SAY HELLO TO a new series on Ambitious Kitchen: 30 MINUTE THURSDAYS!
Granted this fabulous dinner recipe only takes 20 minutes so now it’s even more exciting, am I right?!
I have to say this series comes at the perfect time because not only is Summer on the horizon but so are the best TV shows: House of Cards (I binged 3 episodes in one night), Game of Thrones (coming in July) and Handmaid’s Tale (I’m starting it soon). Tell me… what are you watching?!
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Look, I know how life gets. You’re busy. You have no time to cook or no idea what to make or you’re just so hungry by the time you get home and want to shove all the bagged popcorn in your mouth along with a few handfuls of cereal. Been there.
So each week for the rest of the summer, I’m going to bring you a new recipe that can be made from start to finish in 30 minutes or less. And in each recipe, I’ll give you options on how to make it vegetarian and gluten free if possible (just pay attention to the notes section in the recipe). NOW WE CAN ALL EAT TOGETHER!
Raise your hand if you’re SUPER excited.
K cool, me too.
Our first 30 Minute Thursday recipe is a super simple and unbelievably tasty rigatoni (or whatever pasta you’d like) coated with garlic parmesan, lots of the best veggies and of course, a little chicken sausage for protein. Tony and I gobbled it up for dinner one night, and because it was so good I ended up making it a few days later for Abra and I.
Surprisingly, it’s pretty tasty when served cold too — which means it makes an excellent on the go lunch.
20 Minute Garlic Parmesan Rigatoni with Chicken Sausage & Broccoli
- 10 oz uncooked whole wheat or gluten free rigatoni (ziti or fusilli also works)
- 3 cups broccoli florets
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- 4 precooked chicken sausages, sliced (I used Trader Joe’s sundried tomato basil chicken sausages)
- 1 red bell pepper, julienned
- 1 small white onion
- ⅓ cup grated parmesan
- ¾ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Red pepper flakes
- To garnish: Extra parmesan & parsley
Add pasta and broccoli to a large pot with water and pasta until al dente, as directed on the package. Once the pasta has cooked, drain, then transfer the pasta back into pot.
While pasta is cooking, add the olive oil, sliced chicken sausages, red pepper and onion to a large skillet and saute for 8-10 minutes or until chicken sausages are slightly golden and veggies are al dente.
Add the cooked veggie and chicken sausage mixture to the pasta and stir. Next add in parmesan, garlic powder, salt, pepper and red pepper flakes. Pour into warm bowls and serve immediately.
Serve with extra parmesan on top and a sprinkle of parsley. Serves 4.
If you are gluten free, chickpea pasta is a great alternative and will increase the protein by about 10g per serving and the fiber by 4g per serving.
To make vegetarian: Simply leave out the chicken sausage and increase the veggies by 1 cup and parmesan cheese by a few tablespoons.
This sounds perfect!
I think this is a great series; I’m so excited for it! I keep my recipes online and created a “quick ‘n’ easy” tag for healthy recipes I can throw together quickly with minimal effort (and often one pot) created from kitchen staples. I’m looking forward to adding some of your new recipes.
I will definitely try this with a vegetarian “sausage”. Lightlife makes a great soy based Italian sausage that would make a perfect substitute!
I make something similar with kale instead of broccoli and I make my own sausages so I can control the sodium in them. So yummy and my husband loves it too! Watching Handmaid’s Tale and really enjoying it…pretty cool that the author of the original book is a Canadian too.
Any dinner that’s ready in 20 minutes and I’m IN! Plus, so many tasty ingredients!
A.K.! I love you and I think I love about 100% of your recipes. But is there no “sauce” in this? I’m sure it must be yummy & not dry b/c otherwise you wouldn’t have posted it. 😉 If we wanted to add a bit of “sauce” is there something you could recommend? Maybe I’m a newby and behind the times. Does the moisture just come from the parmesan cheese?
You could try reserving some of the water from cooking the pasta and add it back in at the end, to combine with the cheese to make it a little “saucier” 🙂
I just made this for dinner tonight and it was so, so good! Thank you!
Would soy chorizo work in this? LOoking forwars to the quick and easy dinners!!! Love it!
You bet! I think it’d be delicious with any type of sausage. Enjoy!
I just made this tonight and it was a very tasty dish that I will definitely make again! Although, the broccoli was completely mushy. Next time I’ll add it to the pasta later. Plus, I couldn’t find precooked chicken sausage so it took longer since I had to boil it first, but you have to wait for the water to boil for the pasta anyway. Still, it’s an easy dish to make.
Interesting! You can definitely add it to the pasta later if you’d like 🙂 Glad you enjoyed this!
I made this tonight and it was delicious! Your recipes are great!
I’m so glad you liked it! Thanks Makayla 🙂
This was terrific! I saved a bit of the pasta water (half cup) to sauce it up a bit, and threw in some spinach at the end of the veggies cooking.
