You need to have a few pantry recipes you can whip up in a few minutes for those nights you’re out of groceries, super busy, exhausted, or all 3.   It takes longer to go get fast food than it does to cook and clean up after this meal.   And you’ll feel much better feeding your family a homemade meal.


I always have pasta, lemons, olive oil, Parmesan cheese, and garlic in the house so this is a go to recipe for busy nights.  I might add chicken if I have any leftover, or mushrooms would be really good.  But last night, it was a throw it together and go kind of night.


Spicy Lemon Linguine

serves 2-4


1/2 package linguine (any type of pasta will work)

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 tablespoon butter

1 teaspoon red pepper flakes (more or less to taste)

zest and juice of one lemon

1 tablespoon white wine (optional)

1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese


Boil water, add a tablespoon of salt to the water, and cook linguine until al dente.  Drain pasta and reserve a little pasta water.


Meanwhile, heat olive oil in a saute pan over medium heat.  Add garlic and red pepper flakes and cook for 2-3 minutes.  Add the lemon zest, lemon juice, wine, and butter.   When the linguine is cooked, add it directly to the saute pan and stir.  Add a little pasta water to thicken the sauce.  Add the Parmesan cheese, stir, and serve with additional cheese.