I abhor wasting food and I was getting tired of cluttering up the freezer with 1/2 jars of pasta sauce just because I was afraid I wouldn’t use it before it went bad. So I set up a challenge for myself. If I opened a jar of something I had to use it up within a week. The ideas below (I’m not calling them recipes because you barely need to measure a thing) show you how I used up an entire family-sized jar of pasta sauce in five days – serving it up for both lunch and dinner.
Heat a lightly oiled skillet over medium-high heat.
Spread pasta sauce on a whole wheat tortilla. Top with your choice of pizza toppings and shredded mozzarella cheese. Place in skillet and cook until the cheese is melted and the bottom of the tortilla has light brown spots.
Slide off onto a plate and fold in half.
Pizza Grilled Cheese Sandwich
Melt butter with a small amount of oil in a skillet over medium-high heat.
Spread pasta sauce on a slice of whole wheat bread. Top with your choice of pizza toppings and shredded mozzarella cheese. Repeat with another slice of bread. Place both slices of bread in skillet and cook until the cheese is melted and the bottom of the bread is lightly browned.
Slide off onto a plate and serve as two open-faced sandwiches or put them together for a gooey-delish pizza sandwich.
Spread pasta sauce to lightly cover bottom of your choice of pans. You can make a personal lasagna by using a small pie plate or serve a crowd using a large baking pan.
Layer over sauce precooked whole grain or carb-free lasagna noodles, ricotta cheese, pre-cooked sausage, pre-cooked veggies or frozen spinach that’s been thawed and squeezed dry, and mozzarella cheese. The last layer should be the noodles, then sprinkle on some grated or shredded Parmesan cheese.
Bake for 30 to 45 minutes until the dish is hot and bubbling and the Parmesan is melted and lightly browned. If the dish is ready to take out of the oven but the Parmesan hasn’t melted, just turn the oven to broil and broil for a minute or two until the Parmesan is browned.
Stuffed Bell Peppers
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Cut the top off one or more bell peppers and scoop out the seeds and membrane.
Mix together pasta sauce; cooked grain such as rice, quinoa or couscous or even Miracle Rice; cooked veggies; cooked hamburger or sausage (optional); mozzarella, Parmesan, Gouda, Havarti, and/or Monterey Jack cheese.
Place stuffed bell pepper in a lightly oiled baking dish. Bake for 30 to 45 minutes, until the pepper is al dente.
Add pasta sauce to boxed or canned tomato soup, tomato basil soup, potato soup, chicken noodle soup, chicken rice soup, French Onion soup, or just some broth. If you have some cooked sausage you can add it to the soup.
Stir in horseradish to taste. Serve it up with shrimp and you’ve got a party!
Eggs in Purgatory
Bring 1 cup pasta sauce to a light simmer in a skillet. With a spoon create a well and crack in an egg. Do it again. Put the lid on the pan and cook until the whites are just barely set. Remove from heat. Top with shredded cheese if desired.
If you don’t have enough pasta sauce you can add salsa to make up a cup of sauce.
Saute chopped bell pepper, eggplant, onion, and summer squash seasoned with salt and pepper in olive oil. Add 1 cup pasta sauce and ½ cup water or dry red wine to the pan. Allow the mixture to simmer until tender.
Low Cal Buffalo Wings
You won’t miss the butter with these wings.
Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
Mix a sauce of 1/2 pasta sauce and 1/2 hot sauce. Toss wings in the sauce. Bake on a sheet pan for 40 minutes.
Stir together 1/2 cup white wine, 1 cup pasta sauce, 1.5 pounds clams or mussels in a saucepan. Bring the sauce to a low boil, cover and cook for about 5 minutes, until the shellfish opens.