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Rigatoni with Tomatoes and Tapenade

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Rigatoni with Tomatoes and Tapenade

Rigatoni with Tomatoes and Tapenade

Jessica Braider
This oh-so-flavorful pasta was inspired by a recipe for a Mediterranean pasta dish from the Food Network's Melissa d'Arabian (who is also a Scramble fan!). If you fear it may be a little too flavorful for your picky eaters, you can either leave some of the pasta plain and just toss it with the tomatoes and olive oil, or you can rinse some of the noodles under cold water before serving them to wash off the sauce.
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Italian, Mediterranean
Servings 8 servings


  • 16 oz. rigatoni noodles (use wheat/gluten-free if needed)
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup tapenade or olive paste or use finely chopped or pureed flavorful pitted olives
  • 2 cups tomatoes diced, or 2 cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 2 - 3 Tbsp. fresh mint, parsley, or basil, chopped
  • 2 Tbsp. capers
  • 1 clove garlic minced, about 1/2 tsp.
  • 1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes or more to taste
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese for serving (optional)


  • Cook the rigatoni according to the package directions in a large pot of salted water.
  • Meanwhile, in a large serving bowl, combine the oil, tapenade, tomatoes, fresh herbs, capers, garlic, and red pepper flakes, and press the mixture with the back of a large spoon or potato masher to combine the flavors. Let it sit until the pasta is cooked to let the flavors meld.
  • Drain the pasta and toss it with the tomato mixture. Serve it immediately, topped with the cheese, if desired, or refrigerate it for up to 2 days before serving.


Do Ahead or Delegate: Cook the pasta and store tossed with a little oil to prevent sticking, chop or puree the olives if using, dice or halve the tomatoes, chop the mint or parsley (if using basil, don't chop ahead of time), peel the garlic, make and refrigerate the tomato mixture, grate the cheese if necessary and refrigerate, or fully prepare and refrigerate the dish.
Scramble Flavor Booster: Double the garlic and use the optional Parmesan cheese.
Tip: Tapenade, often used as a spread on sandwiches or crackers, is generally made with an olive puree, sometimes with additional flavorful ingredients added, such as capers, garlic, lemon, and anchovies.
Nutritional Information Per Serving (% based upon daily values): Calories 316, Total Fat: 12g, 17%; Saturated Fat: 2g, 11%; Cholesterol: 6mg, 2%; Sodium: 262mg, 11%; Total Carbohydrate: 46g, 15.5%; Dietary Fiber: 3g, 10.5%; Sugar: 12g; 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, Dairy-Free, Dinner, Fall, Gluten-Free, Kosher, Low Fat, Low Sodium, Main Dish, Make-Ahead, No Added Sugar, Nut-Free, Spring, Summer, Vegan, Vegetarian
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