Easy One Pot Sloppy Joe Pasta Recipe

Do you LOVE Sloppy Joe’s? If so, you will love this Sloppy Joe Pasta recipe! This is an easy one pot weeknight meal that is sure to please even your pickiest eater.

First off, I did not grow up eating sloppy joe’s. My mom wasn’t a fan, and somehow I made it through my entire childhood never even trying a sloppy joe. Crazy!

As an adult, I finally got my first chance, and I will admit…I wasn’t super impressed. I’m not a huge fan of the “sweetness” of sloppy joe’s. Maybe if I had grown up with that flavor profile, it would be different?

I’m really not sure.

(Did you grow up with Sloppy Joe’s? Love them? Maybe you need this t-shirt, haha!)

However, I had this recipe at a friend’s house a few years ago and it totally WORKED! I loved it!

As a mom, I also love it because it is one pot, is pretty flexible and it makes enough for a crowd. (here are some other one pot meals you might enjoy: Chicken with Rice, Slow Cooker Chicken, Broccoli and Stuffing or One Skillet Chicken Thighs with Red Wine Vinegar. )

If you, like me, aren’t a huge fan of the sweetness of sloppy joes, decrease or even omit the brown sugar in this sloppy joe pasta recipe. It will be amazing regardless!

Sloppy Joe Pasta

 

Ingredients: 

  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 3 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 2 15 oz cans fire roasted tomatoes
  • 1 15 oz can tomato sauce
  • Plus use the empty can of tomato sauce to add 15 oz of water as well
  • 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar (use a bit less or omit if you like less sweetness)
  • 12 oz egg noodles
  • salt & pepper to taste

Directions: 

  1. Melt the butter in a large pot, add the diced veggies and saute until translucent. Add the garlic and saute a couple of minutes.
  2. Now, brown the ground beef (season with salt & pepper at this point) in the pot with the veggies.
  3. Next add the remainder of ingredients except for the egg noodles and simmer about 5 minutes
  4. Now, add the egg noodles and cover the pot. Cook until the egg noodles soften.
  5. Taste to see if you need more salt & pepper
  6. Enjoy!

 

Ingredients
  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 3 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 2 15 oz cans fire roasted tomatoes
  • 1 15 oz can tomato sauce
  • Plus use the empty can of tomato sauce to add 15 oz of water as well
  • 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar (use a bit less or omit if you like less sweetness)
  • 12 oz egg noodles
  • salt & pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Melt the butter in a large pot, add the diced veggies and saute until translucent. Add the garlic and saute a couple of minutes.
  2. Now, brown the ground beef (season with salt & pepper at this point) in the pot with the veggies.
  3. Next add the remainder of ingredients except for the egg noodles and simmer about 5 minutes
  4. Now, add the egg noodles and cover the pot. Cook until the egg noodles soften.
  5. Taste to see if you need more salt & pepper
  6. Enjoy!
3.5.3251

 

 

Easy Slow Cooker Pesto Chicken Pasta with Cheese

This easy weeknight slow cooker Pesto Chicken Pasta (with cheese!) comes together so quickly but tastes SO flavorful! Make this keto or low carb by omitting the pasta and serving over caulirice or spaghetti squash! I love meals with simple ingredients that make dinnertime easy!

I am a newcomer to loving pesto. Honestly, I shied away from anything with pesto for years. It just looked a bit too green, a bit too oily? for me? Oh, how I missed out!

This pesto chicken pasta is SO flavorful, so easy, so quick (well, except for the time that it spends cooking in the slow cooker WITHOUT your supervision!) that it almost seems silly to write a recipe for it.

However, I need you to try this. Therefore, I need to share the recipe! I hope you love it as much as we do!

Also, if you are doing low carb/keto, this tastes AMAZING over spaghetti squash! (you can find my recipe for cooking Spaghetti Squash in your instant pot here).

Looking for more quick weeknight meals? You will love my Chicken & Broccoli Alfredo (a keto/low carb recipe, but you can serve over pasta!), my Creamy Garlic & Mozzarella Chicken and don’t miss out on my Slow Cooker Tomato Basil soup recipe!

