Monday, November 7, 2011

Fettuccini With Turkey Meatballs And Vegetables

Last night I cooked a fabulous pasta dinner that was beyond fantastic.  I had been searching for a pasta dish that was different, not the same typical pesto, tomato or Alfredo sauce.  I kept seeing recipes that looked good but not quite what I wanted.  Finally I decided to just use ingredients and techniques of various recipes I had found.  Time for a blonde girl spin.


1 - 14 ounce Package of Armour Turkey Meatballs - Thawed
1 - Pint Grape or Cherry Tomatoes -Whole
1 - Bell Pepper (I used yellow for color contrast) - Sliced
1 - 8 ounce Package of Baby Bella Mushrooms - Sliced
1 - 9 ounce Package of Buitoni All Natural Fettuccine
1 - 9 ounce Package of Spinach - Whole Leaf (Or Baby Spinach)
1 - Package of Fresh Basil (1/2-3/4 cup) - Largely Chopped
1/2  cup Parmesan Cheese, Shaved
1 Bottle of Extra Virgin Olive Oil to keep handy.
Salt & Pepper to taste

I used Baby Bella Mushrooms, you can substitute with white mushrooms, however Bella's give you such a flavor punch that white do not.  I use the Buitoni Fetuccine because their fresh pastas, that you can find in the dairy section of the grocery store, just have such a better flavor and texture than your typical dried pasta, not to mention it cooks in less than half the time.  The fresh basil gives an incredible flavor, you do not want to skip it, you'll find it in the packaged fresh herb section of your produce section.  Unfortunately I didn't think to measure the Extra Virgin Olive Oil and eyeballed that part so I'll have to just give you guesstimates on how much I used and you'll have to figure out what works for you.  Have fun and use your favored vegetables or a different kind of meatballs in your dish, this is just what I used and it was great!  You'll be surprised at how flavorful the Turkey Meatballs are if you've never used them before, and they are not greasy at all.

  • Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
  • Start pot of the water on the burner to come to a boil for the pasta, use amount of water called for on the package. While waiting on the water to boil start the next step.
  • Coat the tomatoes, bell pepper, and mushrooms in about 2-3 tablespoons of the olive oil and a light sprinkle of pepper.  Spread out on a baking sheet and put in oven for 10-15 minutes until the mushrooms and bell peppers are the cooked consistency you like, I personally like a little crunch, the tomatoes will start to burst or shrivel, stir after about 6 minutes.
  • Put pasta in the boiling water, if you are using the Buitoni it should take 3 minutes exactly, set a timer, you do not want to overcook your pasta. Drain and reserve 1/2 cup of the water.
  • In a Paella pan or large skillet on medium high brown the meatballs in about 1 tablespoon of olive oil.
  • Once meatballs are nicely browned turn the heat to medium and add the entire package of spinach and 1 more tablespoon of olive oil.  It will look like a lot but it cooks way down.  Constantly stir and flip until your spinach has shrunk down.
  • By now your roasted vegetables are done, dump them into the pan with the meatballs and spinach, stir. 
  • Add pasta and 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil and toss together.  I found using a large wooden fork and a wooden spatula worked great.  Start with the smaller amount of olive oil and add more if it seems your pasta is sticking together.  Part of any stickiness will be resolved in the next step though.
  • Dump the Basil and Parmesan cheese and the pasta water on top.  Toss well until the basil and cheese are well incorporated, cheese is starting to melt, and the water has pretty much been absorbed, add more olive oil if needed.  Salt and pepper to taste.
  • Remove from heat and serve immediately.  Top with Parmesan cheese and salt and pepper if you desire.
This dish will feed about 4 people, or 2 people who somehow have room for seconds.  I did not find that I needed anything else because this meal was very flavorful and filling.  Though I'm sure sides of salad and a nice baked bread brushed in olive oil and covered in an Italian cheese blend then baked until melted would be perfect compliments at a dinner party.  Though it may sound difficult and look like something that is a result of heavy labor, it was actually really easy to make, and will surely be a welcome change if your bored with the same old pasta dish.

Be creative with cooking and experiment, you never know what kind of awesomeness you'll come up with! 

Much love and Enjoy!!

Be kind to your non stick pans - Only use a plastic or wooden cooking utensils and they will thank you with a long life.  Amazon Cooking Utensils


  1. I'm SO gonna make this! And I love that you incorporated pictures too. Move over, Martha Stewart!! :-)

  2. Oh gosh Martha is my hero! LOL =) Thanks!! You know it's easier to cook with pictures haha =) Let me know if you guys like it =)