Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Menu Monday A Day Late & A Dollar Short!

Late with the menu this week! The recipe for the Rigatoni is from Love From Texas!

  • 1lb lean ground beef
  • 1lb mild Italian sausage links
  • 16oz rigatoni pasta (I like the texture much better than actual ziti.)
  • 4oz cream cheese
  • 45oz jar of pasta sauce (I’m a Prego girl. For this I used Chunky Garden.  Love the extra veggies!)
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • shredded Italian blend cheese
  • shredded or shaved parmesan cheese
1. Cook the sausage links according to package directions. I actually used my Cuisinart panini grill to save stovetop space and it worked well! (Med-low heat for about 20 minutes, turning every other minute or so.) Let them cook as you put together the rest of the dish, then cut in to 1/2” thick slices at an angle. I used 3.5 of the 5 sausage links, but I think it would’ve been fine to use all of them.

2. Cook pasta in salted water according to package directions. Drain very well then return to pan. Add cream cheese, stir gently every few minutes until cheese is completely melted and covers the noodles. (I felt so weird the first time I used cream cheese in a pasta dish. But I promise it does wonderful things!)

3. Brown ground meat with onion on medium high heat. (I did this as my sausage and pasta were cooking.) Drain and return to pan/skillet. Add pasta sauce and let simmer. Once sausage is done and sliced, add it to the sauce. I added a little bit of garlic powder to my sauce for taste.

4. Put together pasta bake in a casserole dish. Start by smearing a thin layer of sauce on the bottom, just enough so the pasta won’t stick. Then add noodles and sprinkle with some of the shredded Italian blend cheese. Spoon sauce over noodles. Top with another layer of Italian blend cheese and, if desired, parmesan.

5. Bake at 375 for about 20 minutes, or until cheese is slightly browned.

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