Tomato & Artichoke Penne

Tomato & Artichoke Penne // shutterbean

For a couple of years in college I went vegetarian (thaaaaanks, dorm food) and lived off a lot of stir-fry meals, pizza, Tillamook cheese  & hummus.  It took me about a decade to get back into the stir-fry game. I went a little overboard with my college wok…

Tomato & Artichoke Penne // shutterbean

When my friend, Riley moved in during our last year of college, he came with a nice repertoire of meals. He was the first person to introduce me to chilaquiles (which I LOVED) and he also made this Tomato Artichoke Penne Pasta dish that had me swooning. He was most certainly a welcome breath of fresh air food-wise/roommate-wise.

Tomato & Artichoke Penne // shutterbean

What I love about this dish was how easy it is to prepare and how it costs next to nothing to make. For a college student those two things are GOLD. For an adult who has no time to grocery shop and wants a meal with tons of leftovers throughout the week, it’s SOLID gold.  Sidenote: I find eating cold pasta to be way more enjoyable than hot. Is it just me? There’s just something about cold leftovers that satisfies me. Perhaps it’s how the flavors develop over time? Throw some feta in your pasta leftovers and you have a fantastic salad for an outdoor picnic.

And we’re off!

Ingredient gathering time. What I really like about this recipe is that everything is pretty much made from pantry staples. If you have fresh basil, go for it!

Tomato & Artichoke Penne // shutterbean

First we brown our pine nuts. Put them in your saucepan over medium-high heat for 2-4 minutes.

Tomato & Artichoke Penne // shutterbean

We chop up the marinated artichoke hearts & reserve their liquid for our sauce!

Sometimes I use two cans/jars because I’m a sucker for artichoke hearts. It’s another thing that makes it taste amazing when eaten cold.

There’s a nice tang to the sauce. You’ll like the different textures in there!

Tomato & Artichoke Penne // shutterbean

You’ll want to saute the onion in olive oil til translucent. Add garlic, stir.

Tomato & Artichoke Penne // shutterbean

Pour in the diced tomatoes & dried basil.

Tomato & Artichoke Penne // shutterbean

Now add the artichokes & the reserved liquid.

Tomato & Artichoke Penne // shutterbean

Cook over medium high heat and reduce reduce reduce. We want a thick sauce.

Tomato & Artichoke Penne // shutterbean

Pine nuts go into the sauce that’s done.

Tomato & Artichoke Penne // shutterbean

Pasta gets cooked. Pasta meets sauce.

Tomato & Artichoke Penne // shutterbean

Cheese goes in that sauce. Amazing things happen.

Tomato & Artichoke Penne // shutterbean

Look at this bounty!

Tomato & Artichoke Penne // shutterbean

Welcome to my senior year of college, minus all of the incense, ratty sweaters & birkenstocks.


Tomato & Artichoke Penne

serves 4-6

  • 1/3 cup pine nuts
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2  chopped yellow onion
  • 3 cloves minced garlic
  • 2 14.5 oz. cans diced tomatoes
  • 1 12oz. jar marinated artichoke hearts roughly chopped, liquid reserved
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons dried basil
  • 10 oz. whole wheat penne pasta
  • salt & pepper
  • 1/2 cup shredded parmesan cheese

In a medium saucepan, cook pine nuts over medium-high heat until nicely browned, about 3-4 minutes. Set aside.

Wipe saucepan clean, add 1 tablespoon olive oil sauté onions over medium-high heat until translucent, about 3-4 minutes. Add garlic, stir into onions and cook for 1 minute. Add in the diced tomatoes, chopped artichoke hearts and their reserved liquid and stir in dried basil. Cook over medium-high heat for 20 minutes, until sauce thickens. Meanwhile, cook penne according to instructions. Add pine nuts to the pasta sauce, mix the pasta with the sauce and stir until evenly coated. Add in cheese, stir and serve.

