Sometimes you get home from work and are really pressed for both time and energy. The desire to give in and order take-out can be close to overwhelming. You can still pull together a delicious meal for yourself and your family for far less cost and probably a lot faster than waiting for delivery. Aidell’s All Natural Caramelized Onion Chicken Meatballs to the rescue! I like to pick up ready made items like this from the market for just such occasions. They have few ingredients but are big on flavor and very easy to incorporate into a pleasing entree as they are fully cooked already.
Get started by putting on a pot of salted water to boil to prepare your package of elbow macaroni according to the directions. I fixed the entire box so that I could package up lunches or freeze future individual entrees from the leftovers. While you are waiting for the pot to boil, get out your cutting board and dice up your onion, rough chop your mushrooms and clean and dice up your pepper. I love Cubanelle peppers this time of year (late Summer) because they are a mild sweet pepper with just the slightest little zip, they only come in at 500-1000 on the Scoville Scale so they are not a hot pepper by any means. Plus Cubanelles bring a lovely bright green and red to the color palette. Heat a splash of olive oil in a pan and saute the onion, mushroom and peppers until all are soft. Once your veggies are tender, lower the heat and de-glaze the pan to get all those lovely brown bits off the bottom with a quarter cup or so of dry white wine. Add the package of fully cooked chicken meat balls to the wine and veggies and toss it around to heat it through.
Stir in the jar of Classic Alfredo. At this point, if you have the time and/or inclination you could make fresh Alfredo from scratch or if you already have some put up, use your own jar. When I buy ready made, I look for the most natural products I can find among shelf stable options. Since I used a pre-packaged sauce, I did not add any salt to this dish with the exception of the salt in the pasta water. Stir the sauce together and season it with cracked black pepper and roasted garlic powder, or regular garlic powder if you do not have roasted. I prefer the roasted for it’s sweetness. Turn your heat down to keep the sauce warm while you wait for the macaroni to finish cooking.
Once your pasta is al dente, so that it is cooked but still has a little tooth to it generally 8 minutes, drain the pasta. Stir your cooked macaroni directly into the sauce. I served our pasta with some re-heated sweet corn we had prepared a couple of nights ago in a shrimp boil. I switched it up my seasoning the corn with butter, smoked salt, pepper and Parmesan cheese. You could pair this pasta with a light salad, or any side vegetable. It reheats nicely — so since you have plenty, package some up for lunches, or for future dinners.
- 1 12oz. pkg Aidells All Natural Caramelized Onion Chicken Meatballs
- 1 16oz Box Elbow Macaroni
- 1 16oz jar Classic Alfredo Sauce (If you have any home made on hand that is even better!)
- 1 medium Red Onion, diced
- 4 oz. Baby Portabella Mushrooms, rough chopped
- 1 large Cubanelle Pepper, diced
- ¼ C Dry White Wine
- ½ tsp Roasted Garlic Powder
- ¼ tsp Cracked Black Pepper
- 2 tsp Olive Oil
- Put a deep pot of salted water on to boil to prepare macaroni according to package directions.
- Heat olive oil in a pan. Saute onion, mushroom and pepper until soft.
- De-glaze pan with wine and add meatballs to the pan to heat through.
- Add the jarred sauce or your home made sauce and stir everything together.
- Season the sauce with pepper and roasted garlic powder. Stir.
- When the macaroni is al dente, drain it and stir it directly into the sauce.
- This serves a family of four plus you have plenty of leftovers to package up for lunch the next day.