Ditalini Pasta with Bacon and Peas

Prep Time 10 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 5 servings

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This Ditalini Pasta with Bacon and Peas recipe makes a delicious meal that’s light and creamy, with a great savory flavor, but also comforting! Made with tiny pasta shapes, smoky bacon, sweet peas, and Parmesan cheese. It’s perfect for a busy weeknight dinner.

plate filled with ditalini bacon and pea pasta with steel fork in it.

Looking for more one pot pastas? Try my quick Pasta Carbonara, Easy Chicken Orzo Recipe, this One Pot Lemon Orzo pasta or this One Pot Pasta Primavera next!

This delicious Ditalini Pasta with Bacon and Peas recipe is made with simple ingredients in just 30 minutes. 

We love pasta around here It’s always a huge hit with my family (even the picky eaters!) so we make it a lot. I love finding new ways to cook it!

This recipe is simple but still packs in some protein, fibre, vegetables and carbs — it’s a simple meal that checks all of our boxes.

The Parmesan cheese adds incredible flavor to our sauce, and is the perfect complement to the smoky, salty bacon and sweet peas.

It’s not a heavy sauce, but you can adjust it as you like by bumping up the cream and cheese before serving.

Some of my other favorite Ditalini recipes are Italian Wedding SoupItalian Sausage Soup, and my Creamy Instant Pot Chicken Noodle Soup

Ingredients Needed:

ingredients for ditalini pasta with bacon and peas in glass bowls.
  • Pasta: you can use ditalini pasta as I have done, but any kind of pasta will work well. Use high quality pasta where you can, or whole grain for extra fibre.
  • Bacon: chopped bacon adds a classic smoky and salty flavor. 
  • Peas: frozen peas will work best in this recipe, but you can use canned as well.
  • Cream: use full-fat heavy cream for the creamiest flavor. Milk and low fat cream do not reduce as well as heavy cream, so I don’t recommend them in this recipe.
  • Cheese: freshly grated Parmesan cheese gives a salty, cheesy flavor that’s irresistible.  
  • Salt and Pepper: salt and freshly cracked pepper is all you need!
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How to Make Ditalini Pasta with Bacon and Peas

This recipe is quick and easy to make. Full instructions are included in the recipe card below.

  1. Cook pasta: In a large pot of boiling, salted water, cook ditalini just until al dente according to package directions.
  2. Drain pasta: Reserve 1 cup of pasta water and drain the ditalini.
  3. Cook bacon and add sauce ingredients: Cook bacon until browned and crisp. Add the peas, cream, and Parmesan and cook together.
  4. Add pasta: Add the drained pasta to the skillet with the sauce and stir, adding pasta water and stirring until the sauce and pasta come together. Taste and season with salt and pepper.

Ditalini Pasta Recipe FAQs

What is Ditalini Pasta?

Ditalini Pasta is tiny pasta shapes like small tubes, and they work really well to evenly disperse the peas and bacon. You can use other small tubular shape pasta like elbow macaroni or penne for a similar look. 

How do I store Ditalini Pasta with Bacon and Peas?

Store this dish in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 2-3 days. Allow it to cool to room temperature before putting it in the fridge.
To reheat, I recommend adding a splash of cream or broth and reheating in the microwave or on the stovetop.

Can I freeze Ditalini Pasta with Bacon and Peas?

You can freeze this recipe if you need to. Let it cool completely, then store it in freezer-safe bags or containers and freeze it for up to 3 months. Defrost and reheat in the microwave or on the stovetop. 
Keep in mind that after freezing the texture of the pasta will be softer.

ditalini pasta with bacon and peas being scooped out of pan in wooden ladle.

Ditalini Pasta with Bacon and Peas Variations

  • Pasta shapes: Try using another small or short pasta like orzo, ziti, orecchiette, rigatone, rotini pasta, or penne pasta. Long pasta will work, too!
  • Increase the sauce: The quantities used in this recipe will give you a creamy sauce that just lightly coats the pasta and other ingredients. If you like creamier pasta sauces, just add more cream. 
  • Fresh herbs: Add some fresh herbs like mint or parsley as a garnish for extra fresh flavor. 
  • Use other veggies: You can use frozen corn or frozen green beans instead of peas if you prefer. You can also use fresh veggies if you don’t have frozen ones, just cook according to the time required or parboil separately.
  • Make it vegetarian: You can easily make this recipe suitable for a vegetarian diet by omitting the bacon. To achieve a similar smoky flavor and texture, you can use thinly sliced mushrooms with a bit of liquid smoke. 
  • Add some spice: If you like a bit of spice in your pasta, add some red pepper flakes to the dish. 
ditalini pasta in grey plate with fork on the side and pan in the background.

