Ziti with Meat Sauce
Pasta is a classic comfort food made healthier by adding fresh veggies. It also freezes well for a quick meal on a busy day.
- 1 pound lean ground beef
- 4 medium carrots
- 2 cans (10-ounces) reduced fat and reduced sodium condensed tomato soup
- 2 1/2 cups water
- 8 ounces dried ziti pasta
- 2 tablespoons snipped fresh basil (or 2 teaspoons dried basil)
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 cup shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
- 1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
- Scrub carrots and shred, using large holes on grater.
- In a large pot, cook ground beef and shredded carrot over medium heat until meat is brown.
- Drain off fat. Stir in tomato soup, water, uncooked ziti, dried basil (if using) onion powder and garlic powder into meat mixture in pot.
- Bring mixture to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and cook about 20 minutes or until ziti is tender, stirring occasionally.
- Stir in fresh basil (if using) and mozzarella cheese. Sprinkle individual servings with Parmesan cheese.
Smart Shopping Tips
- Fresh herbs can cost a pretty penny from the produce section of a grocery store. Experiment with growing your own. They’re easy and most can be grown in pots all year long.
- Fresh herbs should be added at the end of cooking time, while dried herbs are added at the beginning.
- Use lean ground chicken or turkey instead of beef.
- Make it a vegetarian dish by replacing the meat with white pinto beans or garbanzo beans. Add beans after the ziti has cooked 10 minutes.
- Instead of ziti pasta you can use whole grain penne pasta.