This recipe is adapted from the Spicy Sausage Pasta at Kevin & Amanda.
They have some awesome recipes over there, not to mention some super cute free fonts! Now I have made this following their recipe EXACTLY before, and it was delicious! But I'm all about the shortcuts and cheaper options in the kitchen, so I'm going to share with you some of the substitutions I usually make. This recipe is incredibly forgiving, and I think my version(s) are every bit as tasty! Also, I add my ingredients a bit out of order from their recipe, because I'm a rebel like that. And I make mine as a double recipe, which is what I'm going to show you today. So half it if you wish. But it makes AWESOME leftovers. Not that any usually makes it to the next day at my house!
Here's what I used last time I made this (which was this week):
First substitution, the star of the show: the sausage. K & A use turkey smoked sausage, and it is ah-may-zing! I've used it, and it really does taste just like the original. And way better for you! But you can use good old beef if it's what you have on hand. OR, you can use L'il Smokies, which I did here! We have a grocery outlet near our house that gets amazing deals on random foods, and they stocked these for a couple of weeks for $1 a pack! Hello freezer stock up!
First heat some olive oil over medium high heat for just a couple of minutes. Then add all that sausage goodness! Yum!
Next substitution: the onions. I use minced. I'm sure that fresh or frozen are probably better, but I have this huge container of minced onions and I use them in everything! I personally love them in this dish. I usually use a couple of tablespoons here, maybe a little more, but you may want to use less, depending on your love (or not) for onions.
Mix the onions and sausage well and cook it for about 4 minutes, until the sausage starts to brown.
Then you're going to add your garlic. My sister-in-law turned me onto minced garlic in a jar, and I've never looked back. No more cleaning the holes of a garlic press with a toothpick for me! I generally add about 2 teaspoons here, which is more than the original recipe calls for (even doubled), but this is a recipe with strong flavors, and it can handle it!
Cook the sausage, onion, and garlic for about 30 seconds, then add your chicken broth. I use two 14 ounce cans.
Then I add my tomatoes. This is where I really play fast and loose. Sometimes I use two 10 oz cans of Rotel. Sometimes I use two 14 oz cans of petite diced tomatoes. Sometimes I use one of each, which is what I did here. It really all depends on what I have on hand. Rotel will make it spicier, so keep that in mind. I told you this recipe is forgiving! Just add the tomatoes/Rotel right in without draining.
Another big substitution here: the original recipe calls for heavy cream, which is awesome, but I rarely have any on hand. So I just add a cup of milk, usually whole milk, but I've even used 2%.
Now comes my favorite part: you just add the dry pasta right in there without cooking it first! Hooray! I used penne rigate here, which is my usual choice, but this will work with pretty much whatever you have on hand outside of maybe spaghetti or egg noodles. I use a 16 oz box.
Mix it all up well so the pasta is all coated with the rest of the ingredients.
Salt and pepper to taste.
Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally, then reduce heat, cover, and let simmer for 20 minutes. You can stir during this if you want, but I like to
Mix it all up and admire that gooey deliciousness. You're about to make someone's night, my friend.
Now, scallions. I add these, um, sometimes. I like them, my kids do not, and Nick is indifferent. I don't let it stop me from making this recipe if I don't have any on hand. If you have some, chop 'em up and toss those bad boys on there!
Kevin & Amanda's recipe calls for you to broil everything at this point. Is it embarrassing that I've made this 685 times and just now noticed that? Anyway, I'm sure that is a very tasty addition, but I never do it, and not um, just because I didn't know I was supposed to. I make mine in an electric skillet (shout out to my mom who changed my life when she passed it along to me), and moving it to an oven friendly dish would make this Two Pan Sausage Pasta, and I have enough dirty dishes in my life.
One Pan Sausage Pasta
*2 pounds of smoked sausage, smoked turkey sausage, kielbasa OR two 13 oz packs of cocktail wieners.
*2 Tbsp olive oil
*1-2 Tbsp minced onions or 1.5 cup diced fresh or frozen onion.
*2-4 cloves of garlic
*2 14 oz cans of chicken broth
*2 10 oz cans of Rotel or 2 14 oz cans of petite diced tomatoes.
*1 cup heavy cream or whole milk
*16 oz of dry pasta
*Salt and pepper to taste
*2 cups of shredded cheddar/Monterey Jack/cheddar jack blend/fiesta blend
*1/4 cup sliced scallions
Heat olive oil over medium heat until just smoking. Add sliced sausage or cocktail wieners and onion. Cook for 4 minutes or until sausage begins to brown. Add garlic and cook for 30 seconds. Add chicken broth, tomatoes/Rotel, and cream/milk. Mix well, then add dry pasta. Mix well again, then salt and pepper to taste. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 20 minutes. Remove from heat. Add shredded cheese and mix well, then add scallions. Serve hot!
This goes awesome with Cheddar Bay Biscuits, which will be featured in an upcoming post!