If you’re looking for a quick, easy family-pleaser, I encourage you to give this pasta with kale and Italian sausage dish a try. Kids love the penne pasta and have no idea that you’ve snuck in nutrient-rich kale leaves! Bonus: It’s low-calorie and budget-friendly!
1 lb. penne pasta
2 Tbsp. olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 lb. mild, ground Italian sausage
1 can low-sodium chicken broth
1 bunch kale, chopped with tough center stalk cut away and removed (about 12 cups)
½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain, reserving ½ cup of the cooking liquid.
Heat oil in a large skillet on medium-high heat. Add garlic sauté 1 minute, then add sausage. Break the sausage up as it cooks, and sauté it for 4-6 minutes or until browned. Transfer to a large bowl and set aside.
Add chicken broth to the skillet, set to high heat and bring to a boil. Add the kale, stirring until wilted. Boil for about 5 minutes or until kale is tender and stock is reduced to about ½ cup.
Combine pasta with kale and reduced stock and sausage mixture. Stir ingredients together and mix in Parmesan cheese. Add in about ¼ cup of reserved pasta water to loosen as needed.