Pasta with Salmon and Leeks {Quick and Easy Meals}

You can have this delicious Pasta with Salmon and Leeks on the table in less than 30 minutes! It’s perfect for families on the go, and budget friendly as well! 

You can have this delicious Pasta with Salmon and Leeks on the table in 20-25 minutes! Perfect for a busy weeknight when you're pressed for time but want to put a healthy meal on the table. Budget friendly too!

This quick and easy smoked salmon pasta dish is a go-to meal for our family. With our kids’ busy sports schedules, I need dinners that I can either make ahead or put together quickly. This delicious Pasta with Salmon and Leeks is one of my favorites, as I can put it together in twenty to twenty five minutes, which I love.

My late father in law was the inspiration for this recipe. He was an amazing cook, and I’ve been privileged over the years to learn a great deal about cooking from him. I don’t have his actual recipe, but he used to make a smoked salmon pasta dish very similar to this, and it was always one that I really liked.

It’s a very simple recipe…your main ingredients are smoked salmon, leeks, a red pepper, and of course pasta. I always use Barilla pasta, and for this particular recipe, I use Farfalle or Campanelle. If you like a different pasta shape, you could definitely use it.

I know I mentioned budget friendly as well. Your main ingredients in this recipe are:

  • Smoked salmon: $7.00 for a 4 oz package
  • Leeks: $1.99 / bunch
  • Red pepper: $2.29
  • Parsley: $0.99 / bunch and we only need about 1/2 for this recipe, so we’ll say $0.50
  • Pasta: $1 a box (I buy in bulk when it goes on sale)

It adds up to be $12.78 for a family of 5. Now obviously there is a cost associated with the other ingredients in the recipe, but I didn’t figure them in here because they are things I normally have in the house…leftover wine, olive oil, butter, a sprinkling of parmesan, salt and pepper to taste. So let’s guesstimate $16 for the whole meal, give or take. Divide that by 5, and it’s $3.20 per person. A pound of pasta will typically feed 4 adults, but our family is 2 adults and 3 kids. There is always enough for all of us, and sometimes leftovers too. 

There really aren’t cut and dried measurements when it comes to the leeks and pepper. I use whatever comes in the leek bunch at the grocery store…this time around it was three leeks. I use most of the green part of the leek as well as the white. Leeks are a very dirty vegetable though, so make sure you clean them well or you could be eating sand! I only use one pepper and chop it as small as I can because my boys don’t like peppers, but you could definitely use a second pepper. I’d probably use a yellow pepper if I used a second one, for color. I love the colors in this pasta.

The whole smoked salmon pasta dish takes about 20 minutes start to finish…25 minutes tops. That’s what I call a quick and easy meal!

This delicious pasta with salmon and leeks takes 20-25 minutes to make, from start to finish! Perfect for those nights when you're pressed for time but still want to put a healthy meal on the table. Budget friendly too!

And now for the recipe! 

5.0 from 5 reviews
Pasta with Salmon and Leeks: Quick and Easy Meal
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Quick and easy dinner recipe for busy weeknights!
Recipe type: Pasta
Serves: 6
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 red pepper, chopped
  • 3 leeks, chopped
  • ½ of a bunch of parsley, minced (save a little for garnish)
  • 2 cups white wine (I used savignon blanc because that is what I had, but it doesn't matter what you use)
  • 4 oz package of smoked salmon, chopped into bits
  • 1 lb Barilla Farfalle pasta
  • Salt and black pepper to taste
  • Garnish with parmesan cheese and parsley, if desired.
  1. Start water boiling for pasta, and cook pasta as directed, while cooking the pepper, leek and salmon mixture.
  2. Add 2 tablespoons butter and 2 tablespoons olive oil to saucepan; heat on low until butter is melted. (Save 1 tablespoon of butter until later).
  3. Add chopped pepper and leek, cook until softened (about 3-4 minutes), stirring frequently.
  4. Add white wine. Bring to a boil, and then simmer until wine is about halved, about 5-6 minutes.
  5. Add salmon while wine is simmering.
  6. Season with salt and pepper, and add last tablespoon of butter. Mix well until butter has melted.
  7. Mix parsley into salmon, leek and red pepper mixture (minus whatever you plan to use for garnish).
  8. Add pasta to sauce slowly, and mix well.

