Chickpea Pasta with Sausage and Escarole

Gluten-free pastas are tastiest with olive oil-based pan sauces that don't thicken too much, which can make the pasta feel gummy. Pasta with chickpeas and greens is a classic dish from the Puglia region of Italy. In our riff with chickpea pasta, we added sausage to complement the earthy flavors of the greens and noodles.
Save Recipe
  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 40 min
  • Active: 30 min
  • Yield: 4 servings
Share This Recipe

Ingredients

Kosher salt

One 8-ounce box dried chickpea penne

1/4 cup olive oil

8 ounces sweet Italian sausage, casings removed  

1 small red onion, thickly sliced

1 medium head escarole, trimmed and coarsely chopped

1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

1/2 cup grated Parmesan

1/2 cup grated Pecorino Romano

Directions

  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook the pasta until al dente, 1 to 2 minutes shy of the package directions. Reserve 1 1/4 cups pasta water, then drain.
  2. Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Crumble in the sausage and cook until no longer pink, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the onion and cook until golden and wilted, about 4 minutes. 
  3. Add the escarole, red pepper flakes and 1/2 cup pasta cooking water. Cover and cook until the escarole has just wilted, 3 to 4 minutes. Increase the heat to reduce the liquid in the skillet and thicken it slightly, about 1 minute.
  4. Add the pasta to the simmering sauce and drizzle with the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil. Toss well, adding a little more of the reserved pasta water if it seems dry. Remove the skillet from the heat. Sprinkle with the Parmesan and Pecorino, toss and serve immediately.