Orecchiette with Smoked Turkey Sausage - delicious bites of smoked sausage in rich tomato sauce with vegetables and orecchiette pasta.
Smoked Sausage Pasta
Smoked sausage pasta is one of the kids favourites, they love the little bites of smokey sausage with a yummy sauce and pasta. To keep it slightly healthier I opt for smoked turkey sausage which is lower in calories and fat.
You don't need much either just 2 or 3 sausages depending on their size is plenty for a recipe to serve people when you slice them up to make a pasta dish.
What is orecchiette pasta? It's the name of a particular shape of pasta. Looks like little curled up pasta coins (or ears as some call them) and the size is perfect bite pieces, so popular with kids and adults.
It can be harder to source than just regular pasta, but is well worth it if you can get some. Regular dried pasta that you purchase at the grocery store often has other ingredients like fortified vitamins and minerals. Dried Orecchiette pasta is usually in the pricier range of pasta and has just basic ingredients of durum wheat, water (and sometimes eggs).
Substitutes for Orecchiette Pasta?
Hunted high and low and can't find orecchiette anywhere but would like to try this recipe? Don't worry, any pasta will work. A bite size kind is best, so that you get similar sized pieces of smoked sausage and pasta throughout the dish.
Some other varieties I like to use in this recipe are fusilli or penne or even the bow pasta is great too.
Substitutes for Smoked Sausage?
Smoked sausage is usually readily available, turkey however might be harder to source, but a reduced fat smoked sausage will work fine too, just make sure you calculate by whatever smoked sausage you use.
Regular sausages can be used in this recipe also, I just remove the skin and break up as I cook, but to get that smokey flavour I recommend adding a pinch of some smoked paprika.
This will also work with some pieces of sliced boneless skinless chicken thighs or shrimp (prawns).
Fresh Herbs or Dried?
Luckily this time of year I have lots of fresh herbs on hand in my garden, as I grow all the main ones that I use regularly in a planter.
In the colder months though when here in Canada we can often have snow on the ground I have to resort to store bought fresh herbs and I know they can end up pricey if you have to buy a whole bunch for one recipe.
Fresh will always taste better, but if you are on a budget and don't want to have added expense, dried herbs will still add those flavours required in the dish. Where I use a tablespoon of fresh you want no more than a teaspoon of dried.
Sides for Smoked Turkey Sausage Pasta
Wondering what sides to serve with this pasta dish? I pretty much always serve any pasta dish with a mixed salad in the middle of the table, that way everyone can help themselves to how much they want.
For this pasta dish I went for the following:
- Baby Spinach
- Shredded Romaine
- Fresh diced Tomatoes
- Sliced Cucumber
- Red Onion
- Julienned Carrot
and then for dressing I paired with some poppyseed dressing. This one was store bought, but it's really simple to make too:
- ¼ cup (4 tbs) of fat-free plain yoghurt (not Greek)
- juice of half a small lemon
- ½ tbs of maple syrup
- ½ tsp of yellow mustard
- ½ tsp of onion powder
- pinch of poppy seeds
- pinch of salt
Just mix all those together in a bowl and it's ready.
More Pasta Recipes
Love your carbs and want some other pasta ideas? Check out some of these recipes:
- SPINACH PASTA BAKE
- FAJITA CHICKEN PASTA
- CHICKEN MEATBALL PASTA BAKE
- PASTA CHICKEN ENCHILADAS
- ONE POT TACO BEEF PASTA
- ONE POT CHEESEBURGER PASTA
- RICOTTA AND SPINACH STUFFED PASTA SHELLS
- CREAMY CAJUN CHICKEN MEATBALL PASTA (GLUTEN FREE AND DAIRY FREE)
or head on over to my Full Recipe Index with over 900 delicious Slimming Eats and Weight Watchers friendly recipes all fully searchable by meal type, ingredients, value and smart points etc
- 2 smoked turkey sausages (approx 200g or 7oz), sliced
- 85g (3oz) of diced onion
- 3 cloves of garlic, minced
- 150g (5.5oz) of carrot, finely diced
- 150g (5.5oz) of red pepper finely diced
- 1 cup (240ml) of passata
- 1 cup (240ml) of chicken or vegetable stock
- pinch of mixed dried Italian herbs
- pinch of red chilli flakes
- 1 tablespoon of balsamic vinegar
- 240g (8.5 oz) of orecchiette pasta
- 1 tablespoon of fresh basil, chopped
- 1 tablespoon of fresh parsley, chopped
- cooking oil spray (I use olive oil)
- salt and black pepper
- ⅓ cup of reserved pasta water
- Spray a frying pan over a medium high heath with some cooking oil spray.
- Add the sliced smoked turkey sausage and fry in the pan until lightly golden, remove and set aside.
- Add another little spray of cooking oil spray and add in the onion, garlic, carrot and peppers and fry for a couple of minutes to soften.
- Add in the red chilli flakes, dried Italian herbs, passata, stock, balsamic vinegar, and then add back in the sausage, bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and simmer for 15-20 minutes, sauce should reduce down and thicken (don't lower heat too low, it should still gently bubble). Check half way through and add a little water if dries out too much.
- In the meantime, cook the orecchiette pasta in boiling salted water according to package directions. Orecchiette usually takes 9-11 minutes, so time accordingly with the sauce.
- Once pasta is cooked reserve ⅓ cup (80ml) of the pasta water.
- Drain the rest of the water from the pasta, and add the pasta into the sauce, with the reserved pasta water and fresh herbs and toss until all combined and everything is equally covered in the sauce.
- Taste and season as needed with salt and black pepper.
- Serve and enjoy!!!
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- Calories - scroll down to nutritional info box
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Nutrition InformationServing Size 1 SERVING
Amount Per Serving Calories 343Total Fat 4.3gSaturated Fat 0.8gCholesterol 32mgSodium 521mgCarbohydrates 58.2gFiber 5.4gSugar 9.1gProtein 17.7g