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Kale Tomato Pasta


Kale Tomato Pasta

Kale Tomato Pasta

Photo © Molly Watson
The sauce for this Kale Tomato Pasta cooks in the time it takes to boil the water and cook the pasta. It's a great one-dish dinner when you want something a bit lighter and without meat.

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Yield: 4 to 6 servings


  • 1 lb. pasta (fusilli or penne are great here)
  • 2 bunches Dino/lacinato/black kale
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 3 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp. red chili flakes (optional)
  • 2 Tbsp. tomato paste (this homemade tomato paste is excellent! but others kinds will do just fine)
  • Salt
  • Parmesan for garnish


  1. Bring a pot of water to a boil. Add salt to make it taste as salty as sea water. Cook the pasta until it's tender to the bite or according to package directions. Drain the pasta when it's done.
  2. Meanwhile, clean the greens and chop them. Peel and slice the garlic cloves as thinly as you can – don't stress it too much, the pasta will be tasty no matter how you cut the garlic.
  3. Heat a frying pan or medium saucepan large enough to hold the pasta over medium high heat. Add the olive oil. Add the garlic and chile flakes, if using. Cook, stirring, until the garlic is just barely starting to turn golden.
  4. Add the tomato paste and stir to combine it with the garlic and oil. Add 1/3 cup of water and stir to combine everything and sort of dissolve the tomato paste into the water.
  5. Add the chopped kale, stir to combine everything and coat the kale with the tomato-y mixture, cover the pan, reduce the heat to medium low, and cook until the kale it tender, about 5 minutes. Add another 1/3 cup water if the mixture seems dry or the kale is sticking to the pan.
  6. The pasta should be ready to drain or already drained at this point. Add the drained pasta to kale mixture. Stir to combine. Taste and add more salt, if you like.
  7. Serve hot, with freshly shredded Parmesan cheese to taste.

Makes 4 to 6 servings Kale Tomato Pasta.

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