One Pot Pantry Pasta with Chickpeas and Peppers
Need a quick dinner idea? This Pantry Pasta with Chickpeas and Roasted Red Peppers is it! This delicious dinner uses only ingredients that are likely to be in your pantry and it’s made all in one pot! It’s also dairy-free and vegan and sure to a be a hit with the whole family.
Quick Pantry Pasta
We are all about quick and easy dinners, especially during busy seasons of our lives. This Quick Pantry Pasta with Chickpeas and Roasted Red Peppers is definitely a winner. It’s made all in one pot, with items you likely already have in your pantry and will surely be a hit with everyone. Did I mention it takes less than 20 minutes to cook? That means that if you are walking in the door with absolutely no idea what you are going to make for dinner, this will save you! It’s also easy to swap in other ingredients in case you don’t have the chickpeas or roasted red peppers so this one really is a life saver. Save this recipe and hang it on your fridge for the next time you need dinner fast.
Pantry Pasta Ingredients
- Marinara Sauce
- Penne Pasta
- Roasted Red Peppers
- Water / Broth
- Salt + Pepper
- Garlic Powder
- Onion Powder
How One Pot Pasta Works
If you are new to the concept of cooking pasta all in one pot, let me explain how it works! Typically pasta is cooked separately in lots of boiling water, then drained before being used in whatever dish you are making. But a one pot pasta instead boils the pasta directly in whatever “sauce” you are using. In this recipe, the pasta is boiled in a mixture of marinara sauce and water (or broth, if you have it in your pantry!). Instead of just filling the pot with water, a precise amount is added to ensure that when the pasta is finished cooking, there is just enough liquid leftover to make your sauce. The resulting sauce is “creamier” because any starch that is leftover in the cooking liquid is left in the pot, instead of being discarded when draining the pasta. Because it’s all cooked in one pot, follow the directions and ingredient amounts precisely to ensure the correct amount of sauce leftover at the end.
Also note that when the pasta is finished cooking, the sauce might look like it is too watery. It will thicken in about 5 minutes to be the perfect amount, so have patience.
What Type of Pasta to Use
We tested this one pot pantry pasta with a lot of different types of gluten-free pasta and with traditional wheat pasta as well. It all worked the same! However, you must use penne pasta for this, as the amount of water called for is based off of the type of pasta used.
When you are cooking this, the recipe calls for you to cook the pasta as long as the package directions call for, after it has come to a boil, so be sure to check for that information on the pasta package.
Alternative Ingredients for Pantry Pasta
We based this recipe off of the idea that marinara, chickpeas and roasted red peppers are often what can be commonly found in the pantries of many families. However, you can make some swaps for what you have on hand, such as switching the beans (or omitting them) or even adding meat to this dish. However, you can not swap out the use of 25 ounces of marinara sauce or the amount of water/broth called for, because it will affect the final dish.
Some other ideas for swaps to make:
- Canned White Beans
- Frozen Veggies (peas, cauliflower)
- Canned Artichokes (maybe add in some olives for a mediterranean twist!)
- Sun Dried Tomatoes
- Canned Tuna
- Leftover Veggies
Adding Meat to this Dish
If you wanted to add ground meat, cook it first in the pot, then add the remaining ingredients.
If you like this pasta recipe, check out these others:
- Gluten-Free Chicken Caesar Pasta Salad
- Sausage and Vegetable Pasta
- Gluten-Free BLT Pasta Salad
- Broccoli Rabe and Sausage Pasta
Watch the video:
Pantry Pasta with Chickpeas and Peppers
This Pantry Pasta with Chickpeas and Roasted Red Peppers is the ultimate easy and quick dinner idea. This delicious dinner idea uses all ingredients that are likely to be in your pantry and it's made all in one pot! It's also dairy free and vegan and sure to a be a hit with the whole family.
- Add all ingredients to a large dutch oven and stir together to combine. Turn the heat on to medium high and let the mixture come up to a boil.
- Once boiling, cook the pasta for as long as the package instruction states (if package says to cook pasta for 10 minutes, cook for 10 minutes), stirring every few minutes to prevent the pasta from sticking to the bottom.
