Pasta Primavera

April 14, 2012  •  Pasta & Pizza, Vegetables

I don’t know many kids who don’t love pasta with a nice creamy cheesy sauce. Pasta Primavera gets its name from the seasons – primavera in Italian (and Spanish) means “spring”, and in the spring our bodies like to eat fresher and lighter foods, like a pasta dish filled with yummy vegetables.

The great thing about this recipe is you can use whatever vegetables you like. I’ve suggested a few based on what kids seem to like when we cook this in some of the Denver schools, but change it up and let me know how your dish turned out!

Pasta Primavera
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: Entree
Serves: 4-6
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 2 cups 2% milk
  • ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 cups of chopped fresh vegetables (asparagus, broccoli, carrots, onions, and zucchini work well, but pick ones you like!)
  • 8 ounces of pasta, cooked al dente and drained
  • 8 large basil leaves, chopped
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  1. Tell your parents you are making Pasta Primavera for dinner and ask for their help!
  2. Heat the flour and butter together in a medium saucepan over medium high heat, whisking together. Once the butter has completely melted and combined with the flour, cook for 2 minutes.
  3. Slowly add the milk, a tiny bit at a time, whisking the whole time so that lumps don't form. When the milk absorbs into the flour, add a little more, and keep doing this until all of the milk is added. Continue to whisk until the mixture thickens, then stir in the cheese and remove from the heat. Set aside.
  4. Heat the oil in a large skillet over high heat and add the vegetables. Cook while stirring until they are slightly soft, about 5 minutes.
  5. Carefully combine the vegetables with the cheese sauce and the cooked pasta; stir in the basil leaves and add just enough salt and pepper to make it taste great.
Always ask an adult for help before you begin cooking! "Al dente" means to cook pasta until it is still just a tiny bit firm, not overcooked and mushy. Combining flour and butter to use to thicken sauces is called a roux (pronounced "roo") - you'll see this technique in other recipes so try to remember it! You can always add meat to your pasta - cooked chicken or shrimp would be great in this recipe.


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