This 30 minute weeknight meal comes together so easy! Italian Sausage Pasta with Cherry tomatoes is perfect for using up those summer vegetables coming from your garden! Swap the veggies for whatever you have on hand. It’s absolutely delicious; who can say no to sausage and pasta?

Italian sausage and pasta


This post was originally published on November 9, 2011.

Let me tell you a worst nightmare situation for a late person: having a construction crew parked directly in front of your driveway, and all along the court you live on, and on all the adjacent residential streets. For WEEKS, with no end in sight.

For normal people, who leave for the activities of their lives at normal-people-time (that is to say, ON time) this would only be a minor concern.

Italian sausage and pasta

Maybe on the first day, the construction would cause them to be a couple minutes late. Then they would file this “construction going-on” information in the part of their brain where they remember important facts. Not only that, but they would be able to pull it up at the perfect time, namely, anytime BEFORE the moment they need to be arriving at wherever they are going, which is usually when I am leaving my house.

It’s a whole different ball game for a late person. I know you know what I mean by “late person.” We all have a late person in our lives: either it’s you, or someone you love, or someone you love a little less because they are a late person.

Italian sausage penne pasta recipe

I am in the first category. My poor children will never know what it’s like to play on the playground before school starts, or even know what it’s like to leave the car for school without me yelling after them, “RUN!!” (In my defense, I inherited my lateness gene from my mother, so I  was never at the school playground one moment early either. And look how I turned out! Wait…)

I am seriously this close to handing these poor construction guys my daily drop off/pick up schedule. I feel like it would just be easier. Do you KNOW how many times I have to leave and enter my driveway every day? (six. Six times. Not counting anything else I have going besides school chauffeuring.)

how to make italian sausage pasta

How was everyone’s Mother’s Day weekend? Mine was great but a little busier than I wanted it to be. My Mother’s Day dream is to be alone for a few hours, and maybe take a nap. I’m sure I’m not the only one, right?? Eric got me flowers and super comfy pajamas and made me Nana’s Famous Ribs though, so I’m definitely feeling pampered. He’s the best.

How to make Italian Sausage Pasta

As a result I’m taking it easy with dinners this week. I’m all about the git-er-done 30 minute meal. Enter this super quick and easy Italian Sausage Pasta! I love making this in the summer time. I posted this recipe on the blog waaay back in the day, but the photos needed some help, so here we are.

Italian sausage recipes

If you are a master gardener, or even a moderately productive gardener, this recipe is for you. Do you see all these gorgeous summer garden veggies? (Ahem, I bought all these veggies at the store. Let’s add gardening to whatever category “lateness” is filed under in my life.)

The veggies are super easy to swap out. Use zucchini instead of yellow squash. Peppers instead of tomatoes. It’s going to be great no matter what.

Italian sausage pasta

First we start by slicing up our Italian sausage.  This is kind of a pain because the sausage will want to spill out of the casing and mush about. But I really like the crispy edges that form when you use the slicing method. I’ve found that slicing in one confident motion with a sharp non-serrated chef’s knife works best for me. If this sounds annoying to you, just toss bulk sausage in the pan and crumble as usual.

italian sausage pasta recipes

Then chop up whatever veggies you want to use–I like cherry tomatoes, yellow squash, and basil–and toss it in the pan. Cook it for another few minutes, toss in some green onions, serve it over pasta, and you’re done! It could not be easier.

This is pretty good with Parmesan shaved on top. I can’t think of many dishes that Parmesan shaved on top doesn’t ameliorate, so go on, go wild.

italian sausage and pasta

And as usual, here’s the original photo of the recipe as shot in 2011. This was in my first few weeks of blogging! And we still make this recipe on the regular, so it’s definitely a keeper.

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What to serve with Italian Sausage Pasta

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Italian Sausage Pasta with Cherry Tomatoes (30 Minute Dinner!)

5 from 2 votes
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 15 minutes
Total: 30 minutes
Servings: 4
This 30 minute weeknight meal comes together so easy! Italian Sausage Pasta with Cherry tomatoes is perfect for using up those summer vegetables coming from your garden! Swap the veggies for whatever you have on hand. It's absolutely delicious; who can say no to sausage and pasta?


  • water and 1/2 tablespoon salt, for pasta
  • 3 cups pasta, about 9 ounces, any kind (I used cavatappi)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 pound Italian sausage links
  • 1-2 teaspoons oil
  • 1 cup good quality beef broth
  • 2 medium yellow summer squash
  • 2 cup cherry tomatoes
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped and divided
  • 1/2 cup green onions, chopped
  • more fresh basil, to garnish


