I’m a hungry gal. I constantly am munching on goodies all day long. But I often have no time to make new things all day long. So I’m a master at food prepping, snack hoarding and leftovers. All the leftovers. This recipe has made me the queen. Because it slays. This recipe has been my dinner, lunch, dinner, lunch, and snack. Be aware, I do not get tired of food very easily. Especially when it’s in pasta form. Which is why I can eat left-overs like a boss. But this was an extreme case in which I ate it constantly.
Pro tip* If it’s too much leftovers for now, and you can’t handle the pasta overload like I did, freeze it and have it any time you want! Food in the fridge stays good for up to 3-4 days, according to the FDA.
So what is in this glorious pasta dish that made it so scrumptious that I could eat it for three days straight? Well, imagine biting into buoyant spiraled pasta coated in a tangy garlic-tomato sauce, dipping your fork back into the dish to pick up an array of bright veggies including zucchini, mushrooms, fresh onions, and spinach. If that’s not enough, you also get the sweet taste of chicken fontina sausage. And the whole dish it topped off with melted cheese. This dish will fill you up, keep you full, and not weigh you down.
This dish has a hearty serving of veggies, no added sugars, a good source of lean protein and a proper serving of whole grains. It took me a total of 30 minutes to cook the pasta, cut the veggies, and allow for baking time. So it was pretty quick. I was sitting down fork in hand not much later. And if you’ve never cooked before, this is the best beginner meal! What’s the saying? “If you can boil water, you can cook”? Or something like that. THe most “cooking” this entails is boiling water. The sausage you should buy comes pre-cooked, so you do not have to worry about under cooking meat and creating food-borne illness. The most “technique” you will need is chopping vegetables. But you can chop them anyway you want! It’s all going into a pasta bake, so “fine knife skills” do not matter. It’s all good in the neighborhood…yo? Am I gangster enough for that?
Let me show you even more delicious photos. Okay little secret? Taking these photos was the worst because it smelled so delicious and I wanted to eat it right away.
Nom nom nom.
Whole-wheat Pasta Bake
- 1 ½ cups dried whole wheat fusilli (cooked)
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 clove garlic, chopped
- 1 tsp. olive oil
- 2 zucchini, chopped
- 1 cup mushrooms, sliced
- 1 cup spinach
- 1 can (32 oz) crushed tomatoes
- ¼ cup parmesan (you can use shredded, pre-packed, or the dried variety)
- 2 links chicken sausage
- optional: salt, pepper, dried basil, dried oregano
Preheat oven to 375.
Cook your pasta in a pot of salted, boiling water, just a minute under what the package recommends.
While pasta is cooking, chop the onions and garlic.
Sauté onions and garlic with a teaspoon of oil on medium heat until onions are soft, stirring occasionally.
While the onions are cooking, chop the remaining vegetables. Add all vegetables to the onion mixture and cook for 3 minutes or until slightly cooked. Optional, if you have spices, put ½ teaspoon of each into the vegetable mixture.
Slice the sausage into discs and then cut discs in half.
In a 9X11 inch pan, scoop in pasta, the vegetable mixture, the sausage, and pour in the can of crushed tomatoes. (If using a metal pan, spray with oil or coat with oil to prevent sticking). Mix all ingredients together in pan. This may get messy, just be aware.
Sprinkle the cheese on top. Place the pan into the oven for 15 minutes.