Baked Penne With Corn, Zucchini and Basil

Total Time
1hr 30mins
Prep 30 mins
Cook 1 hr

Enriched with two kinds of cheeses, this baked pasta showcases favorite summer vegetables at their seasonal best, including sweet corn, zucchini and fresh tomatoes. July 2009 Williams-Sonoma.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Preheat an oven to 400ºF.
  2. Bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat. Generously salt the water, add the pasta and cook, stirring occasionally, until al dente, about 8 minutes. Drain the pasta and rinse under cold running water. Set aside.
  3. In a 12-inch nonstick fry pan over medium-high heat, warm 3 Tbs. of the olive oil. Add the corn, season with salt and black pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until the corn is lightly golden, 6 to 8 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl. Set aside.
  4. Return the pan to medium-high heat and warm the remaining 3 Tbs. olive oil. Working in batches, add the zucchini, season with salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until the zucchini is tender and golden brown, 6 to 8 minutes. Add to the bowl with the corn. Repeat with the remaining zucchini, adding more oil to the pan as needed.
  5. Set the pan over medium-low heat. Add the onion, 1 teaspoons salt and black pepper, to taste. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is translucent, about 2 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes, garlic, oregano and red pepper flakes and cook, stirring occasionally, until the tomatoes soften and begin to form a sauce, about 5 minutes. Stir in the tomato paste and cook for 1 minute. Add the wine and cook until the wine has reduced and the sauce is fairly thick, about 3 minutes more.
  6. Add the pasta, tomato sauce, basil, mozzarella and half of the Parmigiano-Reggiano to the bowl with the vegetables and stir to combine. Transfer to the fry pan and sprinkle the remaining Parmigiano-Reggiano on top. Transfer the pan to the oven and bake until golden brown on top, 20 to 25 minutes. Serve warm.
Most Helpful

This was good, but I found the effort/time involved outweighed the taste. Maybe it will be more delicious in a few days?! It definitely wasn't bad, I just like to get in and out of the kitchen and this recipe didn't quite fit that requirement. HOWEVER, gobs of yummy veggies! :-)

Emily C June 13, 2011

I loved this recipe! Though it appears to be a simple pasta bake, there are a number of steps that make it a little time-consuming, but not difficult, such as first cooking the corn, then the zucchini, etc. But it really was worth the extra time. I will definitely make this again! The flavor was amazing! (I even used whole wheat penne.)

Lawsome October 01, 2009

This was a great! I personally give this like a really strong 4. My hubby gave it a high 3. I think that's only because he's a meat eater though. I kept trying to figure out what was the flavor I was tasting the most of, but I really think it was a few. I really love fresh basil in meals. I didn't have fresh oregano, but was still good. I halved my amount, because I didn't have enough ingredients, plus only 2 of us were eating. I was almost finished eating and I finally figured out that I was really tasting the fresh corn that kind of sweetens up when you cook it like this. The thin layer of cheese on top really gives it a good texture because it almost gives it a crunch after going in the oven. This is a great recipe for using up ingredients in your garden!! I didn't have white wine, so I used red instead, and it tasted great still. I didn't have penne, and elbow was the closest thing I had, it really probably is better with a bit chewier pasta. I'm not one to season a with too much salt, but this dish really does benefit from it.

enestvmel July 16, 2009