Angel Hair Pasta Recipe with Garlic and Herbs (Easy)

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It doesn’t get easier than this Angel Hair Pasta Recipe with Garlic and Herbs (Easy)! This 20-minute Italian pasta recipe is fresh, satisfying, and delicate. It is made with a light sauce of olive oil, garlic, fresh basil, and parsley, then topped with fresh parmigiano and sweet cherry tomatoes—it is your new go-to pasta dish!

You will also love Shrimp Scampi Pasta Recipe, Gemelli Pasta Recipe with Tomatoes and Mascarpone, Spaghetti with Tomato Sauce, and Fried Spaghetti Pasta Recipe.

process for making- - adding cherry tomatoes on top of the final dish.
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Easy Angel Hair Pasta Recipe

This scrumptious pasta dish is made with only a few simple ingredients. It’s one of those easy pasta dishes the whole family will love. The light olive oil sauce, fresh herbs, and pop-in-your-mouth sweet cherry tomatoes are a winning combo!

This delicious Angel Hair Pasta recipe will turn into a new family favorite. Even picky eaters will love this delicious angel hair pasta. It’s perfect for an easy dinner on a busy weeknight.

What is Angel Hair Pasta?

Angel hair pasta, also known as Capellini, or Cappelli D’Angelo, translates to little hairs of an angel in Italian. These long strands of thin pasta are the thinnest pasta you can find.

You can find angel hair pasta at any grocery store in the pasta aisle. Here are a few of my favorite brands that sell them. Read- Why Pasta Quality Matters.

plate of angel hair pasta with herbs and garlic.

Simple Ingredients

Since there are only a few fresh ingredients for this easy recipe, I recommend using high-quality ingredients for the best results.

ingredient shot for recipe
  • Angel Hair Pasta. The featured pasta for this simple recipe. You can also use regular spaghetti for this recipe. Make sure to cook your pasta al dente!
  • Tomatoes. Any variety of cherry tomatoes or grape tomatoes will do. Whatever kind is ripe and sweet since the tomatoes are added raw- after the pasta is cooked.
  • Fresh Garlic. In Italian cooking, a little garlic goes a long way, just enough to give flavor but not overpower the dish. I prefer to use fresh over jarred varieties or garlic powder.
  • Olive Oil. High-quality extra virgin olive oil brings the best Italian flavor and health benefits.
  • Fresh Herbs. I use fresh Italian parsley and fresh basil. Use can use a mixture of parsley and basil or just one.
  • Freshly Grated Parmigiano. A little spoonful of freshly grated parmesan cheese on each plate before serving.
  • Kosher Salt. Adding salt to the pasta water is essential to making your pasta flavorful!

See the recipe card for quantities.

How to Make Angel Hair Pasta Recipe with Garlic and Herbs (Easy) Step-by-Step Photos

You will have a delicious fresh pasta meal in a few easy steps. Enjoy!

process for making- Angel Hair Pasta Recipe with Garlic and Herbs (Easy)- sautéing garlic in olive oil

Heat a large saucepan or large skillet to medium heat. Add olive oil and garlic. Let them get fragrant for 1 minute in the oil. Turn off the heat and set the pan aside. 

process for making- Angel Hair Pasta Recipe with Garlic and Herbs (Easy)- saving reserved pasta water.

Cook your pasta in a large pot of salted water. Boil pasta until al dente according to package directions. Reserve 1 cup of pasta water before draining. Stir pasta with pasta utensil.

process for making- Angel Hair Pasta Recipe with Garlic and Herbs (Easy)- adding pasta water to olive oil and garlic in pan.

Add reserved pasta water to the pan with olive oil and garlic. Turn heat to medium-low, bring to a simmer, and stir vigorously with a whisk. 

process for making- - adding pasta, herbs and cheese to the pan.

Lastly, drain the pasta and add it to the pan. Turn the heat off and stir until the sauce coats the pasta. Stir in fresh basil leaves and chopped parsley. Add parmigiano and toss a couple of times. 

process for making- Angel Hair Pasta Recipe with Garlic and Herbs (Easy)- adding cherry tomatoes on top of the final dish.

Sprinkle the cherry tomatoes over the top. Add extra parmigiano cheese and fresh ground black pepper. Serve hot, and enjoy!

plate of angel hair pasta with herbs and garlic. Bof dish of pasta in the background.

How to Cook Pasta Perfectly Every Time

Make sure to cook your pasta perfectly al dente every time! Read HOW TO COOK PASTA PERFECTLY EVERY TIME! This is a complete guide to walk you through all the important steps of cooking pasta the authentic Italian way.

Pasta Tool

SHOP our handmade pasta utensil to measure long pasta portions and stir the pasta. This is my most used tool in the kitchen when cooking pasta dishes.

Saucepan Recommendations

I use this large saucepan for so many recipes. See here: Easy Italian Sausage and Peppers Skillet Recipe. It is large and deep enough to stir the al dente pasta in after it is cooked to marry with the sauce.

plate of angel hair pasta with herbs and garlic.

Angel Hair Pasta Variations

The first time you make this recipe, make it the traditional way. You can try a variation the next time you make it!

