Classic Baked Ziti

Warm and comforting this is an easy-to-make classic Baked Ziti recipe filled with Italian Sausage, tomato sauce, and cheese to the max! This recipe is especially indulgent with a side of Homemade Garlic Bread.

baked ziti in baking pan

Baked Ziti | A Classic Dinner

Love Lasagna but hate the time it takes to make it? Baked Ziti offers all of the same flavors and comforts that lasagna does but with way less effort. Meaty tomato sauce, filling pasta, and all of that melted gooey cheese! Today’s classic Baked Ziti recipe makes a large 9×13 pan which is perfect for large families or to use as leftovers! While I have my Instant Pot Baked Ziti on the blog (that is super popular), I thought I should post a more classic recipe that everyone can make. No special equipment needed!

Main Ingredients Needed

With a couple of pantry staples you can have this Baked Ziti recipe ready for dinner tonight! Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Ziti Pasta – this is just a specific pasta shape, penne would work perfectly well in its place.
  • Sweet Italian Sausage – I used sweet Italian Sausage here but feel free to use mild or hot!
  • Olive Oil, Onion + Garlic – these three are used with the sausage to add some subtle flavors.
  • Marinara Sauce, Tomatoes + Water – these three make up the sauce. I used storebought marinara sauce (Rao’s). It’s a little expensive but so worth it.
  • Oregano, Basil, Bay Leaves, Salt + Pepper – these herbs and seasonings help flavor the sauce.
  • Mozzarella + Part-Skim Mozzarella – I used a blend of full fat and a lower fat mozzarella in this recipe. Don’t worry, it still tastes great.
  • Parmesan – I also used parmesan for a little bit more cheesy oomph!
melting cheese into ziti

Baked Ziti Variations

Everyone has their secret tips and tricks in making Baked Ziti their own and in this house, I encourage it! Feel free to use my recipe as a base then customize to your liking. Here are a couple of options to get you started:

  • Vegetarian Baked Ziti: feel free to make this a vegetarian meal by leaving out any meat products and then supplementing with more veggies!
  • Adding Vegetables: you can absolutely use/hide vegetables in this dish. Consider wilting spinach, adding shredded zucchini, or shredded carrots to this dish! Or serve your vegetables on the side!
  • Using Different Meat: although I use a pork Italian sausage for this baked ziti recipe, you can absolutely replace it with ground beef or ground turkey.
baked ziti in baking dish before baking

How to Make Baked Ziti

For full details on how to make baked ziti can be found in the recipe card down below 🙂

Step 1: Boil the Pasta

Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Cook ziti according to package directions. Drain and set aside.

Step 2: Brown the Meat

In another pot or deep skillet with high sides, heat the pan over medium heat. Brown sausage, breaking apart as it cooks. Drain if desired. Replace back in the pan. To the cooked sausage, add olive oil, onion, and garlic and saute until mostly tender.

Step 3: Make the Sauce

Stir in diced tomatoes, marinara sauce, water, basil, oregano, bay leaves, salt, pepper. Stir well. Cover and simmer. Taste sauce and adjust seasonings. Remove bay leaves.

Add cooked ziti to the sauce and stir to coat. Add in fresh mozzarella and parmesan cheese. Stir to melt slightly.

Step 4: Bake

Pour into lightly greased 9×13 pan. Sprinkle with shredded mozzarella cheese, cover with lightly greased foil and bake. Top with chopped parsley (optional) and serve hot.

baked ziti topped with cheese in baking dish before baking

Storing Baked Ziti

Baked Ziti will last in the fridge, in an airtight container, for 4-5 days! Which means it’s great for leftovers and meal prep. Alternatively you can make a double batch and freeze one portion for later!

Freezing Instructions

One of the best parts about Baked Ziti is that it can be frozen to last even longer and make a super easy dinner for the future, I love when that happens!

Simply double the recipe, bake one portion, and with the other store in a freezable container before baking (those aluminum casserole dishes found at the grocery store would work great for this). Be sure to cover tightly with aluminium foil and then plastic wrap before freezing. Freeze for up to 3 months.

When ready to bake, thaw in the fridge overnight then bake as accordingly!

spooning baked ziti onto white plate

Try this Baked Ziti soon, I just know you’ll love it!

The recipe card is down below, enjoy 🙂

baked ziti in baking pan

Print

Classic Baked Ziti

Warm and comforting this is an easy-to-make classic Baked Ziti recipe filled with Italian Sausage, tomato sauce and cheese to the max!
Course Dinner
Cuisine Italian
Keyword baked ziti
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes
Servings 8 servings
Calories 665kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 lb ziti pasta
  • 1.25 lbs Sweet Italian Sausage
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 onion diced
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 25 oz marinara sauce I used Rao’s
  • 14.5 oz petite diced tomatoes
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 2 bay leaves
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 8 oz fresh mozzarella drained and cut into cubes
  • 1/4 cup parmesan cheese
  • 1 cup part skim mozzarella shredded

