Our family favourite – comfort food at its finest.  Italian sausage, cheese, tomatoes, pasta—and all in just one cooking pot? What’s not to like? This one-pot dinner brings together comforting, easy-to-find ingredients in an ultra-simple preparation to make a midweek meal you’ll turn to again and again.

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 lb bulk mild Italian sausage or any other raw protein such as boneless chicken 
  • 1 cup diced onions
  • 2 cups diced vegetables (bell peppers, carrots, celery, whatever you have)
  • 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 carton (32 oz) chicken or vegetable broth (if beef is your protein you can use beef broth)
  • 1 can (14.5 oz) crushed or diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 12 oz uncooked pasta (3 3/4 cups)
  • 1 can plain beans (black beans, white beans, or kidney beans) (optional)
  • 2 cups baby spinach or arugula (optional)
  • ½ cup shredded Italian cheese blend (4 oz) or parmesan or Mozza
  • 2 tablespoons shredded fresh basil leaves or parsley
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • (optional) 1 tablespoon wine

Additions: You can add any savoury leftovers you might have such as garlic, diced tomatoes, cold cuts, cheese, salsa, frozen mixed veg. This recipe is very flexible.

Steps

  1. In a large Dutch oven, heat oil over medium heat. Add sausage; cook 6 to 8 minutes, stirring occasionally, until no longer pink. Add onions, bell pepper, Italian seasoning and salt to oil and drippings in pan; cook over medium-high heat 5 to 7 minutes or until softened and starting to brown.

  2. Stir in broth and tomatoes; heat to boiling. Stir in pasta; return to boiling. Reduce heat; simmer uncovered 18 to 20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until pasta is cooked to desired tenderness and sauce is thickened (stirring near the end will help sauce to become creamy). Add a bit more water or stock if needed and maybe a splash of red wine.  Stir in spinach and butter; continue to stir 30 to 60 seconds or until wilted.

  3. Remove from heat; top with cheese. Top with basil or parsley.  Serves 4 – 6 

Author: Kathryn Howden

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