Category Archives: Pasta

Spicy Shrimp Penne Pasta



  • 28 ounces tomato sauce
  • 1 lb raw shrimp, peeled, deveined and tails off
  • 12 ounces whole wheat penne pasta
  • 1/2 teaspoon italian seasoning
  • 3 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 2 tablespoons parsley
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • salt, to taste

Combine tomato sauce, italian seasoning, garlic, olive oil and crushed red pepper and simmer for 20 minutes. Meanwhile, cook pasta in salted water and drain. Cook shrimp in a little olive oil in the same pot that the pasta was in for about 3 minutes. Slowly add sauce and cook for 5 minutes. Put pasta back in and stir to coat the pasta with the sauce. Add parsley and salt.


Mac and Cheese Muffins


What a  fun way to eat macaroni and cheese.

This was a very basic recipe that originally didn’t call for any seasoning other than a little salt added to the bread crumbs.  You can basically make mac and cheese the way you normally do, but bake it in a greased muffin tin for a different and fun presentation. It’s also a neat way to control portions and serving sizes. 🙂


  • 2 cups uncooked elbow macaroni
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1/2 cup seasoned dry bread crumbs
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • salt, pepper, garlic powder, paprika, to taste


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease a muffin tin with nonstick cooking spray. In a small bowl, stir together the bread crumbs and olive oil ; set aside.
  2. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add the macaroni and cook for about 8 minutes, it should still be a little bit firm. Remove from the heat, drain and return to the pan; stir in the butter and egg until pasta is evenly coated. Reserve 1/2 cup of sharp Cheddar cheese and stir the remaining Cheddar cheese, milk and mozzarella cheese into the pasta.  Add salt, pepper, garlic powder, and paprika, to taste. Spoon into the prepared muffin tin. Sprinkle the reserved cheese and the bread crumb mixture over the tops.
  3. Bake for 30 minutes in the preheated oven, or until the topping is nicely browned. Allow the muffins to cool for a few minutes before removing from the pan. This will allow the cheese to set and they will hold their muffin shape.

Modified from: All Recipes

Taco Pasta




  • 10 oz bowtie pasta
  • 1 lb ground beef
  • salt, pepper
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 cup salsa
  • 1/4 cup taco sauce
  • 2 cups taco cheese


Cook pasta according to package directions.  Drain and return to pot. Brown ground beef, seasoning with salt and pepper. Drain and return to pan. Add remaining ingredients except for cheese. Cook for 3-4 minutes. Add ground beef mixture to pasta and mix well.  Stir in one cup of cheese. Add more salsa and/or taco sauce if necessary. Pour into a round casserole dish and sprinkle the top with remaining cup of cheese. Bake at 350 degrees for about 10 minutes.


Olive Garden’s Capellini Pomodoro




This has been the only meal I will order at Olive Garden for several years. I finally got around to making it at home and couldn’t believe how easy it was.  This is a simple pasta dish that is great by itself but also good topped with grilled chicken or shrimp.

Olive Garden’s Capellini Pomodoro

3 garlic cloves — minced
2 pounds plum tomatoes — seeded, diced
1 ounce fresh basil leaves — minced
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
3 ounces Parmesan cheese — grated
12 ounces dry angel-hair pasta — cooked
1/4 teaspoon freshly-ground black pepper

Cooking Directions:
Heat olive oil and add garlic; cook until it turns white. Add tomatoes
and pepper and heat through, stirring constantly, about 2 to 3 minutes.
Tomatoes should not lose their shape. Remove from heat.

Transfer hot, cooked pasta to large bowl. Toss pasta gently with tomato
mixture, basil and half of Parmesan cheese. Serve immediately and pass
remaining Parmesan.  I also added a little salt, to taste.

This recipe yields 4 servings.


From: Secret Restaurant Recipes

Crockpot Lasagna



I’ve made this a couple times before but it’s been a while! Today, I used ground Italian sausage instead of ground beef. This is another easy dish that is ready for the crockpot in 15 minutes or so and then you don’t worry about it until it’s done!

Crockpot Lasagna


1 lb. ground beef
1 large onion, finely chopped (I also added green peppers and mushrooms)
2 garlic cloves, crushed and minced
1 large jar spaghetti sauce (such as Ragu in the 1 lb. 10 ounce jar)
1 package (8 ounces) no-boil lasagna noodles
16 ounces shredded mozzarella cheese
1 lb. ricotta cheese
1/4 cup milk
1 egg
1/2 cup shredded Parmesan/Romano cheese
Salt and pepper to taste


1. Brown the beef, onion, and garlic in a little oil in a frying pan. Drain off any grease.

2. Add the spaghetti sauce into the browned meat mixture. Mix well.

3. In a separate bowl, mix the ricotta cheese, milk, and egg.

4. Beat until thoroughly mixed and smooth. Then mix in the mozzarella cheese and the grated cheese, so that all the cheeses are combined.

5. Grease the slow cooker/Crock Pot with some vegetable shortening on the bottom and sides.

6. Put about 1/4 of the meat and sauce mixture in the bottom of the slow cooker/Crock Pot. Put a layer of noodles on top of that (break or cut them if needed). Put about 1/3 of the cheese mixture on top of that. Then repeat with sauce, noodles, cheese for another 2 layers. Top with meat sauce. Cook on low for about 3 hours or until noodles are tender.


Homemade Spaghetti Sauce





2 Tablespoons olive oil
1 large sweet onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, chopped
2 28-oz. cans crushed tomatoes

1 15-oz. can tomato sauce

1 6-oz. can tomato paste
2.5 teaspoons dried parsley
2 teaspoons dried basil
1 ½ cups water
2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
2 Tablespoons sugar
2 bay leaves, whole




Saute onion and garlic in olive oil until onion is tender.

 Add tomato paste, crushed tomatoes, parsley, basil, water, salt, pepper, sugar and bay leaves.

 Stir and bring to a boil. Stir and lower heat to a slow simmer. Cook 3-4 hours. Remove bay leaves before serving.


From: Brown Eyed Baker

Zesty Macaroni Salad




  • 3 cups cooked macaroni
  • 2 cups cooked corn
  • 1 can Ro-Tel Original Diced Tomatoes and Green Chiles, undrained
  • 1/2 cup onion, diced
  • 1/4 cup, plus 2 tbsp taco sauce
  • 1/2 cup vinaigrette dressing
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • Old Bay Garlic and Herb Seasoning


Combine pasta, corn, tomatoes and onion in a medium sauce bowl.  Add taco sauce, dressing, and sugar; mix well. Sprinkle the top with Old Bay Garlic and Herb seasoning. Refrigerate for at least one hour before serving. Add more dressing if necessary.

Modified from: Ro-Tel