Instructions

  • Bring large pot of salted water to boil. Cook ziti according to package directions. Drain and set aside.
  • In another pot or deep skillet with high sides, heat pan over medium heat. Brown sausage, breaking apart as it cooks. Drain if desired. Replace back in the pan. To the cooked sausage, add olive oil, onion, and garlic and saute until mostly tender, about 3 minutes.
  • Stir in diced tomatoes, marinara sauce, water, basil, oregano, bay leaves, salt, pepper. Stir well. Cover and simmer 30 minutes. Taste sauce and adjust seasonings. Remove bay leaves.
  • Add cooked ziti to sauce and stir to coat. Add in fresh mozzarella and parmesan cheese. Stir to melt slightly. Pour into lightly greased 9×13 pan. Sprinkle with 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese, cover with lightly greased foil and bake at 350 degrees for 20-30 minutes. Top with chopped parsley (optional) and serve hot.

Nutrition

Calories: 665kcal | Carbohydrates: 54g | Protein: 31g | Fat: 36g | Saturated Fat: 14g | Cholesterol: 87mg | Sodium: 1370mg | Potassium: 817mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 785IU | Vitamin C: 14mg | Calcium: 356mg | Iron: 4mg

The post Classic Baked Ziti appeared first on Lauren’s Latest.

Originally posted at Laurens Latest

Spinach Lasagna (no boiling needed)

This tasty Spinach Lasagna is an easy recipe and jam-packed with spinach & three kinds of cheese!

Layers and layers of pasta, sauce, cheese & spinach, this dish can be made ahead of time, freezes and reheats well and everyone loves it.

Spinach Lasagna on plates with Reynold's Wrap

I am so excited to have partnered with Reynolds Wrap® to bring you this favorite spinach lasagna!

Tips for an Easy Meal

Who doesn’t love to cook entrées that are easy, delicious, and filling? Spinach Lasagna is a family favorite, with its fragrant layers of rich flavors — and lots and lots of cheese! Below are our favorite time-saving tips!

  • Lining the pan with Reynolds Wrap® Heavy Duty Foil before baking makes cleanup a total breeze. (This works with any lasagna recipe)!
  • Skip boiling the noodles, and simply pour hot water over them while you prepare the sauce and the cheese mixture.
  • Reynolds Wrap® Heavy Duty Foil is durable and sturdy and using it to line the pan means you can lift the lasagna out (without the foil tearing) for easy cutting and serving!
  • This dish can be made up to 3 days ahead of time before baking.
  • Bake spinach lasagna covered with Reynolds Wrap® Heavy Duty Foil for the first 45 minutes to keep it from drying out.
  • Top with cheese and bake uncovered for the last 15 minutes; this gives a nice cheesy crust on top.

This dish is a great one to bake an extra and give to a neighbor or loved one. I am excited to partner with Reynolds Wrap® this year especially after learning of their partnership with Feeding America®. They are helping provide meals to people who need them. Did you know that 1 in 9 Americans do not have access to a meal? This affects all walks of life, children and adults alike, which means many children and families need help. Reynolds Wrap® has joined Feeding America® in the fight against hunger by helping to provide 2 million meals* to families across the country. 

Visit Feeding America® here for ways that YOU can get involved, including donating, fundraising, and volunteering to name a few. Volunteers are always needed across the United States (check out the link above to find a food bank close to you) and each has a variation of needs making every volunteer experience a little different.

*$1 helps provide at least 10 meals on behalf of the Feeding America® network of food banks

ingredients on a baking sheet to make Spinach Lasagna

Ingredients

SAUCE We love homemade marinara sauce but a jarred sauce makes this extra quick. Replace the marinara with a meat sauce if you’d like.

SPINACH LAYER Spinach lasagna needs a great spinach layer. We add ricotta, mozzarella, and parmesan for great flavor. Frozen spinach works well in this recipe (but you can replace it with fresh if you’d prefer). Be sure to squeeze it dry so the layers set up.

PASTA Traditional lasagna noodles are our favorite (and they don’t actually require boiling, more on that below). You can also use fresh lasagna sheets found in the refrigerate area (no boiling required for those either)!

Time Saving Tip

To make lasagna without boiling the noodles first—even if they are not the oven ready kind — pour boiling water over them while you prepare the sauce and cheese mixture.

Use plenty of sauce and be sure to cover the casserole with Reynolds Wrap® Heavy Duty Foil so no steam escapes. Tender noodles and no boiling!

ingredients to make Spinach Lasagna

How to Make Spinach Lasagna

Spinach lasagna takes a bit of time, but it’s easy to pull together. Your family will love its cheesy goodness!

  1. Prep Sauce Simmer your favorite marinara sauce with some onions, garlic, and seasonings (per recipe below).
  2. Prep Filling Stir together spinach, ricotta, some mozzarella, and some parmesan.