(Quick Crowd Sourcing: I noticed while making this slow cooker pesto chicken pasta that my slow cooker has a crack on the bottom of it! This clearly means it is time to purchase a new slow cooker. 😉

Comment below and let me know what slow cooker YOU have and if you love it! )

Pesto Chicken Pasta with Cheese

Ingredients: 

  • Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts (enough to feed your family)
  • 1 small jar of pesto (I used Aldi brand)
  • 1/4 cup salted butter
  • 1/2 lemon
  • 1/2 cup parmesan
  • 4 oz shredded mozzarella
  • 1 lb pasta (or spaghetti squash!) of your choice – cooked
  • salt & pepper to taste

Directions: 

  1. First, you’ll layer your chicken breasts (mine were frozen) on the bottom of your slow cooker. Season with salt & pepper on both sides and then top with your jarred pesto and butter. Squeeze the lemon over the top. Cook on low for 4-6 hours
  2. Take your chicken out and shred it. You can do the “two fork” thing or I like to use the paddle attachment on my kitcheaid. Works every time!
  3. Return the chicken to the pot and add the parmesan and pasta (or spaghetti squash). Stir it all together and taste to check to see if you need to add more salt & pepper.
  4. Put shredded mozzarella over the top of the pasta and let it cook about 10-15 minutes longer until it is melted.
  5. Serve!

I hope you enjoy this Pesto Chicken Pasta!

Ingredients
  • Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts (enough to feed your family)
  • 1 small jar of pesto (I used Aldi brand)
  • 1/4 cup salted butter
  • 1/2 lemon
  • 1/2 cup parmesan
  • 4 oz shredded mozzarella
  • 1 lb pasta (or spaghetti squash!) of your choice – cooked
  • salt & pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. First, you’ll layer your chicken breasts (mine were frozen) on the bottom of your slow cooker. Season with salt & pepper on both sides and then top with your jarred pesto and butter. Squeeze the lemon over the top. Cook on low for 4-6 hours
  2. Take your chicken out and shred it. You can do the “two fork” thing or I like to use the paddle attachment on my kitcheaid. Works every time!
  3. Return the chicken to the pot and add the parmesan and pasta (or spaghetti squash). Stir it all together and taste to check to see if you need to add more salt & pepper.
  4. Put shredded mozzarella over the top of the pasta and let it cook about 10-15 minutes longer until it is melted.
  5. Serve!
3.5.3251

 

Easy Weeknight Lasagna-Yes, Really

 

 

Lasagna can be a pretty big undertaking. It’s a meal that I don’t really put on our menu all that often. Mainly because it takes a veritable army of pots, pans and ingredients to go from kitchen to table. I am a work at home mom of a 3 year old and a 2 year old. I don’t have time to:

  1. Brown the meat, while simultaneously not overcooking the pasta noodles.
  2. If I’m really doing lasagna right, of course I’ll be making my own sauce. Generally taking up burner #3, simultaneously simmering away while my meat browns and my pasta overcooks.
  3. Now to assemble the lasagna, I need to set up an assembly line worthy of Ford Motor Company. No less than 3 cheeses…oh and remember those lasagna noodles we overcooked? Somehow we need to pry those apart without burning the fingerprints off of our fingers, or haphazardly turning them into thin spaghetti noodles (this is lasagna right? I forgot. Because you know,  the baby needed some attention about 2 hours into the lasagna prep and with no end in sight, I finally just threw everything into the casserole dish and hoped for the best!)

Okay, it’s not quite that dramatic, but I am sure you get the picture.

 

Continue reading Easy Weeknight Lasagna-Yes, Really

Braided Spaghetti Bread Recipe – Dinner All-In-One Style

Braided Spaghetti Bread

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One night, we were combing through the pantry trying to find something for dinner. That night, we were supposed to go out to dinner, but one of the kids was feeling under the weather, so we needed to stay home.

