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Pasta with Garlic and Greens

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Pasta with Garlic and Greens

Pasta with Garlic and Greens

Jessica Braider
I had a massive bag of organic baby greens that wouldn’t all make it into smoothies before it turned, so I dreamed up this recipe on my way home from a meeting that ran late. It would also be great with sausage, bacon, or prosciutto if you prefer a meatier meal, or stir in 2 chopped tomatoes toward the end of cooking the greens if you want a sweeter flavor. Scramble recipe tester Melinda Kelley said, “I figured my kids would hate it ("greens" do not go over big here). But I was very pleasantly surprised that they agreed with my husband and me that this was a great dish.”
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Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Italian
Servings 8 servings


  • 16 oz. . whole grain rigatoni, fusilli, or pasta of your choice (use wheat/gluten-free, if needed)
  • 2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion halved and thinly sliced
  • 4 cloves garlic sliced
  • 12 - 16 oz. baby greens such as kale, spinach, and/or Swiss chard, or use full grown adult greens, stems removed from kale if not using baby greens 12 – 16 cups, loosely packed
  • 1 cup reduced-sodium chicken or vegetable broth (or use any variety)
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese plus extra for serving


  • Bring a large pot of water to a boil, and cook the pasta in salted water until it is al dente.
  • Once the water is almost boiling, heat a large heavy skillet over medium heat and add the oil. When the oil is hot, add the onions and sauté them for about 5 minutes until they are tender.
  • Add the garlic and cook it for 2 more minutes until it is fragrant and tender, then add the greens and broth, cover and let the greens wilt for 2 minutes.
  • Remove the cover and continue cooking the greens for 3 more minutes until they are tender but not mushy.
  • Drain the pasta, and in its cooking pot or a large bowl, toss it with the greens and cheese, and serve it immediately with extra cheese, if desired.

Slow Cooker Directions

  • Omit the oil. Add all ingredients except the pasta and the Parmesan cheese to the slow cooker and cook on low for 5 - 6 hours or on high for 2 1/2 - 3 hours. Serve over the cooked pasta and top with the cheese. (Slow cooker cooking times may vary—Get to know your slow cooker and, if necessary, adjust cooking times accordingly.)


Do Ahead or Delegate: Cook the pasta and store tossed with a little oil to prevent sticking, halve and slice the onion, peel the garlic, separate the kale from its stems if using the full-grown variety, grate the cheese if necessary and refrigerate.
Scramble Flavor Booster: Serve the pasta with crushed red pepper flakes or freshly ground black pepper.
Tip: Just like siblings don’t always play nicely together, the same goes for produce. Avoid storing fruits and veggies together. Many fruits give off ethylene gas, which can speed spoilage of vegetables if in close proximity to the fruit. Store fruits and vegetables in different crisper drawers in your refrigerator, or if you have any fruits and vegetables on the kitchen counter, don’t put them in the same bowl.
Nutritional Information Per Serving (% based upon daily values): Calories 302, Total Fat: 7g, 10.5%; Saturated Fat: 2g, 8%; Cholesterol: 6mg, 2%; Sodium: 191mg, 8%; Total Carbohydrate: 50g, 16.5%; Dietary Fiber: 9g, 35.5%; Sugar: 3g; Protein: 11g
Like this recipe? Check out The Scramble's family-friendly meal plans to see just how simple getting dinner on the table can be!
Keyword 30 Minutes (or less) Meals, All, Dinner, Fall, Gluten-Free, High Fiber, Kid-Friendly, Kosher, Low Fat, Low Sodium, Main Dish, No Added Sugar, Nut-Free, Slow Cooker, Spring, Summer, Vegan, Vegetarian, Winter
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