Main Dish | August 13, 2014

Spaghetti Margherita

It’s summer and if you’re like me, you’re thinking of every way to avoid turning on the oven, but not eat a sandwich or salad!  Making Spaghetti Margherita involves the stove top, but only for a few minutes.

I originally posted this recipe in 2010, but have updated it a bit. Spaghetti Margherita is a simple and straight-forward dish. While the pasta is cooking, you can throw together the sauce.
Some people think- Margherita Pasta? Is that alcoholic? The answer is no. Legend (some question this) says that Pizza Margherita was created in the late 1800’s, and named for Queen Margherita to reflect the colors of the Italian flag. The pasta variation followed.

I know I say this all of the time, but EVERYONE loves this dish. When I make it for my boys, they love it, even though it isn’t a meat dish. Now that’s saying something…(since they have never jumped aboard the “meat is not all that good for you and you should eat it sparingly” train)!
Lazy summer days mean lazy summer nights.
This dish fits perfectly with that theme. Hope you love this Foster family favorite!

5 from 27 votes

Spaghetti Margherita (updated)

Servings 4 as a main dish, 6 as a side
Author abountifulkitchen


  • 3/4 lb. spaghetti cooked "al dente", drained
  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil plus a little more for drizzling on top after finished
  • 2 tablespoons butter optional, but highly recommended for flavor
  • 1-2 cloves garlic minced
  • 2 lbs. Roma tomatoes about 10-12 coarsely chopped or grape tomatoes
  • 1 cup fresh basil leaves chopped
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
  • 1/2 lb. fresh mozzarella cut into 1/2 inch cubes
  • ½ cup grated Romano or Parmesan cheese
  • additional basil leaves for garnish


  1. Cook pasta. Set aside, or while pasta is cooking prepare sauce.
  2. In large skillet, heat oil and butter over low heat.
  3. Sauté the garlic until fragrant over low heat, about 1 minute.
  4. Add tomatoes, sugar, salt and pepper.
  5. Cover and cook for 10 minutes. Add basil, and pasta to pan with tomatoes.
  6. Cook for 2-3 minutes, just until all pasta is heated through.
  7. Just before ready to serve, pour into serving bowl, toss with fresh mozzarella and grated cheese. Serve at once with additional grated cheese, and more fresh basil if desired.
  8. Drizzle with a bit more olive oil and top with a light sprinkle of course sea or kosher salt.

Recipe Notes

-Fresh Mozzarella differs from mozzarella that is sold in most cheese cases at grocery stores. Some grocery stores, such as Harmons in Utah, make their own fresh mozzarella daily. Make sure you are purchasing fresh mozzarella for this dish. Fresh Mozzarella is made from whole milk in small batches, usually round in shape and surrounded in liquid.

-If you aren't growing basil in your back yard, you can purchase fresh basil at farmers markets, grocery and garden stores. One plant will yield fresh basil for several recipes this summer.

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Recipe Rating

  1. I love the flavor of this recipe, but our sauce is too thin. I’ve tried making it twice, and it’s more like soup instead of gravy. I’ve tried adding cornstarch and extra sour cream, but it’s still too thin. Any suggestions?