Mediterranean garlic and olive oil pasta in 3 white bowls with garbanzo beans on the side.

Mediterranean Garlic and Olive Oil Pasta

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Mediterranean garlic and olive oil pasta is incredibly filling, easy to make, and can serve a crowd in minutes. With hearty vegetables, like tomatoes, artichoke hearts, and spinach, this pasta is not only delicious but it’s also good for you. As a perfect weeknight meal, this recipe comes together in less than 30 minutes and fills hungry bellies with a combination of nutritious ingredients.

Mediterranean garlic and olive oil pasta in a white bowl with garbanzo beans and lemon off to the side.

What makes this mediterranean garlic and olive oil pasta so good?!

This mediterranean garlic and olive oil pasta offers a great balance of healthy carbohydrates, fats, and proteins. It keeps you full for hours and incorporates good-for-you ingredients. As wonderful as it is to eat fresh, it is equally delicious as a leftover lunch or dinner the following day. In addition it is super flavorful with it’s garlicky, herby sauce, fresh squeezed lemon, and creamy, tangy feta. 

This delightfully unique spin on pasta helps to shake things up in your daily routine by introducing you to some lesser known ingredients like artichoke hearts and garbanzo beans. Likewise, you can keep this pasta vegetarian or boost the protein with some grilled chicken, shrimp, or steak. The mouthwatering flavors of the mediterranean combine to create this perfect quick and easy weeknight meal for your entire family. From parents to kids alike, this pasta is sure to please everybody’s palate.

Ingredients

Labelled ingredients for mediterranean pasta (see recipe for details.)
  1. Spaghetti or Bucatini Pasta, organic semolina or whole wheat
  2. Olive Oil
  3. Garlic, minced
  4. Shallots, sliced
  5. Tomatoes, diced
  6. Artichoke Hearts, canned and quartered
  7. Garbanzo Beans, canned
  8. Spinach
  9. Dried Oregano
  10. Dried Basil
  11. Salt & Pepper
  12. Fresh Squeezed Lemon Juice
  13. Feta
  14. Optional Additions: Kalamata Olives, Sundried Tomatoes, Pine Nuts, Capers, Crushed Red Pepper Flakes, Zucchini, Summer Squash

A few notes about the ingredients:

  1. I like to use organic semolina pasta or whole wheat pasta in this recipe. It lends an incredibly fresh and semi-nutty flavor to the dish. As an added bonus, semolina pasta is higher in protein to keep you fuller longer and whole wheat pasta is higher in fiber to aid in digestion.
  2. Artichoke hearts have a very mild taste. They add a hint of saltiness and a little bit of brininess to the flavor of the pasta. They are soft in texture and fall apart as you cook them.
  3. This pasta is very customizable. Besides the garlic, shallots, tomatoes, and dried herbs that give the sauce flavor, many of the other vegetables can be swapped out with others of your choosing. The above list is not exhaustive, so feel free to add in or remove anything you’d like.
  4. You can keep this as a vegetarian pasta or you can choose to add in your favorite protein. Grilled chicken, shrimp, and steak would all pair very well with this pasta.

How do you make mediterranean garlic and olive oil pasta?

Boil the pasta in a separate pot, according to the package instructions. Stop cooking a minute or so before the package says, so that it doesn’t become mushy when you cook it again in olive oil. When the pasta is done cooking, drain it and reserve about 1 cup of the pasta water.

Olive oil, artichokes, garlic, shallots, and tomato in a high sided skillet.

In a large high sided skillet, combine olive oil, garlic, shallots, and tomatoes over medium heat. If the garlic starts to turn brown, adjust the heat to medium low to prevent it from burning. Cook the garlic, shallots, and tomatoes in the oil for a minute until the shallots start to soften and the tomatoes break down. 

Olive oil, garlic, shallots, tomatoes, garbanzo beans, and spinach in a high sided skillet.

Add in the artichoke hearts, garbanzo beans, and spinach. Give it a stir to coat in the olive oil. As the artichokes start to break down and the spinach wilts, add in the dried herbs. 

Spoon the pasta into the olive oil and toss it to coat. In small increments, add in the reserved pasta water until you get the sauce consistency and creaminess that you like best. 

Remove the pasta from the heat, squeeze fresh lemon juice over the top, and stir to combine. Transfer pasta to a serving bowl and top with freshly crumbled feta cheese.

Mediterranean garlic and olive oil pasta in a white bowl with lemons on the side.

How do you spice up plain pasta?

If you prefer not to use jarred sauce to lend flavor to your pasta, I highly recommend this recipe. You can also spice up your noodles many different ways. Add some garlic and olive oil, salt and butter, blended roasted red peppers, or fresh basil pesto to boost the taste. Combining fats, vegetables, and herbs helps to offer delicious enhancements to plain pasta.

Can you eat pasta on the Mediterranean diet?

