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The creamiest, easiest, one pot Lemon Butter Ricotta and Zucchini Pasta…our perfect bowl of summertime comfort food. This simple zucchini pasta is made in under 30 minutes, uses just one pot, and is a great way to use up that summertime zucchini. It’s creamy, garlicky, packed with zucchini, and finished with fresh thyme and basil. The perfect cozy summer dinner, or easy side, any night of the week. Everyone in the house will enjoy this dish, veggies and all!

One Pot Lemon Butter Ricotta and Zucchini Pasta | halfbakedharvest.com

Sometimes I set out to create recipes and I am so excited about them. But then sadly, the outcome just isn’t quite what I had pictured in my head. Most of the time the photos I paint in my head are far too pretty and perfect than what I could ever actually create. They’re probably a little unrealistic too, but I always strive to match that vision the best I can.

But this time…I really didn’t have a good picture in my head. So I went into this recipe with pretty low expectations. And somehow…it ended up being my favorite recipe of the week.

One Pot Lemon Butter Ricotta and Zucchini Pasta | halfbakedharvest.com

The details are simple…hello to a one pot recipe!

This isn’t my first one pot recipe, but it’s truly one of my easiest…and personally one of my favorites.

It’s summery and simple, but cozy and delicious too.

Here’s how this goes. Find yourself a nice big pot that can fit your pasta and lots of zucchini. Now melt together some butter, shallots, garlic, thyme, and lemon zest. I also like to add a nice pinch of red pepper flakes for a bit of spiciness.

The trick is to cook the butter until it just begins to brown and smell nutty. Then the shallots soften, the thyme becomes fragrant, and the lemon and chili flakes infuse their flavor into the butter. And just like that, the kitchen is already smelling amazing.

From here, the rest is really so easy.

One Pot Lemon Butter Ricotta and Zucchini Pasta | halfbakedharvest.com

Stir in your favorite short-cut pasta, then lots of grated zucchini, and broth. Bring the broth to a boil and cook until the pasta becomes al dente. Next, add the creamy ricotta, some fontina or gouda cheese, and tons of fresh basil.

As you’re stirring, smells of lemon, garlic, thyme, and basil will quickly hit your nose.

It’s wonderful.

One Pot Lemon Butter Ricotta and Zucchini Pasta | halfbakedharvest.com

I serve this up right out of the pot with fresh thyme, basil, and chili flakes. This dish would also be great with some added texture. Try using any type of toasted nuts or seeds. I love salted pistachios…and roasted walnuts or salted pepitas would also be great.

It’s best to eat this pasta immediately. It’s meant to be on the creamy/almost soupy side, with lots and lots of creamy sauce. The pasta will soak up the broth up if it sits too long, so enjoy it right away…it will be just perfect.

Oh, and leftovers are great too!

One Pot Lemon Butter Ricotta and Zucchini Pasta | halfbakedharvest.com

This is a good way to get in your vegetables and use up all the zucchini you have. Plus, because the zucchini is grated, kids barely even notice it’s there.

And well, that’s that, told ya it’s simple!

One Pot Lemon Butter Ricotta and Zucchini Pasta | halfbakedharvest.com

Looking for other one pot recipes? Here are some favorites:

One Pot Melty Burrata Lemon Pesto Pasta

Creamy Penne Alfredo with Spicy Arugula

One Pot Spicy Alla Vodka Pizza Pasta

Lastly, if you make this One Pot Lemon Butter Ricotta and Zucchini Pasta, be sure to leave a comment and/or give this recipe a rating! Above all, I love to hear from you guys and always do my best to respond to each and every comment. And of course, if you do make this recipe, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram! Looking through the photos of recipes you all have made is my favorite!

One Pot Lemon Butter Ricotta and Zucchini Pasta

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings: 6
Calories Per Serving: 489 kcal

Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.

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Ingredients

Instructions

  • 1. In a large pot set over medium heat, melt together the butter, shallot, garlic, thyme, lemon zest and a big pinch of red pepper flakes. Cook until the butter is browning and the garlic is fragrant, about 3 minutes. Stir in the pasta and toss to coat in the lemony butter. Stir in the zucchini and broth. Season with salt and pepper.
    2. Bring to a boil over high heat. Simmer 5-8 minutes until the pasta is al dente, stirring often.
    3. Stir in the ricotta, fontina, and basil. Cook another few minutes until very creamy and the basil is wilted. It should be creamy, but with just a touch of liquid.
    4. Divide the pasta among bowls and top with fresh thyme, basil, and chili flakes. Enjoy immediately!

Notes

For extra texture and flavor, try using any type of toasted nuts or seeds. I love salted pistachios, roasted walnuts, and salted pepitas!
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One Pot Lemon Butter Ricotta and Zucchini Pasta | halfbakedharvest.com

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Comments

    1. Hi Christina,
      Any other herbs you enjoy will work in place of the thyme:) I hope you love the recipe! xTieghan

  1. 5 stars
    This is such a delicious dish. Plenty of fresh herbs are key here. I wonder if some of the folks who said the dish lacked flavor used sub par ingredients. I do know my own tastes so I used a bit more garlic and all the zest from one lemon. Smells amazing cooking, tastes great and only one pot to wash!! Thanks, Tieghan!!

