Pasta, Pizza, Risotto, Vegan/Vegetarian

Gluten Free Fusilli with Vegetable Ragu

Nicoletta July 2, 2018

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Gluten Free Fusilli with Vegetable Ragu: a chickpea brown rice pasta topped with a delightful summer vegetable ragu. Hearty, rich and delicious!

Song of the day: Hungry Like The Wolf – Duran Duran.

Gluten free Fusilli with Vegetable Ragu

[This post is sponsored by The Italian Centre Shop. We’ve been compensated but -as always- all opinions are our own.]

I have no problems admitting I have been a spoiled kid. My parents and nonni, especially, did their best to indulge most of my wants and desires.



Take the Sunday lunches at my nonni, for example, since I never liked the typical meat ragu, nonna would make a simple tomato sauce with sweet peas, or a vegetable ragu, to dress her homemade fettuccine. And everybody was good with that. Sometimes she would add an egg that would cook beautifully poaching inside the tomato sauce, and that would be mine alone because for the others there would be meat dishes after the first course. The Thursdays my mom would make her famous gnocchi (because in Rome, there is a thing called Giovedì Gnocchi, Gnocchi Thursday), the sauce would always be my dad’s tomato sauce with celery onion and carrot (and sometimes she would add some diced vegetable, according to what she had).

Gluten free Fusilli with Vegetable Ragu

If you have a chance to try this recipe or any other recipe for vegetarian ragu, you will find that you won’t miss the meat at all. The vegetables in this ragu provide enough substance, texture, and incredible flavor.

Let’s make Gluten Free Fusilli with Vegetable Ragu.

We started things off with garlic and chili flakes sauteing in a pan, then we added onion, carrot, and celery, then the chopped zucchini and eggplant. We let them mingle a bit to get the flavor intensity we wanted, then, like in the real ragu, we splashed the vegetables with some red wine. The good stuff, the one you would actually drink. And usually, it goes something like this: one for the pan, one for the cook, lol. Loreto shares a story of watching the Galloping Gourmet where the glasses of wine flowed freely.

Gluten free Fusilli with Vegetable Ragu

At this point, when the vegetables have softened and the wine dissipated, we added the beautiful Massimo’s tomato sauce and let simmer and amalgamate just for a bit. This tomato sauce you find at The Italian Center Shop in the to-go coolers is made fresh in-house daily with top quality ingredients at an easy-on-your wallet price. It is robust, rich, sweet, and fragrant, and pretty handy when you want to make a quick sauce that packs an intense flavor like that of a ragu that has been stewing for hours.

Gluten free Fusilli with Vegetable Ragu

The picture above says it all. Look at the color and that chunkiness the ragu is known for. I grabbed a wooden spoon and did a taste test, while Loreto was itching to get a piece of bread and do his infamous sauce sandwich. We both in unison gave that sound of appreciation….’mmmmmm’, and the words: ‘that is good!’ escaped our full mouth.

All that was left to do was to boil some pasta, and today, we ventured outside the regular durum wheat pasta, to try some gluten-free fusilli made with chickpeas and brown rice, from one of our favorite brands: Rummo. Nice texture at the touch and it kept the al dente texture well.

Gluten free Fusilli with Vegetable Ragu

We spread some vegetable ragu at the bottom of a pasta platter, then the gluten-free fusilli, then some more ragu on top. A good mix, because in Italy our rule of thumb is to always serve your pasta mixed, and we’re ready for plating.

Gluten Free Fusilli with Vegetable Ragu

We left the grated Grana (or Parmigiano) on the side, so everybody could add it only if they wanted. The fusilli with vegetable ragu are already so flavorful that you can skip it and make the dish vegan and gluten-free. I love the depth of flavor in this dish. The balance of tang and sweetness of the sauce, the meatiness of those chunks of eggplant and zucchini. The gluten-free pasta has this wonderful nuttiness which accentuated the flavor profile and for those that chose a bit of Parmigiano said it added that nice punch that pairs so well with the sauce.

Song of the day: Hungry Like The Wolf – Duran Duran.

Gluten free Fusilli with Vegetable Ragu

Gluten Free Fusilli with Vegetable Ragu

  • Author: Loreto and Nicoletta
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x
  • Category: Pasta, Vegetarian
  • Method: Stove top
  • Cuisine: Italian


  • 3 Tbsp e.v.o. oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 1/2 medium onion chopped fine
  • 1 medium carrot (we used 3 small) diced
  • 1 celery stalk diced
  • 2 small zucchini diced
  • 1/2 eggplant (or 1 small) diced
  • pinch of salt
  • pinch of paprika
  • pinch of black pepper
  • pinch of chili flakes
  • 710 ml (1 big container) Massimo’s Tomato Sauce
  • 2 Tbsp water, to braise
  • splash of red wine
  • 1/4 cup Grana Padano (or Parmigiano), grated, for the top (optional)
  • 300 g gluten-free pasta (we used Rummo chickpea and brown rice fusilli)


  1. Heat up olive oil in a medium cast pot and toss in garlic, and chili flakes.
  2. When the garlic is golden, add in the onion, carrots, and celery, and when nice and soft, add the rest of the diced vegetables and a couple of spoons of water.
  3. Saute for about 15 minutes then add the red wine, and let dissipate.
  4. When the wine has dissolved, pour in the Massimo’s tomato sauce and stir. Break up some basil leaves and sprinkle in. Season with salt and pepper, cover slightly, turn down the heat, and simmer on low for 15 minutes stirring occasionally. Remove the garlic, if you wish.
  5. Just before the sauce is done, bring a pot of salted water to boil, toss in fusilli and stir. Continue cooking for the suggested cooking time on the package, then drain.
  6. When the pasta is done take some of the sauce and spread it onto the bottom of a serving dish. Place cooked pasta on top and then the remaining sauce and stir. Finish with some freshly grated Grana Padano or Parmigiano (optional) and a drizzle of olive oil.
  7. Ready to serve. Enjoy!