Sauce in a dish with Reynold's Wrap and lasagna noodles

  1. Layer the Lasagna Line the pan with Reynolds Wrap® Heavy Duty Foil and layer the lasagna.
  2. Bake Cover tightly with foil and bake. Uncover, add cheese, and bake until browned.
  3. Rest 15-30 minutes to allow the lasagna to set up. Grab the edges of the foil and lift it out of the pan. Cut and serve.

Spinach Lasagna in pieces on Reynold's Wrap

 

Make it a Freezer Meal

  • Freeze a whole lasagna by prepping it in a casserole dish lined with Reynolds Wrap® Heavy Duty Foil, extending the foil on each side about 6 inches. Wrapping in foil will protect the spinach lasagna from freezer burn.
  • Fold over the foil and freeze the lasagna. Once frozen, remove the lasagna from the casserole dish (and wrap well in Reynolds Wrap® Heavy Duty Foil). This way your casserole dish can be used for other things until you’re ready to thaw and cook the spinach lasagna.
  • To bake from frozen, place the foil-wrapped lasagna back into the same pan and bake covered 75 to 90 minutes at 350°F or until hot in the middle. Open the top of the foil, add cheese and bake for an additional 15 minutes.

close up of plated Spinach Lasagna

More Lasagnas We Love

Did you love this Spinach Lasagna? Be sure to leave a rating and a comment below! 

close up of plated Spinach Lasagna

Spinach Lasagna

This homemade Spinach Lasagna is cheesy & budget-friendly, it’s the perfect dish to feed a crowd!
Course Casserole, Dinner, Entree, Pasta
Cuisine American, Italian
Prep Time 35 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 20 minutes
Rest Time 20 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 15 minutes
Servings 8 servings
Calories 476
Author Holly Nilsson

Equipment

  • Reynolds Wrap® Heavy Duty Foil

Ingredients

  • 9 lasagna noodles
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 large onion chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 4 cups pasta sauce
  • 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
  • 10 ounces frozen spinach thawed
  • 15 ounces ricotta cheese
  • 4 cups mozzarella cheese shredded, divided
  • ½ cup parmesan cheese shredded, divided
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon fresh parsley
  • ½ teaspoon salt

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a 9×13 pan with Reynolds Wrap® Heavy Duty Foil.
  • Place lasagna noodles in a pan and cover with boiling water for 15 minutes. Rinse with cold water and dab dry.
  • Meanwhile, heat olive oil over medium heat in a large skillet. Add onion and garlic and cook until tender, about 5 minutes. Add pasta sauce and Italian seasoning. Simmer 5 minutes more or until slightly thickened.
  • While sauce is simmering, squeeze spinach to remove moisture. Combine with ricotta cheese, 2 ½ cups mozzarella cheese, ¼ cup parmesan cheese, egg, and fresh parsley. Mix well.
  • Place 1 cup of sauce in the bottom of the prepared pan.
  • Layer with 3 lasagna noodles. Add ½ of the spinach and cheese mixture and ⅓ of the sauce.
  • Add 3 more lasagna noodles, remaining ½ of the spinach and cheese mixture, and ⅓ of the sauce. Top with the last 3 noodles and the remaining sauce.
  • Cover with Reynolds Wrap® Heavy Duty Foil to ensure it is well sealed and bake 45 minutes. Remove foil, top with remaining mozzarella and parmesan cheese. Bake an additional 15-20 minutes or until browned.
  • Cool 20 minutes before cutting.

Video

Nutrition

Calories: 476 | Carbohydrates: 37g | Protein: 29g | Fat: 24g | Saturated Fat: 13g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 96mg | Sodium: 1320mg | Potassium: 751mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 8g | Vitamin A: 5430IU | Vitamin C: 13mg | Calcium: 553mg | Iron: 3mg
plated Spinach Lasagna with a title
close up of Spinach Lasagna with writing
close up of Spinach Lasagna with a title
Spinach Lasagna cut into pieces and a plated dish with a title

Originally posted at Spend with Pennies

Sausage Tortellini Soup (30 Minute Meal)

Soup is the perfect belly-warming meal in a bowl and this sausage tortellini soup is both quick and delicious.

It’s a one-pot soup packed with Italian sausage, cheese tortellini, and a handful of veggies. It comes together in no time and satisfies even the heartiest of appetites!

Sausage Tortellini Soup in bowls

A Hearty Favorite

  • This soup is ready in just over 30 minutes start to finish.
  • We love the robust flavor of Italian sausage but you can swap it out for your favorite ground meat.
  • This recipe is great with extra veggies including bell pepper, mushrooms, spinach, and kale.
  • Just one pot means less mess, less dishes.

ingredients for Sausage Tortellini Soup on a marble board

Ingredients

MEAT Ground Italian sausage is used in this recipe. If you use other ground meats, you’ll want to boost the seasonings a bit! Fennel is the spice that gives Italian sausage it’s flavor so add a little if you have it.

BROTH I prefer a low sodium beef broth in this recipe but any kind will work.

VEGGIES Onion adds flavor. The canned tomatoes add great texture and flavor the broth and zucchini adds freshness.

