Thursday, February 21, 2013

Kale, turkey, and chicken sausage marinara pasta

kale and turkey chunky marinara pasta 1
We prefer creamy or olive oil/wine-based light pasta sauces over the marinara version. I rarely ever whip up marinara, except for when I make lasagna, for that is when the sauce is bursting with tons of chunky diced tomatoes, full-bodied flavor, and zesty spices - so good! I decided to use the same marinara sauce atop some whole wheat penne, sauteed kale, ground turkey, and chicken sausage for a hearty, quick, and good-for-you meal. If vegetarian minded, you can make it without the ground turkey and chicken sausage. You can use it as a dip for breaded mozzarella sticks. You can use it in some legit lasagna. You can make it in a big batch to freeze until an evening calls for a quick dosage of homemade marinara sauce.The possibilities are vast. Even if you're not a fan of the traditional red sauce, I daresay you'll be won over with this chunky marinara rendition! kale and turkey chunky marinara pasta 2
Kale, Turkey, and Chicken Sausage Marinara Pasta

Whole wheat penne
1 lb sweet Italian chicken sausage
3/4 lb fat free ground turkey breast
1/2 cup onion, minced
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
4 tbsp garlic, minced
1 (28 oz) can crushed tomatoes
2 (6 oz) cans tomato paste
13 oz tomato sauce
1/2 cup water
1 tbsp sugar
1 1/2 tbsp fresh basil, chopped
1/2 tsp fennel seeds
1 tsp Italian seasoning
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
2 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp garlic
2 tbsp water
1 head of kale, rinsed and chopped
Freshly ground pepper
Fresh Parmesan cheese, grated
Fresh Romano cheese, grated
Crushed red pepper (optional)

1. Cook penne al dente according to package directions. Rinse in a colander and shock the pasta with cold water. Set aside.
2. Brown 4 tbsp garlic and onion in extra virgin olive oil in a large pot over medium heat.
3. "De-skin" the Italian chicken sausage. Add sausage and ground turkey breast to onions. Cook sausage, turkey, and onions until well-browned. Break the meat into small pieces as you're cooking to create sausage-like bits.
4. Stir in crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, tomato sauce, and water. Season with sugar, basil, fennel, Italian seasoning, salt, pepper, and  parsley. Stir until thoroughly mixed. Simmer, covered, for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
5. While sauce is simmering, brown 1 tbsp garlic in 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add chopped kale. Saute kale for about 2 minutes. Add 1 tbsp water and continue sauteing until kale is tender but not overcooked, about 3 more minutes. Season with freshly ground pepper.
6. In a dish, layer penne, kale, and meat sauce. Sprinkle fresh Parmesan and Romano on top (and crushed red pepper for a spicy kick), and enjoy!


  1. Looks delicious. I love that you incorporated the Kale. And I loved your last post. Loved it all! My mom use to take me to a huge "Swap Meet" in LA on Saturdays. Have you ever heard a flea market called a "Swap Meet?" Man, it was huge! I loved it. I'd always take any money I could scrounge up. :) Take care,


  2. we are not big marinara fans at my house, but from what you've said, it sounds like we would be big fans of this sauce!

  3. Ooh yum! I usually skip pasta whenever I could but red sauce is my weakness so this is going to be a hit. I'm bookmarking this.

  4. i'm pinning this. i don't really mind marinara sauce, but it's doesn't thrill my tastebuds. a wine base sauce i will definitely have to try. as always beautiful presentation my dear!

  5. making pasta sauce really intimidates me. but this looks so yummy, i might have to give it a try! thanks for sharing!

  6. Yummy! This looks so delicious. Pasta is one of my favorite dishes.

  7. Look so yummy! I'm totally making this sometime :3

  8. Cooking with kale! I like that! