Margherita Frittata

Margherita Frittata, which is called Frittata di Pasta alla Margherita in Italian, is a typical Neapolitan dish which uses leftover pasta. The idea of not throwing away food that can be recycled into a new meal has been passed down for years  from Italian grandmothers and great grandmothers to each new generation. Sometimes the simplest of meals can be the best and this is one of them.

If you cook a large quantity of spaghetti and have a little left over, never throw it away…save it. The frittata is so good that you may want to cook extra pasta just so you can prepare this recipe. Having some leftover pasta aglio e olio from the previous evening’s dinner, I knew I had to make this well know Italian egg dish. All I needed to do was go out to the garden and pick some ripe cherry tomatoes and basil.

Margherita Frittata
Margherita Frittata

This is not really a recipe but rather a technique that allows you to make a meal with what you find in your refrigerator and pantry. I’m giving you approximate amounts that will serve 2 people for a main course or 4 for an appetizer. Since you will be using leftover pasta and whatever you may have on hand, your quantities may be different.

 Margherita Frittata – Frittata di Pasta alla Margherita

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

  • 4 – 5 eggs
  • 1/4 tsp. each of salt, pepper, garlic powder and onion powder or however much you like to use
  • 1 – 2 Tbsp. of grated pecorino or parmesan cheese
  • 1 – 2 Tbsp. of flour, I used Wondra* (optional)
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 – 2 c. of leftover spaghetti that is cooked al dente**
  • 10 cherry tomatoes, quartered, (I used Sweet 100’s and Sun Gold) seasoned with a little olive oil, salt and pepper
  • a handful of fresh basil, coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 of a small ball of fresh mozzarella, cubed
  • chopped basil or parsley for garnish

* I read that the trick to fluffy eggs is to sprinkle in a little flour before cooking.

** If you are one of those people who never have leftover pasta, you can cook spaghetti specifically for this dish then toss it with a little olive oil and let it cool slightly.

Whisk the eggs with the seasonings, grated cheese and the flour until well blended. Heat the olive oil in a 10 inch nonstick ovenproof skillet, swirling to coat the sides. When hot, add the egg mixture and rotate the pan to form a bottom. Add the pasta, top with the tomatoes, basil and cubed mozzarella. Place in the oven for approximately 5 – 10 minutes or until the eggs are cooked. (This depends on how many eggs and how much pasta you are using.) You can check for doneness with a toothpick inserted into the middle. Remove the frittata from the oven and let rest for 5 minutes. Cut into wedges and then serve.

****

Marcella Hazen, a wonderful authority on Italian food, had a recipe for a delicious spaghetti frittata in one of her cookbooks that she prepared with a larger ratio of pasta to egg and was much thicker. Her classic dish was just made with pasta, eggs and cheese.

There are many options when preparing what might be called an Italian omelet. If you prefer, you can cook the frittata covered on the stove top and finished under the broiler. Whether you want a thin frittata like I prepared or a thick one that is mostly pasta like Marcella’s, your options are wide open as to what you put in your frittata. Remember, Italian grandmothers made this dish to feed their families with bits of food that were leftover from a previous meal.

My Margherita frittata can be served either hot or cold as an appetizer, served with a mixed green salad for a light lunch or dinner, or even stuffed into crusty bread to take along on a picnic. I’ve been talking about how good this frittata was for days. Try it, I believe you will like it.

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205 thoughts on “Margherita Frittata

  1. That sounds delicious and very different to the one I had last night – no pasta.
    I think frittata must be a universal method of using up leftovers and therefore I suspect anything goes… which does make me wonder at the unusual possibilities 😉

    1. Hi Mad Dog, A frittata is such a good dish to add what ever bits you might have in your fridge. I need to make a tortilla soon…love potatoes and eggs together. I know that is one of your favorite egg dishes. 🙂

  2. I always have leftover pasta. It’s hard to judge how much to cook. This looks so delicious and I’m happy to be reminded how to use it.

    Best,
    Bonnie

    1. Hi Bonnie, I know what you mean. I’ll put pasta in the pot, look at it and add a little more thinking perhaps it was not enough when in fact I had plenty to begin with. 😀 This frittata is a get way to use the leftover pasta.

  3. This looks so delicious, Karen! I love frittatas, and this one is right up my alley… You put me over the edge when you said stuff it into a crusty bread to take along on a picnic!
    Funny how our grandmothers would use the leftovers to stretch the meal.. And how they are sometimes viewed in a negative manner with some people(not the grandmothers! The leftovers, silly!!)… But to me, something like this is a most perfect meal… I could eat leftovers every day, especially like this. Awesome post! Delicious frittata! ❤️

    1. Thank you Prudy, for your sweet compliment…I’m glad you enjoyed the post. I think a frittata makes for good picnic food as it is as good cold as it is hot. I totally agree with you about leftovers. It is fun to make a new meal out of perfectly good food that some would people throw out. They don’t know what they are missing. 😀

  4. This is a marvelous idea Karen! My grandmother was Italian and she created the most delicious meals and often they were just the way you described – great memories!

    1. Thank you Meg, I’m glad you like the idea of using left over pasta in a frittata. It’s nice to know that the post reminded you of your grandmother and her good cooking. 🙂

    1. I appreciate your kind words, Norma. This is such an easy dish to put together and so good. I hope your kitchen remodel is almost done.

  5. I know this dish, but have never made or even tasted it. I really should make this — I love frittatas and I love pasta, so I know I’d love their marriage. I’m one of those that never has leftover pasta, so I’d have to make some just for this dish — but that’s easy! I should try flour in the eggs sometimes. I usually add some cream, which also seems to help make the eggs fluffy. Really interesting recipe — thanks.

    1. Hi John, Since you enjoy frittatas, the next time you are making spaghetti make a little extra. I believe you will really enjoy this dish. I’ve added cream to eggs as well…the flour worked real good in this recipe.

  6. I’m with you when it comes to recycling food. Nothing should go to waste as long as it’s still edible! Frittatas are often a dinner for us when there are bits and pieces to be used and I need a break from cooking.

    1. Hi Linda, When you spend time creating a good dish and some is left, it is a shame to throw it away. I like to try and create a new dish…I’m glad you feel the same way. A frittata is a great way to use some of those leftover ingredients combined with some new ones.

    1. Hi Monique, I like frittatas but with the added pasta, fresh garden tomatoes, basil and mozzarella…it was just as you said, delicioso. 🙂 Thank you for your nice compliment.

    1. Hi Ksenia, I’m happy to know you like the idea. I love taking something good that is left over from a previous meal and creating a totally new dish with it. I hope you and your family will enjoy the frittata.

    1. Hi Angie, I agree that the frittata does look just like its pizza namesake…the flavors are there too but a little less carbs. 🙂

  7. Sounds wonderful, Karen. We need to work on leaving some spaghetti in that pot… usually, it is so tasty that we eat it all! This recipe is a great incentive.

    1. Hi David, I think we are all so tempted to eat the last bit of something even though we may be stuffed. In the case of some left over pasta, this is a great use to create a delicious new meal. I’m happy if I can get you to save a little pasta for this dish…I think you will be happy with the results.

    1. Hi Debbie, I just saw that somehow my answer didn’t get posted…sorry. I think this is a recipe where you won’t miss having meat at all. I hope you will enjoy it. 🙂

    1. Thank you Mary, for your nice compliment…I’m glad you like the recipe. It is a shame to throw good food away when it can be used to create a delicious new meal.

  8. I’m going to send your beautiful frittata recipe on to my son Josh. He makes some of the most creative egg breakfasts every morning and throws in whatever leftovers he has available. He will definitely love this!

  9. I’m sure I will like it! It looks fantastic, Karen! This is my kind of food … simple and versatile. It can be made ahead of time and served in different occasions and always, always delicious no matter what!

    1. I appreciate your nice compliment, Francesca. Simple dishes like this let all the flavors shine…I’m glad you agree. Thank you!

    1. Hi Betsy, A frittata made with leftover pasta is very popular in Italy. I hope you give it a try, I believe you will really like it. Thank you for your nice compliment.

    1. Thank you Rachel, I’m glad you like the looks of the frittata. Next time you cook spaghetti, just cook a little extra for this dish. You will be happy you did.

  10. Just learned something new! Pasta in frittata’s! I’ve never heard of it before Karen. What a great idea. We always have leftover pasta and I now I know another way to enjoy it “second time around”! This is a perfect combination I might add…

    1. Hi Seana, Adding pasta to a frittata is a very common dish in Italy. I’m glad you like the recipe, it is a nice way of using a little bit of left over pasta.

  11. This looks very pretty and summery (and delicious, too). I’m one of those people who hates getting rid of leftovers, and since I always end up making more pasta than I can eat, this sounds like a great thing to try out.

    1. Thank you Jaleh, for your nice compliment. I’m happy to know that you like the recipe using a little left over pasta with fresh summer tomatoes to create a delicious new meal.

  12. What a visually splendid frittata, Karen. Love it! I have always liked Margherita-style pizza, so I am certain I will love this.

    1. Thank you for your nice compliment, Vicki…I’m happy that you like the looks of the frittata. I know you always have access to fresh tomatoes so I do think you will enjoy this dish.

  13. Good Evening Karen, Oh my word, I am certainly one of those people who always cooks too much spaghetti…. I know I should know better, but now I have an answer when my husband asks me why I have cooked so much. Usually we have it cold, tossed in olive oil, some sun dried tomatoes and parmesan cheese…. but now I will be able to turn the left over spaghetti into a Margherita frittata.
    Thank you for the idea.
    Best wishes
    Daphne

    1. Hi Daphne, Yes…next time your husband mentions that you have cooked too much pasta, just tell him your planning ahead for another good meal. 😀 I’m glad you like the idea, thank you!

  14. So beautiful: it totally makes me want to plan my cooking in a way that I am “stuck” with left-over to make this 🙂

    1. Thank you Afra, I agree that the frittata is pretty with the red and yellow tomatoes. Yes, do plan ahead…cook more so that you can be stuck with a little extra pasta. 😀

  15. My dad and I love this but I remember when I was younger my mum refused to make it for us as she wasn’t a fan – now you’ve reminded me I need to make it for my Dad! Yours looks perfect 🙂

  16. What a clever way to make use of leftover pasta! Plus we have an egg glut at the moment, so we’re always looking for recipes – thank you! Although I must say, I did click on your email link with the thought that tequila would be involved.. 😉

    1. Hi Judi, I’m glad you like the recipe, thank you. I think you will be happy with the results of putting some pasta in your next frittata.

  17. If it tastes half as good as it looks this will be added to my regular menu of dishes! I didn’t know the trick of adding flour to the eggs for extra fluffiness – a good tip to know.

    1. Hi Sarah, I think you will definitely enjoy the taste of this frittata. I’d recently learned about the trick of adding a sprinkle of flour to the egg…I’m happy to pass it on to others.

    1. Hi Boleyn, This is indeed a practice dish. I think it is always good when we can find a good way to use some of our leftovers from a previous meal. I’m glad you like the frittata, thank you. 🙂

  18. That does, of course, look delicious Karen. It’s everything I love about Italian food. I would genuinely go for something like this over a fillet steak. And I love fillet steak.

  19. Hi Karen. I love frittata as it’s something that can feed a lot, by just using all the left overs in the fridge. never tried it with left over pasta. It’s mainly cold potatoes I use., but why not ! I always cook too much pasta.Looks like it will be tomorrows lunch with a salad. As I have all the ingredients in the fridge, just waiting to be made into your Margherita Frittata.
    Thank you so much for your kind comment on my Lavender post. I’m doing well thank you. Enjoying family & friends visiting us. Looking forward to the end of the summer season, when I should hopefully be able to get my hands in the earth again, after my surgery..

    1. Hi Barbara, I’m happy to know that you are doing so well after your surgery. I know you will be very happy when you can get back into your garden. I’m glad that you had everything to make this dish, I hope you enjoyed it. 🙂

      1. We certainly did enjoy the Frittata, and we had an unexpected visitor so it was easy to say ‘would you like to join us for lunch’ So naturally your recipe has been passed on to be eaten in another house in France..

