Whether you love spaghetti or macaroni, pasta is an easy family dinner you can throw together on the fly. When I don’t know what to make for dinner, I usually make pasta. There are SO many different combinations you can make! I could make a different pasta every night and still have variety in my life. But I don’t. But it would be really easy to do so. Here are some easy ways to make delicious, and somewhat healthy, pasta! But mostly delicious.
Re-Invigorate Canned Pasta Sauce
You don’t have to make your own sauce to have good pasta sauce. Whether you buy sauce in a can or in one of those fancier jars, it is possible to have a delicious sauce. My trick? Add some fresh spices and herbs and you have a newly invigorated sauce! This works with both tomato and Alfredo sauce!
Soup Works as Sauce!
Don’t have pasta sauce? Try canned soup! Last night I used a can of mushroom and a can of creamed chicken with some milk, garlic, paprika, salt, pepper and Parmesan cheese. (And spinach!) It. Was. Delicious. Any “Cream of” soup would work as a sauce, but you can also use tomato as well!
Make a Cheese Sauce
If you want to be fancy, you can make your own cheese sauce. It’s super simple! This is the recipe I use, which is from the back of a Catelli macaroni box. Prep time? 15 minutes.
3 cups macaroni
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup flour
3 cups warm 1% milk
3 cups cheese
“Melt butter in a pot set over medium heat. Add flour; cook, stirring for 3 to 4 minutes. gradually whisk in milk; cook, stirring constantly, until just thickened. Season to taste with salt. Remove from heat; stir in cheese until melted. Add hot macaroni and toss to coat.” Serves 4
I like to add extra cheese to this recipe because it makes it more delicious!
Spinach, the Best Veggie for Pasta
Spinach is the best vegetable for pasta. Buy it in chopped form, microwave it for about 2 minutes until the spinach is thawed, and strain the water. Throw it in your pasta and you have a vegetable! I’d recommend putting it into the sauce so that the spinach is distributed evenly throughout the pasta. It tastes good with pretty much every pasta you could think of. Tomato, Alfredo or soup, spinach works with all of them!
Another option you can throw into most pasta dishes is canned mushrooms. I’d throw them into the saucepan so that it absorbs some of the flavors of the sauce. Make sure you drain the sauce.
Cheese Makes Everything Better
I like throwing cheese into my sauces. I usually use Parmesan cheese in my sauces, combined with whatever cheese I have in my fridge. Wanna go the extra mile? Once you have cooked your pasta and mixed it in with the sauce, put cheese on top and bake it. Yep. Hot, melty, delicious cheese.
Pasta, a Vehicle for Leftover Meat
I love throwing my leftover meat into my pasta. Leftover chicken? Chicken Alfredo. Leftover ground beef? Spaghetti bolognese. Leftover meatballs? Spaghetti and meatballs. Leftover taco meat? Throw it in some penne with some salsa and cheddar cheese and now you have a tex mex penne.
It’s hard to screw up pasta. Have fun with it! Let me know what else you can do for a quick and delicious pasta tricks!