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Cheesy pasta-sausage bake: The dish you want before making any resolutions

I am a cookie-maker, baker-faker, food-taker. Errr! Picture-taker! I started to blog about food with the intent to inspire others to get back into the kitchen and start cooking.

Pasta, cheese, sausage — what more could you ask for in a comfort food casserole?

I totally needed a comforting meal after doing all-important things this past weekend, like opening up gifts and cleaning up all that Christmas wrapping paper.
Pasta, cheese, sausage — what more could you ask for in a comfort food casserole?
Image: Katerina Petrovska/SheKnows

While feeling like our home will never be uncluttered or clean again, because kids, and spending approximately 48 minutes trying to clean up all the Christmas glitter, because kids (two girls), I headed to the kitchen to do what I actually know how to do: Bake pasta with sausage.

Pasta, cheese, sausage — what more could you ask for in a comfort food casserole?
Image: Katerina Petrovska/SheKnows

This is the ideal meal if you’re short on time but need something that looks totally fancy and is completely filling. It's so delicious because the filling is mixed with a bit of veggies as well as cheese and tomato sauce, really allowing the sausage to shine through. It’s then covered with more sauce and more cheese, and then it’s finally ready for domination.

Pasta, cheese, sausage — what more could you ask for in a comfort food casserole?
Image: Katerina Petrovska/SheKnows

Fusilli pasta bake with ground turkey sausage recipe

Serves 4

Prep time: 10 minutes | Bake time: 15 minutes | Inactive time: 10 minutes | Total time: 35 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1 (500-gram) box fusilli pasta
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 pound ground turkey sausage
  • Salt and fresh ground pepper, to taste
  • 1 yellow onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 sprig rosemary
  • 1 small zucchini, sliced into thin rounds
  • 1 small yellow squash, sliced into thin rounds (you can also use any other vegetables you have on hand — sliced bell peppers, broccoli florets, cauliflower florets, etc.)
  • 1 (24-ounce) jar tomato sauce
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese, divided

Directions:

  1. Bring a pot of water to a boil. Add the pasta, and cook according to the directions on the package.
  2. Heat your oven to 400 degrees F.
  3. Lightly grease a baking dish with cooking spray, and set it aside.
  4. In a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of extra-virgin olive oil.
  5. Break up the turkey sausage meat, and add it to the skillet. Season the meat with salt and pepper, and continue to cook until browned on all sides.
  6. Drain, and transfer the cooked sausage to a bowl.
  7. To the same skillet, add the rest of the olive oil, and cook over medium heat.
  8. Add the onions, garlic and rosemary, and cook for 1 minute.
  9. Add the sliced zucchini and yellow squash. Continue to cook for 4 – 5 minutes or until the vegetables are tender, stirring frequently.
  10. Stir in the cooked sausage and the jar of tomato sauce. Continue to cook for 3 minutes.
  11. In the meantime, drain the pasta, and add it to the skillet. Stir in 1/2 of the grated Parmesan cheese, and remove the skillet from the heat.
  12. Transfer the pasta mixture to the previously prepared baking dish.
  13. Smooth the top, and sprinkle with the remaining cheese.
  14. Bake for 15 minutes.
  15. Remove the dish from oven, and let it stand for 5 – 10 minutes.

More comfort food recipes

Slow cooker meatball soup — your favorite pasta dish, reimagined
Creamy vegan mac and no cheese will fool even the biggest dairy lovers
Company-worthy comfort food: Creamy butternut-pancetta pappardelle

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