  20. Karen this dish looks and sounds so appetising… and nourishing too! Love it.

    1. Hi Donna, The fresh red and yellow cherry tomatoes does make this a colorful frittata. I hope your husband will enjoy it someday. Thank you!

    1. Thank you Cheri, I’m glad you like the photo. This wasn’t a planned post as it was just a quickly put together meal. It was a last minute decision to take a photo and share the frittata with my readers. 😀

  21. The picture reminds me of a rustic pizza. I’ve been grilling a lot of pizza this summer and throwing whatever I find lying around at home on top of it. Sometimes some of the most creative dishes come from what people just have lying around. Nice work!

  22. My sister introduced me to this Italian type frittata when my kids were young. Thank you for the reminder…I know I’d love your Margherita version. It looks sublime!!!!

    1. Hi Liz, I’m glad that I could remind you about frittatas. They are a quick and easy meal to prepare. This version was especially good with the fresh tomatoes and basil from my garden. Thank you for your nice compliment.

  23. I do not know whether I would be a ‘foodie’ were it not for Marcella Hazan or Claudia Rodin . . . .worshipped both and have all their books methinks! Was twice booked into Marcella’s Bologna’s school and fate decreed otherwise . . . oh, I wish!! Great dish which can be tweaked so many ways . . . . since I have never bought onion or garlic powder, I guess that is one way 😉 ! Must remember to put on menu!!!!!!

    1. Hi Eha, We do have some wonderful people to thank for when we all started out cooking. Marcella and Claudia were two women that contributed much to our learning how to prepare good food. As much as I use fresh onion and garlic, I still like to use the powders. Sometimes fresh is just a little too strong whereas the powders can just enhance the taste subtly. Sometimes I will use both fresh and powder. 🙂

    1. Thank you for your nice compliment Fae. This frittata has a lot going for it…especially when you can use some of summer’s fresh tomatoes. 🙂

    1. Hi Lindy, I think you will enjoy the addition of pasta to your next frittata…especially if you add a little fresh tomato to the mix. Thank you for your nice compliment. 🙂

  24. Oh yay! I have leftover pasta, eggs, mozzarella and cherry tomatoes! Thanks for the great idea. I haven’t made a frittata in quite awhile. This sounds great!

    1. Hi Laura…it sounds like I had good timing with this post. I hope you and your family will enjoy the frittata as much as we did. Thank you.

  25. How wonderful! I also enjoy using leftover pasta for various dishes. Nothing beats leftover night. Even better is being able to add garden fresh tomatoes!

  26. If my frittata looks half as good as yours, then I will be happy! And oh Karen, I am so guilty of throwing away pasta and I do feel terrible about it, I hate wasting stuff! I justify it by saying…..well, it’s the cheapest part of the meal anyhow so at least I’m not throwing away veggies or meat. But waste not, you’ve inspired me to put a new spin on my pasta and waste not. Thanks =)

    1. Hi Laura, I agree with you about pasta being inexpensive but it is a great addition to a frittata so don’t throw the little bit away anymore. I’m glad you like the idea and I know yours will look just as good as mine when you prepare it. 😀

    1. Thank you for your nice compliment, Kelli. This is a dish that is also good at room temperature so you could sit and look at it all you wanted and I would still be good. 😀

    1. Thank you Kathryn, for the nice compliment. I do think you will enjoy the addition of a little pasta to a frittata…it goes so well in the dish.

    1. Hi Larry, I’m glad that you agree with me about using leftover pasta in egg dishes. The eggs cook so quickly that the pasta doesn’t turn to mush. Thank you for your nice compliment.

    1. Hi Conor, I’m a great kitchen recycler. 😀 It is fun to take a bit of good food left from one meal and create a totally different meal out of it the next day. Thank you for your compliment.

  27. Now I’m kicking myself for throwing out the pasta left from entertaining last Saturday night! This sounds wonderful and something I’d love to try.

    1. Hi Susan, There is always next time but I’m glad you like the idea. I think you will enjoy the frittata and appreciate your nice compliment.

