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Baked Rigatoni with Spicy Sausage & Cheese

Source: © EatingWell Magazine
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Active Time:  30 Minutes
Total Time:  1 Hour
  6 servings
Spicy Italian sausage and mushrooms are perfect baked with cheesy rigatoni. Make it a meal: Complete this meal with Radicchio & Fennel Salad.
4 ounces  hot Italian sausage  (2 links)
1 teaspoon  extra-virgin olive oil
1   large onion, chopped
3 cloves  garlic very finely chopped
8 ounces  mushrooms trimmed and sliced
1 teaspoon  crumbled dried rosemary
2 14-ounce cans   diced tomatoes in juice (recipe-ready) or two 14-ounce cans plum tomatoes, chopped, juices reserved
1/4 cup  dry red or white wine
salt & freshly ground pepper to taste
12 ounces  whole-wheat rigatoni mostaccioli or penne
1/2 cup  part-skim ricotta cheese
3/4 cup  fresh breadcrumbs  (see Tip)
1/4 cup  freshly grated parmesan cheese

Tip: To make fresh breadcrumbs: Trim crusts from firm sandwich bread. Tear bread into pieces and process in a food processor until coarse crumbs form. One slice of bread makes about 1/3 cup crumbs.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

Coat a 3-quart shallow baking dish with cooking spray.

Crumble sausage into a large nonstick skillet (discard casing) and cook over medium heat, stirring, until browned and cooked through, 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer the sausage to a plate lined with paper towels and set aside. Wipe any fat from the pan.

Heat oil in the same pan over medium-high heat. Add onion and sauté until softened, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and sauté for 1 minute. Add mushrooms and rosemary; cook, stirring, until the mushrooms begin to give off liquid, about 3 minutes. Stir in tomatoes (and their juices), wine and the cooked sausage. Bring to a simmer and cook, uncovered, for 5 minutes. (The sauce will be quite thin). Season with salt and pepper.

Meanwhile, cook pasta in a large pot of salted boiling water until just tender, 8 to 10 minutes or according to package directions. Drain and add to the sauce; toss to coat.

Spread half of the pasta and sauce in the prepared baking dish. Dot with spoonfuls of ricotta and top with the remaining pasta. Cover with foil and bake for 20 minutes.

Combine breadcrumbs and Parmesan in a small bowl. Season with salt and pepper. Sprinkle the breadcrumb mixture over the pasta and continue to bake, uncovered, until the top is golden, about 10 minutes.

Recipe reprinted by permission of © EatingWell Magazine. All rights reserved.
Date Added: 10/01/2008
Nutrition Facts per Serving
Yield:   6 servings
Calories: 368
Fat. Total: 8g
Protein: 19g
Carbohydrates, Total: 55g
Fat, Saturated: 2g
Fiber: 7g
Cholesterol: 21mg
Sodium: 320mg
% Cal. from Fat: 20%
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