I don’t know about you, but most of my recipe adventures in the kitchen happen most often when I’m out of an ingredient. Such was the case when I came up with this recipe. I had promised my family lasagna one evening. Normally, I always have the ingredients for lasagna on hand—lasagna noodles, tomato sauce, cottage cheese, and mozzarella. On this particular day, I thought I was all prepared to go into the kitchen that evening and start on the lasagna for that night’s dinner. Lo and behold, I was out of both lasagna noodles and cottage cheese.
I really didn’t want to have to come up with something else for dinner because
a.) I already had everything else out that I needed to make lasagna
b.) I promised and wanted to deliver, and
c.) I REALLY didn’t feel like coming up with a different plan for dinner.
So I began looking around my fridge, freezer, and pantry to find either something else for dinner, or a possible substitute for the ingredients I was missing.
As always, I had a variety of pasta. I figured I could just mix the sauce with some other type of pasta, top it with cheese and call it a day.
Then I noticed I had some cream cheese in the freezer.
Could it be possible to replace cottage cheese with cream cheese?
I figured I’d give it a whirl. And since I didn’t have flat lasagna noodles, I just decided to turn it into a skillet lasagna.
Once I had it all together, I served it up to critical acclaim (ha!) The kids loved. My husband loved it. I enjoyed it as well. It turned out to be a successful lasagna-like dinner, and I think everyone appreciated my efforts to keep our menu as close to what I had planned as possible.
- 1 pound of your favorite uncooked pasta—I used rotini. Penne would work well too.
- 1 pound of ground beef or turkey browned and drained
- 28 ounces of your favorite spaghetti sauce—I use my spaghetti sauce recipe
- 1 1/2 cups water
- 1 8 ounce package of cream cheese
- 1 teaspoon of garlic powder
- 1/2 cup parmesan cheese
- 1 cup mozzarella cheese
- In a large skillet, combine the pasta, spaghetti sauce, meat, and the water. Bring it to a boil and cook until the pasta is tender, about 15-20 minutes.
- In the bowl of a mixer, combine the cream cheese, garlic powder, and parmesan cheese and whip together for about two minutes until the cream cheese is whipped and the ingredients are thoroughly combined.
- Add dollops of the cream cheese mixture evenly on top of the pasta mixture. Top with the mozzarella cheese.
- Cover and heat until the mozzarella melts. I place my skillet into the broiler for a couple minutes to brown the top a bit.