  28. Sounds wonderful but then again, how can you go wrong with tomatoes, fresh mozzarella and basil 🙂

    1. Hi Chris, I totally agree with you. It is the time of year when there are so many great ingredients we can use in cooking. The frittata was very good, I’m glad you like it.

    1. Hi Jessica, I’m glad you like the idea…I think this is a great way to make use of leftover pasta. When you add fresh tomatoes, basil and mozzarella, I think it turns our terrific. Thank you for your nice compliment.

  29. That looks so good! I always feel like that little bit of pasta leftover just goes to waste in my fridge until I throw it out. I will definitely remember this recipe. What a wonderful idea and perfect for all these summer tomatoes coming into season!

    1. Hi Daisy, I’m glad you like the idea of the Margherita frittata. You are right, the abundance of ripening cherry tomatoes in my garden inspired this recipe and it is delicious.

  30. My husband was just telling me how his mother would fry up leftover spaghetti, which he absolutely loved. I know he would think your Margherita Frittata is fantastic! I’ll be making this soon!

    1. Hi Sandra, I hope you and your husband enjoy the frittata as much as we did. I haven’t had fried spaghetti but I panfry egg noodles in butter and they are great. 🙂

  31. It’s been so hot lately and we’ve been busy, so cooking hasn’t been a favorite pastime! This recipe fits the bill for an easy summer dinner. I have so many wonderful tomatoes right now and I was actually thinking of making a Margherita pizza. This would be easier in many ways and would go a lot further. I love leftovers for work. Perfect timing, Karen. I have all the ingredients. I really did need a suggestion and you’ve given it to me once again. 🙂

    1. Hi Debra, This is a great meal for busy days like you are having. The frittata takes almost no time to put together and is delicious. I’m glad I could help with an idea for a quick summer meal…thank you for your nice comment as always.

  32. I love how Italians hate to throw anything away and how they turn their leftovers not into ‘leftovers’ but into a magnificent dish. And this is only more wonderful with your homegrown produce xx

    1. Hi Charlie, I agree…waste not, want not has given us some very good dishes. Being able to use ripe tomatoes and sweet basil from the garden really added to the overall flavor of this dish. 🙂

  33. What a very useful recipe, Karen. I do throw leftover pasta out because it doesn’t keep well. (unless my son is at home and then he just gets a huge mountain of it on his plate) 🙂

    1. Hi Gloria, I’m so sorry that you have been having problems leaving comments and I appreciate that you didn’t give up. That was so nice of you…thank you for your compliment. 😀

    1. Hi Eva, I’m glad you agree…when you have a little bit of something good, it is nice to create a new meal with it. Thank you for your nice compliment.

  34. love, love, love this…the leftover spaghetti is such a good idea Karen. With our bumper crop of Tennessee tomatoes I will jump right on this one! Big thanks for such an easy recipe.

    1. Thank you so much for your nice compliment, Teresa. Yes, not only is this an easy recipe…I think you will find it delicious when you have some fresh summer tomatoes. Enjoy!

  35. Wow Karen, such a nice frittata, I love the addition of the pasta…looks beautiful…delicious meal!
    Hope you are enjoying your week dear 😀

    1. Thank you for your compliment and wish Juliana. A bit of pasta adds so much to the frittata…I’m glad you like the dish. It has been a nice week, I hope yours has been as well.

  36. Oh my goodness Karen, this spoke to me… called my name I say!! Absolutely mouth watering pics and recipe! I am loving the addition of Wondra, I have this recipe on my “make now or die” list!! ♥

  37. This looks delicious, Karen! My husband was born in Italy, and his mother was the same–she always saved uneaten pasta and made a fritatta the next morning with it! Our favorite frittata is made with spaghetti that was mixed with a good quality ricotta as it’s sauce. The leftover ricotta pasta makes a divine frittata! On occasion, I will add some chopped leftover vegetables and soem chopped procuitto to it. It can be a dinner entree that way!

    1. Hi Pat, It is nice to know that you confirm the fact that spaghetti frittata is indeed an Italian tradition. Your version with ricotta sounds great…I’ll definitely being trying it soon.

