Schinkennudeln (Ham & Cheese Pasta)

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Let’s take it back a childhood favorite of mine… Schinkennudeln! It’s a ham and cheese pasta and it is truly what my childhood tastes like.

Schinkennudeln from (@whatsgabycookin)

I can’t even begin to describe the memories that Schinkennudeln brings back for me. It was our favorite dinner and my mom is the best at making it. Mine comes out equally as delish but there’s something really special about my mom or omi (grandma) making it for me (also they do the dishes which is an added bonus!). In its simplest form this is a ham and cheese pasta. It’s easy, inexpensive and perfect for a crowd.

All you need are a few things to get the ball rolling. Pasta – duh. I like to use orecchiette because they are like little ears of pasta with an indent that’s perfect for catching bites of ham and cheese so each bite is loaded with plenty of flavor. Ham – naturally. It’s the star of the dish! Frozen Peas – because mom always wanted us to have a few veggies. And some CHEESE, because why not! Trust me when I tell you that you’ve gotta try it!! I mean look at these 2 little girls – tell me they don’t look pumped post-Schinkennudeln!


Schinkennudeln (Ham & Cheese Pasta)

5 from 12 votes
We're bringing it back to my childhood today with this incredibly simple Ham & Cheese Pasta!
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Total Time 20 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine German
Servings 4 people


  • 1 1/2 cups diced ham
  • 1 pound orecchiette pasta
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 shallots thinly sliced
  • 3 garlic cloves roughly chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups frozen peas
  • 1/2 cup pasta cooking water
  • ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • ½ cup grated Colby jack cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
  • kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper


  • Heat a large pot of water over high heat and bring to a boil. Once boiling, add the pasta and cook until al dente. Drain, reserving ½ cup of the pasta cooking water.
  • Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a medium skillet on medium heat until melted. Add the shallot and sauté for 3-4 minutes until fragrant. Add the chopped garlic and cook for 1 minute more. Stir in the cubed ham and the frozen peas and toss to combine.
  • Add in the reserved pasta cooking water and then the pasta and 2 varieties of cheese. Season with salt and pepper and lemon zest. Toss to combine and serve as needed.


Photo by Matt Armendariz / Food Styling by Adam Pearson / Recipe by What’s Gaby Cooking

** This post is brought to you by the National Pork Board. All content, ideas, and words are my own. Thanks for supporting the sponsors that allow me to create new and special content like this for What’s Gaby Cooking**


  1. We really like Cavatappi pasta cups….and ham….and cheese… um..peas are ok but I’m at an age where I don’t have to… ;o)

    We will have your FB page open @ 11am tomorrow (Wed the 9th) to watch you make a dish I won’t even try to pronounce… :O)

  2. In the introduction section the pasta is referred as “Cavatappi” in fact it actually is “ORECCHIETTE ” as shown in the pictures attached ! Just an observation! Looks great.

  3. Whipped this up tonight after craving a creamy pasta dish but was out of all creams (milk/half & half/heavy whipping cream). Spruced this up by using TJ’s Rosemary sliced ham that I had in the fridge. Thanks for recipe!

  4. This recipe was AMAZING!! Even my picky-a$$ kids who never like the same entree LOVED it! I was afraid to add the shallot for fear that picky kids would veto, so I only added one (instead of two) but it added so much flavor to the dish. This will definitely be in the weeknight meal rotation.

  5. 5 stars
    Holy Moly, this was soooo good. Far greater than the sum of it’s parts. We have decided this will become tradition after Easter from now on.

  6. I grew up in germany miss it terribly and to see this and all these receipts maa as hes my heart melt !!Geuren salad Rotgrout unt jerker schnitzel oh Got Sauregraut mit ribchen’Ich hoffe ich finde alles duesem recepies here!!!?!!

  7. 5 stars
    Oh my gosh!! Amazing Pasta recipe.. I made this last night for a dinner party with friends, hubby had to help me because I’m not feeling that great, it was simple and was delicious!!! My friends loved it!!

  8. 5 stars
    Every time I make this recipe, my picky kids rave. This time, I realized I had no scallions. I used some green onions (white part) and it was just as great.

  9. Can’t wait to make this recipe with our Easter left over ham. What an adorable picture of you and your sister. Too cute.

  10. 5 stars
    We LOVE this recipe. After making it post last Easter (with ham leftovers) my son has been asking for it all year. Thank you Gaby!!

  11. This was very good! Mine didn’t seem as creamy as yours. I did not use pre-shredded cheese. Would you suggest increasing the pasta water or maybe smaller pasta (I used large shells because it’s what I had on hand)?

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