**If you find the sauce too tangy, add a pinch of sugar while it’s cooking away on the stove***

  • Averie @ Averie Cooks

    I just love artichokes! I always have a bag of those TJs frozen artichokes on hand for when the mood strikes! Your pics are always so clear and tack sharp and am loving the individual shreds of shredded parmesan cheese that I can see. Wow…making me hungry!

    And it was soooo good to finally meet you this weekend! 🙂

  • Priya

    I saw this, then I went to the shops to get artichokes and they didn’t have any! Boo! This looks stellar. Nom nom….
    Question- does Cooper like it? I really don’t think my daughter who is the exact same age will be keen on the artichokes. Oh well more for me!

  • Jill

    This looks incredible! Adding this to the rotation immediately!

  • Katy @ Katy's Kitchen

    Thanks for the veggie meal, love it and and appreciate it for the same reason you loved it in college! Cold pasta is amazing, I don’t know why but I just love it! Sometimes I get so excited about eating the cold pasta I wish I could just refrigerate it after I make it and wait to eat it. But then I get hungry. 😉

    • Tracy

      Haha! I know EXACTLY what you mean. I wish it just came out cold immediately.

  • Tieghan

    I love artichokes!! Like really love them!! This pasta looks perfect! I have everything on hand to give it a try tonight!! Can’t wait!

  • LIA

    YES! Perfect timing 🙂 After seriously OD-ing on your baked artichoke squares (they are SO good), i feared i’d never want to see another artichoke again, but this may swing it for me. Mmm Mmm Mmm.

  • Ashleigh | Love Stoned

    This looks amazing! I wish my husband liked artichokes…maybe I’ll just have to make this one night when he’s working late ♥

    xx Ashleigh

  • Emily

    Oh man, as soon as I saw “artichokes” in the title I knew I wanted to make this. Seriously my favorite vegetable ever. I love them in any incarnation, and combined with pasta, they have to be heaven. I’ll have to make this on a night when my bf isn’t home, as he is crazy and doesn’t like artichokes.

  • Karen

    Oh, man. It’s recipes like this that make me want to sway from the grain-free Paleo diet I’ve been into. Must.Stay.Strong. I love how my body and mind are feeling so there’s no going back now.

  • Abby @ The Frosted Vegan

    Ohhh this looks so so good!! Go girl!

  • Heidi - Apples Under My Bed

    Love the look of this recipe! Im a newly converted artichoke lover & I’m so happy to be here. Cold pasta love here too. Thanks, Tracy & Riley. Solid indeed.
    Heidi xo

  • Heather Christo

    obsessed with artichokes- they are my favorite food. This looks perfect for dinner tonight!

  • Eileen

    Artichoke hearts in pasta sauce is one of my favorite things! I’ve never tried it with pine nuts, though–sounds like a winning combination. 🙂

  • thenik

    uh, yum! I think I might make this as a side dish tonight with our grilled halibut. Because for some reason we just love halibut and artichokes together.

    • thenik

      Update: THIS WAS AMAZING with our grilled halibut. We look forward to the pasta leftovers for lunch!

  • Sarah

    This looks so tasty! I love the artichokes and the pine nuts in there.

  • cindy

    I went vegetarian during college because of the dorm food too. There were a lot of In-n-Out grilled cheeses in my life (the picture of health)! Cold pasta and cold pizza are my two favorite leftovers…I think the flavors congeal with the cheese. ha.

    We love artichokes at our house, my husband especially…I’m totes going to have to make this one!

  • Ellen

    You are so very not alone in liking stuff cold! I actually like most foods better leftover and cold. Except maybe French fries…

  • Maria Tadic

    My husband just dug out leftover pasta from the fridge…ate it right there, fridge door open and everything! He loves cold food and cold leftovers. It’s nuts…you’re not the only one I guess!

  • Beth @ Mangoes and Miles

    Hey! I just discovered your blog today, and I’m so glad I did because your food looks magical. 😀 I’m also a fan of cold pasta over warm…unless it has cheese on it, in which case I love the ooey-gooeyness of melted cheese. 🙂

  • candi

    I was so excited when I saw this recipe because I make a lazy version of it and its delicious. I used Trader Joe’s frozen arrabiata as the base and then dump in their canned artichoke hearts and canellinis. It’s one of my favorite lazy after work dinners. I can’t wait to try your homemade version.

