Canada’s food guide

Mediterranean tomato and ricotta pasta

No one will guess that the secret ingredient in this creamy pasta dish is ricotta. Packed with colourful vegetables, this tasty meal will be a hit.

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 6

  • 1 pkg (375 g) whole grain rotini or fusilli
  • 10 mL (2 tsp) extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 small zucchini, grated
  • 1 small carrot, grated
  • Half a red bell pepper, finely chopped
  • 15 mL (1 tbsp) dried oregano
  • 5 mL (1 tsp) dried basil
  • 1 jar (700 mL) tomato passata
  • 125 mL (1/2 cup) water
  • 45 mL (3 tbsp) chopped fresh parsley or basil
  • 250 mL (1 cup) light ricotta cheese
  • 30 mL (2 tbsp) grated Parmesan cheese (optional)
  1. In a pot of boiling water, cook pasta for about 8 minutes or until tender but firm. Drain well and return pasta to pot; set aside.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large nonstick skillet, heat oil over medium heat and cook zucchini, carrot, pepper, oregano and basil for about 5 minutes or until starting to turn golden. Stir in passata, water and parsley. Bring to a boil and simmer for 5 minutes. Pour over pasta and stir in ricotta and Parmesan, if using.


  • Ask little chefs for ideas on what pasta shape to use. In addition to rotini and fusilli, there are lots of other shapes available. Have fun looking for these at the grocery store.
  • Transform this pasta dish by baking it. Spread pasta mixture into a casserole dish and sprinkle top with 125 mL (1/2 cup) part skim mozzarella, shredded and bake in 200°C (400°F) oven for about 10 minutes or until cheese has melted.
  • Passata is cooked tomatoes that have been crushed and strained, and it's usually sold in a tall glass jar.
  • Try using less of the ingredients that are high in added sodium, sugars or saturated fat. Adding salt or sugars directly to your recipe? Remember, a little often goes a long way.