It’s not that our pantry isn’t well stocked, it is VERY well stocked. However, sometimes when you have your mind stuck on going out for a nice restaurant meal, an old standby meal at home just doesn’t sound very appetizing!

I decided to comb through some of the budget friendly recipes I had pinned on Pinterest for some inspiration.

I came across this braided spaghetti bread and decided that it would be fun to tackle.

Not pretty, but oh so tasty

Well, I’ll say that it was fun to make, but mine did not turn out as pretty or as uniform as the one pictured on the Rhodes website.

In fact, mine was kind of a mess!

It sure did taste good though, and I encourage you to give it a try yourself!

Braided Spaghetti Bread Recipe

adapted from RhodesBread.com

Ingredients:

  • 1 Loaf Rhodes Bread Dough or 12 Rhodes Dinner Rolls (we only had the dinner rolls) Thawed
  • Flour for rolling out dough
  • 6 oz spaghetti, cooked and drained
  • 1 cup spaghetti sauce
  • 1/4 lb ground beef cooked
  • 8 oz mozzarella cheese, cut into 1/2 –inch cubes
  • 1 egg white
  • Parmesan cheese
  • Parsley flakes

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. On a floured surface, roll out your bread dough until it’s a 12×6 rectangle (this was difficult for me and is probably the reason my spaghetti bread looks so wonky. I wish you better luck )
  3. Take your cooked spaghetti and go ahead and mix it with your ground beef and spaghetti sauce.
  4. Go ahead and place your dough on the greased baking sheet you are going to cook it on (unless you feel confident you can transfer it easily after you assemble it).
  5. Take the spaghetti mixture and pile it lengthwise in the middle four inches of the dough.
  6. Top with mozzarella cheese
  7. Now you are going to make cuts alongside the filling. They should be about 1 1/2 inches apart and come within 1/2 inch of the filling. Do this up and down both sides.
  8. It’s now time to “braid” your bread. Begin by folding the top and bottom strips up over the filling. Then, alternating strips, braid left and then right over the entire loaf of bread.
  9. Brush the loaf with your egg whites. Sprinkle your Parmesan cheese and parsley over the top.
  10. Bake in your preheated oven for 30-35 minutes or until golden brown.
  11. Let sit for a few minutes before digging in!

Since I didn’t take any pictures of the assembly process, here’s a crude diagram:

You probably won’t have 14 strips to braid with 😉 but my drawing is definitely not to scale!

Make this, stick a salad with it and bam! Instant meal!

NOTE: Next time I make this, I’ll probably sprinkle some sea salt over the bread before I bake it. I like salt though, for some of you, the Parmesan might be enough. This is a very versatile recipe, do what makes you happy!

Enjoy!

Be sure to check out the other frugal recipes here on Family Friendly Frugality!

Creamy Chicken Noodle Casserole

Today’s recipe proves that it’s really okay to detour from the original recipe. Maybe you don’t have all the ingredients on hand. Maybe you can’t stand mushrooms or chicken or sour cream. The truth is, you can really custom make any recipe into a dish your family will love.

When I flipped over my bag of egg noodles the other day, I was hoping to find a stroganoff recipe. I have yet to make one I really enjoyed, and this was the first time I had purchased this brand of egg noodles. I was hoping for the stroganoff recipe to end my quest. Instead, there was a rather bland recipe for Creamy Chicken Noodle Bake. It didn’t use cream of mushroom/chicken/broccoli soup though, so I was interested (nothing against the cream of soups…I just get sick of every casserole recipe including them!), but it looked pretty boring.

The other problem was that it called for 4 cups of chicken, which is a lot of chicken for this frugal girl to dump into a measly casserole. AND it was devoid of any veggies. When I make a casserole, I want it to be all in one. Our meat, our veggies and our starch.

So I decided to manipulate this recipe a bit, and the finished result was just lovely! Know that you can change this up however you like. It’s a great basic recipe that you can really change up to suit your families tastebuds!

Cheesy Chicken Noodle Casserole

adapted from the back of a noodle bag <—Classy!

