Quick & Easy Zesty Italian Penne Pasta Bake
We like this recipe because we use fresh peppers, onions, and zucchini from our garden. I can up with this recipe because I needed a quick recipe for unexpected company and had left over marinara sauce in the refrigerator and breakfast sausage in the freezer. I usually make my recipe with ziti, however, penne pasta is basically the same thing. I make this recipe in the summer when I have lots of "fresh" zucchini from my garden. I always pick fresh, baby zucchini for this recipe, therefore, it isn't necessary to peel the zucchini or cook it, because it is very tender. When it is sliced thin, it cooks perfectly in the casserole and does not require prior cooking. I serve this with fresh garden salad and crusty bread or rolls.
- Ready In:
- 1hr 15mins
- 1 package Jimmy Dean sausage
- 1 medium onion, course chop
- 1 small sweet red pepper, course chop
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon hot crushed red pepper flakes
- 2 teaspoons dry basil
- 1 (14 1/2 ounce) can tomato sauce
- 1 small zucchini, unpeeled,sliced very thin (do not cook zucchini, it will cook in the casserole)
- salt and black pepper
- 1⁄2 box penne pasta
- 1 (8 ounce) package shredded colby-monterey jack cheese
- 1 tablespoon butter, to grease casserole dish
- Cook pasta to aldente stage, put in strainer, do not rinse and set aside to completely drain.
- Heat large saute pan, add olive oil, onion, sweet red peppers, hot crushed red pepper flakes and garlic.
- Saute on low until soft, not brown.
- Place in a small bowl and set aside.
- In same pan, brown sausage until cooked through.
- If not using Jimmy Dean Sausage, remove any excess fat.
- Return vegetable mixture back to pan and add tomato sauce, basil, salt and pepper to taste.
- Bring to a boil, lower heat and simmer 10 minutes.
- Grease 2 quart casserole, put 1/2 of the pasta, cover with 1/2 of the meat/sauce mixture, lay slices of 1/2 of the zucchini, sprinkle 1/2 of the cheese, repeat with a second layer of pasta, meat/sauce mixture, zucchini slices, ending with the remaining cheese.
- Bake covered in 350 degree oven for 30 minutes, remove cover and bake until lightly brown, about 10 minutes.
MY PRIVATE NOTES
RECIPE MADE WITH LOVE BY
JOIN THE CONVERSATION
Quick and easy and lots of flavour. I had just made some recipe #22782 yesterday so I used that instead of the canned tomato sauce. Since the recipe already had Italian sausage, red pepper flakes and basil I omitted those from this recipe. I double the ingredients because I cooked a full box of penne before realizing the recipe called for 1/2 so I added more of the other ingredients to balance it out. It was a hit and I will be making it again. Great recipe for university kids to make too.Reply
Very good indeed. I already had prepared tomato sauce in the fridge, (made with similar ingredients), so I used that, adding it to the sausage. We don't get Jimmy Deans here, so I used chorizo sausage. I subbed peas (only one layer) for the zucchini, and allowed them to cook in the casserole in the same way, they cooked perfectly. A very nice casserole that the whole family thoroughly enjoyed; since my tomato sauce was already prepared it took me only around 40 minutes to have this on the table. Served with garlic bread, an excellent mid-week supper! This dish was made in memory of Judy-Jude, January 2009, may she rest in peace.Reply