Lemon Ricotta Pasta

Quick Summary

Lemon Ricotta Pasta- pasta made with spinach, garlic, shallot, lemon and a simple, creamy ricotta sauce. Top with Parmesan cheese and fresh basil for the perfect pasta dinner!

You can’t go wrong with pasta for dinner. A few favorites include: pasta primavera, spaghetti carbonara, baked ziti, and classic spaghetti. I also LOVE this simple Lemon Ricotta Pasta. It is the perfect meal for spring, summer, or anytime.

This pasta dish is easy to make, all of the ingredients are pretty basic. Plus, you can use whatever noodles you have in the pantry. It is a great meal for using up all of the random pasta you have.

But the sauce is what really makes this pasta special. Ricotta cheese is the secret to the sauce. It creates a creamy, cheesy sauce that is exquisite. For extra flavor, there is also shallot, garlic, spinach, and lemon. The combination is perfection. Pro tip, make sure you reserve some of the pasta water to create a silky smooth sauce that sticks to the pasta!

Top with freshly grated Parmesan cheese, basil, and crushed red pepper flakes and you have a restaurant quality meal in just 30 minutes!

Table of Contents

  1. Ingredients
  2. How to Make Lemon Ricotta Pasta
  3. Serving Suggestions
  4. How to Store & Reheat
  5. More Pasta Recipes
  6. Lemon Ricotta Pasta Recipe


  • Pasta– use your favorite pasta. Rigatoni, penne, farfalle, orecchiette, fuisilli, spaghetti, and angel hair are all good options. Read package instructions because cook time will vary depending on what shape you use.
  • Reserved pasta water– make sure you save some of the pasta water to create the sauce!
  •  Olive oil
  • Spinach– I like to use spinach, but kale or arugula are also delicious.
  • Shallot– look for shallots in the produce section, by the garlic.
  • Garlic– minced! I love this garlic press.
  • Ricotta cheese– use whole milk ricotta cheese for best results.
  • Lemon zest and lemon juice– I always zest the lemon first and then juice! I use this tool for zesting and this tool for juicing.
  • Parmesan cheese– buy a wedge of good Parmesan cheese and freshly grate it!

How to Make Lemon Ricotta Pasta

  • Cook the pasta until al dente, according to package instructions. Reserve ½ cup of the starchy pasta water and drain the pasta. Pour the pasta back into the pot and set aside.
  • While the pasta is cooking, heat the olive oil over medium heat in a large skillet. Add the spinach and shallot and cook until spinach is wilted. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute.
  • Reduce the heat to low and stir in the ricotta cheese. Add the lemon zest and lemon juice and stir until creamy.
  • Add the reserved pasta water and stir again until well combined. Stir in the Parmesan cheese. Season with salt and black pepper.
  • Add in the pasta and stir well until pasta is well coated in the ricotta sauce.
  • Garnish with basil, crushed red pepper flakes, and extra Parmesan cheese, if desired. You can also add an extra squeeze of lemon juice if you want a stronger lemon flavor.

Serving Suggestions

Here are a few side dishes that go great with this pasta!

  • Salad: Kale Salad, Caesar Salad, Green Salad, Arugula Salad, or Spinach Salad
  • Garlic Bread or Caprese Garlic Bread
  • Bruschetta
  • Roasted Broccoli
  • Roasted Green Beans or Simple Skillet Green Beans
  • Roasted Carrots
  • Roasted Asparagus

How to Store & Reheat

  • Store leftover pasta in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
  • Reheat in the microwave or on the stovetop. You may need to add a little water to create a super creamy sauce. Top with extra Parmesan cheese, basil, crushed red pepper, and a little squeeze of lemon after reheating.

More Pasta Recipes

  • Lemon Spaghetti
  • Baked Ziti
  • Spaghetti
  • Chicken Penne Pasta
  • Spaghetti Carbonara
  • Pasta Primavera
  • 5-Ingredient Spinach Parmesan Pasta

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