TORTELLINI Because of the Italian sausage makes this soup meaty, we prefer cheese tortellini in this recipe but feel free to use your favorite. Mini ravioli works too.

Pro Tip: Adding a little bit of cornstarch to the broth doesn’t thicken it but it does add a silky feel!

How to Make Sausage Tortellini Soup

You’ll love how easy it is to make this tasty Italian-style soup!

  1. Cook sausage & onion. Drain fat, if needed.
  2. Add broth, tomatoes, & seasonings; simmer to blend flavors.

sausage & tomatoes in a pot for Sausage Tortellini Soup

  1. Add tortellini & zucchini and simmer until tender.
  2. Season with salt & pepper to taste and serve.

ingredients for Sausage Tortellini Soup in a pot

Kitchen Tips

  • To make prep quick, while the sausage is cooking prepare the other ingredients. While the soup is simmering, slice the zucchini.
  • Leftover meats and veggies can be added. If they are already cooked add them in the last few minutes since they just need to heat through.
  • Add the juices from the canned tomatoes.
  • Boost the flavor of this soup by adding a parmesan cheese rind (or vegetable juice like V8) to the broth as it simmers. Discard the rind before serving.

Sausage Tortellini Soup in a pot with a ladle

Make Ahead & Leftovers

  • Pasta doesn’t keep well in soups, it can get mushy. If you plan for leftovers, cook the tortellini separately.
  • Keep tortellini soup covered in the refrigerator and it will last about 4 days.
  • Double the base of this soup (without tortellini) and freeze half for another day. Add any fresh pasta once thawed.
  • Freeze portions of soup in zippered bags or muffin tins without pasta. Add tortellini or pasta once thawed

Sausage Tortellini Soup in a pot with bread on the side

More Fresh Soups

Did you love this Sausage Tortellini Soup? Be sure to leave a rating and a comment below! 

Sausage Tortellini Soup in bowls

Sausage Tortellini Soup

This hearty soup is loaded with Italian sausage, fresh veggies, and cheese-filled tortellini!
Course Dinner, Lunch, Side Dish, Soup
Cuisine American, Italian
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 6 servings
Calories 226
Author Holly Nilsson

Ingredients

  • ½ pound Italian sausage hot or mild
  • 1 medium onion diced
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 ½ teaspoons cornstarch
  • 4 cups low sodium beef broth
  • 14 oz canned diced tomatoes with juices
  • ¼ teaspoon dried basil
  • ¼ teaspoon dried oregano
  • 4 oz fresh cheese tortellini about 3 cups uncooked
  • 1 medium zucchini sliced
  • shredded parmesan cheese and parsley for serving

Instructions

  • Cook sausage and onion until no pink remains. Drain fat.
  • Combine water and cornstarch and add to the pot along with broth, diced tomatoes, and seasonings. Cook for 5 minutes.
  • Bring to a boil. Add tortellini and zucchini and reduce heat to a simmer. Cook 6-7 minutes or until tortellini is tender. Season with salt & pepper to taste.
  • Top with fresh parsley and parmesan cheese for serving.

Notes

Note: If you plan to keep leftovers, cook the tortellini separately and add to each bowl while serving.

This recipe is great with extra veggies including bell pepper, mushrooms, spinach, and kale. A can of white beans can be added too.

To make prep quick, while the sausage is cooking prepare the other ingredients. While the soup is simmering, slice the zucchini.

Leftover meats and veggies can be added. If they are already cooked add them in the last few minutes since they just need to heat through.

Boost the flavor of this soup by adding a parmesan cheese rind (or vegetable juice like V8) to the broth as it simmers. Discard the rind before serving.

Nutrition

Serving: 1.33cups | Calories: 226 | Carbohydrates: 14g | Protein: 12g | Fat: 14g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 36mg | Sodium: 752mg | Potassium: 654mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 145IU | Vitamin C: 14mg | Calcium: 67mg | Iron: 2mg
Sausage Tortellini Soup in a pot with a ladle and ingredients for Sausage Tortellini Soup with a title
Sausage Tortellini Soup in white bowls with writing
Sausage Tortellini Soup in a bowl with text
Sausage Tortellini Soup in a white bowl with a title

Originally posted at Spend with Pennies

Parmesan Meatball Soup

Parmesan Meatball Soup

The weather may be getting colder, but you can warm up inside with this delicious Parmesan Meatball Soup. It is packed with flavor and served in a toasty bread bowl. So yummy!

Claire had her first soup in a bread bowl at California Adventure last year, and she has been obsessed ever since, as she should be! Hello, a bowl made of bread?! Carb heaven!

I had originally made meatballs for spaghetti, but when I told her I was going to go snag some bread at the store she asked if I would buy bread bowls. Instead of ditching dinner, I ditched my original plans and legit made soup out of meatballs, and it was bomb diggity delicious!

A bread bowl filled with parmesan meatball soup. The bread bowl and soup have been baked to a perfect toasty brown and the cheese on top is gooey melted perfection.

