Happily Whole

Living well from the inside out

Spinach, Mushroom & Sausage Mostaccioli

Here’s a dinner dish indicative of all three of my meal adjustments: Spinach, Mushroom and Sausage Baked Mostaccioli

It’s a meal with meat (although optional) that can be prepped ahead and doubled. I put one pan into the freezer for a later date. The other goes into the fridge for the same evening, taken out and placed in the oven with the ‘delay bake’ option set so I can do my after school running taxiing while it bakes. That way, we still eat at a reasonable time as a family.

Mission accomplished with this recipe! ALL seven family members loved it (although one picked out the mushrooms), this mama was happy we sat to eat as a family AND we were all cleaned up by 6pm with evening remaining for homework and playtime. BAM! Here’s the recipe: Spinach, Mushroom and Sausage Baked Mostaccioli

So, you see…I’m learning to saver the sweetness of efficiency!

Disclaimer: Dinnertime doesn’t always happen so smoothly, but I’m always working towards it. And when things fall apart, I’m learning to roll with it! 

Now, here's to the first Member's Recipe in a while (and here's why!)


  • 12 ounces pasta (I used gluten free mostaciolli--pictured)*
  • 1 pound lean chicken sausage (or an organic soy sausage may work, although I have not tried--again, my choice is pictured)
  • 4 cups sliced baby portabella mushrooms
  • ½ sweet onion (I used a yellow one)
  • 4 cloves of minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 pound frozen chopped spinach
  • 1 28 ounce can/jar of chunky tomato sauce
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh basil
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 teaspoon natural salt
  • Fresh ground pepper to taste
  • 1 cup whole milk ricotta (I used organic, grass fed)
  • 2 cups mozzarella cheese (I used organic, grass fed)

Recipe Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees and coat a 9x13 baking dish with nonstick spray (I use an organic option)
  • Bring a large pot of water to a boil and add the pasta, follow the directions on the package--avoid over cooking because you don't want them soggy in your dish. 
  • In a large skillet, add the olive oil and saute the onion and garlic for just a couple minutes. Add the sausage and cook, breaking the sausage up into small pieces) until it's cooked through. 
  • Add mushrooms to the pan and cook uncovered, stirring occasionally, until mushrooms are soft and water has cooked out of them. Add the frozen spinach and cook until thawed. 
  • Pour tomato into a medium bowl. Add basil, parsley, salt and pepper. Stir. 
  • Pour ⅓ of the sauce into the bottom of your 9x13 dish. Spread it around (pictured). 
  • Evenly distribute half of the meat mixture over the sauce in the pan. Dollop ½ of the ricotta over the meat mix and then evenly distribute about half of the noodles on top of that. Spread the rest of the meat mix over the noodles. Dollop the remainder of the ricotta over that. Spread the rest of the noodles on top and then pour the rest of the tomato sauce on top, evenly distributing it. 
  • Cover the pan with foil. Bake for about an hour. Remove the foil and sprinkle the mozzarella cheese over the top and return the pan to the oven for about ten more minutes until cheese is melted. 
  • Remove from oven and let set about 10 minutes before serving. 

Recipe Notes

*there are MANY options for gluten free noodles. I always look for one that has more than simple white rice flour in it. I prefer more nourishing grains like quinoa, buckwheat and ancient grains. 

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