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An easy sausage pasta bake made with Italian sausages, tomatoes, red pepper flakes and garlic. Ready from start to finish in under 30 minutes, it’s so simple and perfect for weeknights. Topped with bubbling, melted mozzarella cheese it’s a comfort food favourite!
I give you more cheese and pasta…
Because I can’t help myself, I’m back with more cheesy pasta in the form of this spicy, creamy sausage pasta bake. I’ve been making this pasta bake for as long as I can remember and it never fails to hit the spot. It’s just so easy (cheesy) and comforting and when I need a quick weeknight dinner recipe, this is one I reach for quite often.
Sometimes I’ll switch it up and leave out the mascarpone and add a splash of red wine and more spices such as fresh red chilli and fennel seeds. You could also substitute the sausages for zucchini or eggplant (aubergine) if you’re looking for a meat free version.
How To Make A Sausage Pasta Bake – Step By Step
Bring a salted pot of water to a boil and cook the pasta roughly 3 minutes under-cooked (it will then be cooked in the oven). Important: reserve 1/2 cup of pasta water for the sauce.
Squeeze the sausage meat out of the skin and brown it in a pan (no need for added olive oil). Once browned add the chopped garlic, red pepper flakes and oregano (photos 1-3).
Fry the garlic and spices for 1 minute then add the pureed tomatoes (passata) along with the reserved pasta water. Simmer the sauce for around 5 minutes then turn off the heat and add the mascarpone. Stir it into the tomato sauce (photos 4-6).
Add the drained pasta into the sauce and mix it until completely coated. Transfer it to an ovenproof baking dish, top with mozzarella and bake until the cheese is bubbling and golden (photos 8-9).
More Easy Pasta Recipes For Weeknights;
- Pasta with pancetta, ricotta and tomato
- Sun dried tomato pasta with roasted red pepper
- Pasta with butter and parmesan
- Creamy butternut squash pasta
- Bucatini with roasted red pepper cream sauce
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Spicy Sausage Pasta Bake
- 14.1 oz (400g) rigatoni pasta
- 7 oz (200g) Italian sausages
- 2 cloves garlic , finely chopped
- 1/2 cup (100g) mascarpone
- 2 1/2 cups (700g) passata/pureed tomatoes
- 1/2 cup (125ml) reserved pasta water
- 8 oz (125g) mozzarella
- 1/2 tsp chili flakes
- 1 tsp oregano
- salt and pepper
- 1 small bunch basil for garnish (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 180°C/350F/gas mark 4.. Bring a pot of salted water a boil and boil the pasta around 3 minutes less than advised on the packet instructions. Reserve 1/2 cup (125ml) of pasta water.
- Squeeze the sausages out of their skins and brown in the pan on a medium heat. Add the finely chopped garlic, chili flakes, and oregano. Stir into the sausages and fry for 1 minute.
- Add the passata (pureed tomatoes) along with the reserved pasta water and a good pinch of salt and pepper, simmer for around 5 minutes.
- Turn the heat off and add the mascarpone, stir the sauce until the mascarpone is mixed in thoroughly.
- Drain the pasta and add to the sauce, mix until it's completely coated. Transfer the pasta to an ovenproof baking dish and top with mozzarella. Bake in the oven for around 7-8 minutes or until the mozzarella is melted and bubbling. Serve with torn basil (optional).
- Try replacing the sausages with zucchini or eggplant (aubergine) for a veggie version.
- To make this pasta bake lighter you can leave out the mascarpone and add an extra 1/2 cup (125ml) of reserved pasta water.
- Try replacing the macarpone with a splash of red wine.
- Fresh red chilli and fennel seeds are great additions.
- I always use extra virgin olive oil in all of my recipes unless stated otherwise
- When I use canned or jarred tomatoes of any kind I always use this brand for the best results and flavour
- All vegetables are medium sized unless stated otherwise
- All recipes are tested and developed using a fan (convection) oven
- Find out more about how nutrition is calculated here
- Check out our must have Italian Pantry Staples here
- You can also find all our Essential Kitchen Tools for Italian Cooking here