Everything and anything that involves meatballs are always, always something I can get on board with! They are just dang good! We have our sweet and sour meatballs that are amazing. Then there is our porcupine meatballs that are a staple in our house. And don’t miss our chili sauce and grape jelly meatballs that should be at every party you ever have. Now you have meatballs in a soup!

Ingredients Needed for Parmesan Meatball Soup

Before you decide to make this soup, you need to decided if you are going to make meatballs from scratch or if you are going to buy them pre-made. If you are going to make the meatballs yourself, you need the following ingredients:

Meatballs

  • Bread Crumbs
  • Milk
  • Ground Beef
  • Italian Sausage (mild)
  • Egg
  • Yellow Onion
  • Garlic
  • Parmesan (fresh)
  • Italian Parsley (fresh)
  • Worcestershire Sauce
  • Basil (dried)
  • Oregano (dried)
  • Crush Red Pepper Flakes
  • Kosher Salt
  • Pepper

Those meatballs are going to be your new best friend! They are totally divine! Now for the soup…here is what you will need:

Soup

  • Olive Oil
  • Yellow Onion
  • Carrot
  • Celery
  • Garlic
  • Tomato Paste
  • Crushed Tomatoes
  • Beef Broth
  • Milk
  • Mozzarella
  • Parmesan (fresh)
  • Italian Seasoning
  • Lemon
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Parsley
  • Bread Bowls

The exact measurements for all the ingredients can be found in the recipe card below.

A baking sheet with three bread bowls filled with parmesan meatball soup. They have been baked to a golden brown and the cheese on top is melted to perfection. They are sprinkled with fresh parsley.

How to Make Parmesan Meatball Soup

I’m going to break up the instructions into two parts – making meatballs and making soup. If you are buying your meatballs, jump straight to the making soup section.

Making Meatballs

  1. Combine the bread crumbs and milk in a bowl.
  2. Add all the meatball ingredients into a large bowl and stir with a wooden spoon until combined. Don’t over-mix!
  3. Roll into meatballs that are about 1″ in diameter and place them on a baking sheet lined with foil.
    • PRO TIP: I like to use my smallest cookie scoop to keep a uniform meatball size.
  4. Bake until browned and cooked all the way through. Remove from oven.

Making Soup

  1. Add the veggies to a large pot over medium-high heat. Cook them until they are soft and golden. Toss in the garlic and cook until fragrant. Add the tomato paste and seasonings and stir to combine.
  2. Add the tomatoes, beef broth, and milk and stir everything together.
  3. Gently add the meatballs and bring everything to a simmer.
  4. Add half of the mozzarella and all of the Parmesan. Season with the salt and pepper. Squeeze in a lemon and stir.
  5. Fire up the broiler.
  6. Fill your bread bowls with the soup and top with the rest of the mozzarella. Broil them until the cheese is melted and starting to brown.
  7. Serve with some fresh parsley and dig in!
A bread bowl filled with parmesan meatball soup. A spoon is in the soup and cheese is melted on top.

How Long will Meatball Soup Keep?

This soup should be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator. It will be good for 3-4 days.

Can Soup Be Frozen?

Freeze in an airtight container or heavy duty freezer bag for up to 6 months.

Can I Use Frozen Meatballs?

Yes! You absolutely do not have to make your own meatballs. To use frozen meatballs you’ll probably want to cut them in half otherwise they are a bit too large. Sometimes I even quarter them because they are easier for little ones to eat. 

  • Use 1 pound frozen meatballs instead of making your own.

Three toasted bread bowls filled with meatball parmesan soup. there is melted cheese sprinkled with fresh parsley on top.

Can I Substitute the Ground Beef?

Why yes you can! You can use ground chicken, ground turkey or a meatloaf blend.

What Can You Substitute For Italian Sausage?

You could possibly use breakfast sausage and add 1 teaspoon fennel seeds and 1 teaspoon basil per pound of sausage. You could also use ground pork.

Or you can double the ground beef and totally skip the Italian Sausage. 

Can You Make Meatballs Ahead and Freeze Them?

You can make meatballs and freeze them to use later, in fact I almost always double the meatballs and freeze half for next time.

  1. Place the meatballs in a single layer on a parchment lined baking sheet and freeze for 1-2 hours.

  2. Transfer frozen meatballs to a heavy duty freezer bag and freeze for 3-4 months.

 

So what is the lesson we learn from this recipe? First, meatballs are always a YES! Second, get creative with dinner! You might have something planned and then something else comes up. Instead of ditching your plans and heading to the drive-thru, be flexible and innovative! It’s parmesan meatball soup for dinner tonight!

 

More SOUP RECIPES You’ll Love:

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A bread bowl filled with parmesan meatball soup. The bread bowl and soup have been baked to a perfect toasty brown and the cheese on top is gooey melted perfection.

