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?!
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.