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Pasta Veggie Bake: Easy Make-Ahead Meal

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I love to cook food for my family and friends. Recipe sharing is the best way to try new foods and get creative in the kitchen.

Pasta veggie bake, ready for the oven

Pasta veggie bake, ready for the oven

Easy Weekend Meal

This is one of my go-to easy weekend meals. It's not a one-pot meal necessarily, but I like making it because I can make it earlier in the day and then pop it in the oven when we're ready for it. (This also makes a great meal to bring to friends who have had a new baby, as it can be frozen and reheated.)

Cook Time

Prep timeCook timeReady inYields

30 min

30 min

1 hour

6 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 pound pasta, cooked al dente
  • 1 zucchini, chopped
  • 1/2 red onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 package mozzarella pearls
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1/2 yellow bell pepper, chopped
  • 10 cherry tomatoes, quartered
  • 1 package sweet Italian sausage, cooked and sliced
  • 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons tarragon
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 package fresh baby spinach

Instructions

  1. Boil water and cook pasta according to the package directions. (Most any type of small pasta will work; rotini, penne, elbows, and shells all work great. Pretty much any pasta other than spaghetti will do!) Once the pasta is cooked, set aside.
  2. Sauté the sausage whole and allow it to cool. Once it is cool, chop into bite-size pieces and then sauté the pieces a second time to brown all edges. Remove sausage from the pan and set aside. (Do not wash the pan.)
  3. Using the same pan, sauté vegetables starting with the onions and peppers. Then add garlic and zucchini. Cook on medium to medium-high but stir to make sure that the garlic doesn't burn. Add a little olive oil if the veggies look dry.
  4. Add spinach and cherry tomatoes when all other ingredients are almost fully cooked. Cook until spinach is wilted and all ingredients are fork tender.
  5. Add spices and salt and pepper to taste.
  6. Using a 9 x 13 baking pan, add half of the pasta to the pan along with half of the veggies and sausage. Top with half of the mozzarella pearls. Then add remaining pasta, veggies, sausage, and cheese.
  7. Drizzle the dish with olive oil, additional tarragon, and salt and pepper. You can also substitute tarragon or other herbs/spices that you prefer.
  8. Cover with tin foil and bake for 20 to 30 minutes or until the cheese is melted and the dish is warmed through.
  9. Enjoy while hot!

© 2020 Lisa Bean

Comments

Lisa Bean (author) from Nevada on November 23, 2020:

You're very welcome Pamela!

Pamela Oglesby from Sunny Florida on November 22, 2020:

This recipe sound very good and the picture looks so interesting. I love the variety of colorful vegetables. Thank you for this recipe, Lisa.

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