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Sausage and Pasta in a Pan

Sausage and Pasta

Sausage and Pasta is one of my quick and easy standby meals. The intensely flavored and filling recipe is the perfect choice for a weeknight dinner. Tasty pieces of spicy Italian sausage smothered in a tomato sauce with the perfect blend of seasonings over penne pasta presents a healthy and comforting meal. You'll relish each mouthful of this easy recipe.
Course dinner, Entree, Main Course
Cuisine Italian
Servings 4
Calories 551kcal
Author Imma


The Pasta

  • 1 8-ounce package penne pasta , cooked according to package instructions

The Sausage and Sauce

  • 1 tablespoon (14 ml) olive or canola oil
  • 1-1½ pounds (450-675 g) sweet or hot Italian sausage
  • cup (78 ml) water
  • 2-3 tablespoons (28 - 42 ml) butter or olive oil
  • 1 large onion , sliced into 1/4-inch strips (about 2 cups)
  • 1 teaspoon (1 g) fresh thyme
  • 1 teaspoon (4 g) Creole Cajun seasoning , adjust to your tastebuds (if you want more spice, add more)
  • 1 teaspoon (4 g) Italian seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon (2 g) chili pepper flakes (or to taste)
  • 2-3 teaspoons (10-15 g) minced garlic
  • 2 tablespoons (32 g) tomato paste
  • 4-5 Roma tomatoes , diced
  • 2 bell peppers (green, red, and/or yellow ) , stems and cores removed and sliced into 1/4-inch strips
  • 1 cup (250 ml) chicken broth
  • fresh chopped basil , for garnish


The Pasta

  • First, cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling water according to box instructions. Pasta should be al dente (slightly undercooked, but still firm to the touch).
  • Drain the pasta, reserving about 1-2 cups of pasta water. Set aside.

The Sausage and Sauce

  • Heat a large skillet over medium heat with a tablespoon of olive oil. Place the sausage in the pan and brown on both sides, moving and turning around in the pan regularly, so it browns evenly for about 2-4 minutes.
  • Gently pour about ⅓ cup water (you can use the pasta water) into the skillet to prevent the sausage from burning or sticking to the pan. Cook for about 8-10 minutes or until it’s almost cooked. The sausage will finish cooking with the pasta.
  • Remove the sausage from the pan, put it on a cutting board, and slice it into desired-sized pieces. Set aside.
  • Drain all excess liquid from the frypan, making sure it is completely dry.
  • Add butter, followed by onions, thyme, Creole seasoning, Italian seasoning, and chili flakes. Sauté for about 2-3 minutes.
  • Add garlic and tomato paste, continue cooking for another 2-3 minutes, stirring constantly.
  • Throw in the diced tomatoes and continue cooking. Add a tiny bit of water if the pan gets is too dry. Continue cooking for another 2-3 minutes.
  • Return the sausage together with any accumulated juice back to the skillet, followed by bell pepper.
  • Stir in the broth and cook for about 5-7 minutes, or until the sausage is cooked through and sauce thickens. Lightly season with salt and pepper.

The Finishing Touches

  • Add the al dente pasta to the skillet and mix well, so every bit of pasta is coated with sauce. Add the reserved pasta liquid as needed. Reduce heat and simmer for 2-3 minutes. Adjust seasonings to taste.
  • Garnish the pasta with basil and serve immediately.


  • Top the pasta with grated parmesan cheese for extra flavor.
  • Portabello mushrooms are a delicious addition. I like to throw in about ½ a cup of sliced baby Bellas when I saute the onions. Then, continue with the recipe.
  • If your sauce is a little sour, add ½ a teaspoon of sugar to calm it down and make it less acidic.
  • A dash of red wine is amazing in the sauce. Add it right after the tomatoes.
  • Please keep in mind that nutritional information is a rough estimate and can vary greatly based on the products used.


Calories: 551kcal | Carbohydrates: 55g | Protein: 19g | Fat: 29g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 12g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 58mg | Sodium: 565mg | Potassium: 751mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 8g | Vitamin A: 3066IU | Vitamin C: 91mg | Calcium: 61mg | Iron: 3mg