Thank you Country Crock for sponsoring this post.
They’re not always pretty but casseroles seriously rock.
It’s no wonder that casseroles are the “go-to” dish that people bake for comfort food, or to show that we are thinking of someone or we care. Casseroles are warm and comforting and if you’re lucky, usually filled with lots of good food and cheese. I love that you can literally throw pretty much anything and everything you want in there. Good for cleaning out the refrigerator and you can sneak all sorts of vegetables in, which I love doing. The Husband and kids have no idea because everything is mixed together and baked.
And if you’re one of those people who have no time on the week nights to even think about cooking or what to eat for dinner. Make a casserole on Saturday or Sunday and freeze it. Voila. You’ll have dinner (depending on the size of your family or household) for at least 2 nights covered. Worried about fat, calories or your waistline? Casseroles are seriously what you put into them so bake healthy. Add in just a little heavy cream or don’t add any at all. Go light on the cheese. Stay healthy with the ingredients.
Anything is possible with a casserole.
I’ve been on a vegetable high lately and am a little obsessed with broccoli rabe and kale. I love them dearly and hate wasting food so this casserole was the end result of: 1) me cleaning out the fridge, 2) making sure it was loaded with veggies for my family, 3) using up my leftover pasta and 4) adding my current favorite cheese, Fontal! I grabbed both Fontina and Fontal at the grocery store; Fontal because I have never tried it. It’s similar to Fontina, only milder. It’s just lovely.
This is now my new favorite baked casserole. Like I said earlier, it has all of my favorite things inside and I didn’t go too heavy on the heavy ingredients and I mixed in a couple other cheeses as well. . . Some mozzarella and freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano because I would have broken the bank had I purchased enough Fontal cheese for this entire thing. All of the flavors worked really well together in this casserole and I really loved it.
I hope you give it a try!
Broccoli Rabe, Mushroom and Kale Pasta Casserole with Fontal.
- ½ pound Rigatoni pasta or whatever pasta you prefer
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 2-3 cups mushrooms; sliced
- 1-2 cloves garlic; minced
- 1 large sweet onion chopped
- Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
- 2-4 tablespoons Country Crock; split
- 2 cups of kale; chopped
- 2 cups of broccoli rabe; stems removed and chopped
- 1-2 cups cooked chicken can be chicken breast or rotisserie chicken
- 1 cup marinara sauce; jarred store bought or canned
- ½ cup heavy cream can be substituted with low fat sour cream if desired
- 1 cup fontal cheese; cubed
- 1 cup mozzarella cheese; shredded or diced
- ¼ cup chopped fresh parsley
- Freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano for garnish
- In a pot of salted boiling water, cook the pasta to al dente, according to package directions. Drain and set aside.
- Preheat the oven to 350°. In a large, deep pan, heat the olive oil. Add the mushrooms, garlic and onions and cook/sauté over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until softened for about 5-6 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Drain if needed and set aside.
- In a separate non-stick pan, heat 2 tablespoons of Country Crock and cook the kale and the broccoli rabe for about 5 minutes or until softened a bit. Season with salt and pepper. Drain if needed and set aside.
- Using the same pot you cooked the pasta in, add all of the cooked vegetables, cooked chicken, pasta noodles, marinara sauce, heavy cream, fontal cheese and 1-2 tablespoons of Country Crock. Mix well.
- Pour all of your pasta mixture into a casserole dish and sprinkle on top with the mozzarella; add as much cheese on top as you want.
- Bake the pasta for about 25-30 minutes, or until golden. Let rest for at least 10 minutes. Sprinkle on some fresh parsley and freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano and serve.
Enter to Win with Country Crock
You’ve heard of Country Crock haven’t you? Well, Country Crock is hosting a fabulous contest! Drumroll please . . . the Country Crock Stars contest!
Country Crock wants to hear about and see your favorite casserole. TO ENTER: Share a photo of your favorite casserole, and share in 100 words or less how you demonstrate creativity and resourcefulness in the kitchen.
And want to hear the best part?
3 Finalists will win $5,000 + a trip for 2 to New York City and 12 semi-finalists will win cookware! I just hear the word “cookware” and I get excited. . So, get your best casserole recipe together, ENTER THE CONTEST . . . and GOOD LUCK!
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls Collective, and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.