This simple Lemon Pasta makes for a light and flavorful meal. Spaghetti noodles are tossed with freshly squeezed lemon, spinach, and fresh herbs. It's quick and easy, vegetarian, and simple to make vegan too!
There are times when you are about to make dinner when you open the fridge or pantry and empty shelves stare back at you.
What do you make on those nights?
For me, it's almost always one of my favorite pasta recipes.
If you have some spaghetti (or really any kind of pasta) on hand, a bit of parmesan cheese and fresh lemons - dinner is only a few minutes away.
Perfect when you have hungry hoards moaning that they need to be fed. But that never happens, right?
This Lemon Spaghetti is so much better (and healthier!) than resorting to takeout.
In a matter of minutes, you can have a delicious meal on your plate with hardly any effort. And you guys know I love easy- it's why I wrote a whole cookbook full of one-pot recipes!
While our shelves aren't exactly empty, we are trying to use up the contents of our fridge and some of the things in the pantry before we move homes at the end of the week.
So lemon pasta was what we had for dinner last night. I have to say the lemon spaghetti was absolutely delicious and was a hit with my husband, who requested lemon spaghetti for dinner again tonight!
This recipe is also completely vegan if you just leave off the parmesan cheese. It's perfectly delicious without it! (And if you love vegan cooking, be sure to grab my free vegan substitution cheat sheet here.)
You can add a bit of fresh cracked black pepper for added flavor too.
While you're here, be sure to grab my free e-cookbook packed with reader favorite vegetarian recipes!
Lemon Spaghetti Pasta
- ½ cup olive oil
- ½ cup Parmesan cheese optional
- ½ cup lemon juice freshly squeezed
- ¾ teaspoon salt plus more to taste
- ½ teaspoon pepper plus more to taste
- 1 pound spaghetti dried
- ¼ cup chopped parsley
- 1 cup baby spinach leaves
- 1 tablespoon lemon zest grated
- In a small bowl, combine the olive oil, Parmesan cheese, lemon juice, salt and pepper and whisk to combine. Set aside.
- Bring a large saucepan of water to the boil and season well with salt. Add the spaghetti and cook until tender.
- Drain the spaghetti, reserving 1 cup of the cooking liquid.
- Return the spaghetti to the pan and add the lemon sauce, lemon zest, parsley and spinach. Gradually add the reserved cooking liquid,¼ of a cup at a time, to moisten.
- Season the pasta with salt and pepper to taste and serve.
Spaghetti and pasta can always save my day. I love lemon, so, this looks like a perfect combination to me. Thanks. Congrats on your new bigger kitchen. 🙂
Lovely Recipie . I was wondering what to cook for dinner and saw that your fiancé had posted this on the cooking forum at work. Nice fresh flavours and as a meal not too heavy and not too light. I used South Cape Parmesan which has a beautiful smoothe flavour and is creamier than the others.
I'm not good at cooking but I will try 🙂 My girlfriend will be happy...
Thank you for sharing!
That is our fav pasta sauce and I too learned it from Giada. Quick and easy and you can never go wrong with it 🙂
Rosemary Grubb says
This looks like a lovely recipe, I had a wonderful Italian cookbook that went walk about and I miss it terribly. It had a lemon spaghetti recipe in it. That recipe added a small amount of chilli. It was delicious, the garlic, chilli and lemon coated the spaghetti very yum.
My kitchen is about 30 years old, but I love my house and know it will be a couple of years or so before its changed so I don't worry about it. I am happy with the way I have organized it, I brought the area for the dining table into the kitchen with lots of shelves and a butchers trolley for a 2nd work space. The dining table is just outside the door on an enclosed verandah. Works very well.
Your blog is great, I love your photos.
I love spaguetti! In all the ways made, so simple, so fast, so delicious and this kind of food that with anything you have in the fridge allways convine well 🙂 and never did it with lemon, I will try for sure! Thanks for the idea!
This looks and sounds divine. I love ut!
Thanks John 😀 It's a favourite in our house with my fiance requesting me to make it weekly.
LEMON AND PARMESAN WORK WELL TOGETHER YUM!
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Goodies for a pleas says
This sounds yummy. I have to give it a try 🙂 LG Tina
b. lee says
divine!!! lemon; parm & spinach ~ ~ thanx for sharing * *
Ooo this sounds yummy. I love Giada.
Your blog is great btw!
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Thank you so much sassandspice 🙂
yummy this looks fantastic!!
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Rachel Teahan says
Would this hold up well if I made it the night before? I'm always on the lookout for delicious and new recipes to take to my church events, but often times the food gets a little dried out waiting to be served :/
Hi Rachel, the spaghetti is really best if it's eaten immediately. We've eaten left overs for lunch the next day, which were still fine, but not as good as when it's fresh. It wouldn't dry out because the sauce and oil keep the pasta moist, it would be more a case of the spinach not looking the best when reheated (it will still taste fine though).
