16 Big-Batch Pasta Recipes to Bookmark

Raclette gruyere macaroni and cheese with pickled shallots
Photo: Photo by Victor Protasio / Food Styling by Torie Cox / Prop Styling by Claire Spollen

Big batches of pasta are great for two reasons. They can serve a lot of people if you're entertaining or have a large family, but if you're cooking for yourself or a smaller group, they'll leave you with a lot of leftovers (and less cooking to do during the week). Here, we've gathered 16 delicious options, from Slow Cooker Sunday Sauce on Spaghetti to Pernil Mac and Cheese (which yields a whopping 12 servings) and Easy Ravioli. Each of these recipes will give you at least eight servings, so you'll have plenty to go around. Read on for the full spread, and start clearing room in your fridge and freezer.

01 of 16

Three-Cheese Lasagna with Roasted Red Peppers and Mushrooms

Three Cheese Lasagna with Roasted Red Peppers and Mushrooms Recipe
Photo by Antonis Achilleos / Food Styling by Rishon Hanners

To create a vegetarian lasagna that's packed with flavor (rather than watery and bland), start by roasting mushrooms and red peppers with a quick garlic-infused oil. While the vegetables are cooking, stir together a quick ricotta filling with plenty of Parmesan for extra umami. Using no-boil lasagna noodles and good-quality store-bought tomato sauce cuts down on cook time without sacrificing taste. This lasagna offers 10 servings — as a bonus, lasagna tends to freeze well, so you can also keep leftovers on hand and defrost when you're busy.

02 of 16

Best of the Olive Bar Pasta Salad

Best of the Olive Bar Salad
Greg Dupree

This easy pasta salad comes together in just 15 minutes with help from the grocery store olive bar. Fresh oregano, cherry tomatoes, and feta cheese bring bright flavor to this summer salad, perfect for weeknight dinners, pool parties, and backyard barbecues. (And you can certainly make it year-round, too.) Customize it with whatever captures your imagination at the store — casarecce pasta, stuffed olives, stemmed caperberries, pickled garlic — the possibilities are nearly endless. It makes eight servings total.

03 of 16

Smoked Mozzarella Mezzelune with Braised Onion Sauce

Smoked Mozzarella Mezzalune with Braised Onion Sauce
Photo by Victor Protasio / Food Styling by Micah Morton / Prop Styling by Missie Neville Crawford

Mezzelune (which means "half-moons" in Italian) is a crescent-shaped stuffed pasta similar to ravioli. They're a relatively simple shape to try that requires little equipment to make at home. Meryl Feinstein of Pasta Social Club fills hers with rosemary and smoked mozzarella. A little semolina flour will give the pasta dough more structure and bite, but feel free to omit it and use the same weight of "00" flour or all-purpose flour. If you can't find smoked mozzarella, another smoked cheese like gouda will work in a pinch. The accompanying thick, rich, slow-cooked tomato-and-onion sauce is loosely inspired by a Bolognese classic called il friggione. You'll often find il friggione served with meat, as a side dish, and as an antipasto — but of course it works well with pasta, too. This recipe makes enough mezzelune for eight to 10 servings.

04 of 16

Basil Three-Cheese Ravioli with No-Cook Fresh Tomato Sauce

Basil Ravioli
Greg DuPree

Press and seal fresh basil leaves in homemade pasta dough to make three-cheese ravioli that are as beautiful as they are delicious, paired in this recipe with a no-fuss, no-cook fresh tomato sauce that doesn't distract from the delicate pasta. Mix it up with other herbs if you like, but be sure to use tender herbs like other basil varieties or dill — woody, tough herbs like rosemary can cause the delicate dough to tear. You can make these ravioli ahead of time and keep them in the freezer for a speedy weeknight dinner — the recipe yields enough for eight servings. To cook from frozen, add a minute or two to the cook time.

05 of 16

Pasta Bolognese

Pasta Bolognese
Photo by Jennifer Causey / Food Styling by Emily Nabors Hall / Prop Styling by Claire Spollen

Former Food & Wine Senior Test Kitchen Editor Grace Parisi's Bolognese — which will give you eight to 10 servings — features a traditional combination of ground beef, pork, veal, and tomato enriched by smoky pancetta. It's tossed with penne rigate and finished with freshly grated Parmesan. If you want to make the sauce in advance, it can be refrigerated for up to three days and frozen for up to one month.

06 of 16

Auntie Monica's Seafood Mac and Cheese

Auntie Monica’s Seafood Mac and Cheese
Stacy Howell

Loaded with fresh shrimp, crab, and lobster, and layered with a rich mixture of cheeses, this macaroni and cheese gets an extra boost of spice from liquid shrimp-and-crab boil. The boil seasoning lends its long-cooked flavor to the casserole without overcooking the delicate seafood. This recipe, which serves 10, comes from Monica Williams, chef Kia Damon's auntie and former drill instructor for the United States Marine Corps.

