Creamy kale pasta is a delicious and simple creamy pasta that anyone can make and is perfect for a quick meal. This kale and tomato pasta is such a great combination of flavors and the creamy garlicky sauce that it cooks in is so amazing.
Why I love this kale and tomato pasta
Kale and tomatoes are a match made in heaven and when added to garlicky cream and tossed in pasta, it is pure heaven. I love making this quick creamy pasta because I grow kale and tomatoes in my garden and this makes great use of both of them.
This entire recipe will only take you 30 minutes from start to finish. The bulk of the cooking is waiting on your pasta water.
This simple creamy kale pasta needs to be part of your dinner rotation. It will get even the pickiest vegetable eaters to the table.
- Kale. I prefer using Lacinato kale (also called dino kale) because it is smoother in texture and I think a little easier to cook down. You can use any kale you have on hand.
- Fresh tomatoes. I use large tomatoes for this recipe because they have more juice to release into the sauce. You only need a couple. If you have small cherry tomatoes that will work too, just give them a little mash when cooking to release their juices.
- Heavy cream. This is a creamy kale and tomato pasta so you need the cream 🙂
- Fresh garlic. Fresh garlic is best for this recipe.
- Pasta. I prefer spaghetti but you can also use bowtie pasta, penne or rigatoni.
- Olive Oil.
- Kosher salt.
- Sweet paprika. Sweet paprika will add a little color to the cream sauce and a little sweet flavor.
How to make creamy kale pasta
Expert tips when making this recipe
I have made this recipe many times and although it is easy, I am going to share some tips that have helped me make the best version of this creamy kale pasta.
- Reserve about a cup of pasta water before draining your pasta. You can add this pasta water to your pasta after tossing it in the cream sauce if you think it is too thick.
- Re-heating creamy kale pasta is a breeze if you do it the right way (although it is always best served right away ) 🙂 To reheat this kale pasta, scoop out a serving into a bowl and place a moist paper towel over the top of the pasta. Place in the microwave for 1-2 minutes then toss well.
You can use spinach or Swiss chard and both will be great substitutes for kale.
Yes! We love adding creamy cannellini beans or sliced grilled chicken to this kale pasta for added protein.
More Italian recipes you may like
- Italian American Meat Sauce
- Angel Hair Pasta with Herbs and Cherry Tomatoes
- Penne alla Vodka
- Pasta Piselli e Pancetta
- Easy Ravioli Sauce
- Rigatoni Amatriciana
- Gnocchi alla Sorrentina
Creamy Kale Pasta with Tomatoes
- 1 lb pasta Spaghetti, rigatoni or penne
- 2 bunches of Lacinato kale center stems removed then cut into large pieces
- 1 ½ cups heavy cream
- 2 large tomatoes sliced into quarters then quarters sliced in half
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil for the pasta.
- While you are waiting for the water to boil, pre-heat a large saute pan over medium heat.
- Add the olive oil and kale and cook for about 5 minute until the kale starts to soften.1 tablespoon olive oil, 2 bunches of Lacinato kale
- Now add the tomatoes and garlic and cook for about 2 minutes or until the tomatoes begin to soften.2 large tomatoes, 4 cloves garlic
- Now add the kosher salt and paprika and mix well.1 teaspoon kosher salt, 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
- Reduce heat to low and add the heavy cream.1 ½ cups heavy cream
- Mix well.
- Cover the kale and cream and turn the heat off.
- Once the pasta water is boiling, cook until al dente according to the manufacturers instructions.1 lb pasta
- Drain pasta when ready, making sure to reserve 1 cup of pasta water.
- Add drained pasta to the creamy kale and tomatoes and toss well for 2 minutes.
- If sauce look to thick, add a little pasta water.
- Serve immediately and enjoy.