CREAMY SAUSAGE RIGATONI — Rigatoni pasta and Italian sausage in a creamy tomato based sauce, with plenty of garlic and Parmesan cheese. True comfort food!
When it comes to hearty, satisfying comfort food, this Creamy Sausage Rigatoni is pretty high on my family’s list of favorites.
I mean, whats not to love about rigatoni pasta in a creamy tomato based sauce, with savory Italian sausage, garlic, Parmesan cheese, and a sprinkling of freshly chopped parsley?
Nothing, that’s what! This simple dish is ready in about 30 minutes, and pretty much proves that food doesn’t have to be complicated or expensive to be delicious.
This is the kind of go-to recipe I love having in my collection! And it’s so easy to keep the ingredients on hand, so I can throw it together at a moment’s notice.
We like to use spicy Italian sausage in this recipe, but mild, sweet, or even a combination would be great. And yes, you can also use different types of pasta, but rigatoni is my favorite for this dish.
I know, all pasta kind-of tastes the same, but the type of pasta you use really can change the texture of a dish, and even the way it tastes. And for a hearty dish like this, I like to use a hearty pasta.
Of course, the amounts of garlic and Parmesan cheese are guidelines more than anything. Personally, I like a little bit more of both, so be generous if you wish–especially with the cheese!
This pasta dish is quick, easy and universally loved by kids and adults alike. My teenagers and husband certainly devour it. It does make great leftovers, if you’re lucky enough to have any.
This Creamy Sausage Rigatoni is definitely one you’ll want to try. It’s sure to become a family favorite.
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Tips for Cooking Pasta
Use a big pot: Cook pasta in a large pot–big enough to hold 6 quarts of water per pound of pasta.
Salt: Generously season your cooking water with salt. A few teaspoons per quart of water is a good place to start. Although a little more or less is fine, depending on your preference.
Don’t overcook: Boil your pasta to until it is al dente, which means it’s cooked, but still a bit chewy. You’ll want to test your pasta for flavor and texture every 20 seconds or so during the last few minutes of cooking.
If you’ll continue cooking the pasta in a sauce, or baking it in the oven, remove the pot from the heat a few minutes before it’s done to prevent overcooking.
Here’s what you’ll need to make Creamy Sausage Rigatoni
- Rigatoni pasta
- Olive oil
- Produce: onion, garlic, fresh parsley
- Italian sausage
- Spices: fennel seed, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper
- Tomato paste
- Chicken broth
- Heavy cream
- Parmesan cheese
- 16 ounces rigatoni pasta + 1 cups reserved pasta water
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/2 cup onion, chopped
- 1 pound ground Italian sausage
- 3-4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/2 teaspoon crushed fennel seeds
- 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1 (6 oz.) can tomato paste
- 1 cup chicken broth
- 1 cup heavy cream
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for garnish
- Fresh chopped parsley
- Cook rigatoni according to package directions. Drain, reserving 1 cup of the pasta water.
- Meanwhile, heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion and cook until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the sausage. Cook, breaking into small pieces, until no longer pink. Drain grease if desired.
- Add garlic, fennel seed, red pepper and tomato paste and cook a few minutes more. Stir in the broth and simmer until liquid is reduced by half.
- Add the cream and bring to a simmer. Gradually add pasta water until sauce reaches desired consistency. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
- Stir in 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese. Garnish with fresh parsley and more Parmesan cheese, if desired.
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 505Total Fat: 33gSaturated Fat: 14gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 20gCholesterol: 69mgSodium: 643mgCarbohydrates: 33gFiber: 2gSugar: 3gProtein: 18g
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Who Dished it Up First: This is an original recipe