Frugal Foodie Mama: Weeknight Meat Sauce with Rigatoni

Friday, January 23, 2015

Weeknight Meat Sauce with Rigatoni

A big thank you to America's Test Kitchen for partnering with me today to bring you all this recipe for a flavorful and hearty slow cooked Weeknight Meat Sauce with Rigatoni...
Weeknight Meat Sauce with Rigatoni- this rich and hearty homemade pasta sauce simmers all day in your slow cooker
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There are definitely evenings after a particularly busy or trying day that it is totally appropriate to pop open some of that jarred pasta sauce, boil some noodles, and call it a night. Trust me, you all... I have been there. 
Several times. 
But let's be real- nothing can really beat a good homemade pasta sauce. And this Weeknight Meat Sauce with Rigatoni courtesy of America's Test Kitchen's Healthy Slow Cooker Revolution cookbook is definitely no exception to that rule.

Now this one does require a little prep in the morning, but you can make quick work of this by prepping the chopped onion and minced garlic the night before.  Typically I am not a fan of slow cooker recipes that require a lot of cooking before actually slow cooking, but trust me on this- the little bit of pre-saute work this recipe requires is worth it, friends. It builds layers upon layers of flavor, from the golden onions and garlic to the deglazing from the wine to the browning of the meat. It gives this hearty sauce all the flavor of a traditional long-simmered meat sauce minus most of the fat and extra calories...

Weeknight Meat Sauce with Rigatoni- this rich and hearty homemade pasta sauce simmers all day in your slow cooker
Weeknight Meat Sauce with Rigatoni

by Frugal Foodie Mama
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 4-7 hours
Ingredients (6 servings)
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped fine
  • Salt and pepper
  • 6 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh oregano or 1 teaspoon dried
  • Pinch of red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 1/3 cup white wine
  • 1 pound 93 percent lean ground beef
  • 1 (28 ounce) can tomato puree
  • 1 (14.5 ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 pound whole-wheat rigatoni
  • Sugar
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
Heat oil in 12-inch skillet over medium heat until shimmering. Add onion and 1/2 teaspoon salt and cook until softened and lightly browned, 8 to 10 minutes. Stir in garlic, oregano, and pepper flakes and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in tomato paste and cook until lightly browned, about 1 minute. Stir in win and let simmer for 1 minute. Stir in beef and cook, breaking up meat with wooden spoon, until no longer pink, about 5 minutes; transfer to slow cooker.

Stir in tomato puree, tomatoes, and soy sauce into slow cooker. Cover and cook until sauce has thickened and beef is tender, 6 to 7 hours on low or 4 to 5 hours on high.

Bring 4 quarts of water to boil in large pot. Add pasta and 1 tablespoon salt, stirring often, until al dente. Reserve 1/2 cup cooking water, then drain pasta and return to pot. Season sauce with salt, pepper, and sugar to taste, add to pasta with basil, and toss to combine. Adjust consistency with reserved cooking water as needed. Serve.

Per serving: Cal 480; Fat 10g; Sat Fat 2.5g; Chol 50mg; Carb 69g; Protein 29g; Fiber 12g; Sodium 850mg *To reduce sodium level to 650 mg, use no-salt-added-tomatoes.

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Eat healthier and use your slow cooker more when you win a copy of America's Test Kitchen's Healthy Slow Cooker Revolution Cookbook! Ends 1/26/15
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And let's chat a little about America's Test Kitchen's Healthy Slow Cooker Revolution cookbook for a minute, shall we? ;) It is a delicious and well-rounded collection of 200 recipes that spans soups and stews, roasts, steaks and chops, chicken and turkey, seafood, pasta, casseroles, vegetable mains and sides, recipes for two, rice, grains, and beans, and desserts- all that can be made in the ease of your favorite slow cooker! Every recipe includes nutritional information so you always know what you are consuming with each serving. Plus, you will find plenty of recipes in this cookbook that need no stove top time and can be prepped in as little as 15 minutes. 
Weeknight Meat Sauce with Rigatoni- this rich and hearty homemade pasta sauce simmers all day in your slow cooker
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Not only does this Weeknight Meat Sauce with Rigatoni make a rich and satisfying weeknight dinner, but it is also perfect for a lazy weekend meal. This Italian cuisine loving family gave this pasta sauce a big thumbs up all around. ;)

Do you have a go-to weeknight or lazy weekend dinner slow cooker recipe?

How would like to win your very own copy of America's Test Kitchen Healthy Slow Cooker Revolution Cookbook? :) Use the Rafflecopter below to get entered.
*This giveaway is open to U.S residents only.  All entries for the winner will be checked and verified, so please make sure you are doing what you are claiming in the Rafflecopter or all your entries will be voided.  No funny business, folks. ;)By entering you give the right to use your name and likeness. Number of entries received determines the odds of winning. One winner will be selected. The winner will be notified via the email they provide, and will have 48 hours to reply to the email.  If the winner does not reply back within the 48 hours, they forfeit the prize and a new winner will be chosen via Rafflecopter. The cookbook will be sent directly from the giveaway sponsor. Carrie of Frugal Foodie Mama is not responsible for the delivery of this prize. Entries must come from your MAIN social media accounts, not accounts that have been set up separately just for entering giveaways.  Entries from these types of accounts will be disqualified.  No purchase necessary. Void where prohibited by law.
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If you loved this recipe, you might also like these tasty slow cooker Italian recipes...