Spicy Tomato Basil Pasta

spicy tomato basil pasta with fettuccine in large pan with fresh basil on top

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5 from 3 reviews

This Spicy Tomato Basil Pasta is creamy, herby, and ready in only 20 mins. The perfect vegan + gluten-free lunch or date-night dinner!


  • 8 ounces (225 g) pasta of choice
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 35 cloves garlic, minced 
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes 
  • 1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning 
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste 
  • 1/4 cup (5 g) fresh basil leaves, finely chopped
  • 12 ounces (340 g) fresh tomatoes (optional)



  1. Cook the Pasta: Bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat and add 1 tablespoon of salt. Add the pasta to the water and cook until al dente according to the package directions.
  2. Aromatics: In the meantime, warm the oil in a large sauté pan over medium heat. Add the garlic, red pepper flakes, and Italian seasoning and sauté for 1 to 2 minutes, until the garlic is golden. Add the tomato paste and use the back of a wooden spoon to “mash” it into the garlic and spread it out; it may look slightly lumpy, but will continue to thin out as it cooks! Sauté for an additional 2 to 3 minutes, until the tomato paste starts to darken in color.
  3. Sauté the Tomatoes: add the tomatoes and fresh basil to the pan; sauté for 5 to 7 minutes, until the tomatoes have softened and released their juices. Turn the heat to medium-low.
  4. Combine: Drain the cooked pasta, but do not rinse. Add the cooked noodles to the pan with the tomatoes and use tongs or a spoon to mix well, until the sauce and oil coats every noodle. Add additional salt to taste, if necessary.
  5. Serve: Serve warm, topped with fresh basil or as desired. Leftovers will keep in the refrigerator for up to 3 days and are best reheated on the stovetop with a splash of water, or in the microwave.


  • Gluten-Free: use gluten-free pasta to make this recipe gluten-free.