"Out the Door" Skillet Pasta


This quick and easy pasta dish, is my version of homemade "Hamburger Helper"...a perfect dinner recipe to have on hand for those busy nights when everyone in the household is running out the door like chickens with their heads cut off!

To make this hearty meal, you will need 1 lb. of ground beef, fusilli pasta (or the pasta of your choice), 1 tin of tomato soup (284 ml. or 10 fl.oz), pasta sauce, green pepper, 1 small onion, 1 garlic clove, a few mushrooms, salt and pepper to taste and a bit of brown sugar.

First, in a medium saucepan, cook 3 cups of fusilli pasta in salted, boiling water for about 12-15 minutes or until tender...don't overcook your pasta, nobody likes mushy noodles (or maybe you do, then boil away!)...

...then, in a large saute pan, over medium heat, cook the ground beef until no longer pink then drain off any grease. Mince 1 onion and 1 clove of garlic, add it to the pan and cook for about 5 minutes or until the onion is fairly tender.

Season meat with salt and pepper to taste.

Coarsely chop green pepper (should be about 1 cup) and slice 5 or 6 mushrooms.

Add vegetables to the meat mixture, cover pan and cook for another 5 minutes or until the green pepper is somewhat tender.

Once the vegetables are done, add a 1/2 cup of the pasta water to your pan...

...scraping up all of the brown bits...the pasta water will "deglaze" the pan.

Next up, crack open a can of undiluted tomato soup and dump 'er in! I know this sounds weird, but trust me on the soup thing...

...then measure out 1-1/2 cups of your favourite pasta sauce, add it to the meat/vegetable/weird soup concoction...

...and finally, 1 tsp. of light brown sugar...stir it all together until combined.

Add the cooked, drained pasta...

...and stir until pasta is evenly coated with sauce.

Add some grated (or dehydrated) parmesan cheese to the mixture and heat through.

...and just like that, dinner is served! A quick and filling meal for those busy, "off to the arena" nights...if you are pressed for time, you can skip the eye-catching garnishes and props for your table...I don't think hungry little hockey players would even notice!

"Out the Door" Skillet Pasta

1 lb. of ground beef

1 small onion, minced

1 clove of garlic, minced

salt and pepper to taste

1 green pepper, chopped

5-6 mushrooms, sliced

1 tin of tomato soup, undiluted (284 ml. or 10fl.oz)

1-1/2 cups of pasta sauce

1 tsp. brown sugar

1/4 cup of grated parmesan cheese (about 2 tbsps. if using dehydrated)

3 cups of fusilli pasta (3 cups measured before cooking)

1/2 cup of reserved pasta water

1. Boil pasta until tender (about 12-15 minutes), remove from heat and drain (reserving a 1/2 cup of pasta water)...set aside.

2. In a large saute pan, cook meat until no longer pink and drain off any fat.

3. Add onion and garlic...cook until tender (about 5 minutes)...season with salt & pepper. Add green pepper and mushrooms and cook another 5 minutes (or until green pepper is fairly tender).

4. Next, pour in the pasta water, scraping up the brown bits from the bottom of the pan...add the soup, pasta sauce and brown sugar...stir and toss in the cooked pasta.

5. Sprinkle top with parmesan cheese and heat through...Enjoy! :)