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Spinach Pasta Nests
This quick-to-assemble combination of pasta, cheese, spinach and meat sauce combines many of the flavors of lasagna in a creative fashion that goes together quickly. Your family will be excited to try their stuffed pasta nests.
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Each nest will serve easily if lifted with a large spatula to a plate. This dish is best (and easiest) if prepared the day before and refrigerated before cooking. Pull out of the fridge about an hour before baking.
- 2 Tbsp. vegetable oil
- 1 lb. ground beef (lean 90%)
- 1/2 cup(s) onion, minced
- 3 Tbsp. minced garlic
- 3 cup(s) Bertolli® or Classico® tomato pasta sauce
- 1 Tbsp. sugar
- 2 Tbsp. parsley, dried or 3 Tbsp. fresh parsley, minced
- 3/4 lb. angel hair pasta
- 10 oz. ricotta cheese
- 1 cup(s) frozen spinach, defrosted and drained
- 1/4 cup(s) toasted pine nuts
- 1 egg, beaten
- 3/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
- 1 cup(s) Parmesan cheese, grated
- 1 tsp. each salt and black pepper
- 1 1/2 cup(s) mozzarella cheese, grated
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- In a large sauté pan, heat oil over medium heat. Add ground beef, onion and garlic. Cook until meat is browned. Set aside.
- Meanwhile, cook pasta in boiling salted water for 3 to 4 minutes, until al dente. Drain.
- In a large bowl, combine meat mixture and all remaining sauce ingredients.
- In a second bowl, whip together the ricotta, egg, nutmeg, pine nuts, salt, pepper, 1/2 cup Parmesan and spinach.
- To assemble, use your hands to twirl the pasta into 6 “nests” on a greased cookie sheet (about 6” in diameter.)
- Divide cheese mixture into 6 scoops and place one on each nest; top with sauce. Sprinkle generously with remaining Parmesan and mozzarella.
- Cover loosely with foil and bake for 30 minutes or until bubbling.