Cooking Pasta for a Crowd with Recipes

Cooking pasta for a crowd is the most economical and the easiest means to feed a large gathering. Many groups and organizations serve pasta dinners for fundraiser events because of these reasons. Pasta ideas are well received by communities for their delicious flavor and a change to socialize with their neighbors; and with this, much money can be raised for worthwhile charities.

Lasagna for a Crowd

If you are having another type of event, you might feel that cooking pasta for a crowd is not suitable as the entrée. In this case don’t forget that pasta also acts as a great filler in many recipes. All types of pasta can be added to hot and cold dishes to make delicious meal extenders at a nominal cost. The following are some pasta ideas when cooking pasta for a crowd.

FOR HOT DISHES add with freshly cooked and drained hot pasta.

  • Sauté fresh minced garlic in olive oil, add chopped sun dried tomatoes, sliced black olives. Toss with pasta; add black pepper and crumbled goat cheese.

  • Sautee scallions in butter; blend in sour cream and cottage cheese. Add crumbled cooked bacon and poppy seeds. Blend in with cooked pasta.

  • Small chopped chicken breast cooked in butter, toss with pasta and add grated Parmesan cheese and peas. Toss to blend.

  • Cook chicken livers and onions in butter. Add sherry, crumbled cooked bacon, diced red bell pepper and minced parsley. Toss with pasta.

  • Sauté fresh asparagus pieces and slivered prosciutto in butter. Add grated Parmesan cheese and heavy cream. Serve with pasta.

  • Heat heavy cream. Add gorgonzola cheese, salt, pepper and nutmeg. Toss pasta with butter and add sauce.

  • Heat slivered salmon in butter. Add brandy and pepper. Add heavy cream, nutmeg and Parmesan cheese. Toss with pasta.

  • Blend walnuts, pine nuts, marjoram in olive oil. Add heavy cream, grated Parmesan cheese, black pepper and salt. Blend into hot butter tossed pasta.

  • Add grated gruyere, Parmesan, Fontina cheeses in melted butter. Add salt and pepper and stir into cooked pasta.

  • Sauté minced onion and garlic in olive oil; stir in tomato paste and season with salt and pepper. Remove from heat and stir in ricotta cheese; toss with buttered pasta.

  • Sautee minced garlic in olive oil. Add crumbled goat cheese, fresh chopped basil and pepper. Toss with pasta.

  • Combine black olives, Feta cheese, scallions, chopped tomatoes in olive oil; season with black pepper. Toss with pasta.
  • Sautee shallots, mushrooms and pine nuts in butter; add heavy cream and brandy. Toss with pasta.

  • Sautee spinach and minced garlic in olive oil; add fresh squeezed lemon and toss with hot pasta.

  • Sautee shrimp, pesto sauce, heavy cream; toss with fresh spinach, pasta and Parmesan.

When cooking pasta for a crowd try some COLD FILLER DISHES. Cook and drain pasta, rinse in cold water and drain again. Toss with a little olive oil and let cool.

  • Combine small cuts of fresh carrots, fresh zucchini, blanched broccoli, sesame oil, lemon juice, small amount of sugar and chopped peanuts. Toss with cold pasta.

  • Combine chopped fresh tomatoes, chopped fresh basil, chopped fresh Mozzarella cheese and olive oil. Toss with cold pasta.

  • Combine cubes of fresh tomatoes and cubes of avocado in olive oil and a little balsamic vinegar.

  • Sautee fresh garlic in vegetable oil and a little vinegar; add dry mustard and Parmesan cheese. Toss with cold pasta and refrigerate.

  • Pesto sauce is good alone with cooked pasta, either hot or cold. If serving cold chop in some fresh tomatoes.

  • Toss in with cooked cold pasta some canned tuna, sliced black olives, sliced green olives and vinaigrette dressing.

  • Sautee spinach in olive oil with fresh minced garlic, roasted red peppers and parmesan cheese. Let cool before tossing with cold pasta.

