Facebook LinkedIn Email Pinterest Twitter Instagram YouTube Icon Navigation Search Icon Main Search Icon Video Play Icon Plus Icon Minus Icon Check Icon Print Icon Note Icon Heart Icon Filled Heart Icon Single Arrow Icon Double Arrow Icon Hamburger Icon TV Icon Close Icon Sorted Hamburger/Search Icon

Orecchiette with Caramelized Onions, Green Beans, Fresh Corn & Jalapeño

Scott Phillips

Servings: 4

The flavors in this pasta build with each bite. Try it once, and it will become a summertime staple. If you can’t find orecchiette, you can use farfalle instead.


  • Kosher salt
  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 cups thinly sliced sweet onion (from 1 large onion)
  • 1 lb. dried orecchiette
  • 1/2 lb. fresh green beans, washed, trimmed, and sliced on the diagonal into 1-inch lengths
  • 1 cup fresh corn kernels (from about 2 ears)
  • 1 jalapeño, stemmed, halved lengthwise, seeded, and thinly sliced crosswise
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup grated Pecorino Romano
  • 1 Tbs. chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

Nutritional Information

  • Calories (kcal) : 680
  • Fat Calories (kcal): 190
  • Fat (g): 22
  • Saturated Fat (g): 4
  • Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 2.5
  • Monounsaturated Fat (g): 13
  • Cholesterol (mg): 5
  • Sodium (mg): 570
  • Carbohydrates (g): 104
  • Fiber (g): 8
  • Protein (g): 19


  • Bring a large pot of well-salted water to a boil over high heat.
  • Heat the olive oil in a 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat. When the oil is hot, add the onion and a large pinch of salt and cook, stirring frequently, until the onion is beginning to soften and brown, about 5 minutes. Lower the heat to medium and  continue cooking, stirring frequently, until the onion is very soft and a light golden brown, about 15 more minutes (if the onion begins to look like it’s burning, add 2 Tbs. warm water and lower the heat).
  • Put the orecchiette in the boiling water and cook until just shy of al dente, about 9 minutes. Add the green beans to the pasta water in the last minute of cooking.
  • While the pasta cooks, add the corn, jalapeño, and a pinch of salt to the onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until the corn kernels begin to soften, 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from the heat.
  • Reserve 1/2 cup of the pasta and green bean cooking water and drain the pasta and green beans together in a colander.
  • Return the orecchiette, green beans, and 2 Tbs. of the reserved water to the pot. Add the onion mixture and toss over medium heat until the green beans are crisp-tender and the orecchiette is perfectly al dente, 1 to 2 minutes. Add more of the pasta water as necessary to keep the dish moist. Season to taste with salt and pepper, transfer to warm shallow bowls, and top each serving with the pecorino and parsley.

Start the meal off with Shaved Asparagus Salad with Aged Gouda and Hazelnuts.


Rate or Review

Reviews (9 reviews)

  • pokano | 09/01/2021

    This is a beautiful dish, with the green and yellow of the vegetables against the cream-colored orecchiette. I too think that the pasta could be reduced to 3/4 lb, or more vegetables could be added.

  • SeeBeth | 09/16/2015

    A simple, delicious summer pasta. I would be inclined to add 4 oz of crisped prosciutto or bacon to finish. I did make with full pound of pasta but could reason reducing to 3/4 of a pound

  • ellen_in_charlotte | 06/21/2011

    I have made this many times. I made it as written the first time (in 2007) and noted in my magazine that it was "perfect". That said, since then I have made these changes: used 1/2 as much pasta, added thin red pepper strips (1/4 to 1/2) cup; added 1 strip of bacon, crumbled, and top the pasta with sliced grilled chicken. I never use 1/3C oil - way too much; 2-3 TBS is more than enough for 2C onions.I make the full recipe (with 1/2 the pasta)as a main dish for 2, (with the grilled chicken) and it usually ends up with about one serving left for some lucky person's lunch. I only use 1 chicken breast (really a half of a whole breast) and it is plenty. You could add a side of sliced tomatoes or a green salad, but we had it by itself and it was plenty! Might make it with a bit more corn, but it is fine as is. Husband and I agree it would be great as a room temp or slightly chilled side dish for a cook-out or picnic. Definitely has a firm place in thesummer rotation.

Show More

Rate this Recipe

Write a Review


View All


Follow Fine Cooking on your favorite social networks

We hope you’ve enjoyed your free articles. To keep reading, subscribe today.

Get the print magazine, 25 years of back issues online, over 7,000 recipes, and more.