Yes, that’s correct. I’ve been cooking, you guys. If you follow me on Instagram, then you are well aware at how little this happens because before I got married, I posted on my story every time I cooked (like 3 times?). Being a wife and living with just one other person who is balancing full-time work and school meant one thing for me: I better learn quick. And somehow, a tiny miracle has happened and I’ve not burnt a single thing so far. I have gathered three recipes that Jon and I have made that were easy enough for this novice to handle, so you can too. Enjoy! x
TUSCAN CHICKEN PASTA BAKE
This is a recipe I pulled from Pinterest and seems to have originated from The Seasoned Mom blog (I slightly adapted it). This is the easiest thing you can make and a great dish to make ahead and put in the oven on a weeknight. Add a good salad to take it up a notch!
- 1 16 ounce penne pasta
- 3 cups of Alfredo sauce (more than 1 22 oz jar)
- 3 cups of low sodium chicken broth
- 2 cups of chicken (use rotisserie or cooked chicken breast)
- 2 teaspoons minced garlic
- 1/2 cup minced sun-dried tomatoes
- 2 cups baby spinach
- 1 cup (or more, live your life) mozzerella cheese
- Preheat oven to 425F (220C).
- In a large 13 x 9-inch baking dish (or smaller if you’re splitting the recipe in half), stir together uncooked pasta, Alfredo sauce, chicken broth, chicken, garlic, and sun-dried tomatoes. Cover tightly with aluminum foil and bake for 35 minutes.
- As a person who has never cooked noodles in the oven, I was panicking thinking it wouldn’t be cooked. Don’t worry… it will ‘:).
- Uncover the pasta and stir it up.
- Make sure the pasta isn’t hard (al dente as they call it… aka cooked). If it’s not yet, stick that bad boy back into the oven.
- Once pasta is done, stir in the fresh spinach. The spinach will shrink up right away… so maybe add more than you think you need. Sprinkle mozzarella over the top. Bake uncovered for 10 more minutes (or until cheese is melted and pasta is tender).
- Waalaaa! You’re finished.
SPICY (OR NOT) SAUSAGE RIGATONI
This one is another Pinterest find that is originally from Spicy Southern Kitchen and is nearly exactly as written (because it’s an amazing recipe)! You can make this without the spice, so don’t worry about that 😉 Add some garlic bread to carb it up!
- 12 oz rigatoni pasta
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 medium onion, chopped (I used less than this because I don’t like onion)
- 1 pound Italian sausage
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 (14.5 oz) can of diced tomatoes
- 1 (8 oz) tomato sauce
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (I used 1 1/2 teaspoons because I am crazy)
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/2 cup of half + half
- 1/2 cup of grated Parmesan cheese
- Heat olive oil in a LARGE pan and cook onion until it starts to soften. Add the sausage, and break it into pieces with a wooden spoon as it cooks.
- When the sausage is cooked (no pink, people), add garlic and cook for 1 minute. Drain off any of the excess fat.
- Add the diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, tomato paste, basil, salt, red pepper flakes (or not), and black pepper and simmer until thickened (about 15 minutes).
- Cook the pasta at the same time to whatever time is on the box/bag you got the pasta in. Drain and place drained pasta in a large bowl.
- Add cream to the sausage/sauce and simmer for another 5 minutes. Turn the heat to low and stir in the Parmesan cheese.
- Pour sauce over pasta and toss to coat.
- Walaaaaa! You are an Italian chef.
This is by far the easiest recipe on here and something you can whip up really quickly any night of the week. This is a recipe from my mom that I slightly adapted (because I don’t like a lot of onions or chunky tomatoes in my chili… I’m a picky eater, okay?). Add some spaghetti and Frank’s hot sauce, if you like! 🙂
- 1/2 lb ground beef
- 1/4 (or less) of a white onion, chopped
- 1 can tomato sauce
- 1/2 can of petite diced tomatoes
- 1 can of light red kidney beans (I like a lot of beans), drained
- 1/2 packet of Chili-O
- Sprinkle of black pepper
- Sprinkle of salt
- I like to use a Dutch oven to cook chili, but you can also use a large pot. Put the ground beef in the pot with the white onion. Once they are both cooked, break up the beef to the level you’d like.
- Put in the tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, kidney beans, Chili-O, salt, and black pepper. Stir and let cook on a low heat.
- Should be ready relatively quickly, but if you are making far ahead, stir every half hour.
I hope you all enjoyed all of these recipes and I can’t wait for you to try them out on your own! Cook with your man, cook with your lady, cook with your kids, and cook with your friends. The kitchen is the #1 way to everyone’s heart (especially mine). See ya next week! x