There’s nothing like yummy pasta to make your whole family’s night a little better!
We’ll walk you through our recipe for creamy pasta with ham and cheese from start to finish. It’s the perfect meal for nights when you need a simple dinner that everyone in your family will enjoy. With just four simple ingredients, it’s bound to become one of your family’s favorite quick weeknight dinners.
Now, without further ado… let’s get cooking.
Here’s What You Need to Make the Best Creamy Pasta Ever
Our creamy pasta recipe calls for just four simple ingredients. However, choosing the right variations of these ingredients is the key to successfully making this dish as delicious as possible.
Here are all of the ingredients you need for our creamy pasta, as well as what to look for when shopping for them.
We recommend using fusilli pasta when making this recipe. This type of Italian pasta is curly, spiraled, and perfect for locking in the flavors of other savory ingredients. It’s often paired with creamy, rich sauces made with heavy cream.
The main reason we think fusilli is the best noodle for this recipe is simple – it’s the perfect vessel for sauce. The tiny grooves in the pasta trap the sauce and cheese, making each bite a mouth-watering symphony of flavors.
Fusilli typically needs to be cooked for between seven and 10 minutes. If you want it al dente, try to stay on the shorter side of this range. If you can’t find fusilli at your local grocery store, try substituting it out for rotini, cavatappi, or gemelli, all of which are also great for locking in rich, creamy sauce.
This recipe calls for 40 grams of Beaufort cheese. This cheese belongs to the gruyère family, and it originated in the French Alps, where it’s still produced to this day.
Beaufort is known for its smooth, creamy texture and unmistakable smell. This cheese is often used in pasta recipes since it melts so easily. If you’re pairing this pasta with a drink, opt for white wine – it’s the perfect mate for Beautfort’s flavor profile.
This recipe calls for ham slices, which you can easily find at your local grocery store. However, not all ham is created equal. Making this recipe taste as good as possible depends on choosing the best possible ham.
The ideal way to make this pasta is with sliced city ham. This type of ham is smoked, which gives it a rich, distinct flavor, and it comes pre-cooked.
Heavy cream serves as the base for the sauce in this recipe. It’s rich, thick, and high in fat, which makes it the perfect foundation for a mouth-watering sauce.
Cooking Your Pasta Step by Step
Follow these steps to make the perfect creamy pasta.
Step One: Cook the Fusilli
To start, cook the fusilli according to the instructions printed on the box. You’ll most likely see a recommendation to cook the pasta for under 10 minutes, which is usually the golden rule to follow for spiral noodles. Keep an eye on how the pasta is doing throughout the cooking process by tasting a noodle every few minutes. Just make sure not to burn your tongue!
Once the fusilli has begun to cook, it’s time to move on to the next step in the process – making the sauce.
Step Two: Blend Cheese and Heavy Cream to Make a Sauce Like No Other
Take out a large pot and set it on a burner on medium heat. Add a quarter cup of heavy cream and 40 grams of shredded Beaufort cheese to the pot, topping it off with a sprinkle of salt and pepper. Let the mixture cook until the shredded cheese melts down completely.
Once the cheese has melted, use a tablespoon to add pasta cooking water to the pot with the cream and cheese in it. Add one tablespoon of pasta cooking water per portion of pasta.
Step Three: Drain the Pasta
Using a strainer, pour the pot of pasta into the sink, allowing the noodles to collect in the strainer and the water to drain out. Once the pasta is fully strained, pour it into the pot with the cheese and heavy cream.
Step Four: Add the Ham
Now, it’s time to add the ham to the pot. Take ham slices and place them on a cutting board. Using a small, sharp knife, chop the ham into small pieces and add it to the pot with the noodles and sauce.
Allow the ham to warm for a few minutes in the pot. After it’s reached the desired temperature, it’s time to serve the dish.
Plating and Serving This Pasta
Once you’ve finished cooking the pasta and it’s ready to serve, follow these tips to make it look as great as it tastes.
- Evenly distribute the ham slices throughout the dish. This pasta looks its best when the ham is mixed in thoroughly with the pasta, cheese, and heavy cream. An ideal plating strategy for the dish is to serve it in a small bowl, mixing the ingredients together with a fork to ensure the ham isn’t all in one place.
- Grate extra cheese on top of each bowl. Grated Beaufort cheese makes a perfect garnish for this recipe. Plus, the cheese is already at the ready since you’ve been adding it in to make the creamy sauce. Grate a little bit of additional cheese on top of each bowl of pasta you serve to level up the presentation.