Serving Suggestions

We always have bread on our dinner table, try my No Knead Artisan BreadMom’s Homemade Buns, my Garlic Bread, or Homemade Breadsticks to pair with this easy pasta recipe!

Serve this pasta dish with extra veggies on the side to make it go further. This Cheesy Baked AsparagusAir Fryer Green Beans, or Roasted Carrots would go well with this dish. 

large steel pan filled with ditalini pasta, bacon, peas and a wooden ladle.

More Delicious Pasta Meals You’ll Love

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Ditalini Pasta with Bacon and Peas

5 from 12 votes
This Ditalini Pasta with Bacon and Peas recipe makes a delicious meal that's light and creamy, with a great savory flavor. Made with tiny pasta shapes, smoky bacon, sweet peas, and cheese Parmesan. It's perfect for a busy weeknight dinner or a filling lunch.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Cuisine American
Course Main Course
Servings 5 servings
Calories 599cal

Ingredients

  • 454 grams ditalini pasta (1 lb)
  • 4 slices thick cut bacon (or 6 slices regular cut) chopped
  • cup frozen peas
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • reserved pasta water
  • salt and freshly cracked pepper

Instructions

  • In a large pot of boiling, salted water, cook ditalini just until al dente according to package directions.
  • Meanwhile, cook bacon over medium-high heat in a large skillet until browned and crisp.
  • Add the peas, cream, and Parmesan and reduce the heat to medium-low. Keep at a low simmer, stirring often, until heated through.
  • Reserve 1 cup of pasta water and drain the ditalini.
  • Add the drained pasta to the skillet with the sauce and stir, adding pasta water and stirring until the sauce and pasta come together.
  • Taste and season with salt and pepper.

Notes

Ingredients and Substitutions:
  • Pasta: any cut of pasta will work with this recipe, but ditalini is a favorite here. Peas: peas add a fun pop of color and nutritional value, but you can swap them for another veggie or some fresh chopped spinach.
  • Cream: a touch of heavy cream adds richness and delicious flavor! I don’t recommend milk or light cream because the sauce won’t get as thick. If you want a very creamy sauce, you can double the cream.
  • Other substitutions: the ingredients in this recipe are so few, and each is chosen for a reason! You are welcome to play around with it, but if you find you’re changing it a lot, you might want to have a look at my other pasta dishes to see if there’s something else you’d enjoy more. 
Storage
  • Store: Store this dish in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 2-3 days. Allow it to cool to room temperature before putting it in the fridge.
  • Freeze: You can freeze this recipe if you need to. Let it cool completely, then store it in freezer-safe bags or containers and freeze it for up to 3 months. Defrost and reheat in the microwave or on the stovetop. 

Nutrition Information

Serving: 325grams | Calories: 599cal | Carbohydrates: 75g | Protein: 21g | Fat: 23g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 8g | Trans Fat: 0.04g | Cholesterol: 50mg | Sodium: 312mg | Potassium: 394mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 745IU | Vitamin C: 18mg | Calcium: 126mg | Iron: 2mg
Keywords ditalini pasta

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Meet Ashley

My name is Ashley Fehr and I love creating easy meals my family loves. I also like to do things my way, which means improvising and breaking the rules when necessary. Here you will find creative twists on old favorites and some of my favorite family recipes, passed down from generations!

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Comments

  1. Alexandra Deoni says

    I keep the bacon grease and instead of pasta water, I sometimes add chicken broth for extra flavour and sautée a bit of garlic. It’s a favourite recipe at my house! Great recipe!

  2. Mary says

    Hi Ashley. Quick question. Do you drain the bacon grease or is that part of the cream sauce? It didn’t say in the cooking directions. This sounds yummy and easy. I just want to make it as intended.
    Thank you!!

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