Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Pasta Party Pronto

Hooray for Wednesday!  Happy Hump Day! Does anyone ever really say that anymore?  Oh well, I do :)  A few weeks ago, I had a post on healthy back to school breakfasts.  For today's post, I'm going to give you a healthy lunch option.

I really like this pasta for a couple of different reasons, it's high in fiber from the quinoa pasta (if you are a gluten eater then use 100% whole wheat) and high in protein from the cottage and ricotta cheeses.  It also freezes well and is even more amazing if you add edamame!  Ellie Krieger's recipe that I've posted is pretty amazing, but I've added some changes to make it more my style and also to make it gluten-free of course.  This recipe is pretty easy, requires minimal cleanup and comes together quickly. Feast away!

Cheesy Baked Pasta adapted from Ellie Krieger


16 oz quinoa pasta (if you use Ancient Harvest, you'll need 2 boxes)
1 16-ounce can basil, garlic & oregano diced tomatoes
1 C tomato basil pasta sauce
1 1/2 C shredded pizza cheese blend, preferably 2%
1 1/2 C low-fat cottage cheese
1 C low-fat ricotta cheese
1/4 C grated Parmesan
3 tbsp parsley, chopped
1 tbsp olive oil
1 yellow onion, chopped
2 tsp garlic (I use the pre-minced kind)
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tspdried rosemary
1-2 tsp red pepper flakes
1/4 tsp pepper

1. Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees. Boil water for quinoa pasta.  Add and cook for about 7-8 minutes, until al dente. Drain. Return to pot.
2. Add olive oil to a large saucepan. Saute onion and garlic over medium low-heat for about 10 minutes or until softened.
2. To garlic mixture, add tomato basil pasta sauce and the 16-oz can of tomatoes.  Add red pepper flakes, oregano, rosemary & pepper.  Allow mixture to simmer until thickened, about 12-15 minutes.  Stir the mixture occasionally.
3. Combine parmesan cheese, cottage cheese, ricotta cheese and 1 cup of the pizza cheese blend. Stir in parsley.
4. In pasta pot, add sauce and cheeses.  Stir to combine.
5. Spray cooking dishes with non-stick spray (I used 3!) and top with remaining 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese.
6. Bake 20-25 minutes, until top of pasta is golden brown.
7. Devour.  Freeze leftovers in Pyrex containers for the work week :)

Serves 10 Lindsay-sides portions or 8 normal people :)

Don't be fooled, I had to bake this in 3 different dishes!

With a side of asparagus? Yes, please :)

Do you like baked pastas?  Any I should try?