If you’ve ever grown a cherry tomato plant before, you know that they can be incredibly prolific. It starts out all fine and dandy—you snack on the tomatoes in the garden and maybe a few make it inside for a salad—and then one day, your kitchen counter looks like it’s drowning in bowls of cherry tomatoes.
So what do you do with all those tomatoes? Well, anything! Remember that cherry tomatoes are still just tomatoes—turn them into salsa or sundried tomatoes or chili or, like we do here, a quick roasted tomato sauce. The sweet, fresh flavor of those in-season tomatoes makes this pasta so simple and so beautifully tasty.
This is one of those recipes that’s so gloriously minimalist that you’ll be tempted to add and tweak it—I’m gonna stop you right there! I promise if you’re using fresh, in-season produce, then you don’t need to do an inch of tweaking to this recipe to get a great result. Its simplicity is beautiful.
I do recommend only making this when the produce is fresh and in-season—you just aren’t going to get the same tasty results with hothouse tomatoes and frozen corn kernels. Trust me, I’ve tried to recreate the summer magic in January, and it just doesn’t cut it! Save this recipe for your summer rotation.
Feel free to sub in whatever kind of penne works for your family’s dietary needs. This recipe works wonderful with any kind of penne—white, whole wheat, gluten-free, or legume penne. I’ve tried them all! My favorite is actually corn penne, because the slightly sweet flavor of the pasta blends beautifully with the sweetness of the roasted tomato sauce, and the texture is stiff enough to hold up to a hearty bit of mixing.
The recipe calls for a bit of Parmesan cheese for finishing, but if you are plant-based and want to skip that step, you’ll still have a wonderfully tasty dish. Feel free to finish with my Cashew Parmesan to add that cheesy flavor!
Summer Roasted Vegetable Pasta is best made when fresh tomatoes and corn are at their peak. It’s vegetarian, gluten-free, easily made vegan, and super simple to make, to boot!
- 4 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1 large zucchini, cut into bite-sized chunks
- 1 1/2 cups fresh sweet corn kernels (from about 2 large ears)
- 6 cloves garlic, finely minced
- 1/4 cup fresh minced oregano
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 12 ounces penne, cooked according to package directions (wheat, gluten-free, and legume pasta all work)
- Chopped fresh basil and Parmesan cheese (optional), for topping
- Preheat oven to 450°F. Line a baking sheet with a silicone baking mat or parchment paper, and set aside.
- In a large bowl, combine the tomatoes, zucchini, corn, garlic, oregano, salt, and olive oil. Toss to coat. Spread on prepared baking sheet and roast in preheated oven for 20-25 minutes, or until the veggies are all tender and there is quite a bit of juice in the pan.
- In a large bowl, combine the cooked pasta with the roasted veggies, tossing to coat. The starch from the pasta should help to thicken up the sauce as it cools. Serve topped with shredded fresh basil and Parmesan.
- Category: Entree
- Method: Roasting
- Cuisine: Italian
Keywords: pasta, summer, tomatoes, zucchini, corn, vegetarian, gluten-free