1 Tablespoon olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon dried Thyme
1/2 of a 15 oz can of tomato sauce
3/4 cup fat free sour cream
Half of a 10 oz package frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
Salt and Pepper to taste
1/2 cup panko bread crumbs
3/4 cup low fat cheddar cheese, divided
3/4 cup low fat Monterrey jack cheese, divided
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
In a large pot of boiling water, cook the pasta according to package directions. I usually put a teaspoon of olive oil and some garlic in the boiling water. The oil keeps the pasta from sticking and the garlic adds flavor. Drain and set aside.
In a large deep skillet, heat the olive oil and add the chopped garlic. Cook until fragrant. Add the ground beef and crumble it while cooking. Drain any excess fat before going on to the next step.
Stir in the tomato sauce (you can use jarred pasta sauce too if you would like), the sour cream, thyme and salt and pepper. Stir until beef is covered with the sauce mix.
Mix 1/4 cup of each cheese with the pasta and arrange the mix in the bottom of a large baking dish.
Next, layer the spinach on the top of the pasta then the beef mix. Top with the remaining cheese and the panko bread crumbs.
Bake in the oven for 30 minutes. I like my panko topping golden brown, so I turned on the broiler to high and cooked it an additional 3 minutes. Perfect!!
Boy was this good! My original plan was to freeze half of this for a later date, but hubby made sure that wasn’t going to happen!! With this hamburger pasta casserole, it’s an all-in-one meal. You’ve got your meat, veggies and pasta. The cheese within the pasta base gave it more flavor and the chunks of spinach were delicious. This meal is sure to please the entire family, even those who are not spinach fans.
For more Pasta ideas, click below to hop over to my Pasta Pinterest board
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