Red Pasta Sauce with Brie

Simple dinners are the order of the day around these parts. With the warm, beautiful weather, it’s hard to want to spend all afternoon in the kitchen when my older boys are finally home from school and all four of the rowdy little dudes want to be running around outside catching bugs in their heavy-duty bug nets. Hey, what can I say…me and my big, pregnant belly want to party with them (read: sitting on a chair watching the bug catching, not necessarily participating unless you consider little shrieks of concern when the bugs get too close to mommy’s face participation) but the consequence is that it leaves little time for dinner prep.

What better way to throw together a delicious weeknight meal than serving pasta with a unique red sauce that is perfect for changing up regular ol’ noodle night. Made in 30 minutes or less, this meal is satisfying and simple. A great combination.

While I love brie cheese in other applications, I’ve never considered using it as a creamy add-in for a pasta sauce. The medley of crushed tomatoes, simple spices and combination of Parmesan and brie cheese give the sauce a wonderful texture and flavor and because it is so simple, when I make this, I usually serve it alongside the Creamy Garlic Alfredo Sauce (another quick and delicious pasta sauce) for a little variety. A naturally meatless sauce, you could easily add in some grilled chicken or sauteed ground turkey or beef for extra protein…or leave it meatless like we do to save a few dollars.

What To ServeI like to serve meatless pasta dishes like this with whole wheat breadsticks, a green salad, and steamed veggies like broccoli or peas.

*Need Easter Dinner menu ideas? Click HERE for a make-a-menu!*

Red Pasta Sauce with Brie

One Year Ago: Indian Butter Chicken
Two Years Ago: Maple Glazed Ham
Three Years Ago: Simple and Delicious Cheese Bread

Red Brie Pasta Sauce

Yield: Serves 4-6

Red Brie Pasta Sauce

Note: If you want to add yet another dimension of flavor to this sauce, you can start off by sauteing several cloves of minced garlic in olive oil and then adding the rest of the ingredients. I was in too much of a hurry so I simplified and still loved the result. Also, from what I hear, chopped black olives make a wonderful addition to the sauce.


  • 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes, optional
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 4 ounces Brie cheese, outer rind removed, cubed


  1. In a medium saucepan, combine the crushed tomatoes, salt, pepper, oregano, sugar, basil and red pepper flakes (if using). Bring the mixture to a simmer and cook for 5-6 minutes, stirring often. Add the Parmesan cheese and stir well, continuing to simmer for another 1-2 minutes. Stir in the Brie cheese, simmering and stirring until the cheese melts. Serve the sauce over penne pasta (most any shape of pasta will work well!).

Recipe Source: adapted slightly from my friend, Reyna, who originally got it from her friend, Michelle

26 Responses to Red Brie Pasta Sauce

  1. Beth says:

    Yum! This saved me on a “oh yeah, I need to make something for dinner” night. My brie didn’t melt all the way too (it probably wasn’t the best quality brie), but it was fine after blitzing it with my immersion blender. I also added some cream at the last minute. Served with extra parmesan and fresh basil and it was so good, I’m looking forward to eating the leftovers for lunch today.

  2. Melissa says:

    Ok so I love love your recipes. Huge fan of yours!! But for some reason this sauce just didn’t turn out well for me. It was watery and the Brie didn’t melt. The taste was good. But I was kind of sad at what I’m sure was my error cooking it.

  3. Elaine says:

    This was excellent. I did slightly melt the brie in the microwave first, but there was no problem having it melt right into the sauce. Very rich tasting and amazingly there was some leftover and made an awesome lunch the next day. thanks so much for this recipe!!

  4. Emily says:

    I made this recipe for dinner! I added the garlic and olives! It was amazing…I couldn’t imagine it without the garlic and olives…especially the garlic! Thanks Mel for another delicious recipe!

  5. Michelle Watabe says:

    Me again! I had to tell you today was our first really cold day and I had a hankering for tomato soup for lunch. So I made this (with the olives), blended it up and added 2 C. beef broth and 2 C. whole milk. Then it was too thin, so I blended a 14.5 oz can of diced tomatoes and added it. I doubled the basil, oregano, red pepper flakes and sugar. I added some extra parmesan cheese too. Anyway, it made delicious tomato soup!! Had it again for dinner, and will proceed to eat it for lunch and dinner till it’s gone, as I’m the only one in my family who appreciates such things. I tell you, I am tiring of casting my pearls before swine!

