One Pot Pasta with Kale and Lemon

I am back with another one pot pasta - this one is full of kale, lemon zest, and pine nuts. If you haven’t already noticed I am a huge fan of pan sauces in pasta dishes because they use kitchen staples to create a complete meal. Plus they work in a pinch when you forget the pasta sauce or are not feeling a heavy pasta dish. Couple notes about the recipe. First feel free to substitute the pasta with GF pasta or even zucchini noodles.  Also I like using baby kale because it is a little more tender but regular kale also works, as does spinach. Lastly, make sure to taste for salt before serving - that is the key to making something as simple and easy as this pasta dish. 

One Pot Pasta with Kale, Lemon Zest, and Pine Nuts

  • 12 oz. pasta (I used bucatini but your favorite pasta shape works)
  • 4 Tbs. butter separated
  • 2 shallots, diced
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 2 tsp. Lemon zest
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, plus more for garnish
  • Pinch of red pepper flakes
  • 2 cups kale
  • 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts, plus more for garnish
  • Salt and pepper


Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Cook pasta according to packaging instructions. Strain saving 1 cup of pasta cooking liquid aside. Keep pasta warm.

In the same pot melted 2 Tbs. butter over medium heat. Add shalllots and garlic and cook for about 1 minute or until the shallots are soft and translucent. Deglaze the pan with lemon zest. Add the remaining butter and lemon. Add cooked pasta, Parmesan cheese, pinch of salt and pepper, and red pepper flakes. Toss well to combine. Fold in kale and pine nuts and cook until kale is slightly wilted. Serve pasta warm with extra Parmesan cheese, pine nuts and red pepper flakes.

Serves 4 people