The past couple of years, I seem to have forgotten about the glory that is pasta. I barely ever cook it and then when I do, I think, “why don’t I make this more?” I think my trip to Italy in college ruined my taste for American pasta. For three weeks the January of my sophomore year, I got to experience Rome, Florence, Perugia, Foligno, Assisi, and Orvieto. It was truly an adventure I’ll never forget. The history, beauty, and sheer charm of Italy are unparalleled. And don’t even get me started on the food: pizza, pasta, gelato, polenta, espresso, focaccia, risotto, tiramisu… and that’s just to name a few of my favorites! What makes their food so much better than our’s?
Gluten-Free, Made with Chickpeas
Banza Pasta Bake
1 8oz. box Banza Shell Pasta
1 lb 93/7 organic ground beef
1 24oz. can Classico Tomato & Basil Pasta Sauce
1 yellow onion, diced
1 green bell pepper, diced
1 cup mushrooms, diced
2 heaping handfuls of raw spinach
1 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
1/2 tsp oregano
Salt & Pepper to taste
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2. Bring a saucepan of water to a boil over medium/high heat. Once water comes to a rolling simmer, add entire box of pasta to saucepan with a pinch of salt. Boil for 8 minutes.
3. Meanwhile in a medium to large frying pan, brown the ground beef until cooked through. Transfer to a glass bowl and saute the diced onion, pepper, and mushrooms in the same frying pan with 1 Tbsp of olive oil, oregano, and S&P.
4. Once the pasta is cooked, transfer to a colander before adding to a 9×11″ glass casserole dish with the entire can of pasta sauce. This allows the pasta from clumping together and keeps it moist while the veggies continue cooking.
5.Once the diced veggies are sufficiently cooked (5-7 minutes), add in the spinach and cook until slightly wilted. Add cooked veggies and ground beef to the casserole dish with the pasta and sauce. Thoroughly mix while adding the Parmesan cheese and half the Mozzarella cheese.
6. Top the other half of the Mozzarella cheese to the top of the pasta bake. Cook for 20 minutes in the oven until bubbly and cheese has melted. Let sit for 5 minutes before serving.
This pasta bake is MALTO BENE! Full of veggies, gluten-free, and cheesy to the max. If you’re looking for a quick and easy dinner for a crowd, look no further. This dish has all the nutritious goodness and none of the fake processed junk. I love cooking with Banza pasta, because I can trust that their ingredients are wholesome and a great alternative to eating classic pasta noodles. You won’t even be able to tell that their pasta is made with chickpeas. Enjoy a little taste of Italy right in the comfort of your own home with the help of Banza pasta.