Prep 1 hr
Cook 1 hr
From one of my many cooking magazines. The sauce can be made ahead and reheated before serving and can be frozen up to a month. The pasta dish can be made a day ahead of baking. It can also be made and frozen for up to a month. Thaw in the refrigerator. To cut time use pasta sauce from a jar and add fresh/dried herbs for more flavor. You can also use premade turkey meatballs. Baking time includes time to bake meatballs and also the completed dish.
Zesty Tomato Sauce
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1 cup onion, chopped
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 (28 ounce) can crushed tomatoes
- 1 (15 ounce) can tomato sauce
- 1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste
- 1 tablespoon fresh parsley, minced
- 1 teaspoon italian seasoning
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 lb ground turkey
- 1⁄2 cup panko breadcrumbs
- 1⁄4 cup green onion, minced
- 1⁄4 cup red bell pepper, minced
- 1 large egg
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 3 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
- 1 teaspoon italian seasoning
- 1⁄2 teaspoon salt
- 1 (16 ounce) box rigatoni pasta, cooked and kept warm
- 1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
- 1⁄2 cup sour cream
- 1 (8 ounce) package mozzarella cheese, shredded
- 1 (5 ounce) package parmesan cheese, grated
- In a large suacepan, heat oil over medium heat. Add onion and garlic; cook for 5-6 minutes or until onion is tender. Stir in crushed tomatoes, tomato sauce, tomato paste, parsley, Italian seasoning, sugar and salt. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes. Remove from heat. Set aside.
- Preheat oven to 350. Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminim foil. Place a cooling rack over pan. Spray rack with nonstick cooking spray.
- In medium bowl combine turkey, panko, green onion, bell pepper, egg, garlic, parsley, Italian seasoning and salt. Shape into golf ball sizeballs; place on prepared rack. Bake 15-17 minutes or until lightly browned. Set aside.
- Lightly grease a 13 x 9" baking dish.
- In a large bowl combine hot cooked pasta, cream cheese and sour cream, stirring to combine. Spoon half of mixture into baking dish. Top evenly with half of meatballs. Spon half of Zesty Tomato Sauce over meatballs. Sprinkled evenly with mozarella cheese. Repeat procedure with remaining noodles, meatballs and sauce. Sprinkly evenly with Parmesan cheese. Bake for 35-40 minutes or until hot and bubbly. Garnish with fresh parsley if desired.
- Serve immediately.
Excellent pasta dish, even with my shortcut of Hunt's Spaghetti sauce, mixed wit 15 oz. tomato sauce (this really sped up the prep!). I particularly loved the meatballs (so juicy and tender) and the little bits of red pepper and g. onion added some zest to it. I added a tsp. of dried onion, too. Thanks for posting, Kerena. Roxygirl
DH & I loved this meal! I was scared that I would be the only one to like it cause I like lasagna but DH and my kids don't. DH went for 2nds! I added more salt, cayenne, pepper & oregano to the sauce for our taste. We also like more meat so I added some leftover Jimmy Dean Italian sausage that I had in the fridge (didn't want it to go to waste). It was so good and gave me my lasagna fix even though it isn't exactly lasagna. My grandma didn't like to use cottage cheese or ricotta in her lasagna so she would use crm cheese in her sauce...so this was almost nostalgic for me. I hope more people try this recipe because it was really good. If my DH goes for 2nds on a pasta dish then you know it is delicious!! Thanks!!