Irresistible 5-Ingredient Winter Pastas

When making a five-ingredient dinner, you need all of your ingredients to carry their own weight
Cooking School: Cooking Fresh Pasta

The Daily Meal cook editor, Kristie Collado, shows you how to cook fresh pasta

This Sweet Potato Gnocchi with Brown Butter and Sage uses minimal ingredients wisely.

When you are looking for a quick and easy weeknight meal, nothing really fits the bill quite like pasta. At most, good quality Italian pasta takes about 10 minutes to boil. Now to keep things even simpler, we challenge you to make this five-Ingredient pasta that keeps seasonality at the forefront for an al dente dish in a flash.

Click here for 15 Easy 15-Minute Pasta Recipes slideshow.

First, when picking what to include we considered flavor impact, because when you only have five ingredients to work with, you really want each ingredient to carry its own weight. Reach for briny olives and capers or seasoned sausage (like in this Bison Sausage Pasta with Grape Tomatoes recipe). Up the ante by properly seasoning everything — consider the pepper you use (red pepper, smoked paprika, crushed black pepper). Use a good-quality olive oil, or if you prefer butter, brown it (like in this Sweet Potato Gnocchi with Brown Butter and Sage recipe).

We don’t include pantry staples in our five-ingredients, like olive oil, butter, salt, and black pepper because we assume your would have these on hand.

If you are adding in fresh vegetables like squash, eggplant, Brussels sprouts, kale, or any other fall vegetable, season them well while sautéing in the butter or olive oil (like in this Pasta alla Norma recipe).

Finally, build the body of your sauce by stirring in reserved salted pasta water at the end. The starches in the water from the pasta will thicken your sauce so that it coats the pasta perfectly.

Try using our tips to create your own simple, five-ingredient pasta dishes or check out one of the recipes listed in this story for a delicious dinner.

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Angela Carlos is the Cook Editor at The Daily Meal. Find her on Twitter and tweet @angelaccarlos.