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Simple Pasta with Peas, Ham and Cream

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This all in one meal is a delicious combination of ham, pasta, peas and just enough creamy Parmesan cheese sauce.  It is a great way to use leftover ham and is sure to have everyone asking for seconds! 

Close up plate of curly pasta with cubes of ham, peas and paremsan cheese

      This pasta dish is perfectly simple.  It is a great way to use up some leftover ham and turn it into a comforting and delicious meal!  There is just enough cream and Parmesan cheese to bring it all together and the peas add a nice bright pop of color and sweet flavor. It is so simple to make and is one the family will love!

   Why is it that spring and winter always seem to have a bit of a battle this time of year? After a week of spring being in full force, winter is rearing it’s ugly head again.

   It’s like spring came in and gave winter a punch right in the sweet spot.  Winter was dazed and looked down for the count, but popped back up just in time to extend the match.

  I don’t know about you, but I am ready for spring to stay.  I’ve had enough of the back and forth between nice weather and cold.  Our daffodils came out and bloomed and it snowed two days later.

Sauté pan filled with curly pasta, chunks of ham and green peas in a light cream sauce.

    Our blackberry bushes are getting leaves and our strawberry patch was greening up too.  Hopefully the subsequent freeze didn’t set anything back too far.  That weather man of ours likes to keep us on our toes!

    All it takes is a few warm days and for the grass to start to green up and my tastes start to change.  After a long winter of soups, casseroles and braises, I am now ready for quicker, fresher and easier meals.

    Peas are one of those early spring vegetables that is always a favorite.  There is something about a pod of sweet peas straight from the vine.

     You don’t even have to cook them.  Of course, that is a taste that is hard to come by and it is a bit early for them.  But really frozen peas are a good substitute.

plate of served pasta with ham and peas in front of pan of remaining pasta.

 
     Ham is another dish that says spring to me.  It isn’t necessarily an obvious spring choice, but with Easter coming up there is soon to be plenty of hams on people’s tables.  This Simple Pasta with Peas, Ham and Cream would be a delicious way to use some of those Easter leftovers.

    I love how simple and flavorful this dish turns out.  The smell of the butter, onions, garlic and ham cooking draws you in.  Luckily at that point you are just a handful of minutes away from a delicious meal.

    Some dishes like this make a heavy sauce to coat everything.  I wanted just enough cream to give a very light coating to everything.

green saucier full of pasta with ham peas cream and parmesan cheese.

    To me the sweet fresh flavor of the peas and the salty savory ham should shine and not be masked by too much cream and cheese.  Don’t get me wrong, I love cream and cheese, but in some cases moderation actually is better.  I am not the only one that likes it just like this.

   Not a single one of us was super hungry when we sat down to eat, but all three of us had seconds.  I quickly packaged up the leftovers in lunch sized containers to keep it for myself.  Lunch this week is going to be delicious!

pate full of pasta with ham peas and cream with a fork and flowery napkin.

    As you can see, this dish has become a spring tradition for us.  If there is leftover ham around, this is bound to be on the menu.

   Honestly, we eat it all year long! We always have frozen peas on hand, so any time there are some cubes of ham in the fridge this has a good chance of being on our dinner menu!

Fork getting a bite of pasta with peas ham and cream.

 
   We also love celebrating spring with my lightened up version of creamy pea salad or maple bacon asparagus salad.

   Now I am wondering.  What are some of your favorite spring dishes and flavors?  Is there anything that really signifies spring for you?

Yield: 8 Servings

Simple Pasta with Peas, Ham and Cream

plate full of pasta with ham peas and parmesan cream sauce

This easy recipe combines ham, pasta, peas and just enough creamy Parmesan cheese sauce. It is a great way to use leftover ham and is sure to have everyone asking for seconds!

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes

Ingredients

  • 16 oz pasta
  • 2 Tablespoons butter
  • 1 small onion, finely diced
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 cups ham, cubed
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock
  • 2/3 cup cream
  • 2 cups fresh or defrosted peas
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
  • salt and pepper
  • optional: additional Parmesan for serving

Instructions

  1. Boil noodles and cook to al dente according to the package directions. 
  2. Meanwhile, in a large pan melt the butter over medium heat. Add the diced onion, ham, garlic and a pinch of black pepper and cook until onions are soft and translucent.
  3. Stir in chicken stock and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and stir in cream. Simmer for 3-5 minutes.
  4. Stir in pasta and continue to simmer until pasta is coated. Add peas, stirring to combine and then remove from heat. 
  5. Add Parmesan cheese and adjust salt and pepper to taste.
  6. Serve immediately with an additional grating of Parmesan if desired.

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Nutrition Information:

Yield:

8

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 289Total Fat: 14gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 55mgSodium: 484mgCarbohydrates: 27gFiber: 3gSugar: 4gProtein: 15g

All nutritional information is estimated and will depend on the exact ingredients you use.

Did you make this recipe?

I'd love to see it! Share a picture on Instagram or Pinterest and tag me @carleecooks to let me know how it went!

This all in one meal is a delicious combination of ham, pasta, peas and just enough creamy Parmesan cheese sauce. It is a great way to use leftover ham and is sure to have everyone asking for seconds!

Share with your friends!

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Anne

Sunday 5th of May 2019

This pasta looks so good! Perfect for using up leftover ham but I would consider buying some ham just to make this!

Carlee

Wednesday 8th of May 2019

I totally would too!

Lucy

Sunday 5th of May 2019

I am a newcomer to your blog! You reeled me in with your fabulous Oatmeal Chocolate Breakfast Cake that only has 174 calories in each piece! I can't wait to make it! I can already tell this will be a morning staple for me! Of course, I subscribed because everything else you shared looks wonderful! Nice to be onboard!

Carlee

Wednesday 8th of May 2019

Thank you so much for coming along for the journey!

Colleen - Faith, Hope, Love, & Luck

Monday 29th of April 2019

YUM! Does it get any better? I think not!!!

Carlee

Wednesday 8th of May 2019

It's hard to beat these flavors and how simple it is to make!

Colleen - Faith, Hope, Love, & Luck

Monday 29th of April 2019

All the good stuff in one pasta dish and I love that you use real cream and not some yucky canned soup like some recipes! Sounds amazing!

Carlee

Wednesday 8th of May 2019

It's so easy to do this way and the flavors all come through so well!

Family Around the Table

Monday 29th of April 2019

This is definitely a dish my family will love!

Carlee

Wednesday 8th of May 2019

I hope they do!