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Baked Rigatoni with Spicy Sausage

August 3, 2009

This meal was hearty and satisfying, perfect fuel for a long night out in L.A. I used prepared marinara sauce for a quick and simple dish, without the hassle of making my own tomato sauce. Whole-wheat pasta rather than white pasta makes this version a fiber powerhouse with 7 grams per serving. This delicious and cheesy pasta casserole freezes well so you might want to make an extra to have on hand for a ready-to-heat-and-eat meal.

Baked Rigatoni with Spicy Sausage

Makes 2 servings

  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 4 ounces whole-wheat rigatoni, mostaccioli or penne
  • 1/4 cup shredded Mozzarella cheese
  • 1.5 cups prepared marinara sauce
  • 2 chicken sausage links, cut into pieces
  • 2 tablespoons Panko breadcrumbs
  • 2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • chopped parsley

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Coat a 3-quart shallow baking dish with cooking spray. Put a large pot of water on to boil.
2. Heat pan over medium-high heat and add onion and bell pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes. Add in chicken sausage links and tomato sauce and cook until heated through.
3. Meanwhile, cook pasta until just tender, 8 to 10 minutes or according to package directions. Drain.
4. Add the pasta to the sauce; toss to coat. Combine cheese in pasta mixture and spread into baking pan. Sprinkle breadcrumbs and Parmesan cheese mixture over pasta and bake for 5 minutes until the top is golden. Top with parsley

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