    1. Hi Lea Ann, I’m happy that I can provide you with another way to use your left over pasta. I believe you will enjoy the frittata. 🙂

  38. Not throwing away perfectly fine leftover food is always a good idea and also good lesson to teach the kids. Turning the leftover into another delicious dish like Frittata is even better. This is nice post. Thank you, Karen. 🙂

    1. Hi Ray, I’m happy to know that you enjoyed the post, thank you! I’m glad you agree with me about finding new ways to use the leftover bits of the nice meals we create. You are right about passing this thinking on to our children…I totally agree. 😀

    1. Hi Donna, I agree with you about this being good any time of the day. We had it for dinner with a salad…enjoy! My cherry tomatoes are ripe but my large slicing tomatoes need a little longer to ripen as well.

  39. A glorious frittata Karen. I say this every time I see a frittata recipe – I love them, but I always forget about them. I should stick a note in the fridge somewhere that just says frittata as a reminder for those days I’m uninspired and rummaging around in the veggie drawer. 🙂 This looks delicious!!

    1. You comment gave me a chuckle, Kristy. I think you definitely need to put a note on the fridge as I believe you would enjoy a frittata. 🙂

  40. We eat a lot of frittatas around here [lots of chickens laying lovely eggs for us!], and I think I will put this one on the list of new ones to try – just have to wait for a few ripe tomatoes, which are very slow to come this year! Thanks Karen!

    1. Hi Donalyn, I know how good a fritatta is when it is made with fresh eggs. We are lucky enough to have a friend who gives us eggs from their hens. My large tomatoes are just now starting to ripen but I’ve had cherry tomatoes for a couple of weeks. I hope you will enjoy the recipe when you get a chance to try it.

  41. Just recently, I made a frittata with pasta for the first time. I thought it sounded kind of unusual, but I really liked it. Yours looks lovely.

    1. Hi Beth, I’m glad to know that you have tried using pasta in a frittata…it is a very common dish in Italy. Thank you for your nice compliment, I’m happy to know you like my version.

  42. Now that’s a beautiful creation Karen & one I just never would have thought of. I don’t often have leftover pasta but now I’ll know what to do with any. That’s an interesting trick with the flour for fluffing an egg. Will have to try that next time.

    1. Thank you Diane, The frittata was every bit as good as it looks. Perhaps next time you are cooking spaghetti, you can make a little extra and have a frittata the next day. 🙂

  43. What an amazing idea! I have never heard about this dish, but it makes so much sense and, most of all, looks fantastic. I will certainly remember your frittata next time I have pasta leftovers.

  44. I will be making this. As a vegetarian, I’m always looking for quick, easy dishes to prepare. And I never throw out food (my German grandmother taught me that!)

    1. Hi Darlene, I think perhaps all our grandmothers thought the same way and I’m the same way. I hope you will enjoy the frittata, my husband and I think it is delicious. 🙂

  45. I couldn’t agree more. With a few eggs and some leftovers in the fridge, there is always a meal ready to cook. I love this frittata!

  46. My mom used to make something very similar to this as it is a very frugal dish and great for those pasta leftovers. However yours is made with garden fresh tomatoes and herbs and I bet it was just so delicious! I would do anything to bite into a garden fresh heirloom tomato again… HK woes….Take Care. BAM

    1. Hi Bobbie, I glad to know that your mother used to make a similar dish. You are right, the heirloom tomatoes are wonderful…wish I could send some your way.

  47. Oh, this sounds yummy. I love to make pizza Margherita at this time of year, and I make frittatas all the time — so I don’t know why it never occurred to me to combine the two ideas. I will be trying this out soon!

  48. Your garden looks lovely, Karen! So nice to find a new kindred spirit in the blogging world. And don’t you just love those black cherry tomatoes – they are one of my favorites. Now I am craving a leftover linguine frittata!

    1. Hi Barbara, I appreciate your stopping by for a visit. One of the nicest things about blogging is meeting kindred spirits and it does seem like we have a lot in common. I’m glad you enjoyed the post and recipe…thank you!

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