Print

Parmesan Meatball Soup

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Course 50 of the Best Easy Soup Recipes for Families
Cuisine Italian
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 22 minutes
Total Time 32 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 877kcal

Ingredients

Meatballs

  • Frozen Meatballs Halved if you aren’t going to make them yourself
  • 1 Cup Fresh Bread Crumbs see note
  • 1/3 Cup Milk
  • 1/2 Pound Ground Beef
  • 1/2 Pound  Italian sausage mild
  • 1 Large Egg
  • 1/4 Yellow Onion grated
  • 2 Cloves Garlic minced
  • 1/2 Cup Fresh Parmesan Grated
  • 2 Tablespoons Fresh Italian parsley chopped or 1 tablespoon dried
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Worcestershire Sauce
  • 1 1/2 Teaspoons Dried Basil
  • 1 1/2 Teaspoons Dried Oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon Crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Kosher Salt
  • 1 Pinch Black Pepper freshly ground

Soup

  • 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 1 Cup Onion yellow, diced
  • 1 Carrot peeled, finely diced
  • 1 Stalk Celery finely diced
  • 2 Cloves Garlic large, minced
  • 2 Tablespoons Tomato paste
  • 1 Can Crushed Tomatoes 28 oz.
  • 3 Cups Beef Broth low sodium
  • 1 Cup Milk
  • 3 Cups Mozzarella shredded
  • 1/2 Cup Parmesan freshly grated
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 1 Squeeze Lemon
  • Kosher Salt
  • Black Pepper freshly ground
  • Parsley freshly chopped, for garnish
  • 4 Bread bowls

Instructions

For the Meatballs

  • Dump the bread crumbs and milk into a bowl and stir until softened. Set aside.
  • Preheat oven to 350º and line two baking sheets with foil. In a large bowl, combine all meatball ingredients and stir with a wooden spoon until combined. Do not over-mix.
  • Roll into meatballs, about 1/2-1” in diameter and transfer to one prepared baking sheet.
  • Bake until browned and cooked through, 15 minutes, remove from the oven. 
  •  In a large pot over medium-high heat, heat the oil. Add the onion, carrots and celery to the pot and cook until soft and golden, 6 minutes.  Quickly add garlic and cook until fragrant, 1 minute. Add tomato paste and seasonings and stir until combined, then add tomatoes, beef broth, and milk and stir until everything is mixed together.
  • Add the meatballs to the pot by gently lowering in with a spoon and bring to a simmer, then add half the mozzarella and all of the Parmesan. Season with salt, and pepper then squeeze in a little lemon and stir again.
  • Heat the broiler
  • Ladle soup into four bread bowls and top with remaining mozzarella and broil until browned and bubbly, 2 to 3 minutes. Serve hot with a dash of fresh parsley.

Notes

  • To make bread crumbs, place bread in a food processor or blender and pulse until it is bread crumbs.

Left overs should be stored in the refrigerator for 3-4 days.

 

Nutrition

Serving: 1g | Calories: 877kcal | Carbohydrates: 31g | Protein: 50g | Fat: 62g | Saturated Fat: 26g | Cholesterol: 164mg | Sodium: 2196mg | Potassium: 1112mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 13g | Vitamin A: 4016IU | Vitamin C: 22mg | Calcium: 772mg | Iron: 5mg

A bread bowl filled with parmesan meatball soup. The bread bowl and soup have been baked to a perfect toasty brown and the cheese on top is gooey melted perfection.

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READ: Parmesan Meatball Soup

Originally posted at Oh Sweet Basil

Air Fryer Cauliflower (quick side dish)

The air fryer strikes again for this easy-to-make recipe for air fryer cauliflower! 

Seasoned, crispy, fried cauliflower florets are a low-carb and Keto but to be honest, everyone in my family loves this!

top view of Air Fryer Cauliflower on a plate with a fork

Cauliflower is a superfood and it roasts perfectly in the air fryer! Cook up a batch as a side dish, or as a guilt-free snack!

Easy Air-Fried Cauliflower

Air fried cauliflower is one of our favorite recipes it requires little prep and minimal seasoning and cooks in about 15 minutes.

The caramelization from the air fryer makes this dish even more flavorful.

Eat this as a side dish or use in place of steamed cauliflower in dishes like mashed cauliflower, to add to casseroles or even in roasted cauliflower soup.

Air Fryer Cauliflower in the air fryer before cooking

Ingredients/Variations

CAULIFLOWER – I prefer to use fresh cauliflower in the air fryer but if you only have frozen, use that!

Frozen cauliflower does not need to be thawed first. Simply brush with olive oil (or spray with cooking spray).

SEASONINGS We use garlic powder, salt & pepper, and parmesan in this recipe. Switch it up by trying different seasonings. Or coat the cauliflower florets with buffalo sauce and make “wings.”

cooked Air Fryer Cauliflower in the air fryer

How to Cook Cauliflower in the Air Fryer

It’s super easy and fast to cook up some tasty cauliflower!

  1. Prepare the cauliflower and toss with a bit of oil and seasonings (per recipe below).
  2. Place cauliflower pieces in the air fryer basket and fry until tender.
  3. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese and cook another few minutes until the cheese is melted and crispy.

