This tomato and feta pasta is as special it sounds. It’s got tangy feta cheese, roasted tomatoes and a handful of Italian seasonings. You bake the brick of feta right in a pan with some cherry tomatoes and it’s gets so soft and creamy, then you mix it all together and add pasta. The result is a fresh tasting pasta dish with vibrant flavor. It’s truly a one pot meal that everyone will love.
Ingredients for Baked Feta Pasta
When a recipe only has a few ingredients, you’ll find that quality is important for the best results. Keep that in mind when purchasing the ingredients for your Baked Feta Pasta.
Feta cheese – the original recipe calls for a full block of feta cheese. For the best taste and quality, look for a Greek feta that contains part or all sheep’s milk, like this one. Don’t worry if you can’t find that, another brand will do.
Cherry Tomatoes – You’ll need a pint of cherry tomatoes, and grape tomatoes can easily be swapped in. The fresher, the better. Feel free to double the amount if you’re looking for a saucier dish.
Olive Oil – For drizzling over the tomatoes and cheese. This will end up mixing in to form the sauce, so you want a good quality oil. Epicurious has a great article on how to buy the best olive oil.
Seasoning – Simple Italian seasonings will help ramp up the flavor. The original recipe didn’t have a lot of spices so we’re adding oregano, basil, red pepper flakes and a few cloves of garlic.
Pasta – You can really go any way you want with the pasta. Small cuts work best, like rigatoni, ziti, or the penne I used. You could even toss with some fettuccine or spaghetti.
How to Make Baked Feta Pasta
This simple, rustic pasta recipe is solid gold in the flavor department. It’s rich in tone and vibrant in color.
Prep for baking. Place the block of Feta cheese in the center of a 9×13-inch baking dish and surround with the cherry tomatoes. Drizzle olive oil over the top, tossing the tomatoes a little in the oil so they’re well coated. Sprinkle all of the seasonings on top.
Bake. Place the dish in a 400 degree oven and bake for 30 minutes. The baked feta should be golden in color so if it needs a few extra minutes that’s fine. The tomatoes will wrinkle and burst open while cooking.
Make the pasta. While the tomato feta sauce is baking in the oven, boil your pasta of choice. Make sure to generously salt the water. Be sure to save about a cup of pasta water just before draining, in case you need it later.
Mix it up! Pull the tomato feta sauce out of the oven and immediately start stirring it together, smashing the cheese and tomatoes as you go, until it’s melted into a creamy sauce. Stir in the pasta, tossing well to coat. If you want it a little saucier, add some of the pasta water.
Serving Suggestions and Variations
This recipe is incredibly tasty on it’s own, but I love to garnish with Parmesan cheese for a nutty finish and fresh basil for brightness. I changed up the recipe a bit from the original, but you could go even further with these variations:
Veggies: Add some sauteed or steamed spinach, asparagus, zucchini, mushrooms or broccoli at the end. Onions or shallots would roast beautifully with the tomates.
Place the block of feta cheese in the center of a 9x13-inch oven safe dish. Arrange cherry tomatoes around the cheese.
Drizzle the olive oil all over the tomatoes and feta cheese, tossing the tomatoes a little bit in the oil. Sprinkle minced garlic, dried basil, dried oregano, red pepper flakes (if using) salt and pepper on top of the feta.
Bake uncovered in the preheated oven for 30-35 minutes.
Meanwhile, cook the pasta to al dente per the package directions in well salted water. (Reserve a cup of pasta water near the end of the cooking time in case you want to thin your sauce a bit later)
Mash the feta and tomatoes well with the back of a fork or a spoon. Toss with the cooked pasta until well coated. Garnish with fresh Parmesan cheese and fresh basil, if desired.
If you can only find crumbled feta, you can use that and pile it up in the center of the baking dish.
For a smoother, thinner sauce, reserve a cup of pasta water and stir in a little bit at a time until your perfect consistency is reached.
For a more intense garlic flavor, add a few more cloves and leave them whole, smashing them into the sauce.
Store leftover baked feta pasta in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3-4 days. I don't recommend freezing, the sauce won't likely survive well.
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Kristin Maxwell is the creator and main recipe developer, writer, and photographer of Yellow Bliss Road. A self-taught cook and self-appointed foodie, she specializes in easy, flavorful and approachable recipes for any home cook.