Make Ahead Recipe: One Pot Italian Sausage Bake with Vodka Sauce

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This is a tasty twist on box neon-orange macaroni and cheese with cut-up hot dogs in it.

I can’t believe I just typed those words.

My greatest fear as a kid was that my parents might cut-up hot dogs in our mac and cheese.

In my adolescent culinary experiences I considered it the greatest travesty, with one exception being chocolate chip scrambled eggs.

This recipe works great as an easy make-ahead meal because it uses ready-made sauce. I made two and stored one in the freezer for a month.

I baked it the other night, and it was still tasty:)

It would be a great recipe to make if you need to take a meal to someone.

PS. You can use a different pasta shape, but I just like the way corkscrew keeps it shape after being baked.

One Pot Italian Sausage Bake with Vodka Sauce

serves 6-8

  • olive oil
  • 5 Italian sausage links
  • water
  • salt
  • 1 lb corkscrew pasta
  • 8 oz cottage cheese
  • 8 oz sour cream
  • 1 jar vodka sauce
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella
  • dried Italian seasoning (optional)

Preheat oven to 350º (if baking immediately).

Grease a 9×13 baking dish. Set aside.

Add one tbsp of olive oil to a stock pot over medium high heat. Add the sausage links to the pot. Brown on both sides about 3-5 minutes. Add 1/2 cup of water to the pot and cover. Reduce heat to medium and cook for 10 minutes. Using tongs remove the links to cool. Slice the sausage links once cool.

In the same large pot bring salted water to a boil. Cook pasta as directed on the package. Drain. Place the pasta back in the pot, add sour cream and cottage cheese. Stir to combine.

Place all the pasta in the baking dish, pour the vodka sauce over the pasta. Add the slices of sausage to the top of the pasta, top with cheese. Sprinkle with Italian seasoning.

Bake uncovered at 350º for 20 minutes or until the cheese is melted.

or

Cover and place in the freezer for up to 30 days.

When ready to bake add 1/4 cup milk and bake uncovered for 35-40 minutes.

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