Photo: Whitney Ott; Styling: Claire Spollen    
Hands-on Time
12 Mins
Total Time
21 Mins
Serves 4 (serving size: about 2 cups pasta and 1 1/2 teaspoons cheese)

Low-fat cream cheese and silky mascarpone combine to make a dreamy sauce for this dish. Fresh lemon rind brightens up the flavor profile. Serve with green beans for a simple side to this delicious meal.

How to Make It

Step 1

Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain pasta in a colander over a bowl, reserving 1 cup cooking liquid.

Step 2

Add cream cheese and mascarpone cheese to bowl, stirring with a whisk until smooth. Stir in lemon rind and the next 4 ingredients (through nutmeg).

Step 3

Heat saucepan over medium-high heat. Add pasta and cream cheese mixture to pan; cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Stir in spinach and tomatoes; cook 2 minutes or until spinach wilts, stirring frequently. Remove pan from heat; stir in basil. Sprinkle evenly with cheese; serve immediately.

Chef's Notes

MyRecipes is working with Let's Move!, the Partnership for a Healthier America, and USDA's MyPlate to give anyone looking for healthier options access to a trove of recipes that will help them create healthy, tasty plates. For more information about creating a healthy plate, visit

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Ratings & Reviews

Light pasta dish

September 15, 2017
Enjoyed this and happy to see how low-cal it is for a pasta dish. To suit our tastes, omitted lemon juice and nutmeg, and added a little crushed red pepper in step 2. The lemon rind added enough lemon flavor for us. Leftovers were good the next day, although the sauce had pretty well dried up.

MaryEliz's Review

October 26, 2014
A light, tasty pasta dish. A bit more time intensive than I had thought, but worth it. Another nice aspect to this dish is I had all but the mascarpone and fresh pasta on hand, including being able to use the last of my own tomatoes and basil. It seemed like the sauce was a bit skimpy so I did add in another Tbs of all cheeses. Also added two cups of rotisserie chicken left from another meal and upped the spinach to make it a "one dish meal" for my hubby and adult son. Because it isn't dinner here without meat!

kalynne's Review

October 27, 2014
My girls and I loved it for meatless monday and I have one very picky girl. I didn't use mushrooms. Super fresh tasting b/c of the lemon. I'd like to try it with whole wheat pasta next time - and see what happens

Amy0324's Review

November 10, 2014