More Delicious Pasta Recipes
If you’re not loving the sound of our creamy pasta with ham and cheese, have no fear. We’ve got tons of other mouth-watering pasta recipes for you to try. Below are some of our favorites, hand-picked from our massive recipe database.
Perfect Pasta Ragu
Making this dish will teach you a valuable culinary skill – cooking your own ragu. Ragu is a delicious meat-based sauce that is simple, classy, and unbelievably good. It’s made by combining canned peeled tomatoes with sausage meat, along with spices like basil and garlic.
This recipe for pasta ragu calls for pappardelle noodles, which are perfect for absorbing the flavors from your homemade sauce. If you’ve never had the pleasure of trying pappardelle pasta, you’re in for a real treat.
The Best Lemon Chicken Pasta You’ve Ever Had
Here’s another spectacularly creamy pasta recipe for you. Our lemon chicken pasta is remarkably simple, but it tastes like it came straight from a five-star Italian restaurant! If you love creamy pasta but don’t want to make a dish with ham, this a perfect alternative to our ham fusilli.
Sicilian-Style Pasta Like No Other
This is another delightfully unique dish that’s hearty, satisfying, and simple. Made with large shell noodles, this recipe for Sicilian-style pasta has earned glowing reviews on our cooking page.
At-home cooks love the way the shell noodles lock in the flavor of the salty, savory capers, the sweet cherry tomatoes, and the other ingredients in this recipe.
Tuna Bake Au Gratin
For a slightly more unexpected taste, try this tuna bake au gratin. It combines everything that you love about a tuna melt into a delectable, creamy pasta dish that’s as tasty as it is easy to make.
The creaminess of the cheese is the perfect match for the light flavor of the tuna, and baking this dish in the oven allows it to be crunchy and crispy on the outside while still moist and creamy on the inside.
For a dish that showcases the simple beauty of quality ingredients, you can’t go wrong with this burrata pasta. The brightness of lightly cooked cherry tomatoes provides the perfect contrast for silky, creamy burrata and the savory chew of prosciutto.
The ingredients are simple, yes, but the flavors are astronomical. You’ll never believe that this creamy pasta dish took just over ten minutes to throw together.
Vegetarian Zucchini Lasagna
A steaming bowl of pasta is never out of place, but sometimes a thick wedge of lasagna hits the spot better than anything else. Bonus points if it’s easy to make, like this vegetarian zucchini lasagna. While it takes a bit of time in the oven, most of that is hands-off, and we all know that good things take time.
Classic lasagna is given a lighter twist with the inclusion of fresh zucchini and bright basil, and both ricotta and mozzarella cheese give this dish the creamy, cheesy goodness that you’ve been looking for.
Pasta With Homemade Mouth-Watering Marinara Sauce
This recipe makes it easier than ever to craft your own homemade tomato sauce. With the help of fresh ingredients like garlic, onion, and tomato, you can easily make a sauce that beats anything you’d find on the shelf at the local grocery store.
Pour the sauce over a bed of pappardelle pasta, add shaved parmesan, and you’ve got a dinner your whole family will love.
A Unique Pasta With Pea Pesto and Salmon
Want a creamy pasta recipe that puts a unique spin on pesto? We’ve got exactly what you’re looking for. This recipe will blow your mind with its super-simple pea pesto, which is made from a blend of peas, pine nuts, garlic, feta cheese, and spices. All you need to make this savory pesto is a blender or food processor.
This pesto pasta recipe is the perfect way to get picky kids to eat their vegetables. The peas in the pesto are packed with nutrients, and even the pickiest eaters will love how they taste when they’re blended into a decadent sauce.
Want More Delicious Dinner Ideas?
If you’re always looking for new and exciting recipes to try, we’ve got plenty for you. Our massive database of recipes includes meals from a wide array of worldwide cuisines, and there’s something for everyone.
Whether you’re looking for a delightful, savory pasta dish, or you want to dive into the world of crafting desserts with something like our tiramisu, we have tons of recipes on our cooking page that have been tested by experts.
Plus, we make it as easy as possible for you to make them. All you have to do is choose your menu, allow us to optimize the amount of each ingredient that you need, and then wait for grocery delivery or pick them up from your local grocery store. You can even add other items that you need to the grocery cart before placing an order!