You guys know my go-to dinner recipes are either casserole or crockpot meals. Most of the savory foods I’ve made for the blog so far have fallen into one of those two categories, and for good reason. Number one, you guys seem to love meal-prep recipes, and these kinds of recipes are perfect for meal prep. Number two, I like easy, especially when it comes to food. Number three, typically there is very little clean-up involved, and who likes cleaning up after cooking? Not this guy.
So where did the idea to do a healthy chicken sausage casserole come from?!
Well, like you guys know, I’m in serious diet mode for my wedding right now. It’s something like 100 days away. Should I know the exact days? Um, well, I don’t. But most guys don’t count down the days, do they? Anyways, dieting for me is what I imagine being pregnant is like. I mean with cravings, not all the other stuff. So lately I’ve been having cravings for sausage, and instead of suppressing them, I embraced them. I follow a flexible approach to dieting. If you don’t know about “If It Fits Your Macros”/ Flexible Dieting this website is a good place to learn about it.
I’ve been eating all kinds of sausage the past week or two. I’m talking breakfast sausage, Italian sausage, hickory smoked apple sausage, and caprese sausage (yes that’s a thing). All of these were chicken sausages though, because the macros are just far superior to any normal kinds you’ll find in the grocery store.
Making sausage the usual way (just in a pan or on the grill) was fun for a little while, but I wanted to take my “sausage game” (that sounds much dirtier than I intended) to another level.
Enter Healthy Chicken Sausage Casserole, goodbye plain ol’ chicken sausage. I like to use Italian style chicken sausage in this recipe. It just gives the casserole a great balance of heat and flavor that other sausages don’t. The fennel from that sausage just works perfectly with the tomatoes, peppers and onions in this dish. And I love the kick (the spiciness left in your mouth) the crushed red pepper flakes give you for a few seconds after you take a bite. Of course, you don’t have to use the Italian style in yours, but I do recommend it.
Macros per 270g serving (makes 8):
240 Calories: 2.5g Fat, 29g Carbs (7.5g fiber), 29g Protei
- 12 Oz (340g) Chicken sausage of choice
- 2 Cloves minced garlic
- 3 Cups (320g) chopped mixed peppers
- 1½ Cups (160g) Chopped onion
- 14.5 oz (400g) Can of diced tomatoes (drained)
- 1 Cup (120g) sliced white mushrooms
- 1½ Cups (354ml) water
- 2 Cups (454g) low calorie tomato sauce
- 8oz (227g) box of Banza elbow macaroni (if you can't find Banza use a pasta substitution of your choice)
- 10 oz (280g) Fat-free mozzarella cheese
- 1 tsp Italian seasoning
- Coat a large pan with baking spray
- Add in chicken sausage - removing casing if necessary
- Cook until browned and set aside
- Re-coat Pan and add in garlic, peppers and onions
- Cook until browned
- Now add in tomatoes, mushrooms, chicken sausage from earlier, and the Italian seasoning
- Mix these ingredients well
- Add in water and tomato sauce
- Bring it up to a boil and let simmer for 15 minutes
- In a 9X13 casserole dish add in just enough sauce to cover the bottom of the dish
- Top with the uncooked pasta and cover with the rest of your sauce
- Finally top with the cheese.
- Cover with tin foil and cook at 350 Degrees | 177 Celsius for about an hour