Creamy Cajun Pasta with Andouille Sausage

cajun pastaA pasta dinner is such a nice comfort meal. And I’m all about comfort food!! Especially when I can do a double carb overload. I love eating pasta with bread. Don’t judge. It’s like a must for me.

But it’s nice to change things up a bit so this pasta recipe doesn’t have a red sauce. Instead, it’s creamy and got a little kick to it! So watch out for the little people in your house in case they can’t handle spicy. I got my Andouille at the butcher counter and it was fresh made so it was actually pretty mild but it’s typically packing some serious heat.

This recipe also makes for a really quick weeknight meal because it comes together so fast. And it’s pretty inexpensive. So if you’re tight on time and money, try this one out!

Creamy Cajun Pasta with Andouille Sausage (serves 6)

  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 3/4- 1 lb. Andouille sausage
  • 1/2 onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 green bell pepper, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 lb. crimini (aka baby bellas) mushrooms, thinly sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 lb. rigatoni pasta
  • 1/2 c. white wine
  • 1 c. half & half
  • 1/2 tsp. dried oregano
  • 1/4 tsp. onion powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp. creole seasoning
  • 1/2 tsp. chili pepper flakes (optional)
  • 1/4 c. grated parmesan cheese

Fill a large pot of water and bring to a boil. Add pasta and cook according to package directions. Drain and set aside.

In a large sauté pan, add the olive oil and heat on medium. Add the Andouille sausage. I removed mine from the casing. But other types are fine to slice into coins. Brown up the sausage and break it up. Add in the onions, bell pepper and mushrooms. Continue cooking and stirring for several minutes or until sausage is cooked through. Add the garlic and cook for about 30 seconds more. Then add the wine to deglaze the pan. Make sure to stir and remove any bits from the bottom. Let cook until the wine has almost completely reduced. Add in the half and half, as well as all of the spices and cheese. Cook for a few minutes or until the sauce has thickened slightly.  Add in the pasta and stir to combine and coat the pasta. Serve immediately.

cajun pasta 6cajun pasta 5cajun pasta 4cajun pasta 3cajun pasta 2

Dijon Grilled Pork Chops

pork chops 2Dijon mustard and pork chops make a happy couple. Add in some thyme and this trio makes a happy threesome that actually works!

For those of you who usually steer away from pork, don’t fear the pork! Embrace the pork! It’s very easy to cook and if you’re careful to not overcook it, a juicy pork chop is just as satisfying as a big steak.

This main dish works for a quick weeknight meal that is sure to please all those picky taste buds in your family. These chops alone have outstanding flavor. But my kids prefer to still use BBQ sauce as a dip. Your choice!

Dijon Grilled Pork Chops (makes 4-6 pork chops)

  • 4-6 pork chops, any cut (I used boneless thick cut ribeye chops)
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 3 tbsp. Dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp. dried thyme
  • 1/2 tsp. each of salt and ground black pepper

Place pork chops in a large dish. Drizzle with the olive oil and then squirt the Dijon mustard on top. Using your hands, rub the olive oil and mustard all over the pork chops. Sprinkle with the seasonings, making sure to coat both sides of chops. Cover and refrigerate for a minimum of 2 hours. But the longer, the better.

Heat your outdoor grill on medium high (or an indoor grill pan). The temperature on my grill was almost 400 degrees. For thicker chops, cook 5-7 minutes on each side. For thin chops, 3-4 minutes on each side. Take off the grill and let chops rest on a plate, covered with foil, for about 10 minutes.

Serve with or without BBQ sauce.

pork chops 5pork chops 4pork chops 3pork chopsMy husband used to tell me that recipes that had 5 ingredients or less just weren’t flavorful enough. He now stands corrected.