Olive Garden’s Capellini Primavera

Olive Garden’s Capellini Primavera Pasta is a light and wonderful dish if you are watching what you eat. It’s full of vegetables and not overly heavy.  Fresh carrots, mushrooms, and broccoli help make a healthy dinner.

overhead view of homemade Olive Garden capellini primavera next to bread slices and butter

Olive Garden Never Ending Pasta Menu

As its “Never Ending Pasta” slogan implies, the Olive Garden is famous for its larger-than-life pasta bowls. However, if you want a lighter pasta recipe option, go for the capellini primavera.

But, honestly, what kind of superhuman can resist those free breadsticks?

Light and Healthy Pasta Recipe

Olive Garden’s capellini primavera is a light and colorful dish that’s not overly heavy. It’s full of vegetables including fresh carrots, mushrooms, and broccoli, making for a very healthy dinner that won’t weigh you down.

I love this recipe, and it tastes just like going out to eat at the Olive Garden.

Italian Pasta Sauces

There’s not much that’s more satisfying than a bowl of deliciously sauced pasta when you sit down to dinner. Few meals can give you as much pleasure. Italian pasta sauces have a rich history that goes back all the way to ancient Rome.

Today, the decision to use more than one type of meat in your ragu, put cheese in your seafood pasta, or make your carbonara with cream, can create just as much passionate dinner conversation among Italian families as the latest political brouhaha.

Pasta Primavera

Primavera is a fairly new addition to the vast pantheon of pasta recipes, and it wasn’t created in Italy. In fact, it was the inspiration of Sirio Maccioni, founder of the famous Le Cirque restaurant in New York City.

In 1977, Sirio whipped up a new pasta dish featuring cream sauce, fresh spring vegetables, and garlic.

Primavera (which means springtime in Italian) caught on and soon became one of the most talked-about dishes in town.

However, Maccioni hadn’t intended to rise to new culinary heights. He was simply improvising when he found out that he had nothing but vegetables to garnish his pasta.

Olive Garden’s Capellini Primavera

The Olive Garden’s version is lighter than Maccioni’s – it leaves out the cream sauce. You can make Olive Garden capellini primavera at home with this copycat recipe. You’ll be surprised by how fresh and simple it is.

Capellini Primavera Recipe Ingredients

Here’s a list of what you need:

  • Butter
  • Onions
  • Carrots
  • Broccoli florets
  • Mushrooms
  • Yellow squash
  • Garlic
  • Beef bouillon granules
  • Sun-dried tomatoes (oil-packed)
  • Canned crushed tomatoes in puree
  • Fresh parsley
  • Dried oregano
  • Dried rosemary
  • Crushed red pepper flakes
  • Angel-hair pasta
  • Grated Parmesan cheese
Olive Garden capellini primavera ingredients

How to Make Olive Garden Capellini Primavera

  1. Melt butter in a Dutch oven over medium heat.
  2. Add onions, carrots, and broccoli. Sauté for 5 minutes.
  3. Add mushrooms, squash, and garlic. Sauté 2 minutes.
  4. Add the remaining ingredients except for the pasta and cheese. Stir well.
  5. Bring the mixture to a simmer and cook for 8 to 10 minutes or until the vegetables are tender.
  6. Place the cooked angel hair pasta in a serving dish.
  7. Ladle the Capellini Primavera over the pasta.
  8. Sprinkle Parmesan cheese on top.
  9. Serve immediately and enjoy!

Recipe Variations

Make it vegetarian or vegan by switching out the butter for olive oil and leaving out the cheese.

Use whole wheat pasta for added nutrition.

You can substitute bucatini, spaghetti, or vermicelli for the capellini pasta.

a bowl of homemade Olive Garden capellini primavera

Love Olive Garden? Try these copycat recipes!