  • Bring a medium pot of water to boil. Add 1/2 tablespoon salt (it should taste like the ocean). When it boils, add the pasta and stir occasionally until al dente (check the pasta package instructions).
  • When the pasta is al dente, drain and return to the pot. Add 2 tablespoons olive oil, stir, and set aside (keep warm by covering with lid).
  • Meanwhile, prepare the sausage by slicing is crosswise into large coin shapes.* This is kind of a pain because the sausage kind of wants to spill out of the casing and mush about. But I really like the crispy edges that form when you use the slicing method. I've found that slicing in one confident motion with a sharp non-serrated chef's knife works best for me.
  • Heat a large 12 inch skillet over medium high heat. When the pan is hot, add 1 or 2 teaspoons oil, just enough to coat the bottom of the pan. Add the sausage coins one at a time, placing them in the pan with space in between each one. This will make sure that each one gets seared and brown, instead of steaming (which is what would happen if you dumped it all in together.)
  • Sear the sausage for 3-4 minutes, until the bottoms are nice and brown, then use tongs to flip each one.
  • Sear the other sides for 2-3 minutes until brown.
  • Add 1 cup beef broth (or 1 cup water + 1 teaspoon Better Than Beef Base), stir it all together, and cover. Turn the heat to medium and set a timer for 5 minutes.
  • Chop up the veggies. Slice the yellow squash lengthwise (the long way) and then dice into half rounds. Slice half of the cherry tomatoes in half, or all of them (I prefer to leave some whole). Chop 1/4 cup of basil. Add half of the basil to the pasta that you set aside earlier.
  • Stir the squash, tomatoes, and remaining basil into the pan with the sausage. Turn the heat to high and bring to a boil. Once it boils, cover and reduce the heat to medium. Set a timer for 5 minutes.
  • Remove the lid and add 1/2 cup chopped green onions. Turn off the heat.
  • Serve in shallow pasta bowls, spooned over the top of the pasta with plenty of broth.
  • Garnish with more fresh basil. This is also great with fresh Parmesan on top, but it's not necessary.


*You can totally skip this step and just cook and crumble the sausage in the pan like always. It will taste good either way!
Source: My friend Becky, who adapted it from Betty Crocker


Serving: 1g | Calories: 570kcal | Carbohydrates: 41g | Protein: 21g | Fat: 36g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g | Monounsaturated Fat: 18g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 65mg | Sodium: 1151mg | Potassium: 808mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 790IU | Vitamin C: 38mg | Calcium: 64mg | Iron: 3mg
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Italian
Calories: 570
Keyword: 30 minute dinner, cherry tomatoes, italian, pasta, Sausage
Did you make this? I'd love to see it!Mention @thefoodcharlatan or tag #thefoodcharlatan!

how to make italian sausage pasta

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  1. You can cook whole sausage links and then slice them. It would make slicing easier. Or slice it when partially frozen.

  2. This looks so good and easy! Do you think I could use FROZEN cherry tomatoes? I still have a surplus from last summer I need to use up. Thanks!

    1. Hi Crystal! I’m sure you could, but I’m sure you know it will introduce a lot more moisture into the recipe as they thaw. I still think it will be good!

  3. The Italian Sausage Pasta with Cherry Tomatoes is absolutely delicious! Unfortunately, I screwed up on my end. I forgot to add the beef broth, but crumbled up the Italian sausage, cooked the pasta according to the instructions and used mushrooms, bell peppers and grated Parmesan cheese. I want to make this dish again, but will have to read the recipe thoroughly next time. 

    Thank you, Karen. 🙂

    1. Mushrooms and bell peppers sounds like it would be delicious in this LaTrice! Bummer that you missed the beef broth, but I’m sure it was still good. Thanks so much for commenting!

  4. I want to make all your recipes all the time Karen, but with just two of us I always have a ton of leftovers so that just doesn’t happen.  I could reduce all your recipes down for two people, but that doesn’t happen either. This looks so good and I really want to eat it tonight, but we are eating a leftover mashup burrito/enchilada casserole of leftover Tejano beans and beef (except I used pork because I couldn’t find enough beef in the freezer – needless to say, it was delish) that was really, really good! So it’s leftovers of the remade leftovers, but as you know, I am the queen of turning leftovers into something delicious!

    And, if you throw your Italian sausages into the freezer for about 15 minutes (or longer if you have time) they will be really easy to slice and won’t fall out of the casing.  Just sayin’

    1. You really are the leftovers queen Kris! I’ll have to try the Tejano beef with pork, yum.

      I don’t think this recipe would be hard to half actually. Just cut the pasta to 1 and 1/2 cups and use half the sausage, but keep the veggies the same. Then it will be about the right amount AND low carb! Boom. Oh and you’re so smart to throw the sausage in the freezer for a bit! Genius!

  5. Yes, I use it a lot in the summer when it is around more. I’ve only heard it called banana squash though. It is an ingredient in my all-time favorite sandwich. I will have to share with you it is sooo good!

    1. Actually, banana squash is much different. It grows to gargantuan sizes and is orange in color. And is somewhat sweet. Personally, I’m not much of a fan, especially since, if you get a whole one, you have about 25 pounds of slightly sweet tasting squash to figure out what the heck you’re going to make and eat for the next 5 months.

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