Alright…i’m not gonna lie to you…things be craaaaayzaaaay in my world right now. So much going on that meals have been quick and super easy lately. I’m talking eggs and toast or warming up some sausage rolls and opening a can of beans kinda quick. Not a lot of time or energy for cooking these days but today I had a bit more time so I whipped up a tasty pasta dish that was easy peasy.
Something I don’t eat very often is Lasagna. I enjoy it but the reason I don’t eat it very often is because…well…I would have to make it. It’s not exactly a challenging dish but it’s just more of a pain in the butt kinda dish…making sauce, then boiling noodles…the layering, having your oven on long enough to heat up your entire home…the whole ordeal is annoying and I don’t always think the return on investment is there. Sorry Lasagna fans…I would rather take the same amount of time and make something awesome.
Today though…was one of those days where I was staring blankly in to my fridge to see what the heck was in there and desperately hoped I would get some inspiration for tonights dinner. I noticed I had a small tub of ricotta cheese and remembered that I bought it the week before at the grocery store because it was on sale. I picked it up, looked at the expiry date and noticed it needs to be used up in a week so I instantly thought of making a lasagna. Then I shook my head as I remembered that the odds of me finding the energy to make a lasagna were slim to none and plus the sun was shining and putting the oven on for an hour just wasn’t going to happen or my condo would turn in to an instant sauna.
Okay now…I was in a major culinary dilemma…Lasagna was on my mind and it was now ALL I COULD THINK ABOUT. AHHHHHHH!!! What’s a lazy sack of slack to do??? Make Lazy Lasangna THAT’S WHAT!! Boom, instant mood changer because I was going to get to enjoy the deliciousness of lasagna without all the fuss.
First thing I did was get the ingredients for my sauce ready. I wanted to add some veggies in with the sauce so I cut up some onion, mushrooms, green pepper, spinach and parsley. I also put a tablespoon each of garlic powder, dried oregano and dried basil on a plate so everything was measured out and ready to go.
First you want to brown your ground chicken or turkey in a large skillet. I sprinkled a bit of oregano and basil over top and added a pinch of salt and pepper to the mixture. Next add your onions and stir around until translucent, for about 2-3 minutes. Add in your green peppers and mushrooms and stir around to cook for a few minutes.
At this point, I put a spoonful of pesto in to the mixture (easiest way to mega boost some flavour in to a really simple sauce) and 1 tbsp of balsamic vinegar in to the skillet. Mix.
Next throw in a jar or can of either crushed tomatoes or strained tomatoes. I used a large jar of strained tomatoes and then added my seasonings (garlic powder, basil and oregano). Stir to combine everything.
Cook the sauce for about 10-15 minutes to let all of the flavours mix together.
Next, cook your pasta. You can use anything you want, Rigatoni, Ziti, Bowties…the sky is the limit. I used Penne because that’s what I had in the cupboard. *About 1 minute before the pasta is ready, add in your chopped spinach and parsley and stir in the mixture. Cook until the pasta is al dente (still a bit firm), drain it and add it to your large skillet of sauce.
Next you will want to scoop out 2 large spoonfuls of ricotta and add it to the skillet. Now add 1 cup of grated mozzarella and stir everything together.
Get ready…this is going to be one gorgeous, creamy and indulgent pasta that will be very reminiscent of lasagna. SOOOO GOOD.
Lazy Turkey Skillet Lasagna
- 1 pkg of ground turkey (or you could use chicken)
- 1 green pepper diced small
- 6 mushrooms chopped
- 1/2 white onion chopped fine
- 1 handful of baby spinach chopped
- 1 Tbsp fresh parsley chopped (sub in dried if you don’t have fresh, it’s all good)
- 1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 1 Tbsp pesto
- 1 large can or jar of either crushed tomatoes or strained tomatoes
- 1 cup grated mozzarella cheese
- 2 Tbsp of ricotta cheese
- 3 cups (or half a bag) of dried short pasta (penne, ziti, rigatoni, bowties)
- Salt and Pepper to taste
- Pinch of crushed chilli flakes (optional)
- First cook and brown turkey in a large skillet on medium heat. Season with a sprinkle of dried basil and oregano, salt and pepper.
- Add onion and stir for a few minutes until onions are translucent.
- Add green pepper and mushroom and cook for a few minutes.
- Add a TBSP each of pesto and balsamic vinegar to the mixture.
- Add tomatoes and seasonings and stir. Let the mixture simmer for about 10-15 minutes
- Cook pasta until it’s al dente
- Add spinach and parsley to sauce mixture about 1 minute before the pasta is done.
- Once pasta is drained, add it to the sauce in the skillet.
- Spoon in your ricotta cheese and your mozzarella and mix everything together until it is completely combined.
- Top with chopped parsley (optional) and Serve.
This is a very hearty and delicious pasta dish. The good news is, this recipe makes a lot and will hold up in the freezer for future lunches. I was able to feed my family, fill 2 man size containers for husbands lunches and keep a little bit to the side for the lion tomorrow. BOOM. Its a meal that gives you all of the great taste of lasagna but without all the hassle yo!!
Hope the rest of your weekend is nice and lazy!!