Okay ladies, I was going to do a post tonight on different kinds of Chex mix, but decided I HAD to post about the dinner I made tonight, after the overwhelming success I had with it. 4 empty plates and a dinner-time devoid of fussing, coercion, and whining equals BIG success to this mama! When I can put a delicious, filling, cheap to prepare meal on the table that my family enjoys, I feel like my Mom badge glows just a little brighter.
This meal is truly a crowd-pleaser, and is easy on the wallet. Trust me girls, your family will love this one! I originally got this recipe from a Taste of Home cookbook, but as with most of my meals, I changed the recipe up, using the original as a baseline.
1 16 oz package of rigatoni (I used just shy of the whole package, leaving about 1/2 cup or so left in the bag.) (Don’t forget to use up your extra noodles to do a confetti style pasta, or to serve up some hot buttered noodles as a lunch for your kids!)
1 jar of your favorite Alfredo sauce (The quality of this meal will depend a lot on the sauce you use. I used Classico’s Four Cheese Alfredo.)
1/2 cup or so of sour cream (I don’t measure too often when I cook…just throw in a few good sized spoonfuls!)
1 cup of cottage cheese (again, I didn’t measure…I used about half of a large container.)
1/2 cup of parmesan cheese divided (I used the good ol’ green can, but you could definitely use the real stuff if you have the resources to buy it!)
Several large handfuls of grated mozzarella cheese (You can’t go wrong with cheese…use as much as you wish!)
1 T parsley
Cook your rigatoni until al dente. Stir the jar of alfredo sauce (I thinned mine out a bit with some of the starchy noodle water. I added a ladle or so of the cooking water to the jar to help get all the “bits” out!) Add in the sour cream and mix well.
Pour half of the noodle mixture in a 3 qt. casserole pan. (This recipe could also be done in two 8×8 pans. You could eat one now, and freeze one for later, or use the other to take to a new mom, sick friend, etc. I actually plan on doing this in a week or so when my friend has her baby!)
In a separate bowl, mix together the cottage cheese, egg, half of the parmesan cheese, the parsley, and a handful of mozzarella cheese.
Spread this mixture on top of the noodles in the pan. Sprinkle another handful of mozzarella cheese on top of the cottage cheese mixture.
Top the cottage cheese mixture with the remaining noodles. Sprinkle the top with more mozzarella and the remaining parmesan cheese. Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes, or until bubbly. (My husband also likes the parmesan to turn a nice golden brown color.)
This seriously makes a TON, (like I said, you could easily make this into two meals), and will please your whole family. Plus, since this is a meatless meal (which no one will notice, as it is so hearty and tasty!), it is easy on the wallet. (And trust me about the meatlessness…My husband who is a serious carnivore did not complain at all!)
Serve this up with some garlic bread and a nice green vegetable or salad. Happy cooking!!
Like Pasta? Try these other great recipes from Chasing Supermom!