Creamy, Lemony Pasta Recipe
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Creamy, Lemony Pasta Recipe


Creamy, Lemony Pasta Recipe

This 15-minute pasta lets you decide how much effort to put in: If you’ve had a day and need an easy, no-nonsense meal, then make it as-is and use kitchen shears to cut your scallions. If you’re feeling slightly more ambitious, then make a topping that adds texture, vibrant green color and more lemony flavor to the dish (see Tip).

But don’t cut corners when it comes to the yogurt: Use a thick, strained whole-milk yogurt like labneh, Greek or skyr, as it will give the finished dish an irresistibly rich and tangy taste.

Preparation Steps

  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta, adjust the heat to maintain a gentle boil, and cook until just shy of al dente, 2 to 3 minutes less than the package instructions. Reserve 1 cup of pasta water. Drain the pasta, then return to the pot on the stove over medium-low heat.
  2. Stir in ¾ cup of the pasta water and half the lemon juice. Add several grinds of black pepper, then gradually add the Parmesan, stirring vigorously between additions to prevent clumping, until a silky sauce has formed. Add a tablespoon of water at a time as needed to make a creamier sauce if it looks dry. Stir in the labneh, remaining lemon juice, lemon zest and scallions until creamy and combined, about 1 minute more. Season with salt as needed. Finish with another grind of pepper and serve immediately.


  • 4 servings
  • Kosher salt (such as Diamond Crystal) and black pepper
  • 1 pound short curly pasta, such as cavatappi, fusilli or farfalle
  • 1 large lemon, zested and juiced (about 1 tablespoon zest and 3 tablespoons juice)
  • A heaping ¾ cup grated Parmesan, plus more as needed
  • ¼ cup labneh or other thick, strained whole-milk yogurt, such as Greek or skyr, drained if necessary
  • 2 scallions, green and white parts, sliced