  • Combine and sauté a few minutes stir fry vegetables in sesame oil and a little soy sauce. Let cool and toss with cold pasta.

All of these combinations are great when cooking pasta for a crowd!


Lasagna for a Crowd

Cooking pasta for a crowd gives you many choices. This moist lasagna recipe makes 24 to 30 large servings. If you are serving a lot of other foods it will serve more people.

  • 2 Pounds dried lasagna noodles
  • 4 Cups mozzarella cheese
  • Oil spray for pan


  • 2 Pounds ground beef
  • 2 Medium finely chopped onions
  • 1 finely chopped green bell pepper
  • 2 Carrots peeled and finely chopped
  • 4 Cups canned tomatoes
  • 1 Can tomato paste
  • 1 Can tomato sauce
  • 2 Cups water
  • 3 Cloves minced garlic
  • 1 Tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 Tablespoon dried basil
  • 1 Tablespoon salt
  • 1 Tablespoon dried parsley

Cheese mixture:

  • 6 Cups cottage cheese
  • 4 Eggs
  • 1 Cup bread crumbs
  • 1 Cup dried Parmesan cheese
  • 2 Teaspoons salt

Make sauce first. Cook ground beef until slightly cooked stirring to separate into fine particles. Add the tomatoes, sauce, p0aste, finely chopped onion, bell pepper and carrots. Add oregano, basil, parsley, garlic, salt and pepper. Add water and bring mixture to a boil. Cover and set on low temperature while preparing lasagna noodles and cheese mixture.

Cook lasagna noodles according to package directions “al dente”. I add olive oil to water to keep the noodles from sticking together. Drain in colander.

Combine and beat together with mixer cottage cheese, eggs, bread crumbs, parmesan cheese and salt.


To Assemble: Spray a large roasting pan with cooking oil.

Spoon prepared sauce over bottom of pan.

Make a layer of cooked noodles OVERLAPPING and covering the entire bottom of pan.

Spread a layer of the cheese mixture over the noodles.

Next spread a layer of the sauce over the cheese mixture.

Continue layering like this until all ingredients are used.

NOTE: End with remaining noodles on top (I double layered remaining noodles on top) and then cover with remaining sauce.

Cover pan with foil and place in oven for 40 minutes.

Take out of oven, remove foil and sprinkle mozzarella cheese over top.

Return pan to oven (uncovered) for about 20 minutes or until it turn golden brown.

Prepping for Lasagna for a Crowd
First Layer of Sauce for Lasagna for a Crowd
First Layer of Noodle for Lasagna for a Crowd
First Layer of Cheese for Lasagna for a Crowd
Another Layer of Sauce
Topping Lasagna for a Crowd with Shredded Cheese


Spaghetti and Meatballs for a Crowd

When cooking pasta for a crowd, this recipe will please everyone. The meatballs and sauce can be prepared ahead and refrigerated; simply heat before serving with spaghetti. 

NOTE: This recipe with 4 POUNDS dried spaghetti cooked will serve at least 40 people; add more spaghetti and you can extend the number of servings.


  • 3 Pounds pork neck bones
  • 5 Pounds country style pork ribs.
  • Olive oil
  • 2 Tablespoons parsley flakes
  • ½ Teaspoon pepper
  • 2 Teaspoons garlic powder
  • 2 Tablespoons dried basil
  • 2 Bay Leaves
  • 11 Quarts tomato sauce
  • 2 Quarts water
  • 3 Cups dried Parmesan cheese

Brown all pork in oil in a large stock pot.

Add remaining ingredients EXCEPT Parmesan cheese.

Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer for 2 to 3 hours.

Remove meat and bones from pot to a platter.

Remove meat from bones and chop very fine; return meat to the pot.

Check seasoning to taste; add salt or additional spices to taste.

Add browned meatballs to pot and simmer until meatballs are done.

Remove bay leaves; serve meatballs and sauce over cooked spaghetti.


