Inside: Get a recipe for an easy, 30-minute weeknight pasta that feels extra-special.
Every mom needs a good 30-minute pasta recipe in her back pocket.
(And not just “dump jarred sauce over cooked pasta”–though believe me, that particular dish makes an appearance on our menu sometimes too.)
This Cozy 30-Minute Sausage Spinach Pasta can be that back-pocket-pasta-dish for you. It is for us.
It makes so many appearances on my Real Mom Menu that I figured I’d share the recipe (I feature our dinner game plan in my weekly emails–sign up for those here).
This recipe was inspired by Pinch of Yum’s Date Night Rigatoni. It’s simplified (and lightened up) for a simple weeknight family meal.
Ingredients you need for Creamy Sausage Spinach Pasta
- Cavatappi pasta: This S-shaped pasta is great for this recipe, but you can also swap in penne, bowties, or rigatoni
- Italian sausage: Choose ground sausage
- Olive oil
- Fresh garlic
- Tomato paste
- Chicken broth
- Heavy cream
- Fresh baby spinach: I use half of a five-ounce bag
- Salt and Pepper
How to Make Creamy Sausage Spinach Pasta
While your pasta water is coming to a boil, heat oil in large skillet. Add sausage and cook, breaking it up into bite-sized pieces. (I don’t drain the fat from the sausage, but you can if you’d like.)
When sausage is almost done, add the garlic and stir to cook. Add tomato paste and broth and stir until combined.
Stir in heavy cream.
Then add the chopped spinach. It will look like a lot of greens, but will wilt down nicely.
Add the cooked pasta and stir, drizzling in some reserved pasta water until the sauce is a thickness you like.
Give it a taste and add salt and pepper if you’d like. Then serve, with or without Parmesan cheese on top.
Questions about Creamy Sausage Spinach Pasta
Can I use other pasta shapes?
Sure! Rigatoni, bowties, or penne would also work well with this creamy sauce.
What if my kids don’t like anything green?
You can certainly omit the spinach. Or serve them a helping without it. Or let them surgically remove it from their portion and leave you a little pile of greens at the bottom of their bowl.
Can I use sausage links instead of ground?
Yes. Slice them on the diagonal and cook as you would ground sausage, following the recipe as usual. It may not render as much fat, so I would add an extra splash of cream.
Does this pasta make good leftovers?
Oh my yes! So good.
Can I use more heavy cream?
- 3/4 pound dry Cavatappi pasta (12 ounces)
- 1 pound Italian sausage, ground
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 six-ounce can tomato paste
- 1 cup chicken broth
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
- 2.5 ounces fresh baby spinach, roughly chopped (I use half of a five-ounce bag)
- salt and pepper to taste
- Set a pot of well-salted water over medium-high heat, then cook pasta according to package directions, reserving about a cup of pasta water before draining.
- While water is coming to a boil, heat oil in large skillet. Add sausage and cook, breaking it up into bite-sized pieces.
- When sausage is almost done, add minced garlic and stir to cook. Add tomato paste and broth and stir until combined.
- Turn heat to low. Add heavy cream and chopped spinach and stir.
- Add cooked pasta and stir, drizzling in enough pasta water to thin the sauce a bit.
- Taste and add salt and pepper if needed.
- Portion into bowls. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese if desired.
For an even creamier sauce, add more heavy cream.
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 348Total Fat: 21gSaturated Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 14gCholesterol: 41mgSodium: 596mgCarbohydrates: 25gFiber: 2gSugar: 4gProtein: 16g
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