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Herby Green Olive Pasta

If I have learned anything from these pasta reels, is that people, as well as myself love briny dishes. While I can eat olives and capers straight out of the jar this herby green olive pasta balances that briny flavor with acidity and freshness, making this a well balanced pasta dish. If I have learned anything else, is that people like quick dinners. I have to admit, I didn’t go out wanting to make this an under 25 min dish. It just sort of landed that way, can you say WFH lunch dish!?

Looking for more briny pasta? Check out my Spicy Caper Pasta.

Where do I buy un-stuffed green olives?

No pimento stuffed olives here! Pitted, unstuffed green olives are actually pretty common. National brands such as Pearls and Mezzetta have them stocked in most supermarkets. If you want to get real fancy here get them from a fresh olive bar, often sold by the weight. Those olives are going to have more flavor, and sometimes even a better texture.

plates of green olive pasta

What You’ll Need for Herby Green Olive Pasta

  • Pasta – Players choice here, however i find that a longer pasta takes this thin lemon caper sauce well. The pasta used here was bucatini.
  • Green Olives – Any green olive will work here (except stuffed, especially with pimento). Castelvetrano olives are an excellent option, they are meaty, and just a little sweet. I like to cook them whole, just make sure if you do this they are pitted!
  • Capers
  • Parsley – Only fresh here! Why? You need something to cut into the briny olives and capers, dried won’t deliver.
  • Basil -Fresh only!
  • Lemon – Zest and juice
  • Olive Oil
  • Butter
plates of green olive pasta

A Few Tips

  • This butter, olive oil sauce relies on the flavor from the garlic, capers, and olives. Keep the heat low to ensure you do not burn the garlic in the beginning. You want it to be soft and fragrant not crispy, brown, and bitter.
  • As with most of my 20-30 minute pasta dishes eat immediately. However if you miss the window and need to heat this up, put it in a pot with a tbsp or two of butter to re-heat vs the microwave.

Herby Green Olive Pasta

Print Recipe
This well balanced pasta dish is briny with acidity and freshness.
Course Dinner, Lunch
Cuisine Italian
Keyword Capers, Olives, Pasta
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Servings 3 people


  • 1/2 lb pasta long (spaghetti, linguini, or bucatini)
  • 5 cloves garlic minced
  • 6 oz green olives castelvetrano if available
  • 1/4 cup capers
  • 1/2 cup basil minced
  • 1 cup flat leaf parsley minced
  • 1 lemon zest and juice seperated
  • 4 tbsp butter
  • 2 tbsp olive oil


  • While you prepare the sauce cook the pasta as per packaging in salty water. Once done, place on the side for later use.
  • Add 3 tbsp of butter and all of the olive oil to a pot. Heat up on low-medium heat.
  • Add garlic and cook on low for 5 minutes until garlic is soft and fragrant.
  • Add capers, and olives. Give a mix and cook for another 5 minutes.
  • Add parsley, basil, and lemon juice and lemon zest. Simmer for 3 minutes.
  • Add pasta and the last tbsp on butter. Give a toss and cook for 3 minutes until pasta has absorbed some of the sauce. Enjoy!

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