The mediterranean diet is a diet based on the traditional flavors and cultural practices of the mediterranean. It is fairly less restrictive than today’s popular fad diets and emphasizes fresh vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and healthy fats. It also emphasizes intake of lean proteins, quality seafood, beans, and eggs. Pasta is allowed in this diet in conjunction with these fresh ingredients. The Mayo Clinic offers great information on the mediterranean diet, as well as its relation to heart health.

What makes this mediterranean garlic and olive oil pasta healthy?

To elaborate further on the prior question, pasta in moderation, especially as a vessel for eating healthy fats, fresh produce, and lean proteins, is healthy and can contribute to a complete and balanced meal. Pasta can help add balance to a diet. As well, the quality of pasta is incredibly important. Be sure to look for quality semolina pasta or whole wheat pasta to get the most nutritional value.

One more tip

  • This pasta is excellent served as leftovers too. You can either eat it cold like a mediterranean pasta salad (add some diced cucumbers for added crunch!) or heat it up quickly on the stovetop or microwave.
3 bowls of pasta with a vase of flowers behind them.

Looking for more healthy dinner recipes? Try these:

Share your cooking with me! If you make this recipe, I’d love to know! Tag @yourhomemadehealthy on Instagram or leave a comment with a rating and some feedback at the bottom of this page!

Close up of Mediterranean pasta in 3 white bowls.

Mediterranean Garlic and Olive Oil Pasta

Mediterranean garlic and olive oil pasta is a quick and easy restaurant quality meal for your entire family. It’s healthy, flavorful, and perfect for busy weeknights!
5 from 2 votes
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Total Time 30 mins
Course Lunch, Main Course
Cuisine American, Greek, Italian, Mediterranean
Servings 8 servings

Equipment

  • high sided skillet

Ingredients
  

  • 17.6 oz spaghetti or bucatini pasta organic semolina or whole wheat
  • 6 tbsp olive oil
  • 3-4 garlic cloves minced
  • 2 shallots sliced
  • 3 small tomatoes diced
  • 6-8 canned artichoke hearts (1 can, 14 oz) quartered
  • 1 ½ cups canned garbanzo beans (1 can, 15 oz)
  • 4 cups spinach (5.5 oz)
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • ½ tsp dried basil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • juice from ½ a lemon
  • freshly crumbled feta for garnish

Optional additions:

  • kalamata olives, sun dried tomatoes, pine nuts, capers, crushed red pepper flakes, zucchini, summer squash

Instructions
 

  • Boil the pasta in a separate pot, according to the package instructions. Stop cooking a minute or so before the package says, so that it doesn’t become mushy when you cook it again in olive oil.
  • When the pasta is done cooking, drain it and reserve about 1 cup of the pasta water.
  • In a large high sided skillet, combine olive oil, garlic, shallots, and tomatoes over medium heat. If the garlic starts to turn brown, adjust the heat to medium low to prevent it from burning.
  • Cook the garlic, shallots, and tomatoes in the oil for a minute until the shallots start to soften and the tomatoes break down. 
  • Add in the artichoke hearts, garbanzo beans, and spinach. Give it a stir to coat in the olive oil. As the artichokes start to break down and the spinach wilts, add in the dried herbs. 
  • Spoon the pasta into the olive oil and toss it to coat. In small increments, add in the reserved pasta water until you get the sauce consistency and creaminess that you like best. 
  • Remove the pasta from the heat, squeeze fresh lemon juice over the top, and stir to combine.
  • Transfer pasta to a serving bowl and top with freshly crumbled feta cheese.

Notes

  1. I like to use organic semolina pasta or whole wheat pasta in this recipe. It lends an incredibly fresh and semi-nutty flavor to the dish. As an added bonus, semolina pasta is higher in protein to keep you fuller longer and whole wheat pasta is higher in fiber to aid in digestion.
  2. Artichoke hearts have a very mild taste. They add a hint of saltiness and a little bit of brininess to the flavor of the pasta. They are soft in texture and fall apart as you cook them.
  3. This pasta is very customizable. Besides the garlic, shallots, tomatoes, and dried herbs that give the sauce flavor, many of the other vegetables can be swapped out with others of your choosing. The above list is not exhaustive, so feel free to add in or remove anything you’d like.
  4. You can keep this as a vegetarian pasta or you can choose to add in your favorite protein. Grilled chicken, shrimp, and steak would all pair very well with this pasta.
  5. This pasta is excellent served as leftovers too. You can either eat it cold like a mediterranean pasta salad (add some diced cucumbers for added crunch!) or heat it up quickly on the stovetop or microwave.
Keyword Garlic and Olive Oil, Healthy Dinner, Healthy Lunch, Healthy Pasta Recipe, Mediterranean Pasta

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4 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Made this last night and really enjoyed it! It was perfect for a weeknight dinner as it was so quick to make and unlike many quick dinners, it did not skip out on the freshness of all the vegetable, freshly crumbled feta and the lemon juice. Looking forward to making this again!

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