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Pasta with cherry tomatoes and garlic

Author: Louisa Clements
3.87 from 44 votes
A simple vegetarian recipe for pasta with cherry tomatoes and garlic with chili flakes, lemon zest and fresh basil. This is the perfect weeknight dinner that is ready in 20 minutes!
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Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 10 minutes
Total: 20 minutes
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Servings: 4


  • ¾ lb 340g linguine, reserve 1 cup pasta cooking water
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • ½ tsp chili flakes
  • 1 lemon, zest only
  • 2 pints of cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ¼ cup thinly sliced basil
  • ¼ cup grated parmesan cheese


  • Cook pasta according to package directions. Reserve 1 cup of pasta water.
  • Heat a large saute pan over medium heat, add olive oil, garlic, chili and half of the lemon zest. Cook for about 4 minutes or until garlic starts to turn golden brown and oil has a yellowy-orange hue. Reduce heat to low, add cherry tomatoes and salt, cook for 6 minutes, stirring occasionally until tomatoes are blistered, have softened and are starting to become jammy.
  • Add pasta to tomatoes, add reserved pasta water, ¼ cup at a time until sauce coats the pasta (you may not need all the pasta water). Toss with remaining lemon zest, basil and parmesan cheese and serve.
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