This is a Pot of Spicy Pesto Cheese Bake Rigatoni, meant for nights you want to eat Italian, you also need something easy to prepare and simple. Rigatoni pasta, creamy and very tasty cooked in a spicy tomato pesto vodka sauce! Is that the only pot of pasta? A little Italian chicken sausage and plenty of cheese. This is a great fall and winter dinner to serve any night of the week. But the next Saturday night is equally great for your dinner party. It is delicious and looks nice on any table bile not to mention LOVING a GOOD cooked pasta from anyone else. You’ll start your meal while serving your family and friends.
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 shallot chopped
- 3/4 pound ground spicy Italian chicken sausage
- 4 cloves garlic, minced or grated
- 2 (28 ounce) cans crushed San Marzano tomatoes
- 1/2 cup vodka (chicken broth or water also work)
- 3/4 cup basil pesto homemade or store-bought
- 2 teaspoons dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon dried rosemary plus fresh rosemary for serving
- kosher salt and pepper
- 1 pound dry rigatoni pasta
- 2 cups shredded kale
- 2 cups shredded fontina cheese
- 8 ounces mozzarella, torn
- 1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
- Heat the olive oil in a large pot over high heat. When the oil shimmers, add the shallot and cook until fragrant, about 3 minutes. Add the chicken sausage and brown all over, about 5 to 8 minutes. Stir in the garlic, cook another minute. Slowly add the tomatoes, vodka, 1/2 cup pesto, oregano, rosemary, and a pinch each of salt and pepper. Then add 2 1/2 cups water, the pasta, and kale. Increase the heat to medium-high. Bring the mixture to a boil. Stir frequently until the pasta is al dente, about 8-10 minutes.
- If needed, transfer the pasta to a baking dish. Top with the fontina cheese, then drizzle the remaining 1/4 cup basil pesto evenly over everything. Add the mozzarella.
- Transfer the baking dish to the oven and bake 20-25 minutes or until the cheese has melted and is lightly browned on top. Cool 5 minutes before serving. Serve with fresh rosemary. Enjoy!