Really tasty, really cheap, really easy!
Perfect! Glad you enjoyed!
I want to thank you for helping me to get back in the kitchen! I love to cook but live alone so I’m not always into cooking for one. Your meal ideas are great and I’m loving cooking and getting the veggies in my body!
Thanks so much for your comment, Russ! I’m glad you’re finding recipes you love here. This roundup has a ton of veggie-packed meals you might like, too. Enjoy!
Tried this tonight with “Beyond Meat” Bratwurst Sausages. It was AMAZING and so easy to make. Definitely adding this to my week night dinner rotation.
Perfect!! This one’s great for meal prepping.
I love making this recipe when I want a quick and easy dinner.
Absolutely amazing! I was hesitant with no sauce, but you honestly don’t even miss sauce! The garlic powder and parm cheese create a great seasoning! Next time I want to add mushrooms to it. I used regular pasta I had on hand, but I imagine zucchini noodles will taste delish and be even healthier!
The seasoning really makes this delicious! Mushrooms sound delicious, too, and zucchini noodles are a great idea 🙂
this was sooooooo good !! definitely a keeper. I substituted the chicken sausage for a sweet & spicy regular sausage. delicious, so much flavor. once of my favorites from this website for sure.
Love that! So happy you found this one – quick, easy and so delicious!
Love this recipe!
So happy to hear that!
By far me and my husbands favorite recipe! It’s so quick and easy for when we both don’t have time to prepare a proper meal! Thank you for sharing 💙💙
So happy to hear that! Love this easy dinner 🙂
My whole family loves this recipe! Thank you for sharing this simple and delicious recipe!
I’m so glad! Such a great, easy dinner 🙂
Made this recipe without the sausage and my kids loved it! I added a teaspoon of paprika and chilli flakes. My 14 year old son who has to have meat with every meal, loved this saying that he want to eat more vegetarian dishes but they have to be done well and this is very good.
My daughter had bacon flakes on top 😉
Perfect! So glad they both loved this one 🙂
For vegetarian there is plant based Italian sausage. Just an idea
This was so easy, so flavorful and delish!
Things I changed:
I used garlic sausage and tiny onion and shallot bulb so I left out the garlic powder all together.
I lowered the amount of pasta to save calories.
I would suggest not adding broccoli to the pasta water until pasta is 1/2 cooked. My broccoli turned to mush.
This is one of those easy weeknight meals we all need in our rotation!
Perfect! And noted on the broccoli – this can also depend on how large your florets are. Glad you enjoyed!
This the most amazing recipe! Im going to be making it for the rest of my life- I use fresh chicken!❤
So happy you loved it!
I have made this many times and it is absolutely delicious. I substitute and use sweet italian sausage I even have a picky neighbor and she loves this recipe!
Perfect! Love that idea!
Favorite go to when I’m craving pasta but also wanting a bowl full of veggies! Yum!
This is another staple dinner recipe of mine. I cook it for my family often. I love that it is packed with veggies and my toddler son also enjoys it very much. We love the Applegate brand Italian Sausage from Whole foods – it really sets off the dish. My husband prefers to add some sauce to this, as he likes his pasta saucier. I sometimes will add pesto to mine, but it’s delicious without.
Love that! Pesto sounds amazing (and love Applegate sausages).
One word: EASY . . . We first tried this recipe during a distanced getaway in 2020. The simple ingredients are easy to pack – chicken sausage and parm in the cooler, premeasured spices in tupperware. I have tried it with Banza pasta, but some of the shapes fall apart too easily – if you go this route, I recommend the penne shape. Really, I recommend just going for the wheat rigatoni that’s called for, it really is the best for this recipe. If you store & reheat any leftovers, put in a small pan on the stove with a touch of butter. And don’t hold back on dusting with parm – yum!
Love it! So easy and delicious 🙂 and great tip for reheating!
I’ll be making this tomorrow and substituting the broccoli (because I don’t have any) for zucchini. I always love your recipes because they’re always so easy and I usually have the ingredients in hand.
What is the calorie count without the sausage? I’ve made this before and it was delicious! But I have a child who won’t eat meat of any kind now. I’m also counting calories for myself 🙂
I was looking for a recipe for some leftovers in my fridge – I had chicken sausage so I came to ambitious kitchen and searched chicken sausage and found this! I substituted broccoli with asparagus, bell pepper, and a red onion, and it turned out great! I added 1/4 cup pasta water, and also substituted the parmesan with grated Pecorino cheese. Overall a great starter recipe for the random stuff in my fridge!!
That all sounds AMAZING! So glad you found this recipe and loved it, Amanda 🙂
Such a fast and delicious weekday meal for a mom of two! I will definitely be making this again, especially because I loved having all of the veggies in there with the pasta and chicken sausage. Yum!!
Absolutely! So glad you enjoyed!