salt and pepper and sauté until they become broken down and “saucy” (that’s technical chef terminology right there)! Sprinkle your finely chopped basil onto the tomatoes during the last few minutes of cooking. Drain the pasta, coat with olive oil, and toss with tomatoes. Serve and top with freshly grated parmesan!

Do you have an easy family recipe that you love to whip up on a busy weeknight? Let me know in the comments below. I’d love to try it out!