Check out more of my easy pasta recipes and the best Olive Garden recipes here on CopyKat!

overhead view of homemade Olive Garden capellini primavera next to bread slices and butter

Olive Garden’s Capellini Primavera

You can make Olive Garden Capellini Primavera at home with this copycat recipe. 
5 from 3 votes
Print Pin Rate Add to Collection
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: Capellini Primavera, Olive Garden Recipes, Pasta Recipes, Vegetarian
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 4
Calories: 814kcal


  • 4 ounces butter
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped onions
  • 3/4 cup julienne-cut carrots (1/8″-by-1/8″-by-1/2″)
  • 5 cups broccoli florets cut into 1″ pieces
  • 3 cups sliced mushrooms about 8 ounces
  • 1 1/4 cups thinly sliced yellow squash cut squash in half lengthwise before slicing
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1 tablespoon beef bouillon granules
  • 1/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes, oil-packed, minced
  • 1 1/4 cups crushed tomatoes in puree
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh parsley
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried rosemary
  • 1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 pound cooked fresh angel-hair pasta
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese


  • Melt butter in a Dutch oven over medium heat.
  • Sauté onions, carrots and broccoli in the butter for 5 minutes.
  • Add mushrooms, squash and garlic. Sauté 2 minutes.
  • Add all remaining ingredients except pasta and cheese. Stir well.
  • Bring to simmer, then cook for 8 to 10 minutes or until vegetables are tender and flavors are well blended.
  • Place the cooked pasta in a serving dish.
  • Ladle the Capellini primavera on top of the pasta.
  • Sprinkle grated Parmesan cheese on top.


Calories: 814kcal | Carbohydrates: 111g | Protein: 28g | Fat: 30g | Saturated Fat: 17g | Cholesterol: 72mg | Sodium: 885mg | Potassium: 1443mg | Fiber: 11g | Sugar: 14g | Vitamin A: 5960IU | Vitamin C: 130.4mg | Calcium: 282mg | Iron: 4.4mg

About Stephanie Manley

I recreate your favorite restaurant recipes, so you can prepare these dishes at home. I help you cook dinner, and serve up dishes you know your family will love. You can find most of the ingredients for all of the recipes in your local grocery store.

Stephanie is the author of CopyKat.com's Dining Out in the Home, and CopyKat.com's Dining Out in the Home 2.

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Reader Interactions


  1. SammyT

    5 stars
    This recipe can be made vegan (and healthier) by switching olive oil for the butter and leaving out the cheese. This helps the taste of the vegetables shine more.

  2. Liz Nelson

    5 stars
    I loved this recipe! This was so good with all the vegetables this was not a heavy meal! I served for to my girlfriends for girls night out and several of them asked for the recipe! It was a hit! Thank you!

  3. Susan Remus

    I like the recipes and love to experiment with new recipes. Is there a way you can “add” the nutritional information for these recipes?
    As a diabetic, I need this information to determine my food and insulin needs.

    • Stephanie

      I do not offer this feature at this time. My father died due to complications caused by diabetes. I am not a trained nutritionist, and honestly, I don’t feel I am qualified to present this information, because I don’t want to be wrong. I know how important this is, until I can hire a trained nutritionist, or find a program that is highly reliable, I don’t feel I can offer you this information.

    • Sarah Merrill

      Sparkpeople.com has a feature where you can put in the ingredients and amounts of each in a recipe, and put in how many servings the recipe makes, and it will give you detailed nutrition information per serving. I often find recipes that have only the calories, fat, carbs, and sometimes protein, and I use SP to get the full info – I’m severely anemic, so I’m always wanting to know how much iron is in a dish, which is something most websites and magazines leave out!

  4. Cindy S.

    I like to saute chicken tenders bites in olive oil with 2 cloves of garlic and add to pasta. Also are you ready for this. The next day I make rice, heat up the Primavera and I add soy sauce to it, and bam I have Chinese, it is fantastic!

  5. Metal Detecting Finds

    Ooooh, I tried this last night at Olive Garden and was surprised at how fresh and simple it was. Thanks for providing this recipe! I can’t wait to try it!

5 from 3 votes (1 rating without comment)

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