This Creamy Pasta with Bacon & Peas comes together in just 20 minutes! It’s a delicious (and budget friendly) dinner that’s perfect for any night of the week.
This post was originally published in 2018. It was updated in 2022 to add new photographs.
This recipe for Pea & Bacon Pasta came about on a chilly, rainy day. I hadn’t been to the grocery store in a week and really did not want to head out on this chilly, wet, typical Oregon day.
Instead, I put on my yoga pants, turned on the TV, and started scouring the cupboards thinking up ideas for dinner.
I eventually came across what would make up a fairly well-rounded dinner:
- Peas from the freezer (always on hand in case anyone sprains an ankle).
- Half a package of rigatoni, leftover from the last time I enjoyed some Sunday Gravy.
- A few strips of bacon.
- The last little bit of cream cheese in the package.
The result? A creamy bowl of pasta goodness flecked with bits of smoky bacon and peas.
Plus, it’s got all your food groups in one bowl…
Vegetables, carbs, dairy, protein – Right?
And even though it was a basic Tuesday night… I decided to pop open some bubbles too!
I always say, you don’t need a special occasion to enjoy some sparkling wine, especially when there are so many affordable options out there.
So arm yourself with a budget-friendly meal and a budget-friendly bottle of fancy Prosecco. Then you can decide whether you want to invite company over, or just enjoy this yummy dinner on your sofa in your PJs. Regardless, your night will be elevated with this yummy pairing.
🛒 Ingredients Needed
- Pasta – I used pasta shells, but any favorite pasta shape will work. Rigatoni, penne, rotini, etc. are great options.
- Bacon – I used thick cut bacon for this recipe.
- Butter – I prefer to use unsalted butter so that I can more easily control the salt at the end.
- Milk + Cream Cheese
- Frozen Peas
- Parmesan Cheese
- Salt + Pepper
📋 How to Make It
- Cook the pasta in a large pot of salted water until al dente. Drain, reserving the pasta cooking liquid.
- Fry the chopped bacon until crisp. Set aside.
- Add butter to the pan. Then saute garlic until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
- Add in milk and cream cheese. Simmer for 5 minutes.
- Add peas and return the cooked bacon to the pan.
- Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Toss cooked pasta with sauce, basil, and parmesan, along with reserved pasta water, as needed, to obtain your desired consistency.
🍷 Wine Pairings
- Prosecco. The bubbles cut through the richness of this sauce and the light body doesn’t overpower the fresh flavor of the peas.
- Pinot Gris. It’s tartness will also balance nicely with this creamy pasta.
Did you try this bacon & pea pasta?
If you loved this creamy bacon and pea pasta recipe I would appreciate it so much if you would give this recipe a star review! Also, be sure to snap a picture of your finished dish and share it with me on Instagram using the hashtag #platingsandpairings and tagging me @platingsandpairings.
- 8 ounces pasta shells (1/2 package, or rigatoni, penne, etc. )
- 4 slices bacon (chopped in 1-inch pieces)
- 2 Tablespoons butter
- 2 cloves garlic (minced)
- 1/3 cup milk
- 3 Tablespoons cream cheese
- 1 1/2 cups frozen peas
- 1/2 cup basil (minced)
- 1/2 cup parmesan cheese (grated)
- Salt and pepper (to taste)
Bring large pot of salted water to boil, over high heat. Add pasta and cook until al dente. Drain, reserving cooking liquid.
Fry chopped bacon over medium heat, until crisp. Set aside on paper towels, and drain fat from pan.
Add butter to pan over medium heat. Once butter has melted, add garlic and saute until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
Add in milk and cream cheese. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer on low for 5 minutes.
Add peas and cooked bacon. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Toss cooked pasta with sauce, basil, and parmesan, along with reserved pasta water, as needed, to obtain your desired consistency.
Calories: 483kcal | Carbohydrates: 50g | Protein: 18g | Fat: 23g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Cholesterol: 52mg | Sodium: 445mg | Potassium: 320mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 885IU | Vitamin C: 15.5mg | Calcium: 211mg | Iron: 1.6mg