    Also, totally with you on the cold pasta!

  • Danielle

    This dish looks delicious! And I think I have all the ingredients on hand! Sweet!!! I love artichokes and I’ve never put them in sauce, so I’m anxious to try this, because it looks so good!


    PS I love cold pasta too! Sometimes I nibble on leftovers right from the fridge : )

  • Alysha Gillan

    This. Is. Mouth. Watering. Yum. I love pastas but am always looking for different, unique recipes to try ! Might just try this out 🙂

  • Jayne

    You know… I’ve never tasted artichokes before. They aren’t native or common here. But your pics make me want to look for them and make this pasta. Then again, it could be the pasta. Anything mixed with pasta and tomato sauce is bound to be good.

  • Lucy

    This looks divine, I haven’t had pasta in a while put you’ve got me craving!

    Lucy Loves To Cook

  • Jane M

    Doing the low carb diet to drop the LBS. GAAAAH now I see this delish din din and my mouth is watering. YUUUM!

  • Olithee

    I think pennes are my favourite
    I have to stop looking at cooking receipe in the afternoon because that starves me yup !

  • Abbe@This is How I Cook

    All my favorite ingredients. And it looks as if this is a dish that you can make forever and always and never get tired of it.

  • Stefanie @ Sarcastic Cooking

    Um… I am still rocking my college Birkenstocks. No shame. I also was a veg in college because of the dorm food. I lived off veggie subs from the subway in the basement of my dorm. I wish I had somebody to make this for me back then.

  • dixya@food, pleasure, and health

    i agree- cold pasta is the BEST 🙂 quick meals like these are always welcome in my house

  • tara

    Holy crap this sounds good!!

  • Mary

    That looks so delicious! I’ll make pesto, freeze it and use a small spoonful in pasta dishes to add a bit of freshness, even in the winter!

    Let me know if you would want to link up!

  • Holly @ EatGreatBEGreat

    This sounds like a wonderful pasta dish! Yummy!

  • Lisa

    It is my great pleasure to visit your website and to enjoy your excellent posts and recopies here.

  • aida mollenkamp

    I totally here you on the cold pasta thing!

  • Katy @ Katy's Kitchen

    I know I already commented, but I know how important it is to get feedback so I’m going to comment again! I just made this is (minus the pine nuts…student on a budget!) and it tasted FANTASTIC. Anyone wondering about gluten free subs, tastes great with brown rice pasta and nutritional yeast sprinkled on top. I love how I can count on your blog for an easy weeknight dinner that always turns out. Now I have a work dinner for the next few days. THANK YOU TRACY!!!!

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  • Jen

    Made this for dinner last night. Kinda. I cheated and used jarred marinara (whole foods classic is my fave), but I didn’t skimp on the pine nuts or Parmesan; both added great flavor.

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  • Nicole H.

    I just made this for dinner and it was AMAZE BALLS! My hubby and 3 year old twin boys devoured it! Thanks tons for the great recipe. I can’t wait for the leftovers in tomorrow’s lunch!

  • Heather

    Made this tonight and loved it! Thank you for an easy and delicious recipe.

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  • diana

    did you recently make this and share in an IG story? you were making something that looked delicious with artichoke hearts and i neglected to comment and ask what it was. this was the closest thing i could find on the site that might be it 🙂

    • Tracy

      Oh! Was it a salad?

      • diana

        i’m not sure! i thought it was hot and was being cooked on a stove 🙂

        • Tracy

          Oh! Maybe that was the artichoke couscous thing I made with sausage. I was just playing!

          • Diana

            It looked delicious for sure! Glad I found this one too. Your blog has the recipes I go back to the most of all I read. All so good – thank you!

          • Tracy

            That makes me so happy, Diana!! Thank you for letting me know 🙂

  • Alison

    Perfect! Thank you.

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