Pasta With Snap Peas, Garlic, Lemon Zest, and Black Pepper (Vegan) Recipe

J. Kenji Lopez-Alt

A quick and easy vegan pasta dish with snap peas flavored with garlic and black pepper. A touch of cornstarch helps the sauce to emulsify into a pasta-coating texture.

Recipe Details

Pasta With Snap Peas, Garlic, Lemon Zest, and Black Pepper (Vegan) Recipe

Active 20 mins
Total 20 mins
Serves 2 to 3 servings


  • 1 pound snap peas, trimmed

  • Kosher salt

  • 1/2 teaspoon corn starch

  • 1/2 pound ridged pasta such as cavatappi, penne rigate, or ziti

  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

  • 4 cloves garlic, finely sliced

  • Pinch red pepper flakes

  • Freshly ground black pepper

  • 1 tablespoon juice and 1 teaspoon zest from 1 lemon

  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley leaves


  1. Bring a large saucepan of salted water to a boil. Add snap peas and cook until bright green but still crunchy, about 2 minutes. Strain and run under cool water until chilled. Drain and transfer to a small bowl. Toss with corn starch and set aside.

  2. Place pasta in now-empty saucepan and cover with water by 1 inch. Season to taste with salt. Place over high heat and bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. Continue to cook until pasta is barely al dente (follow package instructions for timing). Drain pasta, reserving 1/2 cup of cooking liquid. Add cooking liquid to bowl with snap peas, stirring to ensure cornstarch is dissolved.

  3. Empty saucepan and wipe out with paper towels to dry. Add oil and garlic. Cook over medium high heat, stirring frequently, until garlic starts to take on hints of color around the edges, about 2 minutes. Add pepper flakes and a few good grinds of black pepper followed by snap peas. Bring to a boil, then add drained pasta, lemon juice, and parsley leaves. Toss to combine, Continue cooking, stirring constantly, until sauce is reduced to desired consistency (about 1 minute), season to taste with more salt and pepper if desired, and serve, topping each serving with lemon zest.

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Nutrition Facts (per serving)
353 Calories
19g Fat
37g Carbs
10g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 2 to 3
Amount per serving
Calories 353
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 19g 25%
Saturated Fat 3g 14%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 534mg 23%
Total Carbohydrate 37g 13%
Dietary Fiber 6g 21%
Total Sugars 7g
Protein 10g
Vitamin C 80mg 401%
Calcium 83mg 6%
Iron 4mg 24%
Potassium 443mg 9%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)