Freezer Meal Recipe: Baked Pasta with Chicken Sausage

Baked Pasta with Chicken Sausage

from melskitchencafe.com

  • 1 Tbsp olive oil Olive Oil Coupons
  • 1 medium red onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 (14.5 oz.) can diced tomatoes Tomatoes Coupons
  • 1 (14.5 oz.) can crushed tomatoes
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/2 tsp dried basil
  • 1/2 c heavy cream
  • 1 lb rigatoni Pasta Coupons
  • 10 oz frozen baby spinach, thawed and drained well (or substitute 1 9-oz. bag fresh spinach)
  • 12 oz precooked smoked chicken (or turkey) sausage, halved lengthwise and sliced 1/4 inch thick Sausage Coupons
  • 8 oz mozzarella cheese, 4 oz cut into 1/2-inch cubes and 4 oz shredded (I just used all shredded) Cheese Coupons
  • 1/4 c grated Parmesan cheese

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil for the pasta. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion; cook until translucent, about 3 minutes. Stir in garlic. Cook for another minute.
Stir in tomatoes, oregano and basil; simmer for 8-10 minutes. Add cream; cook until warmed through, about 5 minutes. Season sauce with salt and pepper to taste.
Meanwhile, preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cook pasta in the boiling water until al dente, according to package instructions. (If using fresh spinach, add it to the pot of boiling pasta right at the end and cook until wilted.) Drain, and return contents to pot.
Add tomato sauce, sausage, spinach and cubed mozzarella to the pot; toss to coat. Season with salt and pepper. Scoop pasta into lightly greased 9×13 pan (or divide evenly between two 8×8-inch pans). Top with grated mozzarella and Parmesan. Bake until browned and edges are crisp, 20 to 30 minutes.

With my smaller family, it works well to save half of this dish as a freezer meal.
Freezer Meal: Prepare recipe right up until the baking step and then cover with a double layer of aluminum foil. Freeze. Thaw in the refrigerator for 1 to 2 days. To bake, increase baking time to 1 to 1 1/4 hours. If baking from frozen, bake covered for 1 hour and 15 minutes, uncover and bake 30 minutes longer.

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