Monday, January 21, 2013

Cheese and Spicy Sausage Casserole

It seems that lately I've been trying to make dinners that will last for a few days.  This is mostly because time just seems to get away from me, especially this month.  As most people did, I too set some personal goals for myself, the main one being to run/walk 150 miles between my treadmill and the open road.  As of this moment I'm sitting at 135.62 miles.  Based on my numbers, I definitely plan to exceed my 150 goal!  Needless to say, this goal has kept me very busy, which is why I've been stretching out dinners.

But enough about personal goals.......let's get back to food!

Let me just start by saying that this recipe is absolutely delicious, and oh my gosh......when this casserole was cooking it spread such a sensational aroma throughout the whole house, and of course, it did not disappoint!  Jeff and I are not shy at all when it comes to spicy food though (in fact, the spicier the better), so if you want to tone down the spiciness level, feel free to add a can of the original Rotel instead of the hot version.  Either way, I'm positive that it will be scrumptious!

Cheese and Spicy Sausage Casserole

1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 package Eckrich Angus Beef smoked sausage (cut in ¼ inch round pieces)
2 Tbsp. dried minced onion flakes
1 tsp. garlic powder
2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
1 (10 oz can) Hot Rotel tomatoes with Habaneros
½ cup skim milk
¼ tsp. salt
½ tsp. black pepper
11 oz. penne pasta (half cooked)
1 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
1 ½ cup shredded pepperjack/cheddar cheese mixture
Garnish with scallions

Heat the olive oil in a large skillet and add in the smoked sausage rounds.  Allow to cook until lightly browned on both sides.

Next, add into the skillet the onion flakes, garlic powder, chicken broth, Rotel, milk, salt, pepper, and pasta.  Let the ingredients come to a boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer, cover, and let sit for 15-20 minutes or until the pasta is ready.

Remove the skillet from the heat and stir in half the cheese.

Spray a 9 x 13 inch baking dish with a non-stick cooking spray, and then evenly pour in and distribute the ingredients from the skillet.  Cover the pasta mixture with the remaining cheese and place in the oven, on broil, until the cheese is melted and turns golden.  (Make sure to keep an eye on your oven.  It only took about 5 minutes for mine casserole to bake, but all ovens are different)

Slightly Adapted from Plain Chicken


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