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Linguine in a creamy lemon sauce. Charred lemon slices to left and a fork twirling into noodles at right.

The Easiest Creamy Lemon Pasta Sauce

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5 from 5 reviews


This easy creamy lemon pasta sauce comes together in no time and is flavoured with garlic, fresh lemon juice and parmesan. It is creamy and cheesy with a fresh burst of lemon. Check out the short recipe video below.


  • Pasta of your choice, 200g dried or 300g fresh
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cup cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 - 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 50g parmesan, finely grated
  • 3 tablespoon lemon juice
  • Zest of a lemon
  • Extra parmesan to serve


  1. Cook your pasta in a pot of heavily salted water. Reserve a cup of pasta water before draining, you might not need it but it's just good practice!
  2. Heat the olive oil over medium heat in a fry pan large enough to hold all the pasta at the end.
  3. Add the garlic and let it sizzle gently for a minute, don't allow the garlic to brown.
  4. Turn the heat down slightly and add the cream, bring to a very gentle simmer for a minute or so.
  5. Add the parmesan in a few lots, whisking in between so it melts evenly into the cream before adding the next lot. You only want a VERY gentle simmer the whole time.
  6. Add the salt and pepper and let it gently bubble for a minute or two until it thickens slightly.
  7. Add the lemon juice, mix in really quickly (a whisk is great for this) then add the cooked pasta straight in.
  8. Let the pasta bubble away gently in the sauce for a minute and add a splash of pasta water if you need to loosen. Check to see if it needs any extra seasoning.
  9. Serve and top with grated parmesan and the lemon zest. A good crack of black pepper never goes astray on top too!


  • I always let my pasta bubble away in a sauce for a minute or two. It helps to thicken the sauce and gives the pasta a chance to take on some flavour. I always undercook my pasta ever so slightly for this reason.
  • You might not need to add any pasta water but it's a good idea to reserve some in case it is too thick.
  • Creamy sauces will thicken off the heat so go for a slightly more saucy consistency in the pan so that once you serve it isn't too dry.
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Category: Vegetarian
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Italian inspired