I thought I stumped my friend Linda (writer of the popular blog Giggles, Gobbles, and Gulps) when I asked her to send me her best muffin pan creation in honor of our theme on In the Kitchen with David. But, I should have known better. Linda can whip up just about anything and she sent me a delicious idea for adults and kids alike—Muffin Pan Spaghetti Nests!
If you are like me portion control goes out the door when it comes pasta. Pasta is my weakness and I always find myself eating way more than I should and having complete food guilt afterwards. One of my favorite ways to portion control my spaghetti is to make Muffin Pan Spaghetti Nests. Not only does each nest dish up a nice little serving of spaghetti, the nests are great for young children or a quick grab and go lunch the next day. My boys love the idea of little spaghetti nests for dinner. They get a kick out of having something in the shape of a muffin or cupcake for dinner.
Two or three spaghetti nests per serving, paired with a nice salad, and you will have a beautifully prepared, fuss-free dinner ready in no time. While this particular recipe is a meatless version, you could top your nest with a small meatball, a slice of pepperoni, black olives or even mozzarella balls.
4 cups of cooked spaghetti
1/3 cup Parmesan cheese, plus extra for sprinkling
4 tablespoons milk
5 tablespoons Italian seasoned bread crumbs, plus extra for sprinkling
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
Non-stick cooking spray
1 cup of your favorite pasta sauce
Olive oil for drizzling
Flat parsley for garnish
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Beat the Parmesan, milk, salt, garlic powder and egg together in a large bowl until smooth. Pour the sauce over the cooked spaghetti and add breadcrumbs.
2. Spray a muffin pan with non-stick cooking spray. Spoon a teaspoon of pasta sauce into each muffin cup. Pack each muffin cup with the spaghetti mixture. Before placing spaghetti in oven, lightly drizzle the tops of the nests with olive oil and sprinkle tops of spaghetti with bread crumbs and Parmesan cheese. Bake 15 minutes. Then, let cool 10 minutes before removing from the muffin pan.
3. To serve, spoon a small amount of pasta sauce under each nest. Place the spaghetti nests on the sauce. Garnish with additional pasta sauce and parsley.
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