Thanks for visiting 🙂
Hope the move goes well / went well! That's a lovely, fresh and simple dinner. Looks superb!
Thanks Agnes....as for the move going well....we're still not in our new house yet due to problems with the removal company but hopefully we will be today.
So simple, but so perfect!
Oh I love lemon pasta - this looks so fresh and healthy. Lovely photo 🙂
Thanks FoodieandChef 🙂
Monique Cooksploits says
This looks lovely and light with the lemon in it. I usually turn to pasta when I can't be bothered grocery shopping. I just moved as well and the thing I was looking forward to the most was having a kitchen with an oven that actually worked! Enjoy the new kitchen!
Thanks Monique. I will enjoy the new kitchen. Hopefully you get an oven that works soon!
Looks so good...I love your photography!
Thank you so much Michelle 🙂
Yum Yum!! Sounds like a perfect after work meal! And vego too! I'll have to give this one a go.
It certainly is the perfect after work meal Jaye. Quick, easy and refreshing too.
Wow - the picture alone could convince me I should make this. Lovely!
Thank you so much Melanie. 🙂
Sylvie @GITK says
I guess I have an in-between kitchen. it's not terribly spacious but not the smallest kitchen I've ever had either. If I could change one thing about it though, I would have more cabinets. There is not nearly enough storage space. Have fun cooking in your new kitchen!
Thanks Sylvie 😀 You can never have too much storage can you? I am certainly looking forward to more storage space in my new kitchen.
I would add a stand mixer to my kitchen, if I could change something 🙂
The spaghetti sounds delicious - very fresh and light.
I have a KitchenAid stand mixer, while expensive has certainly been worth the investment. I highly recommend them Joyti 🙂
This looks awesome. I would never have thought of adding lemon to pasta! Thanks for the inspiration:) I'd like to skip the cheese (because it contains dairy), but wonder if it'd still taste as good without it.
I'm sure it would taste great without the cheese Kayla. I was actually thinking of trying it sans cheese myself. 🙂
Looks lovely and refreshing!
Congrats on your upcoming move!! A bigger kitchen sounds like a good thing for sure. I must try this pasta - it looks delicious. Perfect combo of flavors!
Thanks Marla 🙂
I just made this! So good!
I used buckwheat noodles and substituted fat free Asian salad dressing for half of the olive oil. Enjoying it right now! Thanks for sharing!
I'm so glad you enjoyed it Megan. 😀 I love that you substituted buckwheat noodles for the spaghetti. Sounds delicious. I will have to try it.
Your lemon spaghetti looks superb, and very tempting!
Thank you so much elra. 🙂
I'm always looking for something lighter to do with pasta. And using lemon in the recipe sounds like a great idea. I'll have to give it a try!
This looks divine & simple
Trudy~Veggie num num says
What a great quick pasta recipe! Perfect for a lazy week night 🙂 So happy to hear you're moving to a lovely house and with a big kitchen to boot!! Awesome!! Hope the move goes well!
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Thanks Trudy. I'm really looking forward to the brand new, big and beautiful kitchen. I'm also looking forward to decorating the house too. I can't wait to turn it into our home. 😀
Kiki Chaos says
Your kitchen sounds almost exactly like mine, so I feel your pain. And I feel very envious that you're getting a lovely new one! I hate ours with such a passion it's the reason I don't cook much, and it makes me so sad. But boy won't move 🙁 I'll keep working on him, though!
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Keep working on him Kiki. 😉
Love, love, love lemon spaghetti. So quick and easy. Nigella Lawson does one with eggs in 'How to Eat'. I like the addition of spinach here.
What would I change about my kitchen - given that it's still the original 1939 kitchen from when the house was built, without even shonky 70s renovation, I would like a complete overhaul, a brand new kitchen. What I would change first is the enamel sink - it's a crockery killer.
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Wow, a 1939 kitchen! That's amazing. I don't think I've ever seen a kitchen that old, as you said, most houses seem to have shonky 70s updates to kitchens at least. I can imagine that the enamel sink is a crockery killer too. Here's hoping you have a new kitchen in your future. 🙂
I'm sure your kitchen isn't as small as mine - no room for a dishwasher, and I tend to do most of my prep on the dining table. What I'd give for some bench space!
I love the sound of this recipe. So fresh and quick - being added to my list of things to try as we speak!
You poor thing Leigh. I can't imagine not having bench space. My current kitchen at least has some bench space, not a lot, but some.
I'm glad you enjoyed this recipe. 😀 It's deliciously refreshing. Definitely one if you love lemons, which I do.