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Italian Pastina

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The following recipe, video and photography were provided by our partner, Alissa DiSanto of Sauced By Sunday.

Everyone has a dish that transports them back to their childhood. For me, it’s this classic Italian Pastina! Simple and comforting, it was a staple in my house growing up, especially during the winter or when someone was sick.

Featuring tiny star-shaped pasta simmered on the stove with stock, butter, milk and savory cheese, each bite warms the belly and the soul.

Italian Pastina

As an adult, I love this dish because it is so versatile. I’ve added it to a bowl of Italian wedding soup, eaten it on its own with butter and Pecorino Romano cheese and even used it as my version of “chicken noodle soup.” Whether you’re feeling under the weather or simply looking for a way to warm up, this Italian Pastina will not disappoint.

Italian Pastina

Italian Pastina


  • 1 lb. pastina pasta
  • 4 cups or 1 qt. Heinen’s chicken stock or water
  • 4 Tbsp. Heinen’s butter
  • 1 ½ cup warmed milk
  • Salt and pepper
  • Heinen’s 24-month aged Parmigiano Reggiano or Heinen’s Pecorino Romano
  • Fresh parsley, for garnish (optional)


  1. Add the chicken stock or water to a medium-size pot and bring to a boil over high heat. Add the pastina and stir thoroughly. Cook for 4-5 minutes, or until most of the liquid has been absorbed.
  2. Towards the end of the cook time, heat the milk in a microwave-safe bowl for 20-30 seconds, or slowly warm it on the stovetop. It does not have to bubble and boil.
  3. Once the pastina has absorbed almost all of the liquid, add the butter and warm milk. Stir until the butter is melted and season with salt and pepper.
  4. Divide into bowls and top with freshly grated cheese a little Italian parsley, if desired.


  • Leave the measured milk on the counter for about 30 minutes prior to making the pastina so it comes closer to room temperature prior to warming.
  • Once the milk is added, the pastina may look soupy; however, after it sits for a few minutes, it will thicken.

Italian Pastina

Alissa DiSanto

By Alissa DiSanto

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