Easy Vegetarian Dinner: Penne Pasta with Veggies

I grew up in a household with a Persian mother. Amongst the other Persians I knew I wasn't Persian enough. Amongst the Americans I knew I wasn't American enough. I was always somewhere in the middle. It was a bit of a struggle growing up, never knowing exactly where I stood. As an adult I've come to love that I'm a bit different, & with that in mind, I had to create my own traditions.

penne pasta

* Disclaimer: This post is sponsored by Ragu. All opinions are 100% mine aka Carmen's. :]

As of right now my little family consists of just me & Fred. We love preparing meals together to bond & unwind at the end of each day. It's our version of a homestyle tradition, at least for now. To me, homestyle means you get food made with care, love, & thought. We always try to mix flavor with heartiness —  something that tastes delicious but has some nutritional value. 

penne pasta

This Penne Pasta with Veggies is an easy vegetarian dinner recipe that you can serve at your next family dinner or if you're like me, you'll just eat the leftovers for days to come. You'll get 4 to 6 generous portions with a healthy vegetable to pasta ratio. Let's get started!

// Ingredients //


penne pasta

1 (12-ounce) package of penne pasta
2 heads of broccoli 
1 (8-ounce) package of white mushrooms
1/4 cup of cheese
1/4 cup (or less) of olives

// Directions //


penne pasta

1. Bring water to a boil & cook your pasta according to the directions on the packaging. I chose a tricolor penne pasta because I love the color, but you can use anything your heart desires.

penne pasta

2. Chop your mushrooms while your pasta is cooking. Sautée them for 5 to 7 minutes, or until they half in size & all the water evaporates.

penne pasta

3. Your pasta should be almost al dente by now. Toss in your chopped broccoli to let it blanche & cook inside the water. This is my favorite way to save myself from washing another a dish.

penne pasta

4. Add your Ragu Homestyle Sauce to a sauce pan & cook according to directions.

// Finishing Touches //


penne pasta

Strain your pasta concoction. Add it to your plate then give yourself a generous heap of Ragu Homestyle Sauce. Drop on some mushrooms & then top with a sprinkle of cheese & chopped olives.

homestyle ragu

I didn't add any additional seasoning or spices because the Thick & Hearty Roasted Garlic Sauce has such a rich garlic flavor. The olives & cheese give you just enough salt.  With everything combined, you're good to go.


homestyle ragu


There you have it! I know it's been a while since my last recipe, so I'm glad to have partnered with Ragu in order to entice myself to do so. Bonus points because Fred & I both have enough lunch to last for a couple days. 

How does this easy vegetarian dinner recipe sound to you? :]

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*Disclaimer: This post is sponsored by Ragu. As always, all opinions are 100% mine aka Carmen's. Learn more about my disclosure here. :]

45 comments

  1. Great idea with the mushrooms and broccoli. I'll definitely have to try this recipe. Looks really affordable too. I just found it on Target.com for $1.99--way better than the $4 I paid at my natural food store for a comparable brand recently!

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  2. Great post!

    You have a nice blog!

    Would you like to follow each other? Let me know on my blog.

    Have a great day!

    xoxo Jacqueline

    www.hokis1981.blogspot.com

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  3. Yum, yum, it looks so healthy and delicious! I love mushrooms, what a great idea

    Characters & Carry-ons

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  4. Ooh this looks really good! I have to try it! I like your blog by the way, let me know if you want to follow each other! x

    adelelydia.blogspot.com

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  5. I never think to add broccoli to my pasta! Such a good way to add some veggies.

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  6. Looks delicious! Thanks for sharing =)
    -mainou
    http://www.looksbymc.com

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  7. Ohh, I am loving this! It's so easy and looks absolutely delicious! Must say I have never tried Ragu though, I make my own but many of my friends love the brand.

    Shireen | Reflection of Sanity

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  8. This looks so delicious and easy!! I always am in need of some new dinner ideas :)

    Enclothed Cognition/Bloglovin

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  9. Looks delicious & a great way to get in a heap of veggies into a hearty dinner! Thanks for sharing.

    TFM BLOG

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  10. yum! I used to make a similar version of this when i was at uni :D love it!
    Pam xo/ Pam Scalfi♥

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  11. Looks so delicious! Thanks for the recipe!

    Xoxo,
    Love from www.trangscorner.com {a lifestyle, fashion, beauty, and food blog}

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  12. I would have never though to put broccoli in my pasta but it actually looks amazing. Note to self: Do not look at pictures of food before lunch time. My co - workers think I'm a weirdo even when I'm not staring at the screen drueling :)

    Allie | RainyAllie

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  13. Amanda@craftycookingmamaMay 17, 2016 at 7:14 AM

    This looks like a delicious dinner - love all the fresh veggies! I understand about being somewhere in the middle - but it just makes us all the more unique :)

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  14. I absolutely love unique people, they are the more interesting! <3 Your tradition is lovely and your idea of an ideal meal is just like mine! Plus I have a soft spot for these kind of dishes ;)
    https://bluerosesandstardust.wordpress.com/

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  15. Pasta is probably one of my favourite foods, this looks so delicious!
    Aleeha xXx
    http://www.halesaaw.com/

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  16. I think a lot of people who have parents from a different culture feel that way at some point in their lives, at least I have.

    This dish looks delish!

    Mili | Sharmtoaster

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  17. Awh I feel too akin to not being enough in terms of being apart of a culture. I love that you found your groove though that's what's most important. Thanks for sharing your poignant perspective.

    xox
    Chanel
    Je M'appelle Chanel

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  18. Pasta is my favourite thing ever and this recipe sounds perfect to me, I'm definitely gonna try it out! :)

    xx, Matea
    www.smilesnapsparkle.com

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  19. Very affordable, Stine. We had so much leftovers. It was insane! :]

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  20. Relatively healthy. It's pasta, so I like to add a lot of veggies. :]

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  21. I love broccoli! I also add it to mac & cheese. :]

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  22. Making your own is always ideal, but this is for those nights when you can't be bothered. Ragu's Homestyle sauce is a new version with minimal ingredients, so I can definitely get behind it. :]

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  23. This is a great meal to make in bulk, so you can have it for lunch or dinner for a couple days. :]

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  24. OH yeah! I always do a lot of veggies with dinner. :]

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  25. Sounds tasty, Pam. What was your version? I'd love to know! :]

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  26. Really? I add broccoli to basically everything, so I have no concept of life without it. :]

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  27. Definitely. What's your heritage? :]

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  28. It's hard as a kid because you just want to "fit in." What's your heritage, Mili? :]

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  29. Well, pasta is quite tasty. What's your favorite pasta dish? :]

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  30. It's a unique feeling but it gets better with age. What's your heritage, Chanel? :]

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  31. Please do. Let me know how it turns out. :]

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  32. This looks so flavorful! I love mixing veggies with pasta!

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  33. This dish sounds utterly amazing! I do love a good veggie dish! <3

    The Dazzle Guide

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  34. Thanks for sharing. This looks so good. -Hanna Lei

    Latest Post: Casual (but Cute!) Kimono Outfit Inspiration

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  35. This looks really good!
    http://www.sashaelizabeth.com/

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