Make rich, creamy, and ultra Garlicky Kale & Mushroom Pasta for your next Meatless Monday. This light and flavorful Italian dinner comes together in a pinch using a handful of nourishing ingredients. Veggie-loaded and gluten free options included.
I think we can all agree that there’s nothing quite as comforting as a big bowl of pasta! That said, I’m super excited about this Garlicky Kale & Mushroom Pasta recipe. Imagine noodles, greens, and mushrooms tossed together in a creamy garlic sauce. Yum!
This irresistibly creamy and garlicky pasta dish comes together in just 25 minutes. It’s the perfect choice for date night, dinner parties, and simple weeknight dinners. Try it for your next Meatless Monday!
In addition to being delicious, this dish is also a great way to enjoy an indulgent plate of pasta while sneaking in some nutrients from the mushrooms and kale. According to Healthline, mushrooms are an excellent source of antioxidants, beta-glucan, B vitamins, copper, and potassium, while kale is high in vitamin C, vitamin K, beta-carotene, and may help lower cancer risk.
Needless to say, kale and mushrooms are a nutrient-dense addition to any diet. Ready to treat yourself to this delightful, aromatic, and nutritious pasta dish? Let’s do it.
Ingredients you need to make mushroom and kale pasta
- Pasta - I made this recipe with brown rice pasta to keep it light but you can use any pasta noodle (regular or gluten free) you like. Quinoa pasta, buckwheat noodles, sprouted-grain pasta, and spelt pasta are all great options.
- Mushrooms - Cooked mushrooms release liquid that helps to build the sauce and provide earthy flavors. You can use any type of mushroom here, like shitake, cremini, white, button, portobello, etc.
- Kale - I used lacinato kale (AKA dinosaur kale) as the leaves are thin and cook quickly while keeping their shape.
- Aromatics - Using flavor-forward shallots and garlic adds deep, savory flavors to this pasta recipe. Building base flavors with fresh herbs and aromatics can help cut back on the need for heavier stuff in sauces.
- Parmigiano cheese - Freshly grated Parmigiano is best here. The pre-shredded bagged stuff doesn’t cook into a creamy, luscious sauce nearly as well.
How to make kale and mushroom pasta
These easy-to-follow instructions will show you how to make this incredibly delicious mushroom and kale pasta dish in no time:
Step 1: Cook the pasta according to the package instructions. Drain and reserve about 1 cup of pasta water.
Step 2: Meanwhile, heat the oil in a skillet. Add the shallots and garlic and cook until fragrant.
Step 3: Next, add the mushrooms and saute until soft and golden brown. Add the chopped kale and continue to cook until the leaves begin to wilt.
Step 4: Transfer the veggies to a large serving bowl with the cooked pasta. Add the reserved pasta water and toss to combine. Season with red pepper flakes and Parmigiano, then enjoy!
Play with the add-ins
This pasta dinner is delicious on its own, however, feel free to play with the add-ins when you’re feeling creative:
- Add more veggies - Feel free to add more vegetables like sliced zucchini, roasted red peppers, sun-dried tomatoes, artichoke hearts, or asparagus.
- Add meat - Make a simple protein to serve on top of your pasta. Grilled salmon, roasted salmon, baked chicken breast, and lean sliced beef are all great options.
- Garnish with nuts - Creamy kale and mushroom pasta pairs perfectly with a bit of crunch from toasted pine nuts, pistachios, or walnuts.
- Add leafy greens and herbs - I also like to add a touch of greens, such as spinach or collard greens, colorful peppers, and lots of herbs like fresh basil and fresh parsley.
Turn pasta night into an Italian-inspired feast by serving your creamy garlic mushroom and kale pasta with a loaf of crusty bread and a few of these delicious entrees and sides:
- Mains - Make sheet pan bruschetta chicken or sheet pan sausage and peppers.
- Fish - Serve with a creamy Tuscan salmon skillet or Mediterranean cod.
- Veggie sides - Try with bacon wrapped Asparagus or lemon capers roasted asparagus.
- Simple salads - Serve with a simple green salad, heirloom tomato salad, or this kale salad with sweet, creamy dressing.
Frequently asked questions
Is kale and mushroom pasta gluten free?
Aside from the pasta, all of the ingredients in this recipe are naturally gluten free. That said, use your favorite gluten free pasta and you’re good to go!
Can kale and mushroom pasta be made dairy free? Vegan?
The recipe has only been tested with dairy, however, you should be able to replace the Parmigiano cheese with vegan parmesan. Alternatively, you can omit the cheese completely.
Storing and freezing
If you happen to have any leftover pasta, transfer it to an airtight container and keep it in the fridge for 2 to 3 days. When reheating, add a splash of olive oil and gently reheat in a skillet over medium heat or in the microwave for 2 to 3 minutes (stirring halfway through).
Hungry for more meatless pasta recipes?
- Instant Pot Creamy Alfredo Pasta
- Roasted Vegetable Pasta
- Garden Fresh Tortellini Pasta Salad
- Pesto Pasta Salad
Garlicky Kale and Mushroom Pasta
- 12 oz brown rice pasta
- 3 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 shallot, thinly sliced
- 5 cloves garlic, sliced
- 2 cups mushrooms of choice, sliced
- 3 cups lacinato kale, chopped
- ½ cup pasta water (reserved)
- 1 pinch salt and pepper, to taste
- ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
- ¼ cup shaved parmigiano cheese
- Cook pasta according to package instructions. Drain and reserve about 1 cup of pasta water.
- Meanwhile heat the oil in a skillet and add the shallots and garlic, cook until fragrant.
- Add the mushrooms and sauté for about 5 minutes until it softens and start to turn golden brow. Season mushrooms with salt and peper.
- Add chopped kale and toss to a gentle sauté (about 3 minutes) until leaves start to wilt but maintain it's shape.
- Transfer veggies to pasta bowl. Add reserved pasta water and toss to combine. Season with red pepper flakes and parmigiano cheese