Summertime Penne with Fresh Corn, Tomatoes, and Basil

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Summertime Penne with Fresh Corn, Tomatoes, and Basil | Get Inspired Everyday!

I finally found a gluten free pasta that doesn’t leave me longing for the days when I could eat anything I wanted! It’s as close to the real thing as I’ve ever had, and I couldn’t be more excited! I almost gave up entirely on trying anymore gluten free pasta because there are so many bad ones. You know what I mean right? Crumbly with a gritty mouthfeel and a weird taste is not what I had in mind for dinner! Overall I’d rather have spaghetti squash or zucchini noodles any day, (and that’s really saying something given my love of all things bread and pasta)!

Summertime Penne with Fresh Corn, Tomatoes, and Basil | Get Inspired Everyday!

As far as I can figure out, the difference in texture comes from how it’s produced. DeLallo uses old world Italian methods to get that al dente bite that seems to be missing in every other gluten free brand I’ve tried so far! And before you ask… I was not paid in any way to tell you about this pasta – I simply wandered down the aisle in the grocery store one day and decided to give gluten free pasta another chance! I know so many people who are either Celiac or gluten free that I wanted share this discovery with you – anytime you find a great gluten free product you feel like you’ve found the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow!

Summertime Penne with Fresh Corn, Tomatoes, and Basil | Get Inspired Everyday!
Summertime Penne with Fresh Corn, Tomatoes, and Basil | Get Inspired Everyday!
Summertime Penne with Fresh Corn, Tomatoes, and Basil | Get Inspired Everyday!
Summertime Penne with Fresh Corn, Tomatoes, and Basil | Get Inspired Everyday!

If you’re uncomfortable cooking and prepping you veggies at the same time – be sure to prep the veggies first before you put the pasta in the cooking water, it really takes the pressure off to bring everything together at the same time!

Halve your cherry tomatoes, or quarter them if they’re on the bigger side. To slice basil into thin ribbons, (called chiffonade) stack the basil leaves and roll them up tightly. Using a sharp knife, cut the basil roll into thin ribbons. It’s always best to cut or chop your fresh herbs right before you’re ready to use them, (they sometimes turn brown if they have to wait awhile on the counter).

Summertime Penne with Fresh Corn, Tomatoes, and Basil | Get Inspired Everyday!

This pasta is truly the essence of summer – it’s filled to the brim with vine ripe cherry tomatoes, fresh kernels of sweet corn, fragrant with basil in a creamy sauce with piquant crumbles of Point Reyes blue cheese!

If you don’t like blue cheese:

1. This is also great with an aged crumbly white cheddar or freshly grated parmesan/

2. Even if you don’t like blue cheese, be sure to give it a try sometime with a quality blue cheese – many people change their minds after having the real thing!

Summertime Penne with Fresh Corn, Tomatoes, and Basil | Get Inspired Everyday!
Summertime Penne with Fresh Corn, Tomatoes, and Basil | Get Inspired Everyday!

The inspiration for this dish comes from a salad I had 2 summers ago at a restaurant in Portland called Cafe Mingo. We had several fabulous dishes there the first night, and we decided to go again on our last night in Portland, (so much good food in that city). My second dinner there, I ordered their Insalatone (big salad) which had fresh corn, heirloom tomatoes, and basil in a gorgonzola dressing – it was so good I’m still thinking about it 2 years later!

This pasta dish is made with that salad in mind – once the pasta is properly sauced, I remove it from the heat to add the vegetables. That way they stay fresh tasting, and the pasta is served warm rather than piping hot.

Since this is getting rather lengthy, leave me a comment and let me know if you’d like to see a post about how to cook pasta restaurant style!

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Pasta with Fresh Corn, Tomatoes and Basil | Get Inspired Everyday!

Summertime Penne with Fresh Corn, Tomatoes, and Basil


All the best flavors of summer combined together in this creamy pasta, fresh corn and tomatoes pair perfectly with a touch of blue cheese crumbles and basil.



12 ounces penne pasta, I used DeLallo brown rice pasta

2 Tablespoon butter

2 Tablespoons olive oil

1 large sweet onion

1 cup heavy whipping cream

4 ears fresh organic sweet corn, kernels cut off the cob

12 ounces cherry tomatoes, halved

1 cup chopped fresh basil

23 ounces crumbled Point Reyes Blue Cheese, or gorgonzola dolce

1/2 teaspoon sea salt, to taste


Bring a large pot of water to boil on the stove.

While the water is heating, melt the butter and olive oil together in a large skillet.

Slice off both ends of the onion and remove the core. Cut the onion in half from the top to the bottom. Lay each half flat side down on the cutting board and slice 1/4″ across the onion to make half moon pieces.

Add the onion to the skillet and sauté until the onion has softened and turned a light golden color. Add the heavy cream and simmer for 3-5 minutes, or until the cream begins to thicken just a bit.

When the water is boiling, add the pasta and 1 Tablespoon sea salt. Cook the pasta according to the package instructions. I personally like to pull my pasta out 2 minutes early and finish cooking it in the sauce. It’s a restaurant trick that helps your pasta and sauce come together for a better final product!

While the pasta cooks, prepare your corn, tomatoes, basil, and blue cheese or gorgonzola.

When the pasta is almost cooked, scoop out 1/2 cup of the pasta water before draining it. Drain the pasta and add it to the onion cream sauce mixture in your skillet. Simmer for a couple of minutes to help the sauce ‘stick’ to the pasta. Add a bit of the pasta water if is seems like you’re lacking in sauce – you want the pasta to be nicely coated.

Remove the pasta from the heat when it is al dente. Add the corn, tomatoes, basil, and blue cheese – mix in thoroughly and adjust the salt to taste.

Serve the pasta immediately!

  • Prep Time: 20 mins
  • Cook Time: 20 mins
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Stove Top
  • Cuisine: Italian

Keywords: Gluten Free Pasta with Tomatoes, Penne with Corn, Pasta with Summer Veggies

8 thoughts on “Summertime Penne with Fresh Corn, Tomatoes, and Basil”

  1. This penne does look delicious! Loving the summertime flavours.. saving the recipe to make when the weather warms up.

  2. Before I forget, I’d love to read a post about how to cook pasta restaurant style!! Can’t wait to read.

    Another great & innovative recipe. I’ve done spins on this before but never with whipping cream and corn, what a fun twist.

    I have so many excess cherry tomatoes (I planted 25 plants) and I’ve just gotten back from all the neighbors houses with deliveries. Still have a ton, will be using it to make something very similar to this depending on what I have in the house (don’t want to put 2 kids in carseats, hehe). basil is my favorite herb too, love it! Well, basil and rosemary. Great post.

    • I think rosemary would be great with this dish! If you have too many tomatoes, you can just put them in the blender (raw) blend them up and freeze them for winter. I’m coming out with a roasted cherry tomato dish too that would help you use them up – it’s perfect for a side dish or as a sauce, (and it freezes well).

  3. I once tried a brand of GF pasta that was so chewy and squishy, I kept chewing and chewing and chewing…it felt like Wrigley’s gum.

    I need to try this DeLallo, have you tried the Garofalo brand? It’s made with rice, corn and quinoa and so close to the real deal.
    BTW, loving this fresh corn, tomatoes, and basil sauce you created, looks so fresh and tasty!

    • I haven’t tried the Garofalo brand yet – I generally steer clear of any gluten free pasta with corn in it because they seem to be crumbly. I’ll have to look for it the next time I’m grocery shopping. I love creating pasta dishes bursting with fresh veggies, so I’m super excited to have a brand that I like again! 🙂


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