Pasta, Patate, e Provola (Cheesy Italian Pasta and Potato Stew)

Not sure what to do with those random pasta bits kicking around your pantry? This Neapolitan dish is your answer.

  • Serves


  • Cook

    1 hour 30 minutes


By Katie Parla

Published on January 2, 2023

This is Southern Italian food at its finest—nourishing, flavorful, and made with only a few affordable ingredients. If your pasta shapes vary a lot in width, boil the thicker pieces a few minutes longer than the thinner ones, so they become al dente at about the same time.


  • ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 1 medium carrot, finely chopped
  • 1 medium celery stalk, finely chopped
  • 1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
  • ½ tsp. fine sea salt, divided, plus more as needed
  • ¼ cup tomato sauce, preferably homemade
  • 5 medium Yukon Gold potatoes (1½ lb.), peeled and cut into ½-in. cubes
  • 6–7 cups vegetable broth, or water, warmed, divided
  • 1 lb. dried pasta mista corta (or any mix of dried pastas), or ditali
  • 8 oz. young or sharp provolone cheese, coarsely grated (2 cups)


Step 1

To a large pot, add the oil, garlic, carrot, celery, onion, and ¼ teaspoon of the salt. Turn the heat to medium-low and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are soft but not browned, about 20 minutes.

Step 2

Add the tomato sauce, potatoes, and remaining salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until the potatoes begin to soften, about 20 minutes.

Step 3

Pour in 5 cups of the stock, turn the heat to medium, and cover. Simmer until the potatoes are tender when pierced with a fork, about 20 minutes. 

Step 4

Uncover the pot, turn the heat to high, and add the pasta and enough of the remaining broth to cover by 1 inch. Cook—adding more broth ¼ cup at a time as needed to keep the pasta submerged—until al dente, 8–12 minutes. The texture should be like thick, chunky soup.

Step 5

Remove from the heat, stir in the provolone, and serve.

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