My favorite go-to meal will always be a pasta dish. I've got a slew of them on my site, like my pesto tortellini, easy baked ziti recipe, or who can forget about my quick and easy creamy spinach pasta? There's just something so comforting about a pasta recipe, especially when it comes together in just minutes, and requires only four ingredients. We make brown butter the main character in this pappardelle pasta with brown butter and sage sauce. Trust me, the extra step with browning the butter is everything your tastebuds are craving!
You can't go wrong with pasta dishes all year long, especially when they are versatile and easy to make ahead, prep for dinner or lunch, and can serve as a quick meal in a hurry.
How do I make this recipe?
I chose to use just four simple ingredients for this recipe because, why complicate it? Making the brown butter can be a challenge enough, so there's just not need to overcomplicate with many different and sometimes unnecessary ingredients.
- Pappardelle Pasta - I don't typically choose a longer pasta because I prefer a short cut pasta, but pappardelle felt perfect for this sauce, and it was in fact quite fabulous.
- Brown Butter - I'll walk you through exactly how to make the brown butter in the steps below, and in the recipe card.
- Sage - a few sage leaves added to the brown butter gives the butter and even more earthy, herby flavor.
- Parmesan - who doesn't love parmesan cheese in their pasta?!
See the recipe card below for specific information about quantities
How do I make this recipe?
Making this dish calls for two separate steps, but they can be done simultaneously. Brown the butter as the pasta boils and cooks. There, that's the recipe! Let's break it down a bit further though, shall we?
For the brown butter: To a light-bottomed pan, such as stainless steel, add the stick of butter and turn flame on to a medium heat. The butter will melt down, then begin to sputter. Using a wooden spoon, consistently stir the butter on a medium heat, ensuring the solids do not burn at the bottom. Let the butter start to brown; keeping an eye on the butter for 2-3 minutes. When you see the color change to a light or medium amber color, turn off the heat and remove the pan from the stove, then add the sage.
For the pasta: Bring a large pot of water to a boil, then cook the pappardelle until al dente and according to instructions on the package. Drain and add back to the pot. Pour the brown butter and sage sauce into the pot, then pour in the parmesan cheese. Stir to combine, and serve.
HINT: If you don't want to strain the pasta in the sink, you can use a spider spatula or a spaghetti spoon to ladle the pasta directly from the starchy water into the brown butter itself.
Recipe Swaps and Substitutions
This recipe is absolutely adaptable and easily modified to meet many different dietary needs to make it allergy free. Here are some of those suggestions:
- Pasta: Swap out the regular pasta for your favorite gluten free or protein pasta! You also don't. have to use pappardelle here, if you prefer linguini, spaghetti, or even shells, do what works for you!
- Butter: If you're vegan, or allergic to dairy, you can opt for a vegan-friendly alternative, although I have never browned a vegan-friendly butter before, so I cannot fully attest to how this will work. From my reading and research, I've read that Miyoko's has a great vegan butter that browns!
- Sage: You don't really need the sage in this, I like it as it adds a pop of green and bit of an earthy flavor, but feel free to omit if it's not your thing.
I like to eat this recipe as is, without any added protein or other veggies, but here are some other recipe variations that I think you'll really enjoy:
- Protein: Add some sauteed chicken, shrimp, or even salmon to this dish for added protein.
- Veggies: Toss in cherry tomatoes, charred broccoli, or butternut squash.
- Nuts: Candied pecans or slivered almonds could be a nice texture addition.
Kitchen Equipment and Tools
For this recipe, we'll need pretty standard tools and kitchen equipment when it comes to making the pasta and baking it. One of the tools I highly recommend using is a spider skimmer or spatula. This spatula is circular, and has tiny holes in it. I find it's a lot easier to make pasta recipes when it calls for straining and baking pasta to just use the spider spatula and move the pasta from the water and pot directly to the dish. Less mess and less things to dirty.
Otherwise, here's other common tools you'll need:
- Strainer - if you're not using the spider skimmer/spatula
- Light-Bottomed Medium Frying Pan - to brown the butter
- Large pot
How do I store this recipe?
All leftovers can be placed in a tightly sealed tupperware and placed directly in the fridge. This recipe is also freeze friendly, so if you want to make this dish for another day, simply prep the veggies and pasta, place into a tupperware and into the freezer it goes. When ready, you can defrost the pasta in the fridge and warm up in the microwave, or in a pan again!
Hungry for More?
Here are some other drool-worthy recipes to round out your meal prep for the week:
Pappardelle Pasta with Brown Butter and Sage Sauce
- 1 large pot
- 1 medium frying pan light bottomed
- wooden spoon
- 1 stick butter salted or unsalted
- 1 pkg pappardelle pasta
- fresh sage leaves approx 5 or 6
- 3 tablespoon parmesan cheese
For the Brown Butter
- To a light-bottomed pan, such as stainless steel, add the stick of butter and turn flame on to a medium heat. The butter will melt down, then begin to sputter.
- Using a wooden spoon, consistently stir the butter on a medium heat, ensuring the solids do not burn at the bottom. Let the butter start to brown; keeping an eye on the butter for 2-3 minutes.
- When you see the color change to a light or medium amber color, turn off the heat and remove the pan from the stove, then add the sage.
For the Pasta
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil, then cook the pappardelle until al dente and according to instructions on the package. Drain and add back to the pot.
- Pour the brown butter and sage sauce into the pot, then pour in the parmesan cheese. Stir to combine, and serve.