07 of 16

Pasta alla Norma

Pasta alla Norma
Justin Walker

This simple pasta dish, which yields eight servings, celebrates summer produce and Italian pasta traditions with fresh tomato sauce, fried eggplant, sweet onions, and aromatic basil. The end result is a dish that is so much more than the sum of its parts.

08 of 16

Gluten-Free Spaghetti and Meatballs

Gluten-Free Spaghetti and Meatballs
Jen Causey

F&W Cooks contributor Ann Taylor Pittman's Gluten-Free Spaghetti and Meatballs features smart swaps, using instant potato flakes instead of breadcrumbs in the meatballs and corn-and-rice gluten-free spaghetti instead of regular spaghetti. You'll get eight servings out of the meal.

09 of 16

Speedy Baked Ziti

Speedy Baked Ziti
© Pernille Pedersen

As the name of this recipe suggests, this is the fastest way to make really good baked ziti. The key is to doctor good-quality jarred tomato sauce with ground meat, onion, garlic, and spices. From there, you add creamy fresh ricotta, shredded mozzarella, and flavorful Parmesan. Once the meat is browned, everything comes together quickly and the dish bakes up to gooey cheesy perfection in just 15 minutes, with enough ziti to serve eight.

10 of 16

Pernil Mac and Cheese

Pernil Mac and Cheese at Boricua Soul
Lauren Vied Allen

Pernil, a Puerto Rican–style roast pork shoulder, is flavored with garlic, oregano, and sazón — a seasoning blend that includes coriander and annatto. At their Durham, North Carolina, restaurant Boricua Soul, Serena and Toriano Fredericks serve this garlicky pernil on top of a rich and creamy mac and cheese. Rubbing the seasoned garlic paste into the pork and letting it rest allows the flavors to penetrate deeply into the thick roast. This hearty mac and cheese serves 12.

11 of 16

Easy Ravioli

Easy Ravioli
© Antonis Achilleos

This recipe makes 40 ravioli, which you can fill with Four-Cheese Filling, Carrot-and-Ricotta Filling, or Meat Filling. "Always err on the side of making ravioli dough a little bit sticky," cookbook author and recipe developer Domenica Marchetti says. "You can sprinkle on more flour as you roll it out."

12 of 16

Slow Cooker Sunday Sauce on Spaghetti

Slow Cooker Sunday Sauce for Spaghetti
© Fredrika Stjärne

This hearty sauce, featuring a combination of pork shoulder and sweet Italian sausage, easily comes together in a slow cooker. It's the perfect thing to make on a Sunday for meals during the week, yielding eight servings.

13 of 16

Busiate with Pork Ragù

Busiate with Pork Ragu
Aubrie Pick

For chef Christian Puglisi's pork ragù, which he serves with Hand-Rolled Busiate, marinating the pork overnight results in a meltingly tender meat sauce. If you can't source shank, trotter, or pork belly, season 70% lean ground pork and skip the grinding step. The meal yields eight servings.

14 of 16

Après-Ski Lasagna

Aprés Ski Lasagna
Victor Protasio

This cozy lasagna, which gets brightness from fresh basil, earthiness from mushrooms, and savory heft from mild Italian sausage, is designed to feed a crowd. It will yield eight to 10 servings — pair it with an Alpine Italian red.

15 of 16

Raclette-Gruyère Mac and Cheese with Pickled Shallots

Raclette gruyere macaroni and cheese with pickled shallots
Photo by Victor Protasio / Food Styling by Torie Cox / Prop Styling by Claire Spollen

Inspired by älplermagronen, Alpine farmers' macaroni, this Swiss twist on a Thanksgiving classic gets rich flavor from Gruyère and a lush creaminess from Raclette. Traditional versions of this dish are served with applesauce; as a nod to that flavor play, we've added some shallots that are quickly pickled in apple cider vinegar to balance the cheesy richness. You'll end up with eight to 10 servings of macaroni and cheese.

16 of 16

Pasta Salad with Feta and Herbs

Pasta Salad with Feta and Herbs Recipe
Eric Wolfinger

This Southern-inspired pasta salad (an eight-serving dish) from chef Mason Hereford's Turkey and the Wolf gets a touch of tangy heat from hot sauce and loads of crunch from nutty sunflower seeds. Use Duke's mayonnaise for an extra-tangy bite to the dressing. This colorful, eclectic pasta will fit in well with any picnic or cookout spread.

Was this page helpful?
Related Articles