    1. Hey Stephanie,
      Happy Wednesday! Thanks a lot for making this recipe and sharing your feedback, I love to hear that it was enjoyed:) xx

      1. 5 stars
        This was so delicious! Easy to prepare and everyone devoured it. Can a dish be both light and savory? Yes! Loved it.

        1. Hey Karin,
          Happy Friday!!🌟 I am thrilled to hear this recipe was enjoyed, thanks a bunch for giving it a try! xxT

  2. 4 stars
    Yknow what would really make this recipe go from good to great? Some tomatoes! That and mushrooms. I spent way too much time wondering what on earth it was missing because it felt wayyyy too cheesy (which I guess was the point) but it needed some more spice or pazow! TOMATOES! MAYBE SOME SUNDRIED OR CHERRY! aight thanks for coming to my Ted talk

    1. Hey there,
      Amazing!! I am so glad this recipe was a hit, thanks a lot for trying it out! Sure, tomatoes would be great!! Have the best weekend! ☀️xx

  3. 5 stars
    Tried this recipe last night and it’s definitely a keeper. Very creamy! I was hoping to taste the zucchini more. It kind of got lost. I think next time, I would sauté some chunkier pieces of zucchini and mix it through at the end. Still a very delicious recipe. Thank you 😁

    1. Hey Daniella,
      Happy Friday! Thanks a bunch for trying this recipe out and sharing your feedback, I love to hear that it was a hit! xTieghan

  4. 5 stars
    Like others I used the zest of a whole lemon and then added the juice in with the broth. I used GF rice pasta shells and dill instead of the thyme (had it to use up). I added in some mushrooms with the garlic at the beginning. It came out fabulous!

    1. Hey Sara,
      Happy Wednesday! Thanks for sharing your review and making this recipe, I am so glad it was a winner! xxTieghan

  5. 5 stars
    You know how recipes say 30 min but take an hour (for me anyway!)? This took 1/2 hour and was amazing! Everyone loved it. Next time, I’ll add even more lemon. Thank you!

    1. Hey Lori,
      Happy Wednesday!! I so appreciate you giving this recipe a try and love to hear that it was enjoyed! Thanks for your feedback:) xT

  6. 5 stars
    Although I don’t like reading reviews from people who have substituted multiple ingredients from a given recipe, I thought it might be helpful to know that this recipe is SO good that it will still be good if you have to adjust an ingredient or two. Since i didn’t have ricotta or Gouda cheeses on hand, I used Boursin Garlic and Herb cheese and Parmesan instead. My husband, who was not at all excited about having pasta with zucchini, loved it! Since making this I now have the correct cheeses on hand to follow the exact recipe and I’m sure it will be even better!

    1. Hey Karen,
      Thanks for your feedback! I love to hear that this recipe was enjoyed, thanks for making it:) Have the best week! xxT

  7. I don’t see when you should add the chicken stock. I’m assuming when you add the pasta so it will boil and cook. Am I missing something?

    1. Hi Nicole,
      The chicken broth is used at the end of step 1. Please let me know if I can help in any other way! xT

  8. 5 stars
    This was great as is (I used chickpea noodles and added mushrooms, because everything is better with mushrooms) but I can also see a ton of variations of this being amazing. Chopped rather than shredded zucchini, corn, scallops….so many things would add to this amazing base! But again, as is it’s super yummy and easy. My two favorite things!

    1. Hey Kristen,
      Happy Friday!! Thanks a lot for making this recipe and sharing your feedback, I love to hear that it was enjoyed! xTieghan

  9. Hi! I want to make this for Mother’s Day but my mom gets acid reflux from lemons. Is there anyway to get rid of the lemons without compromising flavor? is there anything you would suggest changing to still have great flavor? Thanks!

  10. 5 stars
    This. Was/is. Tremendous. Make sure to use a pasta that can withstand the cook time/method. A hearty noodle.

    1. Hey there,
      Happy Friday!! I love to hear that this recipe was a winner, thanks a lot for trying it out! ☀️xx

    1. Hi Bonnie,
      I probably wouldn’t freeze this dish, I think it would be tricky to reheat. Please let me know if you have any other questions! xx

  11. Hi there! I enjoyed this recipe but have a question — yours looks so creamy but mine is very piece-y. My ricotta cheese is very chunky and piece-y and didn’t melt into a cream like your appears to. Any idea why this happened?

    1. Hi Kathy,
      Thanks for giving the recipe a try, so sorry to hear about your ricotta. Did you use whole milk ricotta? Was it at room temp? Anything else you may have adjusted in the recipe? Please let me know how I can help! xx

  12. The recipe was really good however please specify if you’re supposed to boil the pasta first had me stressing and induced a small panic attack.
    Kind regards Thelegend gamer 27

    1. Hi there,
      The pasta cooks in the pot with all of the other ingredients, which is why the dish is called “one pot”. Please let me know if you have any other questions! xTieghan