Cheesy Skillet Pasta with Meat Sauce

Cheesy Skillet Pasta with Meat Sauce


Cheesy Skillet Pasta with Meat Sauce recipe on

Are you looking for a quick and satisfying meal? Something that can go full circle from dinner to lunch and back again? Great! This pasta is perfect no matter when you enjoy it.

This recipe I adapted from one of my besties cookbooks. I bet most of you know Jenny from Picky Palate right?

I am thrilled to share the Picky Palate cookbook with you all today!

The Picky Palate Cookbook on

If you have any picky eaters in your house then this cookbook is essential. The recipes are well rounded, ingredients easy to find and the meals are very affordable.

There is a great reason why Jenny’s blog is one of the most popular foodie destinations in the world.

Yes, in the world  folks.

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Jenny’s amazing personality shines through in the intro and all of the head notes in the book. Her recipes are sure to become family favorites!

In this cookbook you will find tempting breakfasts such as: Apple-Spice Puff Pancake with Caramel Syrup, Bacon and Cheddar Florentine Quiche & Streusel-Topped Pumpkin Bread.

There are plenty of savories for lunch and dinner: Cheesy Chicken Pot Pies, Slow-Cooked Green Chili Pork Tacos, 10-Minute Creamy Tomato-Basil Soup & Black Bean Guacamole Burgers are a few to tempt you.

Cheesy Skillet Pasta with Meat Sauce recipe on ©

The desserts! Jenny has such a way with sweets.

In her book you will be dazzled by Ice Cream Sundae Brownies, Almond Lover’s Chocolate Chip Cookies (yes please!) her super famous Oreo-Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies and plenty more!

All of the recipes are expertly photographed by another amazing pal Matt Armendariz (Matt Bites) The photos leap off the pages and will make you want to dash to the kitchen.

Cheesy Skillet Pasta with Meat Sauce recipe on ©

My kids and husband love pasta. Seriously, they could eat it for every meal.

This skillet dinner is filled with protein from lean bison and cheese.

I used brown rice pasta so my gluten free readers would not feel left out.

Cheesy Skillet Pasta with Meat Sauce recipe on ©

The crushed tomatoes offer up some veggies.

I love to serve pasta with a side of extra tomato sauce too.

Cheesy Skillet Pasta with Meat Sauce recipe on ©

My recipe here is an adaptation. Be sure to check out page 108 (Rigatoni Skillet Dinner) in the Picky Palate cookbook for Jenny’s version.

Cheesy Skillet Pasta with Meat Sauce recipe on ©

Also visit The Picky Palate Cookbook post on Jenny’s blog to see more reviews and stores to purchase her cookbook. It would make for an amazing and affordable holiday gift!

Cheesy Skillet Pasta with Meat Sauce

Rating: 51

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 25 minutes

Yield: 6-8 servings

Cheesy Skillet Pasta with Meat Sauce


  • 8 ounces dry Brown Rice Pasta
  • 1 pound organic ground Bison (lean chopped meat great too!)
  • 2 tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 1 cup chopped White Onion
  • 2 cloves Garlic, minced
  • 3/4 teaspoon fine Sea Salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground Black Pepper
  • 1 teaspoon Smoked Paprika
  • 1 14 ounce can Crushed Tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup shredded Parmesan Cheese
  • 1 1/4 cup low fat Shredded Mozzaralla Cheese
  • 2 tablespoons fresh Italian Parsley, plus extra for garnish


  • Cook pasta according to package directions, drain and rinse with cold water to stop cooking. Set oven to a low broil with the rack in the middle. Sauté onion and garlic in a large oven safe skillet over medium heat until softened and fragrant. Add the bison, salt, smoked paprika and pepper. Stir and break up the meat until it is browned, 5 to 7 minutes. Drain fat from pan if necessary. Add the tomatoes, Parmesan cheese, 1/4 cup of the mozzarella and the pasta, stir to combine until well combined and cheese is melted.
  • Top skillet pasta with 1 cup shredded mozzarella. Put skillet under the broiler for about 5 minutes until the cheese is melted and browned.

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110 Responses to Cheesy Skillet Pasta with Meat Sauce

  1. My grandmother’s “fruitcake” recipe – it’s more like a pound cake, spiked with sherry and nutmeg and studded with raisins.

  2. We have too many family favorites to choose just one, but we do love my Granny’s beef stew recipe. It’s simple yet so divine! I ate it as my first meat because the beef is cooked so long it’s soft and easy to chew, and I’ve made it for all my kids when it was time for their first table food. It warms my belly and my heart each time I make it.

  3. My family favorite is spaghetti with meat sauce, so this looks similar to my recipe, but taken up a notch with extra cheese!! Sounds yummy :)

  4. This recipe looks great for kids! My grand-children are picky eaters and I try to make healthy meals for them all the time when they come over. I know this dish has lots of cheese but is a little more healthy because it calls for bison and brown rice. Do you know of any other dishes they may like. You can contact me on my blog!
    Thanks, Millie

  5. I love a casserole my mom used to make. It is a really simple ground beef and rice casserole. I taught my ex how to make it and it was the only thing he could cook. He could grill, just not cook.

  6. Our family favorite recipe is Chicken Pasta Alfredo (gluten-free as well) with veggies. It makes an appearance once a month on our menu at home. I’m so excited to check out this book. I love her recipes. Thank you for posting this recipe. I’m glad to know it turned out well with the gluten-free noodles.

  7. This is hard because my family members have different tastes. My boys like spicy and my daughter is completely opposite. One meal we all like is chicken and dumplings.

  8. I always try to make a pasta dish once in a week. This one looks like a winner for my next week’s pasta menu. It’s scrumptious and making me hungry for some tonight.

  9. My family is Italian and we make a recipe we call popat, which is a sort of fritter made with bread crumbs, parmesan, eggs, and seasonings, which is fried then cooked in tomato sauce. It is the best thing to serve with pasta. My family loves them more than just about anything else I make.

  10. My favorite family recipe is my mother’s cornbread dressing with giblets gravy, which sadly is not written down and I have to just mimic what she used to do as she says to use a bit of this and that!

  11. This pasta looks scrumptious, Marla!!! It’s a complete meal.
    I also loved the forks seen in the picture. I hope you don’t mind that I ask you…Where did you buy them? Wishing you a very Merry Christmas and a blessed New Year!!

  12. Ok, this looks amazing! I just printed the recipe and I’m making it tonight. We love buffalo and I use it in place of ground chuck in tacos, burgers, Bolognese sauce, you name it. I love that it contains no fat and is actually leaner than chicken and has so many omegas. I love your blog and it’s pretty similar to mine, healthy (most of the time) family cooking. I can’t wait to check out more recipes!
    xoxo, Jackie

  13. Love this, but had trouble finding a couple of the ingredients. The Bison was almost $8. a lb, so I used lean ground chicken instead & it turned out great!

  14. […] Rigatoni Skillet Dinner and a side salad- from The Picky Palate cookbook, recipe in link from Family Fresh Cooking (Side Note: I’m in love with the cast iron skillet that I recently purchased.  I can’t believe I waited so long to add it to my kitchen.  I’ve been using it for everything from frying up an egg, cooking a steak, to baking a giant chocolate chip cookie.  It’s such a work horse and it was very inexpensive to purchase.  This 12-inch cast iron skillet is available for less than $20 from our Amazon store.  I’m also considering getting a smaller cast iron skillet as well to add to my pan collection.) […]

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