Ingredients:

  • About 8 oz of egg noodles (cooked until al dente)
  • 2 cups of cooked chicken (diced)
  • 4 cups of chicken broth
  • 6 tbsp butter
  • 6 tbsp flour
  • 1 16 oz bag of chopped broccoli (drained completely and thawed)
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar
  • 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
  • salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. Heat butter in a deep pot and mix in flour, salt, pepper and italian seasonings. Heat through until the mixture starts to brown (you’ll want to be on medium to low heat to be sure you don’t burn it!)
  3. SLOWLY add your chicken broth to the pot, letting each little bit incorporate before adding more. This is the most important part! If you don’t do this slowly enough and without constant stirring, you will have a lumpy base.
  4. Add cooked noodles, chicken and broccoli to the pot and stir
  5. Pour into a 13x9x2 inch casserole dish that you have sprayed with non stick spray
  6. Place in the oven for around 35 minutes
  7. Take out and add cheese over the top and put the casserole back in the oven for 10 minutes
  8. Let sit for a bit after you take it out of the oven so it has time to thicken

You might want to add some parsley or cracked pepper to the finished product, but I loved it straight from the oven!

Enjoy!

Be sure to check out my other frugal recipes here: Frugal Recipes

 

Weight And Budget Friendly Spaghetti And Meatballs

Weight and Budget Friendly Spaghetti and Meatballs

So, most of you know that I have resolved to lose weight in 2011. Call it a plan, call it a goal, call it whatever you like…2011 will see much less of me as the year comes to a close! I will be blogging about losing weight on my Weight Watchers blog, so I won’t be talking much about my progress here on Family Friendly Frugality. That said, I have a duel goal of posting more recipes on Family Friendly Frugality and eating well…so you’ll see a lot more healthy frugal recipes popping up over here!

The internet is a great source of inspiration to me in the kitchen. To be honest, although I have several cookbooks…I often refer to the internet first. While searching for Weight Watchers recipes, I found the site Skinny Taste and was delighted to see that Gina has a category specifically for meals under $10. Of course, much like brick and mortar stores (where I immediately make a beeline for the clearance rack!) that’s the first  place I checked out!

Her pictures are A-Mazing…so I needed to try out some of her recipes to be sure it wasn’t some fancy shmancy camera trickery making all of her food look so tasty. Yum, nope…the food is good y’all!

My first attempt at a Skinny Taste recipe were these Skinny Italian Spinach Meatballs. I, of course, didn’t make them exactly according to the recipe (because honestly…who does that?), but they were a total hit served with garlic bread and some low point spaghetti! The only changes I made were slight. I couldn’t find the Tutorosso tomatoes so I just used generic canned crushed tomatoes. I also didn’t buy Weight Watchers bread because we use Nature’s Own Light Bread (sidenote: Does anyone have a healthy low cal bread machine sandwich bread recipe?).

For the original recipe, be sure to head over to Gina’s Skinny Taste blog, but here’s my take (in pictures) on this yummy low Weight Watchers AND Budget Friendly recipe!

Budget Friendly/Weight Friendly Spaghetti & Meatballs

Mmm, nothing like raw meat and spinach. Seriously these are really awesome meatballs though!
I didn't count how many meatballs this made. All I know is that it served my whole family one dinner and one lunch.
The sauce, although surprisingly simple, was very tasty and would probably be good with anything that required spaghetti sauce.
My meatballs started to brown too much in the pan, so I let them finish cooking in the sauce
I let the meatballs cook away in the sauce while I cooked the pasta
Okay, the garlic bread was kind of high points...but I had the points for it and it was so yummy!

It was a fabulous dinner, and even my non-spinach loving husband enjoyed it. He did request that next time I chop up the spinach a bit more so it’s not quite so “stringy”. The taste was excellent and my kitchen smelled better than any Italian restaurant I’ve ever walked into!

For the full ingredient list, directions and nutritional information head on over to Gina’s Skinny Recipes.