Spaghetti – So Close To Homemade! December 12, 2015


     Don’t have time to cook down those tomatoes all day for the perfect spaghetti sauce?  It’s OK to cut corners in our very busy lives.  Yes, canned spaghetti sauce is allowed!  Remember, the brand you choose has already taken the time to cook the extra liquid out of the tomatoes for you.  Just add in your favorite ground meat, and the Italian spices I listed below.  Let it simmer in the crock pot all day, and you’ll have great tasting “homemade” spaghetti that tastes like you fussed all day!

Italian Sausage Spaghetti & Cheesy Garlic Toast

Spaghetti Sauce

16 oz lean ground beef or turkey
1 tbsp olive oil
1 onion diced
1 small green pepper diced (optional)
2 tsp fennel
2 tbsp oregano
2 tbsp basil
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1 tbsp sea salt
1 can mushrooms (optional)
1 – 26 oz cans of spaghetti sauce  (Hunts or Delmonte)
8 oz tomato paste
2 cups water
1 pkg Italian sausage (cooked according to package directions)

I use an electric pot for my spaghetti.  It is so handy, and allows you to make the spaghetti in one pot! First I brown my meat with olive oil.  I only add the healthy oil because I use turkey or 95% lean ground beef. While browning the meat, add the fennel, oregano, basil, garlic powder, salt, onions and green peppers.  Next add in your mushrooms and spaghetti sauce.  Add your tomato paste, and stir into the sauce until dissolved.  Your sauce will be very thick.  Add in about 2 cups of water making sure the sauce is the desired consistency you like.  Turn your pot down to about 200 degrees (2 hours or less), or low to medium for an all day simmer in the crock pot. I also like to add cooked Italian Sausage or Italian Meatballs to my sauce. The flavor sinks into the sauce and makes it amazing! Serve piping hot over cooked spaghetti noodles, sprinkle with some Parmesan and Enjoy!

Cheesy Parmesean Italian Bread

1 loaf of french bread (cut in half the long way down the loaf)
1 stick real butter  (softened)
1 tbsp garlic powder
1 tsp salt
Parmesan cheese
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

Mix garlic & salt into softened butter.  Whip with a mixer or fork till smooth & creamy.  Use a rubber spatula or knife and spread evenly over the bread.  Sprinkle the top with grated Parmesan cheese, and lastly spread the mozzarella across the top of your bread. Bake uncovered at 375 degrees for 10-15 minutes.  Serve hot with your spaghetti!


Italian Meatloaf & Parmesan Noodles With Sauce March 23, 2014

Italian Meatloaf-Parmesan Noodles & Sauce

Italian Meatloaf & Parmesan Noodles With Sauce

2 lbs lean ground beef
1 tbsp oregano
1 tbsp basil
2 tsp fennel seed
1 tsp garlic powder
2 tsp salt
2 tsp black pepper
1 tsp crushed red chilis
2 eggs
1 cup bread crumbs (oatmeal works too!)

Before you start mixing up your meatloaf, get your noodles cooked.  You'll need a 16 oz box of your favorite shaped noodle (I used Rotini).  Cook as directed.  Strain, and put back in the pot.  Put in 1/2 stick of melted butter, and 1/2 cup of Parmesan.  Mix well.  Set aside, and continue with your meatloaf. 

Toss all the ingredients for your meatloaf in a large bowl.  With clean hands, get right in there and mix all the spices well by kneading the meat like you would bread dough.  Shape into meatloaf, and put in a large glass baking pan sprayed with cooking spray.  Scoot it to the side so you have room for your parmesan noodles.

Pour the noodles into the pan, and then pour 1 can (I used a 26.5oz can of Hunts Spaghetti Sauce) or bottle of your favorite spaghetti sauce over the top of it all.  Sprinkle the top with about 1 cup of grated mozzarella cheese, cover with foil, and back for about an hour & a half.  Beef should be about 175 degrees in the thickest part of your meatloaf, so check your meatloaf before serving.  Another great comfort food for your family!  Enjoy!


Spaghetti Casserole February 22, 2013

You will need:

1 lb of noodles (I used Barilla Mini Bowties)  Cook according to package directions. 

While noodles are cooking, start your sauce:

1 lb ground beef
1 – 24 oz can or jar of your favorite Spaghetti Sauce
6 oz tomato paste
1 small onion diced
1/2 large green pepper diced
1 tbsp basil
1 tbsp oregano
1 tsp salt
1 tsp garlic powder
1 cup grated mozzerella

Brown your ground beef in a large pot along with onions, peppers, and spices.  Cook for approx 15 minutes or until ground beef is cooked through. Next add your spaghetti sauce.  No need to simmer a long time since the sauce is fully cooked.  Add tomato paste.  Mix well.  Next add cooked noodles & mozzeralla.  Turn off your heat & cover pot.  Let stand for 5 – 10 minutes and serve!