Each year it seems like I have less and less time to spend with my family after school starts. Between work, after school activities and homework I’m dead tired before the sun starts to go down. We have maybe an hour to spend together before bedtime comes around. I don’t want to spend that hour slaving in the kitchen; can you blame me?
It’s my job to make sure my family has a full and healthy dinner but no one said that has to take forever. Putting together a casserole while the kids are in school lets me pop it in the oven any time and have that extra time with them. That’s what I do most days. Casseroles are probably my favorite thing to make because of how easy they are and how much time they save me.
Something else I love about casseroles is that there is no set recipe or ingredients. You can toss pretty much anything into a casserole dish and bake it and have it come out delicious. I do it all the time; not all of my casseroles are a success but it’s fun to learn and try. My absolute favorite casserole to make (and the one the family asks for most often) is my pizza pasta casserole . Here’s how you make it:
Pizza Pasta Casserole
- 1 box (16 oz) Rotini Pasta, cooked and drained
- 1/2 cup Country Crock Spread
- Italian herbs (1 teaspoon oregano, 1/2 teaspoon basil, 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder, 1/4 teaspoon sage, 1 teaspoon parsley)
- 1 pound italian sausage, crumbled and cooked
- 1 jar (or 3 cups homemade) spaghetti sauce
- 16 ounces mozzarella cheese
- 8 ounces sliced pepperoni
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F
- In a large bowl toss together the pasta, Country Crock and herbs. Mix well
- Add in the remaining ingredients except half the pepperoni and 1/2 cup of cheese and mix thoroughly
- Spread the mixture into a lightly greased 13×9 casserole dish
- Top with the remaining pepperoni and cheese and bake for 30 minutes
Serve the Pizza Pasta Casserole with a Caesar Salad, or on its own, for a complete meal.
Most of the prep work for the Pizza Pasta Casserole can be done ahead of time. The entire casserole can be assembled and frozen for up to 2 months. To reheat from a frozen state just let it come to room temperature and cook according to the above directions.
A few reasons I use Country Crock:
- Have 0g trans fat per serving
- Contain no partially hydrogenated oils
- Have no cholesterol
- Are 70% less fat than butter per serving
- Have 30% fewer calories than butter per serving
Tell me: How do you make more time with your family during the school year?
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls Collective and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.