Sausage Marinara and Whole Wheat Penne

How to Style your Bangs (and apply Aquage Uplifting Foam!)
I whipped up something quick (sort of a pantry meal + sausage) for dinner the other night. 
I had some whole wheat penne, Giada Roasted Garlic Marinara, Mozzarella, Parmesan, and  French Bread. 
The bread was the special feature as I added some key ingredients to it before I baked it. I spread about 1 tablespoon butter on the inside, sprinkled garlic powder, kosher salt, and pamesan cheese. Baked it for about 10 minutes while the other ingredients for my meal were cooking. 
It was delish. Very buttery and garlic-y. 🙂

And I pretty much love salt on anything, so that was the perfect little kick. 
Overall, though, I wasn’t terribly impressed with Giada’s Roasted Garlic Marinara. I’ve had better. I’ve even tried making my own from scratch and it wasn’t anything to write home about!
Do you have a “go to” special marinara sauce? 
I’d love suggestions. 🙂


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bnfunky says · 09.20.11

This looks delicious! I always forget to add a little salt to my garlic bread. Thanks for the reminder 🙂
As far as sauce goes, I always buy vodka sauce!! Love it!

Brandy says · 09.20.11

Try Paul Newman’s line. His and Classico are my pantry jars. Or I make my own 🙂

Natalie says · 09.20.11

Hi! Been reading your blog ever since I saw the ‘bouncy curled under’ tutorial – thank you for that, by the way! LOVE.

As for a great marinara recipe, have you ever looked into Cooks Illustrated? They have a great one. I actually have a version of it on my blog, but I added some roasted veggies to up the health-factor. Let me know how it goes, if you try it!

Dana says · 09.20.11

Looks delish!! I have tried all of the marinaras and still go back to Prego!! But also the hubs makes some himself by just cutting up tomatoes, garlic, feta cheese, basil, and a bit of olive oil and it is sooo fresh and the bomb!!! Not to mention super healthy 🙂 Also, my fav noodles are Gia Russo thin, they are wheat but soo good!!!

It's A Love Story says · 09.20.11

looks soo yummy!

Mama Flash says · 09.20.11

Love the blog!! Just found it last week and I’m already doing amazing new things with my hair that I never thought possible!!!!

As for marinara sauce goes–I’ll never buy the bottled stuff again. I use a variation on Skinny Girl’s sauce that goes with her shells and meat sauce recipe found here (She actually just posted about it again yesterday!). IT IS SO EASY.

My variation:
1 32 oz can of crushed tomatoes
1 14.5 oz can of crushed tomatoes (a second can makes it just a little more saucier)
1 lb of sausage or ground turkey (whichever I have on hand)
2-3 cloves minced garlic
1 cup onion (I sometimes use chopped frozen onion to save time)
1 tbsp dried basil (she uses fresh… but I always forget to buy it so I just use dried)
salt and pepper

Brown the meat. Add the onion and garlic and cook for a few minutes longer. Add both cans of tomatoes, basil and then salt and pepper to taste. And that’s it. Serve with pasta. Easy Peasy.

anna says · 09.20.11

Over at Kitchen Daily they reviewed and rated a bunch of marinara sauces the other day and rated Giada’s vegetable marinara #1. Here’s the list if you’re interested:

anna says · 09.20.11

Personally I usually get a big can of the diced tomatoes with garlic and onion and add some basil and extra veggies to it.

Shannon says · 09.20.11

Giada has a fantastic recipe for a homemade marinara in her first cookbook. It’s my go-to when I really want to cook.

If I’m in a hurry, it’s always Barilla’s Neapolitan sauce. It’s garlic-y and not too sweet, my personal requirements.

Lauren B says · 09.20.11

you can probably get the aquage uplifting foam pretty cheap anyway since you’re a stylist, but just thought i’d let you know the 8oz uplifting foam is selling for $8.16 on amazon right now.

Libbs says · 09.20.11

I have a similar recipe to Mama Flash, but add a spoonful of basil pesto to the sauce. Very tasty!

Squash Blossom Babies says · 09.20.11

Oh, I’m glad to hear another review about Giada’s pasta sauce. I’ve heard some mixed reviews but haven’t tried it yet.
No matter whether I am making a marina sauce or using sauce from a jar, I always add fresh basil and I think it makes ALL the difference. Oh and really good cheese! 🙂

Mandy says · 09.20.11

I’ve tried lots of different marinara sauces, and Newman’s Own is the best I’ve ever had, hands down. His mushroom marinara is really good, too. I like to add chopped zucchini to the sauce, but that’s more to trick my kids into eating veggies than for flavor (though the flavors are quite complimentary ;)). Thanks for the tips on the garlic bread!

tharker says · 09.20.11

I just discovered your blog this week after seeing your lovely hairstyles all over Pinterest. I am loving this little bloggy space of yours!

Thank you so much for the fantastic tutorials. My hair is about the same length as yours and seems to be close texture wise, and I’m always trying to get more volume, but without much luck. Your Bouncy Curled Under tutorial is just what I needed!

On a side note, I have a shampoo/conditioner question. I have highlights and recently bought Tigi’s Dumb Blonde. While I don’t mind the shampoo, I think the conditioner is awful. Did they do some major changing to the formula? It is super heavy and weighs down my hair. I’ve tried using less, but my then my hair feels like I didn’t use any conditioner at all. Do you have a favorite conditioner for highlighted hair?

Hi, I'm Kate says · 09.21.11

Thanks all for all the Marinara sauce tips!

Hi, I'm Kate says · 09.21.11

Tharker: Oh man. Don’t get me started on TiGi. I use to LOVEEE their shampoo and conditioner for fine hair. Called Thicken up. In fact, I still have a bottle of shampoo and a bottle of conditioner that I can’t bear to use because it’s the last I’ll ever see of it. Uhg.

They are really weird about conditioners. Try using a Redken Conditioner. Or Lanza. Those are two brands with quality conditioners without all the extra junk that will weigh it down.

Hope that helps!( My fav. conditioner is Extreme by Redken. )

Brandi says · 09.21.11

We us Classico Tomato and Basil in my house. It’s really good.

jhoysi says · 09.23.11

Classico is my go-to pantry sauce (their Vineyard variety is my favorite), though I have been experimenting with making my own this year with all the tomatoes we get from The Produce Box.

I sort of just hodge-podged together a “recipe” from research on the internet, and what I thought might be good in it. The big things I’ve found with homemade tomato sauce is:

• you’ve GOT to seed the tomatoes (learned that the hard way when I wanted to be lazy one time)
• put a carrot in it (I commit the cardinal sin of puree-ing my sauce, but if you grate or steam and mash the carrot separately before putting it in, you can keep the sauce chunky) – I don’t know why, but this made a HUGE difference for me!
• it needs to simmer for about a day in the crock pot (in my opinion)

Anonymous says · 11.10.11

The Mario Batali marinara is the absolute BEST!!! I love it and it really does taste fresh and not so “jarred”.