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This bowl of super easy homemade Cheesy Spaghetti O’s is the perfect recipe for busy weeknights and picky eaters. Small little O-shaped pasta, garlic butter, herbs, and tomato paste are boiled together until al dente. Then a handful of grated parmesan and pecorino cheeses are stirred into the mix. Together they create a creamy, cheesy spaghetti O-style pasta that’s wholesome, delicious, and fun. This simple pasta is made all in one pot, in just 25 minutes and your family will become obsessed!

Super Easy Homemade Cheesy Spaghetti O’s |

Well, isn’t this fun?! Homemade spaghetti O’s! And SO MUCH better than anything you’d dump out of a can. So much better.

I’ve said it many times now, but it’s back-to-school season. And as much as I dreaded this time of year as a kid, there was (and is) something so exciting about starting off a new year. It’s odd since the new year isn’t officially until January. But as a kid, the start of the school year meant so much more than the actual new year. New classrooms, new teachers, new friends, possibly even a new school.

It’s a lot. And with practices, homework, and earlier bedtimes, nights become short and hectic.

Super Easy Homemade Cheesy Spaghetti O’s |

My parents relied on easy dinners like chicken and rice, tacos, and pasta. My mom was always stocked with ramen, boxes of mac and cheese, and yeah, cans of Spaghetti O’s.

To be very, very honest. I never went for the spaghetti O’s. My brother Creighton loved them. I only recall eating them maybe once a year and always with a grilled cheese that my dad would make.

So I can’t say that I was a true fan. But we all know I love a homemade “dupe” and spaghetti O’s needed to happen this week. It’s been thundering and storming all week, and this is back-to-school comfort food at its best.

Super Easy Homemade Cheesy Spaghetti O’s |


For starters, this is almost as easy as dumping out a can of spaghetti o’s and heating. Simple, simple and so much better.

I start by cooking the butter together with a splash of olive oil, lots of garlic, some oregano, and chili flakes. Then add in tomato paste, which is the base of our sauce. I prefer to use tomato paste over jarred pasta. It brings a more intense tomato flavor that tastes as though the sauce has been cooking all day. It’s kind of my “secret”.

Next, pour in the water, this is for cooking the pasta. Then, add the Spaghetti O’s or in correct Italian, Anellini pasta. Any shortcut pasta will work, but using the Anellini makes this feel like a legit Spaghetti O’s copycat. It’s fun!

Super Easy Homemade Cheesy Spaghetti O’s |

Next, add in some onion powder and paprika. Then just cook away until the pasta has the perfect bite. Stir in lots of cheese – both parmesan and pecorino, and finish with fresh basil.

Excited to have this recipe in my back pocket. It’s pretty perfect any time of the year. Everyone really loves it. Like really loves it. Oslo is actually eating a bowl out of my lap as I type this. It’s UMMY as Oslo says!

Super Easy Homemade Cheesy Spaghetti O’s |

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

French Onion Pasta with Crispy Prosciutto

One Skillet White Chicken Chili Bake

Healthier Homemade One Pot Hamburger Helper

Creamy Sun-Dried Tomato Chicken Pasta

Lastly, if you make this Super Easy Homemade Cheesy Spaghetti O’s, 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!

Super Easy Homemade Cheesy Spaghetti O’s

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings: 6
Calories Per Serving: 262 kcal

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



  • 1. Melt together the butter, olive oil, garlic, oregano, and chili flakes in a large pot over medium heat. Cook until the butter turns golden, about 5 minutes.
    2. Reduce the heat to low, stir in the tomato paste. Cook 1-2 minutes, then pour over 3 cups of water. Bring to a boil over high heat. Add the pasta, onion powder, paprika, and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring often, until the pasta is al dente, about 12 minutes.
    3. Stir in the parmesan, pecorino, and basil until the cheese is melted.
    4. Serve immediately topped with fresh basil. Eat!
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Super Easy Homemade Cheesy Spaghetti O’s |

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  1. 5 stars
    I thought this was so fun and nostalgic! I wanted a softer bite of pasta as if it came straight out of the can so I did add extra water and cooked the pasta a little longer. Apart from that, I would not change a thing. I think it’s great that I could have a childhood meal without all the extra processed stuff. Thank you for bringing a smile to my face during a cold winter week.