  • Lemon Juice – add a squeeze of lemon juice just before serving for a fresh spin.
  • Red Pepper Flakes – give this pasta dish heat by adding red pepper flakes when cooking the garlic and oil.
  • Butter – melt butter (about 1 tablespoon) when heating the olive oil and garlic to add a little extra flavor.
  • Heavy Cream – turn this light sauce into a creamy pasta dish by adding a 1/2 cup heavy cream to create a creamy sauce and transform it into a creamy pasta recipe.
  • Kalamata Olives – these add a delicious and briny flavor to the dish.
plate of angel hair pasta with herbs and garlic. Bof dish of pasta in the background. Side shot

How to Store Leftover Pasta

After the pasta cools, store leftover angel hair pasta in an airtight container for up to 4 days in the fridge.

Here are a few airtight containers that work well for storing leftover pasta dishes, and more: Pyrex different sizesSnapware different sizesGlasslock oven safe, and Rubbermaid Takealongs.

You will also love Classic Pasta alla Gricia Recipe.

What to Serve with Angel Hair Pasta Recipe with Garlic and Herbs (Easy)

This easy pasta recipe is delicious with a slice of warm homemade bread.

If you want some meat and fish dishes to add to the meal- try these:

plate of angel hair pasta with herbs and garlic. fork full of pasta twirled on a fork.

Top tips

  • Cook your pasta al dente and toss it in the pan with the sauce. This step makes it taste like the pasta we eat in Italy!
  • Don’t skip the vigorous whisking of the olive oil and hot pasta water as it simmers. This will make a smoother sauce to coat the thin pasta strands.
  • Use REAL Parmigiano Reggiano cheese for the sauce to make it creamy. Other kinds will clump and not melt well with the pasta and sauce.

FAQs

Best Sauces for Angel Hair Pasta

Since angel hair pasta is very delicate you don’t want to weigh it down with a sauce that is too chunky. I love this light garlic and herb sauce for that reason. Other great sauce options for angel hair pasta include Authentic Italian Pesto Genovese (Basil Pesto), Authentic Italian Tomato Sauce Recipe (Sugo al Pomodoro), Classic Italian Ragu Recipe (Meat Sauce), Italian Pink Sauce Pasta Recipe (Tomato Cream), and Black Truffle Cream Sauce.

How Long do You Cook Angel Hair Pasta?

Angel hair pasta usually cooks between 4-5 minutes. Look for a good quality bronze cut pasta made with 100% Italian durum wheat. Angel hair pasta has a short cooking time since it is one of the thinnest pasta varieties. Read this complete guide on how to cook pasta perfectly every time!

plate of angel hair pasta with herbs and garlic. fork full of pasta twirled on a fork.

Make sure to leave a ⭐️star rating on the recipe card and comment below if you make the recipe. I love to connect with you through my recipes.

I would love for you to tag me on Instagram @cucinabyelena so I can see your delicious Italian recipes. To get more ideas, follow me on Pinterest.

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Angel Hair Pasta Recipe with Garlic and Herbs (Easy)

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5 from 1 review

It doesn’t get easier than this Angel Hair Pasta Recipe with Garlic and Herbs (Easy)! This 20-minute Italian pasta recipe is fresh, satisfying, and delicate. Made with a light sauce of olive oil, garlic, fresh basil, and parsley, then topped with fresh parmigiano and sweet cherry tomatoes- it is your new go-to pasta dish.

  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: 46 servings 1x

Ingredients

Units Scale
  • 1 box (454 gr) angel hair pasta or capellini pasta
  • 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced (add more if you like)
  • 3 tablespoons fresh basil, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated parmigiano cheese (plus more for serving)
  • 1 pint (2.5 cups) cherry tomatoes, diced
  • Kosher salt for pasta water
  • Pepper to taste (optional)
  • Reserved pasta water

Instructions

  1. Heat a large saucepan or large skillet to medium heat. Add olive oil and garlic. Let them get fragrant for 1 minute in the oil. Turn off the heat and set the pan aside. 
  2. Cook your pasta in a large pot of salted water. Boil pasta until al dente according to package directions. Reserve 1 cup of pasta water before draining. Stir pasta with pasta utensil
  3. Add reserved pasta water to the pan with olive oil and garlic. Turn heat to medium-low, bring to a simmer, and stir vigorously with a whisk. 
  4. Lastly, drain the pasta and add it to the pan. Turn the heat off and stir until the sauce coats the pasta. Stir in fresh basil leaves and chopped parsley. Add parmigiano and toss a couple of times. 
  5. Sprinkle the cherry tomatoes over the top. Add extra parmigiano cheese and fresh ground black pepper. Serve hot, and enjoy!

Notes

Top tips

  • Cook your pasta al dente and toss it in the pan with the sauce. This step makes it taste like the pasta we eat in Italy!
  • Don’t skip the vigorous whisking of the olive oil and hot pasta water as it simmers. This will make a smoother sauce to coat the thin pasta strands.
  • Use REAL Parmigiano Reggiano cheese for the sauce to make it creamy. Other kinds will clump and not melt well with the pasta and sauce.

  • Author: Elena
  • Category: Savory
  • Method: Italian
  • Cuisine: Italian

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About Elena

My dream is to share delicious wholesome recipes that you will share around the table with all your loved ones. The memories surrounded by food are the heart and soul of CucinaByElena.

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2 Comments

  1. So simple, classic and satisfying. I’m always on the hunt for fast pasta dinners for my kiddos and this sauce is lovely as-is but also has so much potential! Can’t wait to try some of the suggestions like adding some cream.






    1. Hi Martha! Yes, I have many delicious quick pasta dishes. We pasta at least 4 times a week. Try my pink sauce. Enjoy!