This pasta with mushrooms and prosciutto is a smoky, spicy, rich, and easy pasta dinner recipe. It is truly perfect for any day of the week.
While I am normally a fan of tomato-based pasta sauces, there are some nights when a creamy sauce just hits the spot.
Tonight was one of those nights and this pasta dinner recipe was just what the doctor ordered. Filled to the brim with buttery mushrooms, crispy prosciutto, and lots of fresh arugula. Although this pasta is seasoned with just salt, pepper, smoked paprika, and crushed red pepper, it is super flavorful.
How to make this pasta with mushrooms and prosciutto:
This recipe is so easy to make and very easy to modify depending on what you have in your crisper.
First, render the fat from the prosciutto. Once it’s crispy, remove it from the pot. Melt butter into the prosciutto fat and add mushrooms. Cook until they are very golden brown. From there, season with smoked paprika and crushed red pepper and let the spices sizzle in the butter for 45 seconds
Add the pasta cooking water and bring to a boil for about 5 minutes. Reduce the heat to a hard simmer and add heavy cream. Simmer the sauce for about 10 minutes until it reduces and thickens.
From there, simply throw it all together. Add freshly minced parsley, baby arugula, cooked pasta, and crispy prosciutto and toss to coat.
How can you modify this pasta dinner recipe? Check out my suggestions below!
- Prosciutto: Use pancetta or bacon, cut into lardons
- Mushrooms and arugula: Get creative with the vegetables in this pasta dish! Try it with Brussels sprouts, spinach, shiitake mushrooms, eggplant, or even chopped green beans or broccoli florets!
- Herbs: I used freshly minced parsley, but try this with thinly sliced basil.
Looking for more pasta recipes? Check my archives!
If you made this recipe, please rate it and comment below! You can also follow me and share your creations by tagging me! I’d love to feature your #triedandtruerecipes creation on my feed.
Pasta with Mushrooms and Prosciutto
- Wide pot
- Large pot
- 4 ounces prosciutto small-diced
- 16 ounces medium shells 1 cup pasta water reserved
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 8 ounces cremini mushrooms scrubbed and sliced
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper more or less to taste depending on heat tolerance
- ½ cup heavy cream
- ½ cup fresh parsley minced; plus more for serving
- 3 ounces fresh arugula
- Salt and pepper to taste
Cook the prosciutto:
- Place the prosciutto in a cold, wide pot. Turn the heat to medium and allow the fat to render for about 5–7 minutes until the prosciutto is crispy and golden brown. Use a slotted spoon to remove the prosciutto from the pot and transfer it to a bowl. Leave the pot on medium heat.
Cook the pasta:
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the shells and cook until al dente. Scoop out 1 cup of pasta cooking water and set it aside. Drain the pasta and set it aside. Note: Try to time this so that the pasta finishes cooking as the mushrooms finish sautéing.
Sauté the mushrooms:
- Melt the butter into the prosciutto fat. Once bubbly, add the mushrooms and cook for 7–9 minutes until golden brown all over—season with salt and pepper.
Bloom the spices:
- Sprinkle the smoked paprika and crushed red pepper and let it sizzle for about 45 seconds. Toss the mushrooms with the spices.
Simmer the sauce:
- Pour in the pasta cooking water and bring to a boil. Allow the sauce to boil for 3–4 minutes until reduced. Reduce heat to a hard simmer and pour in the heavy cream. Simmer for 10 minutes or until reduced and thickened—taste and season with salt and pepper.
Finish the sauce:
- Add the minced parsley and arugula and toss with the sauce. Add the pasta and reserved cooked prosciutto and toss to coat with the sauce for 1–2 minutes—taste and season with salt and pepper.
- Divide the cooked pasta between bowls and garnish with more parsley if you like. Enjoy!