Whether you're making a kid friendly family dinner or preparing a big meal to delivery to another family, this Cheesy Sausage Pasta Bake is sure to please!
Some variation of spaghetti inevitably makes it onto our family dinner table at least once each week. What can I say? We are a family that values tasty hot food, good conversation, and PASTA! Last night I decided to make a classic pasta bake.
Its one thing to mix up some pasta and sauce, but adding just the right amount of spicy Italian sausage and smothering it with some fresh shredded cheese and you end up with one heck of a meal!
A secret little tradition of my own is to make dinner early in the day and leave the final step, the melting, til the very end right before I serve it all up to the family. That way I can get the hard part out of the way and enjoy a glass of wine before we even sit down to eat. Enjoy!
Cheesy Sausage Pasta Bake
- 16 ounces whole wheat penne pasta
- 12 ounces spicy italian sausage
- 1 medium red onion (diced)
- 2 cloves garlic (minced)
- ½ cup red wine
- 46 ounces pasta sauce (I used 2 23-ounce jars )
- 8 ounces shredded italian cheese blend
- Cook pasta according to instructions. Reserve 1 cup of the cooking water prior to draining pasta.
- While pasta is cooking, cook sausage and onion over medium high heat in large skillet until sausage turns crumbly and golden brown, about 10 minutes. Add garlic, stir, and allow to cook for a couple more minutes.
- Add red wine to sausage and scrape bottom of skillet to remove any pieces that stuck to pan. Add pasta sauce and allow mixture to simmer over low heat until pasta is ready.
- Combine cooked pasta and sauce in casserole dish. Add enough of the reserved pasta water to make the pasta barely moist. Top with shredded cheese, cover, and heat in preheated 400 degree F oven until cheese has melted, about 10 minutes. Serve hot.