Fresh Cherry Tomato Pasta Sauce with basil and garlic is easy to make in minutes. The summery no-cook vegan pasta sauce is perfect for quick meals. Try it with penne or any of your favorite noodle shapes.
One of the best things about pasta is not only is it delicious, it's quick to make. While I often turn to no-cook sauces like Avocado Pesto or Lemon Dairy-Free Pasta Sauce, this garlicky tomato sauce makes dinner even faster because you don't have to clean a blender or food processor when you're done.
Why you'll love this recipe
- It's a complete meal ready in only 20 minutes.
- You'll have dinner on the table in the time it takes to boil water and cook a box of pasta.
- It's a great way to celebrate the summer flavors of fresh tomatoes and basil.
- Cherry tomatoes (or substitute grape tomatoes)
- Fresh garlic
- Olive oil
- Red wine vinegar
- Fresh basil
- Pasta (Choose a short pasta such as penne or bowtie.)
- vegan butter (optional) such as Earth Balance or Miyoko's
For the complete list of ingredients with measurements plus recipe instructions, please see the recipe card at the bottom of this post.
- While the pasta is cooking, place the tomatoes in a mixing bowl.
- Add the garlic, olive oil, vinegar, and salt.
- Just before the pasta is done, tear or cut the fresh basil and add it to the sauce mixture.
- Toss to combine and serve it over the drained pasta.
Wait to tear or cut the fresh basil leaves until the pasta is almost done cooking. This will help prevent the cut edges from turning black due to oxidation.
While this pasta recipe is delicious on its own, you can also try it with a salad or side like the following:
While I love having leftovers, I recommend enjoying this sauce immediately. For that reason, I wrote it to make 2 servings. However, you can easily halve it or double or triple it.
But if you do have leftovers that are already combined with the pasta, you can refrigerate them until the next day. Then either enjoy your pasta at room temperature or heat it in the microwave. It won't taste quite the same, but at least your leftovers won't go to waste.
Yes, these small tomatoes can be used interchangeably in recipes. Their main difference is that grape tomatoes are oval shaped instead of round.
Pasta cut in short shapes such as penne, rigatoni, farfalle work well with chunky vegetable sauces since the ridges capture more of the sauce than a long pasta shape like spaghetti or fettuccine does.
If fresh basil is unavailable, other fresh herbs like oregano, parsley, and tarragon will work well in this recipe.
If you're out of red wine vinegar, you can substitute while wine vinegar, sherry vinegar, or balsamic vinegar.
More cherry tomato recipes
Looking for more ways to enjoy fresh tomatoes? Try some of these vegan Mediterranean diet favorites:
And for even more recipes, join the Vegan Mediterranean Diet Recipes Facebook group for support, inspiration, and fun.
If you love this recipe, please give it 5 stars! ★★★★★
No-Cook Cherry Tomato Pasta Sauce
- 1 dry pint cherry tomatoes, halved or quartered (or substitute grape tomatoes)
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- 1 teaspoon red wine vinegar
- salt, to taste
- 10 fresh basil leaves
- 8 ounces penne pasta, or other short pasta (gluten-free, if desired)
- 1 Tablespoon vegan butter, (I used Earth Balance) optional
- Combine the cherry tomatoes, garlic, olive oil, red wine vinegar, and salt in a bowl.
- Set aside the tomato mixture while you prepare the pasta according to the package directions.
- Just before pasta is done cooking, tear the basil leaves (or cut them with herb scissors) and add them to the tomato mixture. Stir to combine.
- Drain the pasta and return it to the pot. Stir in the vegan butter, if using.
- Add the tomato mixture to the pasta and toss well to coat.
- Serve immediately and enjoy!
Nutritional information is an estimation only.
Yummy and healthy.
Glad you enjoyed it!
I loved this recipe so much, I am a huge fan of Penne Pasta. This recipe is really easy peasy! I will try this recipe for sure! Thanks a lot for sharing with all of us. Much love & Regards!!
Thank you so much, Nehal!
Loved having an easy and delicious way to make use of our cherry tomato surplus from the garden. I probably put in a little more tomato than the suggested amount. I also used balsamic vinegar instead, since I didn’t have any red wine vinegar on hand. Gave it a nice sweet taste!
I'm so happy you enjoyed it, Sherri!
Very simple and sounds flavorful. What can I replace with wine vinegar? Looks very delicious Amy!
Thanks Uma! You can use any vinegar you like, or leave the vinegar out and use a squeeze of lemon juice instead.