No Ground Beef?
I never thought the day would come when I would have trouble finding ground beef and chicken breast in the grocery store. I was wrong, and that time is now. The panic buying that came along with COVID-19 is here. I have learned to be a little more creative in my shopping and cooking since I have to work around what is available. I have found that Italian sausage is typically available, and although it is higher in fat, it is very useful in many dishes. You may have a little trouble finding pasta, but in many stores, there are some options.
Let the children help!
Another change in our household is that my children are now home all day. My son is nine years old, and as part of our day, I am trying to teach him some life skills like cooking. He loves this recipe, and it is so simple that he can do almost all of it by himself. I typically help him with the chopping, but otherwise, he does it all! Please note: he is nine years old, meaning I should expect him to eat two of these servings.
This recipe is simple comfort food. It’s like a cross between the perfect soup and the most delicious pasta. It is ideal for a busy night when you want a quick and warm meal. I also love it because the spinach has some great antioxidants, which my children don’t even notice. Add more veggies to this meal by including a side salad. Enjoy!
Pasta Serves: 6
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 20 minutes
1 Tbsp Olive Oil
½ White or Yellow Onion, diced
4 Cloves Garlic, minced
1 lb. Italian Sausage, ground
2 Cups Chicken Broth
2 Cups Spinach, chopped (I like fresh the best)
½ Cup Half and Half
1 Package Pasta (whatever kind you like—we love bow tie pasta!)
Red pepper flakes or cayenne pepper (optional)
- Cook pasta according to directions.
- While pasta is cooking, sauté onion and garlic in olive oil over medium high heat until the onion is translucent (about 4 minutes) in a large pot.
- Add sausage and cook until browned.
- Add chicken broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and simmer for 5 minutes.
- Add spinach and simmer for an additional 5 minutes.
- Turn off heat and add half and half. Serve immediately after adding half and half. You can also add a small amount of half and half to each bowl.
- Serve pasta in a bowl and top with sausage mixture and sprinkle with red pepper if desired.
- You can speed up prep time by using the already minced garlic from the grocery store.
- I highly recommend using fresh spinach for extra nutrition and better texture.
- You can make this recipe in your instant pot as well: use the saute function for the garlic, onion, and sausage. Then cook on high pressure for 2 minutes after adding broth. Add spinach and simply close the lid and wait for 5 minutes until the spinach wilts. Add your half and half and you are done!
- You can also try using a high protein pasta to reduce the carbohydrates and increase the protein.
Nutrition Information per serving: Calories: 580, Total Fat: 29 grams, Total Carbohydrate: 59 grams, Dietary Fiber: 5 grams, Protein: 22 grams.
If you like this recipe, then you may also like this Seafood Chowder.
Originally published April 2020.
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