5-Ingredient Pasta Bake

Bacon and black pepper are the heroes in this dish. Together with some cheese, a small onion and some cream, this pasta bake comes together quickly and is oh so flavourful!

I would describe this as a dry pasta bake. There is no heavy sauce coating the pasta inside the bake, but rather a light coating of bacon and black pepper goodness which comes thru. You must be generous with the black pepper here, it really gives the dish an edge. Here are all of the ingredients needed.

My kids love this dish. We only use minimal cream here to create a flavour bomb that the pasta will be coated in. We start by frying off a small sliced onion in some olive oil. (You can cook the pasta at the same time – cook in salted water according to packet instructions).

Allow the onions to soften. Then add in the diced bacon and fry off.

The onions and bacon are now creating the base of the flavours. In goes the carton of whipping cream – turn down heat to a simmer. During this simmering process, the cream will absorb all the goodness from the bacon and onions. Be liberal with the black pepper. Add in some salt.

Add in cooked pasta + pasta water (saved while cooking pasta) and cheese, and give it a good mix.

Tip pasta onto an oven proof dish and sprinkle remaining cheese on top. At this point, I added in a handful of baby spinach for some greens (can totally omit). I added the spinach raw as it will cook in the oven.

Put in oven and allow to bake for 15-20 mins till cheese is bubbling and golden on top. Best eaten warm. 

Did you try this recipe?

Please do let me know if you've tried it, by leaving a comment or tagging me on IG @thesuddencook.

5-Ingredient Pasta Bake

A quick and freezer friendly recipe using pasta and bacon. Be generous with the black pepper!
Servings 3 people


  • 280-300g pasta Bring some salted water to boil and cook pasta according to packet instruction. Save 1/4 cup paste water then Drain.
  • 1 small onion sliced
  • 250g bacon diced
  • 200ml whipping/cooking cream These are some brands I remember: Arla, Emborg, Pauls
  • 150g grated cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp coarse black pepper


  • Preheat oven to 200C.
  • Cook pasta (save 1/4 cup pasta water) and drain. Keep an oven proof dish ready.
  • In a pot, add 2 tbsp olive oil and add in sliced onion. Cook until soft about 2 mins. Add in bacon and fry for about 5 mins.
  • Add in whipping/cooking cream and bring to a simmer for 5 mins. The simmering part is when the cream will absorb flavours from the bacon and onion. Add in black pepper and salt.
  • Put in cooked pasta + pasta water and give it a good mix. Add in 1/2 of cheese and mix. Switch off.
  • Transfer to oven proof dish and sprinkle remaining cheese on top. Bake for 15-20 mins till cheese is nice and brown. Remove from oven.


Top tips:
  • I usually put a measuring cup or regular cup next to the pot where the pasta is boiling to remind myself to save some pasta water!
  • The black pepper is truly the hero here. Be generous!
  • The pasta bake is meant to be dry. It does not have a 'saucy' filling inside.
  • Pasta type suggested: macaroni, spiral, small penne, small shells.
  • The flavours are incredible. Try it!
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2 years ago

It looks so comforting and tasty! I love mine with lots of bacon 🙂

2 years ago

Bacon + cheese , the flavor bomb in this pasta bake.