So tonight’s dinner? Oh lawdy…where do I even begin?
For the past week (at least) I’ve been waiting for an opportunity to cook up a real dinner, and tonight I finally got my chance. I was browsing around in our fridge to see what we had on hand that I could incorporate with a box of this Barilla PLUS spaghetti.
I was sent a few boxes of the Barilla PLUS pasta a couple of weeks ago and had been eager to try it out ever since. So after rounding up a few key ingredients, and remembering an idea I had not too long ago, I threw caution to the wind and did a little experimenting.
Gosh, I love it when experiments turn out even better than you hoped for.
This was my first-ever attempt at a “spaghetti pie,” but I can now tell you that this is one of the best things going. Seriously. It almost reminded me of a cheesy pasta dish, slash pizza, slash lasagna all rolled into one…and who doesn’t like that?
To balance out the pasta and cheese in this dish, I made sure to add plenty of fresh veggies and some chopped up chicken sausage for added protein. When they came together?
Well, it was like heaven on a plate.
I honestly didn’t measure much of anything while I was making this, but here’s a compilation of what I’m pretty sure is about the same.
Lightened Up & Loaded Spaghetti Pie
- Prep Time: 15-20 minutes, including pasta cook time
- Bake Time: 30 minutes
- Servings: 4-6
- 1/2 a box (about 7 ounces) dry Barilla PLUS spaghetti
- 1 egg, lightly beaten,
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 2 chicken sausages, cooked & chopped (flavor of your choice – I used Al Fresco roasted garlic)
- 1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper
- 1/3 cup chopped onion
- 3-4 cups fresh baby spinach leaves
- 1-1/2 cups marinara sauce (I used Trader Joe’s)
- 1/2 teaspoon oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon basil
- 1 cup part-skim ricotta cheese
- 3/4 cup shredded, part-skim mozzarella cheese
- 2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a 9-inch pie plate with cooking spray.
- Cook the spaghetti according to package directions; drain, rinse, and be sure to remove any excess water. Place in a large bowl and toss with egg and 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese. Press spaghetti into bottom and up sides of prepared pie plate.
- Spray a medium non-stick skillet with non-stick cooking spray and heat over medium heat. Add chopped peppers and onions, stirring occasionally until slightly translucent, about 5 minutes. Add chopped chicken sausage and continue cooking another 3-5 minutes. Add fresh spinach leaves, cover, and allow to cook until spinach is wilted, another 2-3 minutes.
- Stir peppers, onions, chicken sausage, and spinach. Add marinara sauce, oregano, and basil. Cook an additional 3-4 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Spoon ricotta cheese over the spaghetti crust and spread evenly. Add the chicken sausage mixture on top of ricotta cheese layer. Sprinkle with mozzarella cheese and 2 tbsp Parmesan cheese.
- Bake for 30 minutes or until heated through. Remove and allow to sit about 10 minutes before cutting and serving. Enjoy!