We’ve all had our fair share of spaghetti tossed in store bought tomato sauce—and as a result, the mere mention of ‘weeknight pasta dinner’ often causes us to shrivel to the floor a la Big Anthony-style in Strega Nona. But quick and easy to cook pasta is a weeknight mainstay for a reason. Once you go beyond the jar and dress your pasta in the following colorful homemade sauces and combinations, you will know why:
Red Sauce: A simple sauté of chopped tomatoes, onions, mushrooms and quick cooking meat, such as ground beef, turkey or sausage makes a great basic mix. If you want your sauce to be juicier, add a bit of chicken broth and tomato juice. For an easy red pasta sauce recipe click the image above.
White Sauce: Béchamel, one of France’s famed mother sauces, is a classic stovetop combination of flour, milk and butter. This alone won’t do much to liven up your pasta, but just add Parmesan to the sauce, and toss with diced ham and sprinkling of basil for comfortingly creamy serving.
Toss In Everything But The Kitchen Sink: Get creative with your pasta toppings and try adding all types of veggies, meats and cheeses. For an unexpected combination, try sautéing onions and mushrooms in olive oil and white wine. Then pour the sauce over penne and toss with Brie cheese and arugula. For another Brie based pasta recipe, click the image above.