    1. Hey Caitlin,
      Happy Friday!! I appreciate you making this recipe and sharing your feedback, so glad to hear this was enjoyed! xT

  2. 3 stars
    Lacks flavor. A little watery and bland. Needs that richness I’m missing. Not bad just needs something. We will try a little cream and more tomato next time.

  3. 5 stars
    Do you think this could be made in the IP? I love it, but a portion of the pasta seems to stick to the bottom of my pan no matter what.

    1. Hey Jenn,
      I’ve never tried this recipe in the instant pot just because it is easily made on the stove top. I would try a different brand of pasta and make sure you are stirring often! I hope this helps! xT

  4. 5 stars
    This recipe is really easy to throw together on busy nights. Reminds me of a childhood meal, but without weird ingredients.

    1. Hey Maddy,
      Thanks so much for giving this recipe a try, I love to hear that it turned out well for you! Happy Tuesday! 🎄

    1. Hey Morgan,
      Happy Sunday!!☃️ Thanks a lot for making this recipe, I love to hear that it turned out well for you! xT

  5. Totally different recipe than in your cookbook Super Simple. So was very confused. I have made your “Grown up tomato parmesean pasta over 10x. So yummy. The online one is totally different so hope it is as yummy! Glad they hsf fresh Oregano 🙂

    1. Hi Savannah,
      Thanks for giving the recipe a try! Yes, they are two totally different recipes:) The recipes that I share in the cookbooks are exclusive to the cookbooks. xx

    1. Hey Kimberly,
      Awesome!! 🍂 I love to hear that this recipe turned out well for you, thanks a bunch for trying it out! xx

  6. I’ve now made this twice and love it. It takes me a lot longer to cook the noodles- I added a 1/2c water and 5 extra minutes for a total of three times before it was to my liking. I then could not stop eating it.

    1. Hey Dawn,
      Love it!!🤩 So glad to hear that this recipe was a hit, thanks so much for making it! Thanks for sharing what works well for you! xx

  7. 4 stars
    The flavor was good but not saucy enough for me. I couldn’t find the “o” shaped pasta so used elbows. I think if I would have used less than 2 cups of those noodles it would have been fine. Perhaps with the proper noodles it would have been saucier too.

    1. Hi Monica,
      Thanks so much for making this recipe and sharing your feedback! Let me know if you give another noodle a try! Happy Wednesday! xx

  8. 5 stars
    Such an amazing recipe! Finally got around to making this for me and my husband and we loved it! I keep sending it to people for them to make.

    1. Hi Cathy,
      Happy Wednesday! I really appreciate you making this recipe and sharing your review, so glad it was a winner! 🤩

      1. 4 stars
        The taste is great. I had an issue with the noodles sticking to the pot and taking much longer to cook. I had to keep adding water. Next time I will partially boil the noodles before adding. I think that will help. I do like this recipe.

        1. Hey Joann,
          Happy Sunday!!❄️ I love to hear that this recipe was enjoyed, thanks so much for trying it out and sharing your feedback! xx

  9. 4 stars
    So tasty and easy! Next time I think it would be cut back to do like half the cheese (shocking, I know). I used little cheese aggressive lol

    1. Hey Taylor,
      Wonderful!! Thanks a bunch for giving this recipe a try and sharing your feedback, so glad it was a hit! xT

  10. 4 stars
    My family loved this recipe (except my brother, who hates cheese), but it didn’t amke 6 servings; more like five. Nevertheless, it was absolutely delicious. Do you have any idea as to why it made less? I would like to make it again. Abigail

    1. Hey Kim Marie,
      Happy Monday!! 👻 I am so glad this recipe was tasty for you, thanks a lot for trying it out! I think it just depends on the size of your servings:) xT

    1. Hi Macey,
      Happy Monday!🎃 I am thrilled to hear that this recipe was tasty for you, thanks a bunch for making it! xx

    1. Hi Kara,
      Wonderful!! I love to hear that this recipe was a winner, thanks so much for making it and sharing your review! xT