Macaroni Penne Recipe

Explore the perfect macaroni penne recipe: a delectable blend of pasta, rich sauce, and savory herbs. Your go-to Italian delight awaits!

Macaroni Penne

    Macaroni Penne

  • Cuisine: Italian
  • Category: Main Dish
  • Prep Time:
  • Cook Time:
  • Servings: 4
  • Calories: 350 calories

Macaroni Penne is a delightful Italian pasta dish that combines two popular pasta shapes, macaroni and penne, in a flavorful and savory sauce. This dish is a fusion of textures, with macaroni's curved tubes and penne's angular cuts, which create a unique and enjoyable eating experience.

The heart of this dish lies in its rich and aromatic tomato sauce. The sauce is typically prepared with ingredients such as onions, garlic, canned diced tomatoes, and tomato sauce, all seasoned with a blend of herbs like basil and oregano. This medley of flavors provides a robust and slightly tangy base for the pasta.

Macaroni Penne is versatile and can be customized to suit your taste. You can add vegetables like bell peppers, mushrooms, or spinach to make it even more nutritious. Some prefer to include ground meat, such as Italian sausage or ground beef, for added protein. The final touch, a generous sprinkling of Parmesan cheese, adds a creamy, salty element that enhances the dish's overall depth of flavor.

This dish is a comforting and hearty option, perfect for family dinners or gatherings with friends. Its Italian origin reflects the country's love for simple yet delectable cuisine, and it's a testament to the timelessness of pasta as a satisfying and beloved food. Macaroni Penne is a classic example of how a few quality ingredients can come together to create a delicious and satisfying meal.


Discover the ultimate Macaroni Penne recipe – a tantalizing fusion of flavors and pasta shapes that will elevate your Italian dining experience!


  • 2 cups of macaroni
  • 1 cup of penne pasta
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 can (14 oz) of diced tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup of tomato sauce
  • 1 teaspoon of dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon of dried oregano
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup of grated Parmesan cheese
  • Fresh basil leaves for garnish (optional)

Method Instructions

  1. Cook the macaroni and penne pasta separately according to package instructions until al dente. Drain and set aside.
  2. In a large pan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the chopped onion and minced garlic. Sauté for a few minutes until they become translucent and fragrant.
  3. Add the canned diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, dried basil, dried oregano, salt, and pepper to the pan. Stir well and let the sauce simmer for about 10 minutes.
  4. Combine the cooked macaroni and penne pasta with the tomato sauce. Mix everything together until the pasta is coated with the sauce.
  5. Sprinkle the grated Parmesan cheese on top of the pasta. You can also add some fresh basil leaves for garnish if you like.
  6. Serve your delicious Macaroni Penne hot, and enjoy!

Recipe Video

Macaroni Penne

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Recipe Tags: Macaroni Penne, Macaroni Penne Recipe, Recipe


Serving Macaroni Penne is a straightforward and enjoyable process. Here's how you can do it:

  • Portion the Pasta: Use a ladle or tongs to portion the cooked Macaroni Penne onto individual serving plates. Ensure that you have a good mix of both macaroni and penne in each serving.
  • Garnish: If you like, garnish the pasta with some fresh basil leaves or extra grated Parmesan cheese for added flavor and a touch of elegance.
  • Side Accompaniments: Macaroni Penne is delicious on its own, but you can consider serving it with some garlic bread, a simple green salad, or even some steamed vegetables for a well-rounded meal.
  • Serve Hot: Macaroni Penne is best enjoyed when it's still hot. Make sure to serve it immediately to savor the flavors and the warmth of the dish.
  • Utensils: Provide forks, knives (if needed), and napkins for your guests. Pasta can sometimes be a bit messy, and having the right utensils on hand is helpful.


  1. Choose Quality Pasta: Opt for high-quality pasta, as it can make a significant difference in the final dish. Look for brands that use durum wheat semolina for a firmer texture.
  2. Al Dente Pasta: Be mindful not to overcook the pasta. Cook it just until it's al dente, which means it should have a slight bite to it. Overcooking can lead to mushy pasta.
  3. Customize to Your Taste: This recipe is versatile. Feel free to add your favorite vegetables like bell peppers, mushrooms, or spinach. You can also experiment with different herbs and spices to suit your preferences.
  4. Meat Options: If you prefer a meaty version, consider adding cooked Italian sausage, ground beef, or ground turkey to the tomato sauce for extra flavor and protein.
  5. Grated Parmesan: Freshly grated Parmesan cheese tends to have a more robust flavor than pre-packaged grated cheese. If you have the time, consider grating your own Parmesan for a more authentic taste.
  6. Consistency of the Sauce: If the sauce appears too thick, you can thin it out with a bit of pasta cooking water. Conversely, if it's too thin, let it simmer a bit longer to reduce and thicken.
  7. Taste and Adjust: Always taste your sauce and pasta before serving. Adjust the seasoning with more salt, pepper, or herbs if needed.
  8. Leftovers: Macaroni Penne makes great leftovers. Store any extra portions in an airtight container in the refrigerator and reheat in a microwave or on the stovetop.
  9. Pairing: This dish pairs well with a crisp green salad, garlic bread, or a glass of red wine for an Italian-inspired meal.

Ingredient Substitutes

You can make substitutions in the Macaroni Penne recipe to accommodate dietary preferences or what you have on hand. Here are some common ingredient substitutes:

  1. Pasta: You can substitute macaroni and penne with other pasta shapes like spaghetti, fettuccine, or farfalle.
  2. Olive Oil: You can use butter, vegetable oil, or any other cooking oil you prefer.
  3. Onion and Garlic: If you don't have these, you can use onion or garlic powder. They won't provide the same texture but will add flavor.
  4. Canned Diced Tomatoes: Fresh tomatoes can be used, but you'll need to peel, seed, and chop them. You can also use tomato puree or crushed tomatoes.
  5. Tomato Sauce: Tomato paste diluted with water can be used as a substitute.
  6. Dried Herbs: You can use fresh herbs like basil and oregano if you have them. Remember that fresh herbs are more potent, so you'll need less than the dried amount mentioned in the recipe.
  7. Parmesan Cheese: If you don't have Parmesan, you can use Pecorino Romano, Grana Padano, or another hard cheese. If you're looking for a vegan option, use nutritional yeast or a dairy-free Parmesan alternative.
  8. Vegetables: Customize the recipe with your favorite vegetables. Bell peppers, zucchini, mushrooms, or spinach can be great additions.
  9. Meat: You can add cooked ground beef, ground turkey, or Italian sausage for a meaty variation.
  10. Allergen-Friendly: If you have dietary restrictions, choose gluten-free pasta for a gluten-free version. For a dairy-free option, use a dairy-free cheese or skip the cheese altogether.
  11. Spice Level: Adjust the spiciness by adding red pepper flakes if you like some heat, or omit them for a milder version.


Enjoy your journey into the world of Macaroni Penne! From our kitchen to yours, savor this delicious Italian classic with your loved ones.

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