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This sun dried tomato pasta is creamy, cozy, and a crowd-pleasing dinner idea! This recipe is simple to make with maximum wow-factor.

Sun Dried Tomato Pasta

You know those recipes where people rave and only you know the secret that it’s actually easy to make? That’s the case with this Creamy Sun Dried Tomato Pasta! There’s major wow-factor to this pasta, which comes together in just 30 minutes. Earthy, fruity sundried tomatoes lend a meaty quality to this easy vegetarian dish, which is bathed in a Parmesan cream sauce. We couldn’t stop raving about each bite!

Ingredients in sun dried tomato pasta

This sun dried tomato pasta comes together in about 30 minutes, with only one ingredient to chop. That’s right, all you need to do is mince garlic! Otherwise, it’s a matter of simmering up a simple sundried tomato cream sauce and boiling a pot of pasta. Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Short pasta (we used rigatoni)
  • Butter
  • Garlic
  • Milk
  • Flour
  • Heavy cream
  • Parmesan cheese
  • Sun dried tomatoes, packed in oil
  • Spinach
  • Fresh or dried thyme
  • Salt

Got leftover sundried tomatoes? They’re great in this Sundried Tomato Pesto or tucked into a Pesto Grilled Cheese.

Sun Dried Tomato Pasta

Other types of pasta to use

This sundried tomato pasta recipe works with any type of pasta noodle, but we like it best with short cut pasta. Short cut pasta makes it easy to get perfect distribution of sundried tomatoes, spinach, and bites of chewy pasta. However, you’re welcome to make it with long noodles too! Here are a few varieties we’d recommend:

Sun Dried Tomato Pasta

Cook the pasta to al dente

The most important part of this sun dried tomato pasta recipe? Cook your pasta to al dente. Al dente means “to the bite” in Italian, and signifies to cook until it’s tender with a small white speck inside when you bite into a piece. There’s nothing worse than soft, rubbery pasta. Here are a few tips for the perfect al dente pasta:

  • Boil the pasta a few minutes less than indicated on the package instructions. Often package instructions make for overcooked pasta.
  • Start taste testing early. Start taste testing and stop cooking when the pasta is just tender but you can still see a small white speck inside.

Tips for making sun dried tomato pasta

Besides cooking your pasta to al dente, here are a few things to note about this sundried tomato pasta:

  • If the pasta finishes before the sauce, drain and stir with a drizzle of olive oil. This prevents the pasta from sticking to the pan.
  • You’ll add flour as a thickener after simmering the sauce. A standard cheese or cream sauce starts with a roux, a mixture of flour and butter that thickens cheese sauces. This sauce is a little different: it does contain flour as a thickener, but you’ll add it at the end of simmering.
  • For a gluten-free version, use cornstarch and GF pasta. There are lots of great brands of gluten-free pasta these days, made from gluten-free flour or legumes like chickpeas.
Sun Dried Tomato Cream Sauce

Protein adders

This sundried tomato pasta is a delicious vegetarian pasta that’s filling and satisfying! However, if you want to add protein it’s very easy to add the following:

Leftovers and storage info

Sundried tomato pasta tastes the best the day it is made. But unlike many pasta recipes, this one tastes great as leftovers! Store leftovers for up to 3 days refrigerated. You can reheat them in a skillet on the stove, adding a splash of milk to keep the sauce creamy. Or you can simply eat it cold (it’s still good!).

More easy pasta recipes

Love a good pasta? Here are some tasty more pasta recipes that make fast and easy dinner ideas or fun pasta side dishes:

This sun dried tomato pasta recipe is…

Vegetarian. For gluten-free, use cornstarch and gluten-free pasta.

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Sun Dried Tomato Pasta

Sun Dried Tomato Pasta

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 4 1x


This sun dried tomato pasta is creamy, cozy, and a crowd-pleasing dinner idea! This recipe is simple to make with maximum wow-factor.


  • 8 ounces pasta of any type (we used rigatoni)
  • 2 tablespoons salted butter
  • 4 garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 2 teaspoons fresh thyme or ½ teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 cup milk
  • ¼ cup heavy cream
  • ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • ½ cup sun dried tomatoes packed in oil (julienne-cut), drained
  • 3 to 5 cups (3 to 5 ounces) baby spinach or roughly chopped fresh spinach
  • ¾ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour


  1. Start a large pot of generously salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and boil until al dente (check a few minutes before the package instructions indicate). When cooked, drain the pasta. If it finishes before the sauce, toss with a drizzle of olive oil to prevent sticking.
  2. Meanwhile, heat a large saute pan or saucepan over medium low heat. Melt the butter, then add the garlic and thyme and cook for 30 seconds to 1 minute until the garlic is lightly browned and fragrant. Add the milk, heavy cream and Parmesan cheese and cook for 2 to 3 minutes until the cheese has melted and it thickens slightly. Add the sun dried tomatoes, spinach, and salt and cook 2 to 3 minutes more, until the spinach is wilted.
  3. In a small bowl, mix the flour with 2 tablespoons water. Pour it into the pan with the sauce, then stir until it thickens. Cook 2 minutes more.
  4. Add the drained pasta and stir to combine. Stir in a few grinds of fresh ground black pepper if desired. Serve immediately. Leftovers last refrigerated for up to 3 days. 
  • Category: Main dish
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Vegetarian
  • Diet: Vegetarian

Keywords: Sun dried tomato pasta, sundried tomato pasta, creamy sun dried tomato pasta

About the authors

Sonja & Alex

Meet Sonja and Alex Overhiser: Husband and wife. Expert home cooks. Authors of recipes you’ll want to make again and again.

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