Baked Penne with Spinach and Mozzarella

A hearty one dish meal. Make it ahead, cover and refrigerate until ready to bake.


1 pound penne pasta, cooked al dente

2 teaspoons olive oil

2 spicy Italian sausage links, casings removed, sausage cut into small pieces

1 medium onion, chopped

3 large cloves garlic, minced

3 (14.5 ounce) cans diced tomatoes

1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste


1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

1/4 cup pesto, homemade or purchased at store

2 cups mozzarella cheese, grated

8 ounces baby spinach leaves

1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, divided

Honey Tips

How Honey is Made

To make honey, bees drop the collected nectar into the honeycomb and then evaporate it by fanning their wings.


Preheat oven to 350 &deg.
Heat olive oil in a large skillet. Add sausage, onions and garlic. Sauté until sausage is cooked through. Stir in tomatoes, tomato paste, honey and red pepper flakes. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 5-8 minutes. Stir in pesto.
Meanwhile cook pasta according to package directions. Drain well; put pasta back in cooking pot. Add mozzarella, spinach leaves and ¼ cup of Parmesan cheese. Toss until spinach and cheese are well distributed. Stir in tomato sauce.
Spoon mixture into a 9×13-inch baking pan. Sprinkle top with remaining ¼ cup of Parmesan cheese.
Bake for 30-40 minutes or until bubbly. Let sit 5-10 minutes before serving.
Serves: 4-6