Let’s face it, leftover night is the dreaded meal of the week, dry leathery, mash on a plate. Well, it’s time those leftovers have a makeover. A simple meal with minimal cleanup, transforming those leftovers into a one-pot wonder Chicken and Sausage Pasta Bake the whole family will love!
I used to strongly dislike leftovers. Place them in the microwave… reheat… now you got dry chewy not so pleasant meals unless it is soup, I could always do leftover soup. Anyways I am getting off track… What was I talking about… oh yeah simple pasta bake… transforming leftovers.
One week I was doing my weekly fridge clean out and for the third week in a row, I had a full kitchen trash bag. Full of all the wasted meals, veggies, fruits, sandwich meats, cheeses, along with the pantry waste stale chips, crackers, and other mystery food items. If I could explain what they were I totally would but these kids make some weird concoctions.
It was then I decided this was a waste! A waste of money, time, effort, and why do I bother cooking meals every day of the week if this is what it leads to. It was time for a change.
I did some research and found out that an average family household every year throws out $2,200 in waste a year. As a nation, we throw out an approximate 60-million-tons worth of just produce annually.
A study at John Hopkins University stated that we could provide a 2,000-calorie diet to 84% of the population with all the waste American’s are throwing out every year. Yeah, that would take care of our hungry nonfeed child issue we have people. Is it me or are these facts crazy!!
Well, I decided I had to do something. I have a hard time eating out with my food hypersensitivity plus I try my damnedest to avoid giving my kids over processed food, and unfortunately most restaurants these days have processed premade food, oh and don’t get me started on the cost!
Therefore, I decided to transform the leftovers into new meals. Healthy, non-dry, non-chewy, delicious leftovers, but that don’t taste or look like leftovers. What better way to do this then pasta? Pasta is one of my kid’s favorite things, and this Chicken and Sausage Pasta Bake is always a hit. They love it and I love that it is quick, easy, and the clean-up is a breeze.
First, you want to make sure you have a deep skillet, at least 2 inches deep with a lid. Brown the Italian Sausage until it is fully cooked, then add mushrooms, squash, leftover chicken, and olive oil to the skillet and allow to cook for 2 minutes.
Add in thyme, garlic, rosemary, basil, and oregano stir to combine then toss in the diced tomatoes and tomato sauce and bring to a simmer. Once you have established a simmer add in the elbow macaroni give it a quick stir, cover and allow to cook for 10 minutes.
Remove the lid, if pasta is not fully cooked add 1/2 cup of water, cover and allow to cook another 5 minutes. When pasta is cooked sprinkle the top with cheese and serve.
Cutting back on waste has never been so deliciously easy. Chicken and Sausage Pasta Bake is a one-pot wonder the whole family will love.
Chicken and Sausage Pasta Bake
- 1/4 lb Mild Italian sausage
- 1 1/2 cups Leftover roasted chicken
- 1 small Yellow onion Chopped
- 1 tbsp Olive oil
- 3 Baby Portobello Mushrooms Sliced
- 1 Yellow squash Sliced into half moons
- 1/2 tbsp Dry Thyme
- 1/4 tbsp Garlic powder
- 1/4 tbsp Dry rosemary
- 1 tbsp Dry basil
- 1 tbsp Dry oregano
- 1 15oz can Diced tomatoes
- 1 15oz can Tomato sauce
- 8 oz Elbow macaroni
- 1/4 cup 4 cheese Italian blend shredded cheese
- In a large deep skillet or pot over medium heat brown Italian sausage. Once sausage is browned add onions, cook for 3 minutes.
- Add mushrooms, squash, leftover chicken, and olive oil to the skillet cook another 2 minutes.
- Add thyme, garlic powder, rosemary, basil, and oregano mix well. Add in diced tomatoes and tomato sauce and bring to a simmer. Once it starts to simmer add elbow macaroni give a quick stir, cover and allow to cook for 10 minutes.
- Remove lid and give the pasta a stir. If pasta is still hard, cover and allow to cook for another 5 minutes, if there is no liquid is remaining add 1/2 cup of water. When pasta is cooked through sprinkle top of noodles with cheese and serve. CAREFUL IT WILL BE HOT!
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