Simple Pasta and Peas Recipe with Mascarpone Cheese

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Simple Pasta and Peas Recipe with Mascarpone Cheese- This is a quick meal that will save you on a busy evening. Delicious and Satisfying!

It’s so simple it also makes a great weekend lunch. Fresh flavors and plenty of creamy sauce to coat the al dente pasta.

This is one of those easy meals that you make again and again. A delicious pasta dish the whole family loves!

More easy pea and pasta recipes for you: Creamy Pasta Shells with Sweet Peas and Bacon and Creamy Smoked Salmon Pasta with Mascarpone & Peas

pasta recipe- peas- mascarpone
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Simple ingredients for an easy and delicious meal.

  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Red onion
  • Frozen petite peas
  • Italian basil, torn by hand
  • Butter
  • Mascarpone Cheese
  • Barilla Penne Pasta  
  • Salt and Black Pepper to taste
  • Parmigiano or parmesan cheese 

Quantities in printable recipe card.


You start by sautéing the onions and peas in a large skillet with good olive oil. Then add a little butter, mascarpone cheese, and fresh basil leaves.

Cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water. Cook the pasta to al dente texture.

The secret to creating a smooth and creamy sauce is adding a little of the reserved pasta cooking water.

The starches from the pasta act as a binding agent to make it all come together smoothly. This creates a yummy creamy sauce that coats the pasta like blanket. Add plenty of Parmigiano Reggiano (or pecorino romano) and serve hot!

Don’t wait another minute to serve this dish to your loved ones. It is a quick

It makes from a delicious leftovers- if there are any!

Pasta Shapes

Penne (Italian pronunciation: [ˈpenːe]) is a type of pasta with cylinder-shaped pieces, their ends cut at a bias. 

Penne is the plural form of the Italian penna (meaning feather but pen as well), deriving from Latin penna (meaning “feather” or “quill”), and is a cognate of the English word pen.

I love use penne for this recipe since the hole allows for the sauce to sneak inside. If you don’t have any on hand feel free to use another Italian pasta variety.

Orecchiette pasta works well for this recipe.

Here is a link to the best deal I’ve found for purchasing my favorite Barilla Brand Penne Pasta.

Enjoy! I always buy pasta in bulk even with the high quality brands. I never want to run out of pasta. That is an all time Italian fear!

Pasta and peas with mascarpone


For this recipes I highly recommend the ‘petite’ peas or ‘baby’ sweet peas variety. Compared to the standard green pea, petite peas are smaller in stature with a more tender skin, and a delicately sweet flavor.

They are also less starchy and simply, better :).

Since peas are the highlight of this dish it’s important to pick the good quality ones to create the taste and texture you desire.

This pasta e piselli recipe (peas and pasta) recipe tastes like in Italian restaurant without the hefty cost!

More peas recipes: Simple Petite Peas (Side Dish) and Italian Frittata Recipe with Peas, Onions, and Ricotta.

Mascarpone Cheese and Fresh Basil …

Right before the peas are finished cooking you will stir in the mascarpone cheese and fresh basil.

The mascarpone adds a slightly sweet flavor and takes the peas to the next level. The sprinkle of basil adds a fresh and bright flavor to round out the dish perfectly.

It makes for a delicious and creamy sauce with a fresh taste.

I like to add freshly grated parmigiano cheese at the end of this dish. Read this post to learn more about why I grate my own cheese!

More mascarpone recipes: Hot Mascarpone Spinach Artichoke Dip and Chicken Skillet with Creamy Mascarpone Sauce.

Onion Variety

Red onions have a deep purple skin and reddish flesh, but do they really taste different than yellow onions?

They are quite like yellow onions in flavor when cooked, and slightly milder when served raw.

Their deep color is what makes these attractive added to salads, and other foods for presentation.

But once these onions are cooked, they taste very nearly the same as the yellow onion and can be used in recipes to substitute yellow onions (or vice-versa … use yellow or white onion to substitute red onions. (Source: Market Basket Foods).

I like to cut them in thin slices. You can also use diced onion.

I like to switch it up and use red onions to add a little color to contrast the green peas and white sauce!


Garlic- add a little garlic to enhance the onion taste.

Red Pepper flakes- add a little spice to this dish if you desire.

Heavy Cream– if you want your sauce a little thinner add a little heavy cream and half of the amount of reserved pasta water.

Serving Suggestions

This past dish makes a great side to Perfect Pork Tenderloin with Fennel or Best Salmon Piccata Recipe. Serve it with a simple salad and warm homemade Fast Italian No Knead Ciabatta Bread.

Don’t forget dessert! Classic Italian Tiramisu Recipe (Authentic), or Easy Italian Pear Cake (Torta di Pere).

From my cucina (kitchen) to your table… Made with LOVE!

Mangia! Mangia! (Eat!)

More Recipes for YOU:

Italian Petite Peas Side dish

Osso Buco Recipe

Lemon Asparagus and Ricotta Pasta

Baked Salmon with Potatoes and Herb Oil Dressing

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pasta recipe- peas- mascarpone

Penne Pasta and Peas Recipe with Mascarpone Cheese

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5 from 2 reviews

This is a quick meal that will save you on a busy evening. It’s so simple it also makes a great weekend lunch. Fresh flavors and plenty of creamy sauce to coat the al dente penne pasta. 

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


Units Scale
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 3/4 cup red onion, thinly sliced (or diced)
  • 1 (16 oz/ 1 lb.) bag frozen petite peas
  • 2 tablespoons Italian basil, torn by hand
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 8 oz (250 grams) Mascarpone Cheese
  • 1 lb (454grams) Barilla Penne Pasta
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • freshly grated parmigiano cheese


  1.  Bring 6 quarts water to a boil and add 3 Tbs kosher salt
  2. Heat a large sauté pan to on medium heat. Add olive oil. Add onions and cook for 3-4 minutes until translucent and slightly brown in color.
  3. Add the frozen peas and cook 10 minutes until cooked, but no mushy. Add the mascarpone and and butter then turn heat to low. Stir for 2 minutes until sauce is creamy. Turn off heat and stir in basil. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  4.  Add pasta to boiling water. Cook until al dente directions. Reserve 1/2 cup pasta water. Drain pasta and add to pan with peas and mascarpone. Stir well to coat pasta.
  5. Add pasta water and stir to combine. Cover and let sit 2-3 minutes before serving so sauce can thicken. Serve HOT and add extra parmigiano.
  • Author: Elena
  • Prep Time: 5 min
  • Cook Time: 15 min
  • 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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