Baked Cavatelli: A Cheesy and Veggie-Filled Italian Delight

Baked Cavatelli
Baked Cavatelli

If you’re a fan of Italian cuisine, there’s nothing quite like a comforting baked pasta dish to satisfy your cravings. Among the many options available, baked cavatelli stands out as a delightful combination of flavors and textures. This recipe showcases diced tomatoes, fresh baby spinach, and a cheesy sauce that will leave you wanting more. Whether you’re a vegetarian or prefer the savory taste of Italian-flavored chicken sausage, this dish is sure to please. So let’s dive into the details of this mouthwatering recipe.

Easy Vegetable Baked Pasta

Easy Vegetable Baked Pasta
Easy Vegetable Baked Pasta

Ingredients

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Recipe: Cheesy Pesto Baked Cavatelli with Zucchini & Mushrooms – Blue Apron
  • 8 ounces dried cavatelli pasta (about 3 1/2 cups)
  • 1 12-ounce package frozen cooked and crumbled ground meat substitute (soy protein) or 12 ounces Italian-flavored cooked chicken sausage, chopped
  • 1/2 cup chopped green onions (4)
  • 2 teaspoons fennel seeds, crushed
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 2 14.5-ounce cans fire-roasted diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1 24-26 ounce jar roasted garlic pasta sauce
  • 1 5-ounce package fresh baby spinach, chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese (6 ounces)

Directions

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Recipe: Cheesy Pesto Baked Cavatelli with Zucchini & Mushrooms – Blue Apron
  1. Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C).
  2. Cook the pasta according to the package directions. Drain well.
  3. Meanwhile, in a 4- to 6-quart Dutch oven, cook the ground meat substitute (or chicken sausage), green onions, fennel seeds, and crushed red pepper over medium heat for 5 minutes.
  4. Add the diced tomatoes, pasta sauce, and spinach; stir until the spinach wilts. Remove from heat.
  5. Stir in 1 cup of the mozzarella cheese, followed by the cooked pasta.
  6. Spoon the mixture into a 3-quart casserole dish. Cover with foil.
  7. Bake for 25 minutes. Then, uncover and sprinkle the remaining 1/2 cup of cheese on top.
  8. Bake, uncovered, for an additional 15 to 20 minutes or until the cheese is lightly browned.

Tips

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Recipe: Cheesy Pesto Baked Cavatelli with Zucchini & Mushrooms – Blue Apron
  • This recipe offers a bit of heat from the crushed red pepper and fire-roasted diced tomatoes. If you prefer a milder flavor, you can reduce the crushed red pepper or substitute regular canned diced tomatoes.
  • For individual servings, you can prepare the dish in six 14- to 18-ounce individual baking dishes. Follow the instructions until Step 2, then divide the pasta mixture among the individual dishes. Cover with foil, bake for 20 minutes, uncover, sprinkle with the remaining 1/2 cup of cheese, and bake for another 10 minutes until the cheese is lightly browned. This variation yields six servings.

Nutritional Information

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Recipe: Cheesy Pesto Baked Cavatelli with Zucchini & Mushrooms – Blue Apron

Per serving:- Calories: 368- Protein: 29g- Carbohydrates: 52g- Total Fat: 8g (Saturated Fat: 3g)- Cholesterol: 15mg- Fiber: 8g- Sugar: 10g- Sodium: 1,100mg- Daily Values: 75% vitamin A, 54% vitamin C, 37% calcium, 29% iron

Please note that the nutritional information provided is per serving and based on a recipe that serves 10 people. The values may vary depending on the specific brands and ingredients you use.

About the Better Homes & Gardens Test Kitchen

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Recipe: Cheesy Pesto Baked Cavatelli with Zucchini & Mushrooms – Blue Apron

The Better Homes & Gardens Test Kitchen has been at the forefront of recipe development and testing for nearly a century. With a team of culinary specialists, food stylists, registered and licensed nutritionists, and experts with degrees in food science, food and nutrition, or culinary arts, they continuously strive to create practical and reliable recipes for readers to enjoy at home. Annually, the Test Kitchen team tests over 2,500 recipes, produces more than 2,500 food images, and creates over 1,000 food videos in their state-of-the-art test kitchen.

Whether you’re a seasoned cook or just starting your culinary journey, the Test Kitchen’s dedication to providing delicious and well-tested recipes ensures that you can create mouthwatering meals with confidence.

So why not give this baked cavatelli recipe a try? With its rich flavors, comforting textures, and veggie-filled twist, it’s bound to become a favorite in your household. Buon appetito!

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