Single-Skillet Cavatappi Ratatouille

Active time: 25 min.Total time:55 min.
Yield: Serves 4 (serving size: about 1 3/4 cups) 

With its roasted vegetables, fresh basil, and crunchy crouton topping, this gooey, cheesy pasta skillet dinner won a lot of hearts in the test kitchen. This dish is super family friendly, as the vegetables act as a vehicle for the sauce and all the cheesy goodness you can harness in one dish. It’s also easy—all you have to do to the veggies is crush them and give them time to cook down enough so the dish doesn’t get too watery. Sprinkle the bagged croutons over each serving, or just the surface of the cheese. Either way, it’s a weeknight win. 


  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup (3 oz.) sliced red onion (from 1 medium onion)
  • 3 cups
  • 3 cups (12 oz.) sliced zucchini (from 2 small zucchini)
  • 2 tablespoons chopped garlic (from 3 medium garlic cloves)
  • 1(28-oz.) can San Marzano tomatoes, undrained
  • 1(10-oz.) can tomato puree
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 8 ounces uncooked cavatappi
  • 2 1/2 cups arugula (2 oz.)
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil, divided
  • 2(8-oz.) pkg. mozzarella pearls

How to Make It

Step 1

Heat olive oil in a 12-inch cast-iron skillet over medium-high. Add onions, and cook, stirring often, until onions are slightly softened, about 4 minutes. Add squash and zucchini, and cook stirring often, until vegetables are lightly browned and softened, about 10 minutes. Stir in garlic, and cook 30 seconds. Add tomatoes, crushing with hands as you add to skillet. Stir in tomato puree, water, salt, pepper, and pasta, being sure to cover pasta with liquid. Let come to a boil. Reduce heat to medium, and cover. Cook until pasta is al dente, 16 to 18 minutes.  

Step 2

Stir in arugula and 2 tablespoons of the basil, and cook until arugula wilts, about 1 minute. Top evenly with mozzarella pearls; cover and cook until cheese is melted, 1 to 2 minutes. Sprinkle with remaining 2 tablespoons basil, and serve.  

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