For crispier cauliflower, cook in small batches in a single layer. Place all cauliflower in the air fryer together for 2 minutes before serving to heat.

More Air Fryer Sides

Did you make this Air Fryer Cauliflower? Be sure to leave a rating and a comment below! 

top view of Air Fryer Cauliflower on a plate with a fork

Air Fryer Cauliflower

Seasoned Air Fryer Cauliflower is ready in less than 20 minutes, making it the perfect side dish!
Course Air Fryer, Side Dish
Cuisine American
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 14 minutes
Total Time 19 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 132
Author Holly Nilsson

Ingredients

  • 1 head cauliflower cut into florets
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • salt & black pepper to taste
  • cup parmesan cheese finely shredded

Instructions

  • Cut cauliflower into florets. Wash and drain very well.
  • Combine olive oil, garlic powder, salt, and pepper in a small bowl. Toss with cauliflower.
  • Preheat air fryer to 390°F.
  • Place cauliflower in the air fryer basket and cook 12 minutes.
  • Sprinkle with parmesan and cook an additional 2-3 minutes or until florets reach desired doneness.

Notes

If the cauliflower is wet (after washing) it will steam instead of roast so be sure to drain very well. If possible, I try to wash the cauliflower the day before roasting.

For crispier cauliflower, cook in small batches in a single layer. Place all cauliflower in the air fryer together for 2 minutes before serving to heat.

To reheat, air fry 3-4 minutes or until heated through.

Nutrition

Calories: 132 | Carbohydrates: 8g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 6mg | Sodium: 177mg | Potassium: 430mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 65IU | Vitamin C: 69mg | Calcium: 130mg | Iron: 1mg
Air Fryer Cauliflower cooking in the air fryer with writing
close up of plated Air Fryer Cauliflower with a title
Air Fryer Cauliflower in the air fryer and plated with a title
Air Fryer Cauliflower in the air fryer with a title

Originally posted at Spend with Pennies

Kale Caesar Salad (with shortcut dressing)

This delicious Kale Caesar Salad is rich and delicious with a shortcut dressing so good, you’ll almost want to drink it!

Everyone loves a great caesar salad topped with bacon and croutons and we love a fresh kale salad too. Combining the two makes for the most perfect meal or side dish!

close up of Kale Caesar Salad in a bowl

 

Panera Power Kale Caesar Salad and the Sweetgreen Kale Caesar are menu favorites but they can’t compare to this fantastic homemade version!

A Hearty Salad

Kale is a superfood packed full of flavor and nutrition, it only makes sense that it would be a good stand-in for the more traditional romaine lettuce.

One thing I love about using kale in salads in place of lettuce is that leftover salad (even with dressing) will last a couple of days in the fridge! Just leave the croutons aside if you’re making this ahead of time.

TIP: Leave out the croutons for a low carb version!

ingredients to make dressing for Kale Caesar Salad

What’s in a Kale Caesar Salad?

VEGGIES Kale, of course, but feel free to add in some romaine or spinach as well.

TOPPING/FILLING Bacon, croutons, and Parmesan are favorite topping ingredients for this crisp and crunchy salad.

DRESSING The real star here is the creamy Caesar dressing! While my traditional caesar salad recipe has a from scratch dressing, this one starts with mayonnaise as a base. The result is a creamy and delicious dressing in no time at all!

Make it a Meal: Grilled chicken or shrimp are the perfect toppers to convert this from side to an full meal. Serve it with garlic bread.

adding dressing to kale to make Kale Caesar Salad

While chicken can be added to make a chicken caesar salad, the addition of pasta makes for a great caesar pasta salad too!

Tips & Tricks

  • After rinsing and patting dry the kale leaves, gently “massage” each piece between your hands until the leaves are somewhat softened and a darker green.
  • Be sure to cut the spine out of each leaf before tearing it into bite-sized pieces. Tender kale is the result, but it still has all the healthy benefits!
  • Kale Caesar dressing will keep in the refrigerator for about 3-4 days.

Our Fave Salads

Did you love this Kale Caesar Salad? Be sure to leave a comment and a rating below! 

Kale Caesar Salad with croutons and lemons on a plate

Kale Caesar Salad

Creamy Caesar dressing with crisp kale, croutons, bacon, and parmesan!
Course Appetizer, Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine American
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 583
Author Holly Nilsson

Ingredients

  • 1 bunch kale washed, dried, and torn into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 cup croutons store-bought or homemade
  • 4 slices bacon cooked and crumbled
  • cup parmesan cheese shredded

Dressing

  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • ¼ cup parmesan shredded
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • ½ tablespoon dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon anchovy paste* see note
  • fresh black pepper

Instructions

  • Combine all dressing ingredients until smooth.
  • Wash kale and dry well. Gently “massage” the kale with your hands until the leaves are somewhat softened and a darker green. While this is optional, it makes for a more tender leaf.
  • In a large salad bowl, combine kale and croutons. Top with dressing as desired and toss to combine.
  • Sprinkle with ⅓ cup parmesan cheese and bacon bits.