You can use any vegetables you like and dice them smaller or bigger according to your preference.

If you omit the grated Parmigiano on top, you have a gluten-free/vegan pasta dish.

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Gluten free Fusilli with Vegetable Ragu

[This post is sponsored by The Italian Centre Shop. We’ve been compensated but -as always- all opinions are our own.]

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  • Avatar
    Reply Nathalie July 3, 2018 at 5:50 am

    Hi Nicoletta! You just made the perfect pasta recipe for me! I’m vegetarian and gluten intolérant and I love italian food. Your vegetable ragu pasta will be on my menu this week!

    • Nicoletta
      Reply Nicoletta July 3, 2018 at 9:34 am

      We’re so happy you’re going to making the vegetable ragu! It is really delicious. Pair it with your gluten-free pasta of choice and you have a great Italian meal. Let us know how you liked it and maybe rate it. Thank you!

  • Avatar
    Reply Jenni July 5, 2018 at 12:39 pm

    I think my tummy audibly growled after seeing this recipe. We eat gluten-free at our house and this looks spectacular.

    • Nicoletta
      Reply Nicoletta July 8, 2018 at 8:55 am

      Thank you! Gluten free pasta has come a long way 🙂

  • Avatar
    Reply Kiki Johnson July 5, 2018 at 1:06 pm

    This is a great looking vegetarian pasta recipe! The splash of wine and grating of cheese sure takes it to the next level!

    • Nicoletta
      Reply Nicoletta July 8, 2018 at 9:01 am

      Thanks! It is a great vegetarian meal everyone will love.

  • Avatar
    Reply Christine July 6, 2018 at 8:36 am

    This sounds like such a perfect recipe for dinner tonight. I love that it’s gluten free, too! YUM!

    • Nicoletta
      Reply Nicoletta July 8, 2018 at 9:02 am

      Great dinner option, for sure. Loads of veggies and a good gluten-free pasta. Thank you!!

  • Avatar
    Reply Veena Azmanov July 6, 2018 at 1:02 pm

    I am still new to the world of gluten-free, mostly for health reasons and pasta would always freak me out but these days, we not only have gluten-free but a few to choose from. So wonderful. Saving this for later.

    • Nicoletta
      Reply Nicoletta July 8, 2018 at 9:03 am

      Yes! Nowadays gluten-free pasta has a great texture and flavor. We still eat our regular pasta anyways… 🙂 Thank you!

  • Avatar
    Reply Saima July 8, 2018 at 9:45 am

    A gluten free pasta made of brown rice and chickpeas and a ragu made from scratch! It sounds wonderful. While I am not off gluten, I don’t like meat in my pasta and your veg ragu recipe has me drooling!

    • Nicoletta
      Reply Nicoletta July 9, 2018 at 8:58 am

      Thank you!! This gluten free pasta was amazing, held the cooking time perfectly and the texture/flavor was spot on. And the vegetable ragu just the right compliment.

  • Avatar
    Reply Leslie July 8, 2018 at 1:23 pm

    I’m drooling over this recipe! I have to use gluten free pasta, so this is perfect for my family. This is going on my Meatless Monday rotation!

    • Nicoletta
      Reply Nicoletta July 9, 2018 at 8:59 am

      Thank you, hope your family will love the simplicity and deliciousness of this pasta dish!

  • Avatar
    Reply Claire July 8, 2018 at 2:46 pm

    Nicoletta, this is just a gorgeous plate of food.
    Pasta is in my soul, so I just love seeing huge plates of it, especially properly mixed with a delicious sauce.

    • Nicoletta
      Reply Nicoletta July 9, 2018 at 9:00 am

      Thank you so much, Claire! The vegetable ragu so so tasty and the pasta al dente and beautiful.

  • Avatar
    Reply Sharon July 8, 2018 at 6:24 pm

    The vegetables all loaded into the delicious sauce has me excited to make it for dinner this week!

    • Nicoletta
      Reply Nicoletta July 9, 2018 at 9:01 am

      That was my favorite part, as well. Tasting a scoop of that sauce 🙂 . Thank you! Enjoy!

  • Avatar
    Reply sri mallya July 8, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    Perfect for dinner. Love that it’s gluten free. Looks so delicious!

    • Nicoletta
      Reply Nicoletta July 9, 2018 at 9:01 am

      Yes, such a great dinner option, easy and quick. Thank you!

  • Avatar
    Reply Jessica (Swanky Recipes) July 8, 2018 at 9:12 pm

    Our garden is full of vegetable and herbs right now and this recipe sounds flavorful to enjoy for dinner. Since it’s summer, the last thing I want to do is spend the entire day in the kitchen cooking a big meal so right now easy and flavorful dishes are the way to my heart!

    • Nicoletta
      Reply Nicoletta July 9, 2018 at 9:02 am

      I hear you, we don’t need to spend hours in the kitchen to make a tasty, healthy and yummy meal.

  • Avatar
    Reply Vaishali July 9, 2018 at 2:47 pm

    Such a refreshing summer pasta. I haven’t tried gluten free pasta yet. I also try to use as many veggies as possible in a dish..:)

  • Avatar
    Reply Nicole July 9, 2018 at 5:13 pm

    What a great way to hid veggies in food! This is something I would do.

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