What’s your go-to dinner when you’re in a hurry?

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  1. says

    I love that you are posting recipes again… salmon is a favorite in my house. Kind of a long story, but ended up with a very large amount last summer, a mix of steaks, fillets and smoked. Definitely going to try any salmon recipe you post:)

  2. says

    This sounds wonderful and will say I ant to try, but I would have to substitute chicken for salmon, as Kevin and I both aren’t huge fans of salmon. But otherwise, so going to try soon. Thanks for sharing, Michelle!! :)

  3. says

    Michelle, this looks amazing and so healthy! Have you tried it with whole wheat pasta? That would up the fibre content…….when you add the healthy oils of the salmon and the vitamin rich colourful red pepper this packs a powerful punch of the health factor!

  4. says

    This looks so healthy. My hubs loves salmon I am not a fan of it but I have been looking for something to serve him for his birthday and this is going on the list.

  5. says

    Quick, easy, and heart healthy? Sign me up! This looks delicious. My husband and I love salmon, and the kids eat pasta like there’s no tomorrow. YUM!

  6. says

    This is perfect timing! I just pinned this and wrote what I needed on my list b/c I’m SO making this for dinner later in the week. I need something healthy and quick on Thursday night and this fits the bill. Heck, the kids may even eat this!! THANK YOU!

  7. says

    This looks delicious! I know what you mean about leeks being dirty – I make a soup with them and I have to soak them in water to get all the grit out.

  8. says

    I love salmon! And I love smoked anything. The photos look delicious.
    And I wonder if leeks are on that list of the dirtiest fruits/veggies. Good tip there!

  9. says

    I am a huge salmon fan, especially smoked salmon! Haven’t bought it in quite some time, but I think I just found the perfect reason to pick some up. :)

    • says

      I love smoked salmon too. There have been many times the salmon didn’t actually make it to this dish because I just had to have bagels with cream cheese, smoked salmon and capers. Other than an omelette, that is my favorite breakfast!

  10. says

    I will tell you again….how much I LOVE your food photography, Michelle! And I could eat salmon all of the time…it’s soooo yummy. Leeks have always been on the fringe for me to try in a recipe and maybe this will be my inspiration. Sounds scrumptious! :)

    • says

      Thank you! I feel like it’s definitely improving. I’m making sure to take the pictures earlier in the day to take advantage of natural light and stage them better. I hope you enjoy it if you try this…we like this recipe a lot here. And I love that I can make it in 20 minutes!

  11. says

    My husband and I are both seafood lovers having grown up on the East Coast. Living in the midwest has been a challenge as all the seafood is either frozen or dinner requires taking out a second mortgage on the house.

    I think it’s interesting that you went with smoked salmon, it’s a great solution for us and I bet it adds a whole other level of flavor to the dish.

    • says

      I love seafood too but I know what you mean about the cost, because I grew up in Colorado. To me, growing up seafood was a treat…to my kids it’s commonplace. I do love smoked salmon though and it doesn’t break the bank!

  12. says

    I just pinned and printed this, Michelle, and I will definitely be trying it out. I always wonder how I would use leeks in recipes; I think the only thing I’ve used them in is a shepherd’s pie. Thanks for the recipe!

    • says

      I am so glad you enjoying my recipes…I’ve got lots more to come! Now that I am feeling a little more comfortable with my food photography, I feel like I can post more recipes!

  13. says

    This looks like a terrific idea for the leeks we get in our farm share. Our whole family likes pasta dinners, I like speedy meals that I don’t need to think much about.

  14. says

    Michelle, I love the combination of smoked salmon and leeks. Have you ever heard of The Flavor Bible (by Karen Page and Andrew Dornenburg?) It’s a wonderful book that describes and lists which foods/spices/herbs etc go together – a fabulous resource. And it lists smoked salmon and leeks as a highly recommended combination. Of course, you didn’t need a book to tell you that, but it’s nice to know that your father’s wisdom is appreciated even by the “authorities:)”

    • says

      Someone recently told me about that book, I think I need to pick up a copy!! My father in law was such an amazing cook…I am trying to get all of his recipes together (at least the ones that are documented or somewhat documented so that we can all have a cookbook of them). We miss him so much.

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