Life is always busy around the holidays, and it can be especially hard to keep a good diet or meal prep plan around the holidays. Luckily, I have the perfect dish that is not only a cozy bowl of pasta, but is also full of lean protein and vegetables….Orecchiette with Hot Italian Sausage! This is my spin off of a classic dish with orecchiette, pork sausage and broccoli rabe. It’s something my mom always orders out at an Italian restaurant and is a family favorite of ours. This recipe is so simple, you will find yourself sitting back and relaxing with a can of La Croix before you know it. I like to make this recipe extra spicy, but do as you will to keep it mild! You can definitely sub out the hot sausage for sweet sausage. Also, did I mention this is under 500 calories? That’s right. A filling bowl of pasta for less than 500 calories. This is literally just what the holidays called for. Now someone pass me a glass of prosecco.
Orecchiette with Hot Italian Sausage
WW Freestyle Points: 12
- 3 links, hot Italian turkey sausage (I use Jennie O)
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 2 cups of fresh, uncooked broccoli, chopped
- 7 oz. of uncooked orecchiette pasta
- 1 tsp. of olive oil
- Olive oil spray
- 1 cup of chicken broth
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tbsp. of crushed red pepper flakes (more if you like it spicier!)
- Salt, pepper, etc. to taste
- 3 tbsp. of parmesan cheese, to serve
- First things first, fill a large pot full of water and begin the boiling process
- Prepare your vegetables. Chop onions and broccoli into bite sized pieces. Mince garlic cloves and set aside.
- Heat up a frying pan on medium heat and spray with olive oil cooking spray.
- Slice open the casings of the sausage links, and add sausage to the hot pan with salt and pepper, and break up into crumbles. Add onion and garlic when sausage is about half-way cooked through.
- Once sausage is mostly cooked, add chopped broccoli, olive oil and chicken broth to the frying pan. Add the crushed red pepper flakes. Cover and simmer until the broccoli is cooked through, yet still firm.
- Once the pot of water is boiled, add orecchiette. Cook pasta until it is al dente or how you like it. I prefer mine a little more cooked, so be sure you taste test!
- Before you strain your pasta add 1-2 ladles of pasta water to your sausage mixture.
- Strain pasta and add to the sausage and broccoli. Toss until completely coated.
- Serve each with a tbsp. of parmesan cheese and enjoy!