  • 6 Pounds ground beef round
  • 3 Pounds ground pork
  • 3 Cups grated dry Parmesan cheese
  • 2 Cups bread crumbs
  • 2 Tablespoons Italian seasoning
  • 6 Beaten eggs
  • 1 Tablespoon garlic powder
  • 2 Tablespoons dried parsley
  • 1 Tablespoon salt
  • ½ Teaspoon black pepper
  • Oil for frying

Combine all the meatball ingredients and blend thoroughly with clean hands; shape into balls.

NOTE: Use ¼ cup to measure meatball size (about 2 ounces). When cooking meatballs and pasta for a crowd 2 of these meatballs is a typical serving. For children you can cut this to 1 meatball per serving and for larger eaters increase the meatballs to 3.

Deep fry balls in hot oil until outside is brown.

Drop balls in hot spaghetti sauce; simmer until done about 30 minutes.

TUNA CASSEROLE Cooking pasta for a crowd recipe

Cooking pasta for a crowd is perfect for any gathering you will be attending. This dish is great for carry ins.

  • 3 Gallons of water
  • 3 Tablespoons salt
  • 3 Pounds egg noodles
  • 3 Quarts cream of mushroom soup
  • 2 Quarts whole milk
  • 7 Pounds canned tuna
  • 1 Pound dry bread crumbs
  • 1 Pound melted butter
  • 1 Cup shredded Cheddar cheese
  • Paprika

Bring water to a boil and add salt; Drop noodles into boiling water.

Cook noodles until tender; drain, place in large pan and toss noodles with half of melted butter.

Combine soup and milk in a large bowl until blended.

Drain tuna well and break into little pieces in the mushroom mixture.

Combine tuna and mushroom mixture with buttered noodles and mix well.

Divide mixture in half and place in two 12 X 20 X 2 inch pans.

Mix bread crumbs, remaining melted butter and paprika to make topping.

Spread topping evenly on the two casseroles and bake at 350F degrees for about 45 minutes.

Makes about 50 servings.

CHICKEN CASSEROLE FOR A CROWD Serves 20 if cooking pasta for a crowd

Reunions, team parties and charity functions are perfect for cooking pasta for a crowd and this dish is always at the top of my list.

  • 10 Boneless chicken breasts
  • 48 Ounces spaghetti (break spaghetti sticks in 3 pieces)
  • 2 Cups finely chopped onions
  • 2 Cups finely chopped celery
  • 2 Large finely chopped green bell peppers
  • 2 Cups sliced fresh mushrooms
  • 1 Cup butter
  • ½ Cup flour
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 16 Ounces cheese spread
  • 16 Ounces jalapeno cheese spread
  • 2 Small jars diced pimento
  • 8 Cups milk
  • 1 Cup shredded Cheddar cheese for topping

Boil chicken until tender, remove chicken from bones, cool and dice; save broth.

Add enough water to broth to cook spaghetti; when tender drain and toss with butter.

Sauté onion, celery, green peppers and mushrooms in 1 cup butter until tender; add flour salt and pepper stirring until flour disappears.

Add cheese spreads and pimentos and stir until cheese melts; add milk and stir until blended.

Add chicken and spaghetti; divide into 2 baking pans; top with shredded cheese.

Cover and bake 1 hour at 350F degrees.

MACARONI AND CHEESE RECIPE If cooking pasta for a crowd serves 10

If you have decided to on cooking pasta for a crowd this recipe is popular among kids, teenagers and adults as well!

  • 1 Package macaroni and cheese
  • ½ Cup sliced celery
  • ¼ Cup chopped onion
  • 1 Can tomato paste
  • ½ Cup water
  • ½ Teaspoon salt
  • 1 Pound ground beef
  • ¼ Cup chopped pepper, hot or sweet
  • 1 Can whole kernel corn
  • Black pepper

Prepare macaroni and cheese as directed on package.

Brown meat with pepper, celery, onion, and cook until tender.

Add corn, tomato paste, water, salt and pepper.

Combine meat mixture with macaroni and cheese; mix well and bake 20 minutes at 350F degrees.

Serves 10

› Pasta Recipes

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