Johnsonville Sausage Creamy Pasta Casserole
One of our assignments this month for the AllRecipes AllStar Brand Ambassador program was to find a fall comfort food recipe and sub the main protein with Johnsonville Italian sausage - I went through AllRecipes.com and found a bunch of possible options, and presented a couple to my boys to pick from. Kenneth voted for this one because we had some extra pasta already cooked and in the refrigerator (I cooked too much pasta the other day for a different dish, so we just put the extra in a Ziploc and refrigerated it, pasta is always going to get used around here!) This is originally a Baked Spaghetti Casserole dish, but obviously it is no longer baked spaghetti if you use macaroni noodles, so I have adjusted the name - however you could, of course, use spaghetti noodles in this dish, and then subsequently call it whatever you want! :D It is a wonderful, creamy, comforting dish and we all loved it! The addition of the Italian sausage really gives this a great flavor boost - my son was cracking me up when we ate dinner (he ate a HUGE plate, and then ate the rest of mine too) - he said "Mom, I don't know what meat this is, but I need more of it!" Spoken like a true teenager. Speaking of - he will be 16 years old next month. Lord help me.
If you like your casserole dishes really creamy, I would suggest doubling the soup mixture and adding some over the first layer of pasta and meat in addition to the very top. I thought it was enough as written below, especially with the cheese and "juice" from the meat mixture / tomatoes, but I am sure I would have liked it extra creamy too - so adjust to your family's preferences.
I love casserole dishes like this - they are easy to work with and make your own, and served with a big Caesar salad and some incredibly addictive and delicious Italian pull bread this was a fantastic fall dinner at our house! We will definitely enjoy this one again.
Johnsonville Sausage Creamy Pasta Casserole adapted from LaDonna on AllRecipes
12 ounces elbow macaroni noodles
1 cup chopped onions
1 cup chopped green bell peppers
1 pound ground Johnsonville Italian Sausage
1 (16 ounce) can diced tomatoes
1 (4.5 ounce) can mushrooms, drained
1 tsp dried Italian seasoning
1 TBS minced garlic
2 tsp garlic powder
2 cups shredded mild Cheddar cheese
1 (10.75 ounce) can condensed cream of mushroom soup
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add pasta, and cook for 8 to 10 minutes, or until al dente. Drain, and set aside.
- In a large skillet over medium-high heat, saute the onions, green peppers and ground sausage. Once sausage is brown and onions and peppers softened, add the tomatoes, mushrooms, garlic powder, minced garlic, and Italian seasoning. Simmer uncovered for 10 minutes (adjust seasonings to taste, if needed).
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9x13 inch baking dish. Place half of the cooked pasta into the prepared dish. Top with half of the meat mixture. Sprinkle with 1 cup of the cheddar cheese. Repeat.
- In a medium bowl, combine the cream of mushroom soup and water until smooth; pour over the top of the casserole. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.
- Bake in preheated oven for 30 to 35 minutes. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.
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