Winter is almost here and the snow has started to fall. Although I don’t love many aspects of winter, I do love the warm comfort foods that we enjoy during these cold months. I have fond memories of my Mom making delicious “big batch” stews, casseroles and soups and other warm hearty dishes in the fall and winter. The best feeling was coming home from school on a chilly day, and being enveloped in the delicious savory aroma of a warm home-cooked meal.

At the end of the week, our family would have a “leftovers” dinner where each of us got to choose our favorite food from the week to eat. My pick usually involved pasta and cheese (two of my favorite foods). Maybe this is why I love this recipe so much!

This delicious and nutritious pasta bake (which is a twist on classic spaghetti) seems to be one of our family’s go-to easy weeknight meals. What I love about this recipe is that it is quick and easy to throw together, makes the best leftovers and freezes really well. You can use just about any meat of your choosing including ground beef, ground chicken, chicken breasts, or ground turkey like I do.

Cooking this dish offers a great opportunity to use up leftovers in the fridge, such as cooked leftover pasta or leftover meat from a previous meal. Each time I make it, I use different veggies depending on what I have in the fridge. Bell peppers, onions, carrots, zucchini and broccoli all work really well if you don’t have tomatoes and mushrooms on hand. I usually aim for at least 3 different colors at dinner. 

I hope that this easy, tasty and nutritious meal becomes one of your family’s favorites too! Enjoy!

Turkey Tomato Pasta Bake
Prep Time
10 minutes
Cook Time
60 minutes
Yields
10 servings
Nutritional Info
Calories435 kcal
Fat17 g
Carbohydrates44 g
Fiber6 g
Protein31 g
Sodium735 mg
Calcium299 mg
Source: Inspired by the “Canned Soup Mom’s” Easiest Baked Pasta Recipe You’ll Ever Make

Ingredients

1 box(approximately 500 g)pasta (bow tie or your favourite)
1 tbsp(15 ml)butter
1 cup(250 ml)sliced mushrooms
1-1 1/2 lbs(500-750 g)lean ground turkey
2(medium)fresh tomatoes, chopped
2 cups(500 ml)fresh spinach
1 1/2 jars(~900 ml)tomato pasta sauce
2 1/2 cups(625 ml)grated cheese (I used a combination of cheddar and mozzarella and provolone)

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 F.
  2. Cook pasta according to package, but make sure that you don’t cook past “el dente.”
  3. While it is cooking, melt butter in a large and deep sauté pan on medium-high heat. Add mushrooms and sauté until soft (about 5 minutes).
  4. Add ground turkey and sauté until no longer pink (8-10 minutes).
  5. Turn heat down to medium-low and add tomatoes and spinach. Sauté for 2-3 minutes spinach is wilted.
  6. Remove pan from the heat, add jar of pasta sauce as well as cooked pasta and stir to combine.
  7. Grease a large casserole dish and fill the bottom with half of the pasta mixture. Top with half of the grated cheese. Top with remaining pasta mixture and then sprinkle with remaining cheese.
  8. Bake at 350 F for approximately 30 minutes or until slightly golden brown on top.

dairy-divas

Sarah
Read more by: Sarah
Sarah Remmer, RD is a Mom of three, and Registered Dietitian in Calgary, Alberta. Sarah runs a nutrition consulting and communications company, where she specializes in infant and kids nutrition. Sarah is also a freelance nutrition writer and blogger.
Member Of
College of Dietitians of Alberta
Dietitians of Canada