Notes

You may not need all of the dressing in this recipe, leftovers will last about 3 days in the fridge in an airtight container.

Be sure to cut the spine out of each leaf before tearing it into bite-sized pieces.

Anchovy adds a salty and briny flavor to the dressing and adding a small amount really boosts the flavor of this dressing. If you literally can’t tolerate anchovy, skip them and add finely minced or chopped capers instead.

Nutrition

Calories: 583 | Carbohydrates: 11g | Protein: 11g | Fat: 55g | Saturated Fat: 12g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 48mg | Sodium: 863mg | Potassium: 281mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 3410IU | Vitamin C: 41mg | Calcium: 240mg | Iron: 1mg
close up of Kale Caesar Salad on a plate with lemons and writing
adding dressing to kale to make Kale Caesar Salad with writing
close up of Kale Caesar Salad with a title
adding dressing to Kale Caesar Salad with finished dish and a title

Originally posted at Spend with Pennies

Air Fryer Eggplant – Breaded & Seasoned!

Air Fry up a batch of eggplant for a fun snack or a great side dish! 

I’m obsessed with how amazing the air fryer makes everything from burgers to vegetables and this eggplant is no exception! Crispy on the outside and tender on the inside, it’s perfect for snacking or dipping!

top view of Air Fryer Eggplant with dip

Crispy Parmesan Eggplant

Not to be confused with eggplant parmesan, this eggplant is coated in a crispy parmesan crust.

To start you’ll need an air fyer. I have this one here and I’m obsessed with it (I literally use it EVERY SINGLE DAY).

We love this easy Air Fryer Eggplant because it always turns out crispy for dipping but tender inside.

This recipe makes for a great snack or a fun side.

ingredients to make Air Fryer Eggplant

How To Cook Eggplant in an Air Fryer

It’s super easy to air fry eggplant, and these come out perfect in 1-2-3!

  1. Slice the eggplant per recipe below.
  2. Bread eggplant slices by dipping in flour, egg, and finally a Parmesan/breadcrumb mixture. Spray with cooking spray.
  3. Air Fry in a single layer until crisp.

ingredients to make Air Fryer Eggplant on a baking sheet

Fave Dips

Serve with your fave tasty dipping sauces.

Air Fryer Eggplant in the air fryer after cooking

Air Frying Tips

  • Don’t cut the eggplant too thin, you want it to have texture.
  • Salting the eggplant draws out moisture and seasons it!
  • Even though some slices will be larger due to the natural shape of the eggplant, keep all of the slices the same thickness so they fry evenly.
  • Air Fry in a single layer in batches. Once all batches are cooked through, you can heat them all together at 400°F for about 3-4 minutes.

Air Fryer Favorites

Did you love this Air Fryer Eggplant recipe? Be sure to leave a rating and a comment below! 

close up of cooked Air Fryer Eggplant on a plate

Air Fryer Eggplant

Coated in a seasoned breading and then air-fried until tender and crispy, this Air Fryer Eggplant recipe is sure to be loved by the whole family!
Course Air Fryer, Side Dish
Cuisine American
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Resting Time 20 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 177
Author Holly Nilsson

Ingredients

  • 1 large eggplant or two small
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • cup seasoned bread crumbs
  • 2 tablespoons parmesan cheese grated
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • 2 eggs beaten
  • ¼ cup flour
  • cooking spray
  • marinara sauce for serving

Instructions

  • Slice eggplant into ⅓” slices. Sprinkle with salt and let sit 20 minutes.
  • While eggplant is sitting, combine bread crumbs, parmesan cheese, Italian seasoning, and garlic powder in a small bowl.
  • Whisk egg with 1 tablespoon water in a second bowl.
  • Quickly rinse the eggplant and pat dry.
  • Dip each eggplant slice into the flour, then into the egg and finally into the bread crumb mixture. Spray each side of the eggplant with cooking spray.
  • Preheat air fryer to 380°F. Place in a single layer in the air fryer and cook 5 minutes. Flip over and cook an additional 5-7 minutes or until tender and crisp.
  • Serve with warm marinara sauce for dipping.

Notes

Don’t cut the eggplant too thin, you want it to have texture.

Salting the eggplant draws out moisture and seasons it!

Even though some slices will be larger due to the natural shape of the eggplant, keep all of the slices the same thickness so they fry evenly.

Air Fry in a single layer in batches. Once all batches are cooked through, you can heat them all together at 400°F for about 3-4 minutes.

Nutrition

Calories: 177 | Carbohydrates: 27g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 4g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 84mg | Sodium: 923mg | Potassium: 339mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 203IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 97mg | Iron: 2mg
cooked Air Fryer Eggplant in the air fryer with writing
Air Fryer Eggplant in the air fryer with writing
Air Fryer Eggplant cooked in the air fryer with a title
plated and cooking Air Fryer Eggplant with a title

Originally posted at Spend with Pennies