  6. Mel, my heart skipped a beat when I saw this! I guess I missed it back in March. Thank you for sharing one of my favorite recipes with the world! I got it from my friend Gianina, whose Italian grandfather was a chef at Hotel Utah (I think that’s the right hotel) and it was his recipe. So it’s legit! Anyway, isn’t it amazing?! It’s so easy, yet tastes so complex. I highly reccommend adding the chopped olives, which is ironic, because I usually don’t like olives, but it adds another layer of flavor without being olivey. It’s a point of contention with my husband though. He can’t get past the olives even though I keep telling him they are tiny and just adding to the overall deliciousness.

    Besides being scrumptious, and easy, the other great thing about this recipe is that you can keep everything on hand. I buy the 1 lb. wheel of brie at Costco (much cheaper than at the regular grocery store), cut it into 4ths, and freeze them. Then when I can’t think of any thing to make it’s 20 minutes to a delicious dinner with no pre-planning! I nuke the brie for a little bit in the microwave if I’m using it straight from the freezer.

  7. […] Red Brie Pasta SauceMar 30, 2012 … Simple dinners are the order of the day around these parts. With the warm, beautiful weather, it’s hard to want to spend all afternoon in the … […]

  8. Mary Beth says:

    Mel, this was delicious and so easy! Thank you!

  9. Tracy says:

    Ridiculously good. Put a little too much parmesan cheese in, but my boyfriend wasn’t complaining!!! Ate it over thin spaghetti instead, and browned smaller pieces of kielbasa to add some meat. So creamy and addicting!!! Definitely adding this to my recipe box!!!

  10. […] Red Brie Pasta Sauce – Mel’s Kitchen CafeMar 6, 2012 … They are big, shiny bugs that resemble colorful robots. The first time Aunt Mel saw a Writer Spider, she screamed. But she soon learned they … […]

  11. Anissa says:

    This was DELICIOUS sauce. I did the sauteed garlic thing and added the olives. This will be my new go to recipe.

  12. Wendy says:

    This was so good! I made homemade pasta with this sauce and the hubby loved it.

  13. Evelyn Ross says:

    This was wonderful! SO easy and a great taste! I added some crumbled sausage because heaven forbid there is no meat included in our dinner! 😉

  14. Norah says:

    Interesting. I may have to give this a try.

  15. Shauntel says:

    Oh, one more thing. I accidentally grabbed a can of pureed tomatoes, but just rolled with it. It turned out perfect as sometimes our two-year-old balks at “chunks or tings” in her sauce. It worked great as a smooth sauce.

  16. Shauntel says:

    Another delicious – and easy! – dish. We ate it with whole wheat noodles. So yum!

  17. […] Red Brie Pasta Sauce, adapted from Mel’s Kitchen Cafe […]

  18. Evelyn Ross says:

    Are you expecting? Congratulations! I have 5 kids and I wouldn’t change it for anything! Can’t wait to try this recipe…I love, love, love brie!

  19. Elizabeth says:

    This looks tasty! But since I am rather fond of my brie… can you taste a distinctive brie flavor or is it a creamy background note?

    • Mel says:

      Elizabeth – hmmm, that’s a tough question. It definitely has a brie taste (I’m pretty sure blindfolded I could have guessed there was brie in it) but it isn’t overpowering. So my answer is probably right in the middle of your two options – not overly distinctive but more than just a background note.

  20. Jamie says:

    That looks so good!!

  21. I love the addition of brie. Talk about thinking outside the box. This will be on my list of things to try…along with a lot of your other recipes!

  22. Stephanie says:

    I love brie, but would never have thought to add it to pasta sauce. Ingenius – can’t wait to try it!

  23. Jeff says:

    This looks and sounds so incredibly tasty!! And, yes, chalk this one up to…I never woulda thought about that. Cheers!

  24. Kim in MD says:

    Yum…this pasta looks delicious, Mel! I would never think to add brie to pasta sauce…another “why didn’t I think of that?” moment!

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