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This creamy lemon basil pasta is a rich yet fresh vegetarian pasta dish that is ready in only 20 minutes!

Creamy Lemon Basil Pasta

A deliciously creamy vegetarian pasta dish that's super quick and easy.
Course Vegetarian Pasta
Cuisine American
Keyword creamy lemon basil pasta
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 4
Author Natasha Bull


  • 8 ounces pasta (I used penne)
  • 1/2 medium onion chopped
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese
  • Juice & zest of 1/2 lemon
  • 3 dashes Italian seasoning
  • 1 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 1 large handful fresh basil torn
  • 1 tablespoon fresh parsley chopped finely
  • Salt & pepper to taste


  1. Boil a salted pot of water and cook pasta according to package directions.
  2. When the pasta water is about to boil, add olive oil to a skillet on medium heat. Add the onion and sauté for 8-10 minutes, or until it's softened and lightly browned.
  3. Add the garlic to the pan and cook for 30 seconds, until fragrant.
  4. Add the cream cheese, lemon juice and zest, and Italian seasoning. Stir for a couple of minutes until the cheese has melted into a sauce. Stir in the parmesan.
  5. Reserve 1/2 cup of the pasta water prior to draining the pasta. Add 1/4 cup of the pasta water to the sauce. If you want the sauce thinned even more, add pasta water one tablespoon at a time. Once the sauce is thinned to your liking, add in the basil, parsley, and salt & pepper. Add the pasta to the skillet and toss. Serve immediately.