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Sheet Pan Pasta Bake with Mozzarella and Lemon

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This vegetarian sheet pan pasta recipe is a fun take on a classic pasta bake! Made with orzo, fresh mozzarella, spices, and a hint of fresh lemon for a burst of flavor.

This one-pan pasta dinner is perfect for a quick meal on the table fast, and also for easy clean up after.

sheet pan pasta lemon mozzarella cheese vegetarian one pan dinners cook pasta in the oven easy orzo recipes

Sometimes you see a new way of cooking pasta and think, ‘Wow, I have to try that!’  I love the idea of sheet pan meals.  Everything cooks in the oven while you have  time to multitask other things.  But with an easy weeknight pasta?  It turns out perfectly!  Make sure you have a tall enough sheet pan and  you can cook pasta in the oven.  No stovetop cooking required.

This sheet pan pasta came out amazing!  It smelled fantastic while it was cooking (thank  you roasted garlic).  And looked gorgeous coming out of the oven with melted cheese.  The cheese was so melty and gooey, it pulled in long strings when I tried to dish up.  It actually got all over the spoon and our bowl, and I found a little cheese strand on one of the cats after dinner (sorry Onyx)!

This Sheet Pan Pasta Recipe Is:

  • Bright
  • Fresh
  • Garlicky
  • Loaded with Tomatoes and Basil
  • Flavorful
  • Vegetarian and can be made Gluten free (with GF pasta!)
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What’s In This Sheet Pan Pasta with Mozzarella?

See the recipe card below for full ingredient amounts and recipe instructions!

  • Basil, Tomatoes, Lemons, Garlic
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Fresh garlic cloves
  • Aged Balsamic Vinegar: I use this aged balsamic vinegar glaze because it has a really great flavor and a thick consistency perfect for drizzling!
  • Italian Seasoning Blend: usually has thyme, basil, rosemary, parsley, etc. I love this bright and flavorful Italian season mix which brings this amazing dish to life.
  • Salt & Pepper
  • Orzo Pasta: I use regular orzo pasta, or another small pasta shape.  But you can use a whole wheat orzo, or even a gluten free orzo pasta like this one here!
  • Basil
  • Fresh Mozzarella
  • Parmesan Cheese: you can use freshly grated parmesan cheese, or pantry parm will work in a pinch!
meatless sheet pan pasta recipes gluten free option baked orzo with fresh mozzarella parmesan cheese and lemon juice

Grow Basil on Your Counter All Year Long

We got this great countertop Aerogarden which is fantastic for growing herbs in the winter.  We actually got it when we lived in a smaller apartment, but even now that we own an acreage we still use it year-round! 

I love growing herbs on my countertop like fresh basil, dill, mint, sage, thyme, parsley, and lemon balm – perfect for this cucumber salad. It uses LED lights and water, so no messy soil needed – you can have fresh herbs at your fingertips any time.

I love picking a few springs of parsley to chop on pastas, adding basil leaves to soups, and tossing some dill in with my pasta salads. It also makes a great gift for anyone who would like fresh herbs… no big kitchen or green thumb required!

How To Cook Pasta in the Oven

Make sure you have a tall enough sheet pan so it doesn’t overflow and make a mess.  This isn’t a “set it and forget it” sheet pan meal.  It does involve taking the dish in and out of the oven a few times to stir and add ingredients at different stages of cooking.  But this easy weeknight pasta was really fun to assemble and make.  It all came together pretty quickly too. I’m definitely adding this to my Easy Weeknight Meals collection.

This sheet pan pasta recipe got an A+ from me and the hubby, which is always great when I am trying a new recipe.  To make vegan, just substitute a non-dairy cheese, and enjoy!

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Other Simple Sheet Pan Meals You’ll Love!

Mediterranean Sheet Pan Chicken with Vegetables (Whole30, Paleo, Keto)

Sheet Pan Gnocchi Butternut Squash & Kale (Vegan, Dairy Free)

Sheet Pan Fajitas w/ Avocado Lime Crema (Vegan, Paleo, Whole30, GF)

Aloha BBQ Tofu Bowls (Vegan, Gluten Free, Sheet Pan Dinner)

Rosemary Focaccia Bread Recipe (Vegan, Pantry Staple Bread)

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sheet pan pasta lemon mozzarella cheese vegetarian one pan dinners cook pasta in the oven easy orzo recipes

Sheet Pan Pasta Bake with Mozzarella

A sheet pan past that is an Delicious and Easy One-Pan Recipe to make on a busy weeknight!  All ingredients cook on the same sheetpan for easy clean up later.
3.81 from 31 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Course Dinner
Cuisine Italian
Servings 8 servings
Calories 390 kcal


  • Tall Sheet Pan that is at least 2 inches tall


  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 6 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 28-ounce container Diced Tomatoes or 2 pints cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 lemon sliced thin and seeds removed
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon Sea Salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon Black Pepper
  • 1 lb (16 ounce package) Dry Orzo Pasta or other small pasta shape of choice
  • 4 cups boiling water
  • 1/2 cup fresh basil julienned
  • 8 ounces fresh mozzarella chopped into small cubes
  • 1/2 cup parmesan cheese plus extra for topping


  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • On a large sheet pan (make sure the sides are at least 2 inches high), toss the olive oil, garlic, tomatoes, lemon, balsamic vinegar, italian seasoning, salt, and pepper.  When oven is heated, add the tomato mixture to the sheet pan in a even layer.  Roast for 10 minutes.
  • Take the sheet pan out of the oven, and add the orzo and boiling water.  Stir well so all ingredients are well combined. Cover sheet pan with aluminum foil, and cook for 15 minutes.
  • Remove the foil, and stir the orzo again, cook for an additional 5 minutes so orzo soaks up all the liquid.
  • Preheat the broiler on high.  Remove sheet pan from oven, and stir in the basil.  Top with mozzarella cheese distributed evenly over the pasta.  And add parmesan on top of that.  Place sheet pan back in the oven, and broil on high for 3 to 5 minutes, being careful not to burn the cheese!
  • Dish up and top your bowl with any additional parm wanted… Serve with a salad or garlic bread!



*Use a sheet pan that has at least 2-inch sides, so the pasta doesn’t boil over.  You can also use a roasting pan or large baking dish.


Calories: 390kcalCarbohydrates: 46gProtein: 16gFat: 16gSaturated Fat: 6gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 7gCholesterol: 27mgSodium: 573mgPotassium: 193mgFiber: 2gSugar: 3gVitamin A: 328IUVitamin C: 8mgCalcium: 245mgIron: 1mg
Did You Make This Recipe?Please leave a rating and comment below, let us know what you loved about it!

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Posted in Dinners, Easy Weeknight Meals, Favorites, Holiday Recipes, Italian, One Pot Recipes, Pastas, Sheet Pan Meals, Side Dishes, The Herbeevore Recipes, Vegetarian Recipes


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  11. Shirley Lukowski

    4 stars
    Found recipe confusing. Directions state use sheet pan but picture has contents in a skillet. Flavors OK, nothing great. Labor intensive with minimal reward.

    • The Herbeevore

      5 stars
      Hi Shirley, I am sorry to hear you found the recipe confusing – which step of the recipe were you questioning? And yes, you should cook the pasta in the sheetpan, the picture of the pasta is in a bowl not a skilet so I apologize if that looked misleading. Please let me know if you have any other feedback!

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