Try our fennel pasta recipe then check out our fennel salad and more fennel recipes. Also discover more quick and easy pasta recipes, including our penne arrabbiata, smoked salmon pasta, vodka pasta and one-pan sausage pasta.

Fennel pasta cook's tip: a mandoline will make short work of shaving the fennel as thinly as you can. When prepping, don't be too quick to discard the green fronds, which can be used as a garnish.

Fennel pasta recipe


  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 large fennel bulb, finely sliced, green fronds reserved to serve
  • 1 long shallot, finely sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 3 tbsp pine nuts
  • 2 tsp thyme leaves
  • 200g short pasta shapes
  • 100ml dry white wine
  • 1 red chilli, finely chopped
  • 30g panko breadcrumbs
  • 1 lemon, zested
  • ½ orange, zested


  • STEP 1

    Warm 2 tbsp of the oil in a large frying pan, then fry the fennel and shallot with a pinch of salt over a medium-low heat for 40-50 mins, stirring regularly, until the fennel turns a deep gold and is very soft, almost like a paste. Keep adding splashes of water or the pasta cooking water if it's starting to stick to the pan. Cook the pasta following pack instructions until al dente. Once the fennel has caramelised, add the garlic, pine nuts and half the thyme, and fry for 1 min.

  • STEP 2

    Pour the wine over the fennel and bring up the heat slightly. Bubble for a few minutes until evaporated while you make the crumb. In another frying pan, heat the remaining oil over a medium heat and fry the remaining thyme and chilli for a few minutes until fragrant. Stir in the breadcrumbs and fold into the spiced oil for a few minutes until they start to turn a little golden. Transfer to a bowl and stir through the citrus zests.

  • STEP 3

    Tip the pasta into the fennel pan, with a splash of the cooking water, and toss well. Serve in warmed bowls with the crumb scattered over the top and the reserved fennel fronds.

Discover more easy fennel recipes.

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