- Once the pasta is cooked through, let it sit for 5 minutes while the sauce continues to thicken up.
- Serve as is, or with parmesan cheese and basil for garnish.
- The pasta can stick to the bottom of the pot after it has begun to boil. Make sure to stir the pot, scraping up any pasta off of the bottom very frequently.
- We really recommend adding broth / bone broth if you have it in your pantry.
One Pot Pantry Pasta with Chickpeas and Peppers
Looking for an easy and delicious snack idea? These healthy Eggplant Parm Bites are crunchy and crispy and seasoned just right! Like a little bite of eggplant Parm, but made healthy, gluten-free and optionally dairy-free. Serve as a snack or as an appetizer!
Gluten Free Eggplant Parmesan Bites
These Gluten Free Eggplant Parmesan Bites are highly addictive! With a crispy crunchy coating made from almond flour, they are pan fried and served with your favorite marinara sauce. They’ll be loved be all! While this recipe makes enough to serve about 4-6 people, you may be left wishing you had double or tripled the recipe because they are THAT good!
How to Make Eggplant Parm Bites
Like any eggplant parmesan dish you are doing to start off with a breading situation! First you’ll whisk up your eggs to help the breading stick! As always, make sure to season as you go so add in a pinch of salt and pepper to your eggs.
Here we are using our classic gluten-free breading mix which is made up of almond flour and seasoning. To make this eggplant “parmesan” we added in parmesan cheese. If you are strictly dairy-free go ahead and leave that out. We tested it both ways and both were delicious.
Next, cut up your eggplant into bite sizes pieces, about 1″ or so. Sprinkle with salt and then begin breading the eggplant!
First the eggplant goes in the egg to coat. Next it’s coated with the almond flour “breadcrumbs” and finally it’s fried! I use avocado oil when I fry because it’s a great healthy fat with a high smoke point, but you can use whatever you are comfortable with that is good for frying.
After you have lightly fried the eggplant cubes, serve immediately with your favorite marinara. Seriously, you’re going to love these!
Ingredients for Gluten Free Eggplant Parmesan Bites
- Almond Flour
- Fresh Parmesan Cheese (omit for dairy-free)
- Italian Seasoning
- Garlic Granules
- Avocado oil, for frying
- Marinara sauce, for serving
If you like this seasonal eggplant recipe, check out these others:
- Roasted Eggplant Dip
- Moroccan Eggplant with Chermoula Sauce
- Loaded Grilled Eggplant with Creamy Herb Sauce
- Eggplant Meatballs
If you like this gluten-free snack recipe, check out these others:
- 2-Ingredient Strawberry Fruit Leather
- Apple Nachos
- How to Make Gluten Free Crackers
- Mint Chip Energy Bites
Watch the video:
Healthy Eggplant Parm Bites
The infamous Trader Joe’s Gnocchi package directions results in soggy gnocchi that nobody wants, so we’re going step-by-step for you on How to Make Trader Joe’s Cauliflower Gnocchi! It’s a quick weeknight meal on a budget and is a great gluten-free alternative to a classic gnocchi. What has become an almost cult classic, is so good, and we’ve cracked the code on our favorite way to prepare it.
How to Make Trader Joe’s Cauliflower Gnocchi
If you haven’t heard of the Trader Joe’s cult favorite Cauliflower Gnocchi, let us tell you a little bit about it! It’s inexpensive, sold for under $3, and made gluten-free with a hearty dose of veggie. Traditionally gnocchi is made with cooked potatoes that are bound together with egg and wheat flour. The TJ version is made with cauliflower and cassava flour, and a few other ingredients. To be clear, it’s not necessarily low-carb but it’s a healthier take with a classic flavor. The package directions produce a finished product that is a bit suspect so we’re going to go through step-by-step on How to Make Trader Joe’s Cauliflower Gnocchi into a quick weeknight Italian dinner!
How do you cook cauliflower gnocchi?
There are a few different ways to cook cauliflower gnocchi. But there is one way not to cook it, and that is do not cook it according to the package directions. We are looking for gnocchi that isn’t mushy and has a nice crispy coating so we’re using cooking methods that do just that!
