strawberry pasta with lemon and parmesan

The weather on the East Coast is currently doing the thing where it dangles spring right in front of you with the respite of a beautifully sunny day then quickly retracts it and throws some cold, rainy weather in your face. It was during one of those recent days when I had the idea for strawberry pasta with lemon and parmesan. Visions of summer seemed not far off, and I was craving the comfort of some delicious carbs and the vibrant colors of a summery vegetable spread. Thus, strawberry pasta with lemon and parmesan emerged.

I have included two different options for making the strawberry pasta dough – one using freeze-dried strawberries and one using fresh strawberries. The results differ slightly with the freeze-dried strawberry pasta being darker in color and more robust in flavor, but both are delicious. It’s a matter of what you have access to, and both versions of strawberry pasta dough are beautiful shades of pink!

You’ll notice that cooking the strawberry pasta in the lemon sauce magically enhances its color, like how lemon juice keeps apples or avocado from turning brown when exposed to the air (oxidation). It’s a fun little science experiment, and I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!

serves 4


  • dough using freeze-dried strawberries
  • (makes 10-11 ounces of pasta)
  • 3 tablespoons freeze dried strawberry powder OR ¾ cup freeze dried strawberries
  • 1 cup + 2 tablespoons tipo “00” flour
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • All-purpose flour for rolling out dough
  • dough using fresh strawberries
  • (makes 12-13 ounces of pasta)
  • ½ cup fresh strawberries
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 ¼ cup + 1 tablespoon tipo “00” flour
  • 1 egg
  • All-purpose flour for rolling out dough

for the sauce + garnish

  • 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly grated black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 4 garlic cloves, sliced
  • 1 cup lemon juice (from about 4 lemons)
  • 1 cup basil
  • Parmesan cheese, grated

dough with freeze-dried strawberries steps

Place the strawberries in a food processor and pulse until they become a powder. Add the flour ¼ cup at a time and pulse until it is fully incorporated. Then add the salt and pulse. Add the eggs, one at a time and pulse until combined, then add the olive oil. The dough should form into a ball and un-stick itself from the sides of the food processor.

dough with fresh strawberries steps

Place the strawberries in a food processor and add the salt. Pulse until the strawberries are totally pureed. Then add the flour, ¼ cup at a time, then the egg. Pulse until the dough forms a smooth ball, transfer to a bowl, cover with plastic wrap and let sit for 1 hour.

rolling + cutting steps

Divide the dough into four pieces and roll one piece at a time out as thinly as you can using a rolling pin on a floured surface or a pasta machine. Cut the dough into ¼ strips using a pizza cutter or a sharp knife. Let sit for 20-30 minutes to let the pasta dry slightly.

cooking, sauce, and assembly steps

Bring a large pot of water to a boil and add 1 tablespoon of salt.

In a large skillet, heat the olive oil and butter over medium heat. Add the garlic and cook until golden. Add the lemon juice, 1 teaspoon salt, and freshly ground black pepper.

Add the pasta to the salted boiling water and cook for 3 minutes then using tongs, transfer to the skillet. Using tongs will allow you to transfer some of the pasta water along with the noodles. Feel free to add additional pasta water, but the amount that comes from transferring it should suffice. Cook in the pan for another 4 minutes until the pasta brightens in color (the lemon interacts with the strawberry to do this) and the sauce cooks down a bit.

Transfer to a plate and top with basil and freshly grated parmesan cheese. 

dough made with freeze-dried strawberries
dough made with fresh strawberries

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