This lemon garlic pasta recipe is the perfect quick dinner recipe to make for the whole family if you want to make a home-cooked meal, but don't have a lot of time. It's made with simple ingredients and the final result is a light pasta dish with a creamy sauce and zesty flavor.
This pasta al limone is only made with 4 basic ingredients, so it's important that you use fresh ingredients that are high quality. Use fresh lemon juice and fresh garlic (instead of lemon juice concentrate or garlic powder).
What you'll need to make this easy lemon garlic pasta recipe
- pasta: you can use whatever pasta noodles you like. I used pappardelle because I find that thick long pasta works amazingly in this recipe. Other popular pasta shape options are angel hair pasta, spaghetti, linguine, or fettuccine.
- fresh lemon juice: from a real lemon, not from a concentrate.
- lemon zest
- fresh garlic
- extra virgin olive oil: you can also use vegan butter if you prefer a super creamy sauce.
- canned coconut milk: I used canned coconut milk to make this pasta vegan, but you can use heavy cream interchangeably if you wanted a non-vegan version. Also, note that regular coconut milk won't work, you need to use canned coconut milk because it is much creamier.
- red pepper flakes: optional, for extra flavor if you like a little spice
- sea salt
- black pepper
- vegan grated parmesan cheese
- fresh parsley
- You can also top this dish with fresh basil, sun-dried tomatoes, or cherry tomatoes.
The full ingredients list and nutritional information is in the recipe card at the bottom of the post.
Side dishes to pair with this garlic lemon pasta
This delicious recipe tastes amazing as is, but if you wanted to add some more veggies or protein, you can easily add those.
When making this at home, I like to pair roasted broccoli and sautéed mushrooms with mine. I make sure to add plenty of garlic powder to the broccoli and roast them until crispy in the oven.
Another side dish option to add if you wanted some extra protein is some firm tofu. Make sure to flavor it by adding minced garlic and salt & pepper or soy sauce.
How to make the lemon garlic pasta sauce
Start by chopping the cloves of garlic finely.
To a pan over medium-high heat, drizzle a generous amount of olive oil, then add the minced garlic and cook it for 1-2 minutes, until it starts to release its flavors.
If you are adding chili flakes for an extra kick, add them here.
In a separate large pot, cook your pasta according to the package directions, until al dente.
Reduce to low-medium heat. Add the coconut milk, squeeze out the lemon juice, and zest the lemon. Add in the salt and pepper and stir everything until you have a creamy mixture.
Add the cooked pasta to the creamy lemon garlic sauce.
If you like the consistency of the sauce to be thinner, you can add up to ¼ cup of starchy pasta water or white wine. If you prefer a creamy pasta sauce, leave it as is.
Serve with grated vegan parmesan and chopped Italian parsley on top.
For other delicious easy pasta recipes, try these:
Lemon Garlic Pasta Recipe
- 1 package pasta 12 oz
- 1 lemon juice and zest
- 2 cloves garlic
- 2-3 tablespoon olive oil
- ½ cup canned coconut milk
- a few chili flakes
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon pepper
- Start by chopping the garlic finely.
- To a pan over medium heat, drizzle a generous amount of olive oil, then add the garlic and cook it for a few minutes, until it starts to release its flavors.
- If you are adding chili flakes for an extra kick, add them here.
- In a separate pot, cook your pasta according to the package instructions.
- Reduce the heat to low. Add the coconut milk, squeeze out the lemon juice, and zest the lemon. Add in the salt and pepper and stir everything until you have a creamy mixture.
- Add the cooked pasta to the creamy lemon garlic sauce.
- If you like the consistency of the sauce runnier, you can add up to ¼ cup of pasta water or white wine. If you prefer your sauce creamier, leave it as is.
- Serve with grated vegan parmesan and chopped Italian parsley on top.
How to store this lemon garlic pasta recipe
Store the leftover pasta in an airtight container in the fridge for 2-3 days.