Creamy Garlic Penne Pasta

Super simple and delicious Creamy Garlic Penne Pasta recipe packed with flavor. This dish is perfect by itself or you can add chicken too!

This is one of our favorite white sauce pastas because it’s SO simple and easy! Whenever I crave a white sauce recipe, I also love to make chicken alfredo, pasta carbonara, or cheesy garlic tortellini.

Penne Pasta in Creamy Pasta Sauce

White Sauce Pasta

I LOVE pasta! I mean, who doesn’t?! Yes, it has carbs, but this girl needs it in her life because I cook with it ALL the time. In fact, now that I think about it, we usually have pasta at least once a week, whether it’s in salad form, or a main dish.

From Spaghetti to Fettuccine Alfredo,  pasta is something the whole family loves, so we have it quite often. This next recipe is another one of those dishes you can add to the meal plan, because it’s simple and definitely delicious.

This Creamy Garlic Penne Pasta is a white sauce pasta that is great on it’s own, but could be even heartier if you add chicken or another favorite meat.

If you like pasta dishes I would definitely try this one out. It’s super cheesy and has just the right touch of garlic and other spices making it another “go-to” dinner recipe!

Creamy Pasta Sauce in a skillet

How to make white sauce:

One of the main reasons we love this dish is because it’s simple and quick! You can make it start to finish in about 20 minutes. That’s my kind of dinner recipe! Just follow these easy steps to make this creamy pasta sauce which can be added to any pasta.

Cook Pasta. Begin by cooking the pasta according to the package instructions (we used penne).

Make Sauce. While pasta is cooking, melt butter in a medium sauce pan, add garlic and cook for 1 minute over medium heat. Add flour and cook for an addition minute, stirring constantly. Add milk and broth, stirring constantly. Cook until sauce boils and thickens. Add parsley and parmesan cheese, salt and pepper. Stir until cheese has melted.

Combine. Mix in pasta and serve immediately.

Tip: If you want your pasta to be extra cheesy, add ½-1 cup of your favorite shredded cheese (we like to use shredded Mozzarella or Parmesan).

Change it up

Protein. There are so many things you can add to spruce up this delicious dish. Try adding meats such as grilled chicken, diced ham or shrimp.

Produce. You can also add produce such as halved cherry tomatoes, sliced sun dried tomatoes, asparagus, broccoli, bell peppers, or mushrooms.

Spice. To add a little heat, sprinkle on some red chili flakes.

What to do with leftovers

Storing. Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for 3-5 days. 

Reheating. We typically reheat this pasta in the microwave, but this can also be done in a pot on the stove. You may need to add a little more broth if it’s too thick when reheating.

Freezing. If you plan to freeze this dish, leave the pasta undercooked as the freezing process will make thoroughly cooked pasta mushy. Store the cooked dish in a freezer safe airtight container for months.

To reheat, thaw in the fridge and reheat on the stove top stirring constantly to keep the cream base from curdling.

White Sauce Pasta Recipe in bowl

Just another quick, easy dinner meal! We hope you love this easy pasta dish.

What to serve with Creamy Penne Pasta:

For more easy pasta recipes, check out:

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White Sauce Pasta Recipe

4.89 from 153 votes
Super simple and delicious Creamy Garlic Penne Pasta recipe packed with flavor. This dish is perfect by itself or you can add chicken too!
Course Main Course
Cuisine American, Italian
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Servings 6
Calories 409 kcal
Author Lil' Luna


  • 1 lb penne pasta
  • 3 tbsp butter
  • 2 tsp minced garlic
  • 3 tbsp flour
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 tsp dried parsley
  • 1 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • salt and pepper to taste


  • Cook pasta according to packaged directions.
  • Melt butter in a medium sauce pan, add garlic.
  • Cook for 1 minute over medium heat
  • Add flour and cook for an additional minute, stirring constantly.
  • Add milk and broth, stirring constantly. Cook until sauce boils and thickens.
  • Add parsley and parmesan cheese. Add desired salt and pepper. Continue stirring until cheese has melted. Serve immediately.
  • Pour sauce over pasta and serve.


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Recipe adapted from HERE.

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About the Author

Kristyn Merkley

My name is Kristyn and I’m the mom of SIX stinkin’ cute kids and the wife to my smokin’ hot hubby, Lo. My mom’s maiden name is Luna, and I’m one of the many crafty “Lil’ Lunas” in the fam. On this site I like to share all things creative - from recipes to home decor to gifts and home decor ideas. Welcome!

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  1. 5 stars
    WOW! Made this tonight and all my husband said between mouthfuls and a heaping second helping of the angel hair pasta it went over was…”winning” and “keep this recipe or put it in ur memory” hahahaha!! Such a simplistic sauce yet sophisticated enough for any dish u would use a nice creamy white sauce for…i did add some lemon juice to it to play up the flavor profile a little…was suuuuuper gooood….our recently turned picky toddler even enjoyed this and ate it all!! He said mmmm mmmmm lol..happy mama!! Thx for a “winning” sauce that will go into my “memory bank” and be a regularly used delicious sauce.

      1. Thank you so much for the recipe.
        I was looking for the recipe everywhere 👍🏻😋😋
        I’m going to make tonight

  2. 5 stars
    I loved this for my first time making Alfred. Im only 10 and this was amazing My family loves it and I do to I highly recommend this. 🍝

  3. 5 stars
    Easy to make and I had all the ingredients for a last minute pasta dish. I added sauted shrimp to top it off. My husband kept saying, “restaurant quality”. He had 3 servings. I also was impressed how easy the recipe was to follow and the ingredients and aroma all came together for a delicious pasta sauce. I will be making this again with other toppings.

  4. 5 stars
    I’ve made this recipe a dozen times as my family loves it!! One of the reasons I love it so much is because it doesn’t call for heavy cream and is quick to make on our busy nights. I use 1% milk, FF chicken broth, and add red pepper flakes for an extra kick. I always make it with chicken but tonight I added spinach, sundried tomatoes and shrimp and WOW!! Super yummy! Thanks Kristyn!

    1. 5 stars
      I made this for the first time ever. Perfect dish for Lent. I halved the pasta and made 2/3rds of the sauce for extra creaminess since it is just the two of us. I added peas for veggie tonight, but I will be trying other toppings for sure! Other veggies, chicken, BACON? Possibilities are endless. Thank you for creating this new staple in my recipe box.

      1. You’re welcome! I’m so glad you enjoyed it! And bacon goes well with just about anything. 😉

  5. Really yummy! But, my flour clumped up and found it need lemon juice and more parmesan cheese! My 6 year old pasta critic said “momma this is really good but, it needs more cheese!”

  6. 5 stars
    A hit with the entire family, including my 13yo who is picky. I added some fresh steamed broccoli since all my meat was frozen. Would be good with spinach or peas too!

    1. The fresh steamed broccoli sounds heavenly for this recipe. I should try that out too! I’m glad your family liked it so much!

  7. 5 stars
    Great sauce recipe! I added shrimp and a little onion. I ended up using mozzarella cheese instead of Parmesan since that is all I had on hand. It was really creamy. Saved the recipe for future use.

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