This Cheesy Pasta Bake with Veggies is one of my favorite Pasta Recipes for a Sunday Night Supper. Loaded with vegetables like caramelized onions, mushrooms, and wilted spinach, and then covered in gooey, cheese! So easy and delicious!
This is a recipe we've been making at our house, once a week, as we try to eat "lower on the food chain" by adopting a Meatless Monday dinner into the weekly rotation.
There's something so comforting about a bubbling skillet of a cheesy pasta bake dotted with veggies. Especially now as the weather turns cool.
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What vegetables can be put in pasta?
You really can add any types of veggies you like, but for this recipe, I think a combination of caramelized onions, mushrooms, and wilted spinach works really well.
The flavors are sweet and savory and it provides a good mix of textures that also holds up well to being baked. You can also omit the sauce for vegans and just top the veggies on some pasta, tossed with olive oil, and it's still a tasty dish.
How do you make cheese sauce for pasta?
One of the easiest cheese sauces for pasta is a classic mornay sauce (recipe is below). You'll melt butter in a pan, then once foamy you'll add some flour, whisk until a paste forms, then add the milk, simmer until thickened, season with salt and pepper, and I also like to add garlic as well.
You'll then add your cheese and that's all there is to it! Toss your pasta and veggies with the sauce, place in your skillet, top with more cheese, and bake.
Please let me know if you make this Cheesy Pasta Bake with Veggies
by leaving a rating and review below!
- 1 lb (450 g) of your favorite cut pasta (penne, rigatoni, etc)
- 2 tbsp (30 ml) olive oil
- 2 ½ cups (595ml) red onion, sliced into half moons
- 1 ½ tsp (7.5ml) balsamic vinegar
- 2 ½ cups (595 ml) sliced mushrooms
- 5 cups (1190 ml) of spinach
- salt and pepper to taste
For Béchamel Sauce:
- 2 tbsp (30 g) butter
- 2 tbsp (15 g) flour
- 2 cups (480 ml) of milk
- ¼ tsp (1.25 ml) salt
- freshly cracked pepper
- 2 garlic cloves minced
- 1 ½ cups (360 ml) Italian Blended Cheese (Provolone/Mozzarella for the gooeyness and Parmesan/Asiago for Flavor)
- Fresh or dried Thyme for garnish
- Boil pasta according to package instructions.
- Meanwhile sauté the veggies. In a large oven safe skillet add olive oil and sauté red onion until soft and fragrant, add salt and pepper to taste and then add vinegar and cook until reduced slightly. Add mushrooms, cook until soft, then add spinach, cover and cook until wilted. Season veggies with salt and pepper to taste, remove from skillet and set aside.
- If you are Vegan. Simply toss the cooked pasta with 1 tbsp of olive oil, and the toss with the sautéed veggies and serve!
- For vegetarians who eat dairy, continue below.
- To make the sauce, heat the butter in the skillet until melted. Add flour and whisk until combined. Slowly add the milk and simmer until thickened. Add salt, pepper and garlic, and Worcestershire sauce. Stir to combine. Add ¾ cup of cheese to the sauce and combine. Set aside.
- Drain cooked pasta and place in a large bowl then toss with the sauce to coat well, then add veggies and toss. Place pasta in cleaned out skillet, top with remaining ¾ cup of cheese, and place skillet in oven under broil setting for 1 minute or until cheese is golden brown and melted.
- Serve oven-to-table with a tossed salad.
- Makes for great leftovers too!
*If you are NOT Vegetarian 4-5 dashes of Worcestershire Sauce is great in the Béchamel sauce. But for Vegans/Vegetarians please note most Worcestershire sauce has anchovies in it.
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 201Total Fat: 9gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 13mgSodium: 244mgCarbohydrates: 21gFiber: 5gSugar: 3gProtein: 11g