Friday, April 27, 2012

Easy Pasta Skillet

The focus of this blog may be not so much couponing as a way of life (would you like some posts on how to coupon, now that I'm routinely getting 30-50% off retail on my grocery store purchases?), but couponing helped save me a lot when I made this dish last night!  I got the pasta for free with a $1 off one coupon for Barilla pasta I got for "liking" their Facebook page and using it when the pasta was on sale for $1 each.  I paid $0.50 for the cooking creme I used in place of regular cream cheese (it was too zippy for the kids...I won't be buying it again, but regular cream cheese works fine) by getting it on sale for $2 plus using a coupon for $1.50 off one I got from the Kraft First Takes website (this recipe is actually very liberally adapted from the package of the cooking creme).  I used venison for the meat and homemade tomato sauce as well, so total cost to feed the family last night (with leftovers available for a couple individual future lunches) was probably only about $3 at the most!

Easy Pasta Skillet
1/2 lb ground meat
1/2 cup onions 
3 cups tomato sauce
2 cups water
1/4 tsp garlic powder (or to taste)
1/4 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp basil
1 box penne or rotini pasta
8 oz cream cheese (the kind in the tubs works best)

Brown meat with the onions in a large deep skillet (I actually used a 3qt saute pan, but whatever).  Stir in sauce, water, and seasonings and bring to a boil.  Stir in pasta.  Cover and simmer on medium low heat for 15-18 minutes, or until pasta are al dente, stirring occasionally.  Stir in cream cheese; remove from heat.  Let stand covered for 3 minutes.

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