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Cream Cheese Spaghetti

Cream Cheese Spaghetti

Sometimes it’s funny how a new recipe is discovered. This one, in particular, was quite amusing;  Cream Cheese Spaghetti. Now, before you go getting judgy on me let me tell you all about it.

I aim to do a bi-weekly meal plan. Like many people I get paid bi-weekly. Doing a bi-weekly menu, meal plan, and food prep can work well for that. Anyone who has ever planned meals for years on end knows that this task isn’t always just writing down a list of meals and then making them. There are schedules involved and the household members who are being cooked for.

As I many times do when preparing a meal plan I asked D3 and D4 what they wanted to eat over the next couple of weeks. Sometimes I get rapid fire answers and at times I get vague non-answers such as I got this past meal planning time. D3 replied, “Something with Cream Cheese.” As is in my nature I asked some probing questions. “Like a dip? Or an entrée?” She said an entrée.

I racked my brain for some time trying to determine what would make a good cream cheese centric main dish. Who can’t think of dips or sides that have cream cheese in them? I wasn’t going to add meat to the dish because that wouldn’t make it a cream cheese entrée.

The two things that I could come up with were spaghetti or tacos. Spaghetti and tacos become conduits for many things in my house, so why not cream cheese. I added Cream Cheese Spaghetti to the menu.

Finally the night came to make Cream Cheese Spaghetti. On my way home from work I called The Hubs and asked him if he would start the pasta water. “Oh, yeah. It’s that night, “ he said. Apparently he had not been looking forward to this meal.

I got home and made dinner, rounding the meal off with green beans and garlic toast. Everyone looked a little bit nervous as they were trying it. The looks said everything. They liked it. Seconds were dished out. The Cream Cheese Spaghetti recipe was a success.

As we were dining on this new recipe The Hubs asked why this was chosen. I went through the story above. When D3 heard that the other idea had been Cream Cheese Tacos she made an exasperated sound and said, “And you didn’t go with that?” The Hubs quickly reminded her that the likelihood of that dish making it into the rotation with another roughly 360 days left in this year was very high. We love tacos.

Cream Cheese Spaghetti ticked off all of the boxes that make it an excellent weeknight meal:

  • Quick
  • Easy
  • Cost-Effective
  • Crowd Pleasing
  • Delicious

While this isn’t going to tick any boxes for low-fat or low carb it will definitely be hitting our table again this year!

Cream Cheese Spaghetti

16-ounces spaghetti noodles

1 cup reserved pasta water

8 ounces cream cheese, softened and cubed

Seasonings to taste

Cook pasta according to the package directions. At the end of the cooking time, remove 1 cup of water from the pasta pan. Drain pasta and set aside.

Add the cubed cream cheese to the empty pasta cooking pan, or a Dutch Oven. Turn on medium  low heat. Whisk in about half of the reserved pasta water and continue to whisk, adding more liquid to thin. Whisk until cream cheese has melted and you have a sauce to your desired consistency.

Stir in salt, pepper, garlic powder, parsley or your preferred seasonings to taste. Turn off heat.

Add drained pasta to the sauce and toss to coat.

 

 

 
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Posted by on January 8, 2020 in Dinner Recipes, Recipe

 

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Spinach Pasta Bake – Throwing Food Together

Spinach Pasta Bake – Throwing Food Together

In my marriage, one of the strongest connections The Hubs and I have is to food. It can also be one of our biggest disconnects. We both love food and love trying new things, however, we eat and cook very differently.

One of the biggest reasons for this is how we view cooking. When The Hubs cooks, he likes to peruse recipe books or recipes online and then goes to the grocery store for ingredients. He then uses most of the skillets and saucepans, utensils, and bake ware that we own to cook the dish. The dish will most likely contain butter and cream; always delicious, rarely healthy. I like to plan ahead, but because of my job that doesn’t always work. Sometimes I have to just throw together what I have on hand. This ends one of two ways in the household: they love it or they hate it.

Earlier this week I knew I was going to have to throw something together for dinner. As I was putting things in a casserole dish The Hubs started walking into the kitchen. “I’m not sure you want to see what I’m doing”, I said casually. He stopped walking and then boldly took a few more steps so he could look in the dish. “I’m not sure I should have”, he muttered as he walked back out of the kitchen.

A half an hour later dinner was on the table. The girls and The Hubs were glancing from their plates to the other faces and back to the plates. Finally, Daughter Number Four took a bite. Then she took another bite. (whew) At least someone was going to eat. That encouraged Daughter Number Three and The Hubs to also try the dish. They all cleaned their plates, and Daughter Number Three took a little bit more. The only comment from The Hubs was that he wasn’t sure it even needed “the meat”. Really? He’s the only reason I put “the meat” in it! I noticed yesterday evening when I got home from work that the large container of leftovers had been completely devoured!

Here is the creation that I pulled out of the cabinets and fridge, threw together, and served to the family for dinner (and apparently the next day’s lunch)…

The dish was easy, inexpensive, relatively healthy, and yummy. Oh, and it was quick, too. You can’t ask for more than that!

Spinach Pasta Bake

  • 1 package Rigatoni (cooked)
  • 2 cups fresh spinach
  • 1 cup cottage cheese
  • 1 package chicken sausage (fully cooked (I like Aidells), cut in coins)
  • ½ jar spaghetti sauce
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray a casserole dish with nonstick cooking spray. 

  2. Layer sausage, spinach, cottage cheese, pasta, and spaghetti sauce in dish. 

  3. Bake, covered, for 15 minutes. Stir gently, recover, and bake for 15 more minutes until hot through. 

Serve with Italian bread.

 
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Posted by on December 18, 2013 in Dinner Recipes

 

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