This easy Chicken Sausage Casserole is a perfect side dish for Thanksgiving. It’s even hearty enough to be the main course if you don’t like turkey like me! ~ I was invited to be a brand representative for Ragú® and have been compensated for this post for SocialStars. All opinions are my own. We just created the ultimate Ragú #NewTraDish mash up recipe the whole family will love as part of a sponsored post for Socialstars. ~
I have a confession to make. I don’t really like Thanksgiving Day turkey. Eeek! I said it and I’m sure many of you just gasped in horror. I’m sorry to disappoint everyone, but it’s true. I’m not a fan. See, I’m a roasted chicken kind of gal, not a roasted turkey kind of gal – and believe me, the two birds are completely different in taste, texture and color.
So what’s a chicken-loving gal to do on a turkey-loving day? If you ask me, I’ll tell you to just pile your plate with lots and lots of sides and hide the pieces of turkey under your turnips like I do. 😉
Speaking of sides, they’re my saving grace come Thanksgiving and I eat a lot of them. Except for turnips. I don’t eat turnips. They’re gross, and smell like dirty feet. Besides, if I ate my turnips, then I’d have no where else to hide my turkey pieces.
But I’m getting all distracted, aren’t I? Okay, so let’s refocus. Back to my love of sides and my dislike of turkey and turnips.
Each year, I try to figure out how I can incorporate my love of chicken and vegetables into the Thanksgiving Day feast. It hasn’t been easy because no one else (except for a few of my vegetarian and vegan friends) dislikes turkey like I do. So this year, I’m trying to figure out how to make it work for me, so I don’t look like such a weirdo at the dinner table pushing my turkey around my plate like our kids do.
While I was begging my sister to come over and make me her Mini Chicken Margherita Pizzas for lunch (she lives around the corner), I had a brainstorm. What if I created a casserole of sorts? One that was easy to make ahead of time and could just be warmed up on Thanksgiving Day? One that had lots of vegetables and chicken…and sauce and parmesan cheese too? (Sigh. I’m Irish, but I really, really should have been Italian.)
I happened to have a few bottles of Ragú® sauces in the pantry, so I decided to test out a recipe for Thanksgiving. I visited the Ragú® web site and decided to create a #NewTraDish using their Italian-Style Saucy Roasted Potatoes recipe and their Tuscan-Style Sausage Sandwiches recipe for inspiration. All I can say is: Yum! This dish came together really well and I inhaled it for lunch. My husband asked what was cooking when he stopped in for lunch and happily wolfed down a bowl of it before going back to work. This #NewTraDish is definitely being added to my list of easy-to-make, hearty fall casseroles!
EASY THANKSGIVING DAY SIDE DISHES: CHICKEN SAUSAGE CASSEROLE
- 3 chicken sausage
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 3 tablespoons red onion, diced
- 3 cups fresh baby spinach
- 3 mini sweet pepper (or 1/2 red pepper), chopped
- 3 cups halved baby potatoes
- 1, 12-ounce bag brussel sprouts, washed and halved
- 2 cups Ragú® Old World® tomato sauce
- 1 cup shredded mozarella
- 1/8 cup grated parmesan
- 1 tablespoon fresh oregano
- salt and pepper, to taste
Step 1: Heat oven to 450 degrees.
Step 2: Pour 1 cup of sauce into a large glass Pyrex baking dish. Set aside.
Step 3: Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large, deep-sided, frying pan over medium heat. Remove casings from chicken sausage and cut sausage with kitchen shears. (Chicken sausage is harder to manipulate than pork, so kitchen shears are easier to use.)
Step 4: Cook sausage for approximately 3 -5 minutes until it is no longer pink. Add 2 tablespoons olive oil, red onion, red peppers and baby spinach. Saute until spinach is wilted and vegetables are tender — approximately 3 more minutes. Remove from heat and pour the sausage and vegetables to the Pyrex dish.
Step 5: Using the same frying pan, heat one cup of sauce, baby potatoes and brussel sprouts over medium heat, until softened (approximately 3-5 minutes). Remove from heat and add to the Pyrex dish.
Step 6: Add any remaining sauce to the Pyrex dish along with the cheese, and toss together until mixed. Season with salt, pepper and fresh oregano.
Step 7: Place in the oven and cook for 30 minutes until bubbling. Serve immediately.
Ragú® has the Authentic Italian taste American family’s love and a variety of great tasting, quick and easy to make family favorite recipes. For additional recipes and recipe ideas you can find them onFacebook, Pinterest and follow them on Twitter @RaguSauce, #NewTraDish. If you are already a fan of Ragú®, you can get involved with Ragú® Sauce Masters, learn more here.
Denine & Daniele