- In the skillet: This is by far the easiest and simplest method (and our favorite)! The main directions in our recipe include the step-by-step for skillet cooking because it is our preferred method for the best tasting gnocchi. It also makes the meal a one-pan dinner which is always a plus.
- In the air fryer: This is a simple way to crispy up the gnocchi, but the downside is that this cooking gadget isn’t that common and it still means you have to use other pots and pans to make a complete meal.
- In the oven: We offer directions for cooking the gnocchi on a sheet pan, but in all honestly it is our least favorite method. In order to achieve crispy gnocchi it has to have a long cook time, and just isn’t very efficient. But will lend itself to crispy gnocchi if left in there long enough.
What do you serve with Cauliflower Gnocchi:
We serve this recipe with store-bought tomato sauce, spinach and cheese. It makes it a complete meal that is made in one pan and ready in under 30 minutes. Alternatively you could use a homemade tomato sauce, homemade meat sauce, a pesto, a pumpkin sauce or really any sauce that tastes good with gnocchi!
The TJ’s cauliflower gnocchi is also a hit when served alone as an appetizer with a dipping sauce!
Tips on getting your hands on Cauliflower Gnocchi
Admittedly there is a Cauliflower Gnocchi craze going on, coupled with a delay in getting shipments in to some stores. So we had trouble getting our hands on cauliflower gnocchi for a few weeks. Hopefully they’ll be producing more of this product now that they know it’s a hit. Follow these tips to get your hands on Cauliflower Gnocchi:
- Call ahead and ask them to set some aside for you.
- Find out when they get the shipments in, typically late at night before closing or first thing in the morning, so call ahead or plan to be at the store then.
- Buy in bulk. They are stored in the freezer so if you buy a bunch at a time (who bought 10 bags at once? Ahem… not Lexi….) you won’t have to worry for a few weeks/months when they’ll be getting in another shipment.
So jump on the Trader Joe’s Cauliflower Gnocchi train and get to the store to get yours and make sure to post it to Instagram. Because with this one, if you didn’t post it to Instagram, did it even happen?
Watch the video:
If you like this weeknight Italian dinner, check out these others:
- Antipasto ‘Pasta’ Salad
- Italian-Style Mini Meatloaves
- Creamy Tuscan Chicken
- Spaghetti Carbonara
- Spaghetti Squash Boats with Homemade Meat Sauce
- Chicken Parmesan
How to Make Trader Joe's Cauliflower Gnocchi
The package directions on this cult classic hit results in soggy gnocchi so we're going step-by-step on How to Make Trader Joe's Cauliflower Gnocchi! It's a quick weeknight meal on a budget and is a great gluten-free alternative to a classic gnocchi.
- Ignore the package instructions.
- Defrost the gnocchi: You can either let thaw out on the counter for an hour or you can microwave the gnocchi on a plate for 2-4 minutes. Once thawed you want to pat dry any condensation.
- In a large non-stick or well-seasoned cast iron skillet heat 2 tablespoon oil until it’s hot add the gnocchi in an even layer. Let the gnocchi sit undisturbed for 3 minutes. Flip the gnocchi and repeat until they are a light brown and crispy.
- Add in spinach and stir until it is all wilted.
- Add in garlic powder, Italian seasoning, a pinch of red pepper flakes and marinara sauce and toss until combined.
- Sprinkle with cheese and cover for 3-5 amount of minutes, or until the cheese and sauce is hot and bubbly.
- Serve immediately.
- Air-fryer instructions to cook the gnocchi:
- Pre-heat Air-fryer to 400ºF
- Partially defrost the gnocchi, about 2 minutes in the microwave, making sure to break apart any gnocchi stuck together.
- Spray the air-fryer basket with avocado spray.
- Lay 1/2 the gnocchi from one bag inside the basket and spray it once more.
- Cook for 12 minutes, flipping halfway through.
- Repeat with the remaining bag.
- Oven Directions:
- Preheat oven to 425ºF and line a baking sheet with parchment paper
- Place defrosted gnocchi on the baking sheet and spray with avocado oil spray or cooking spray of choice. Toss to coat.
- Bake for 20 minutes, flip, and bake for an additional 20 minutes until the gnocchi is golden brown and crispy on the outside.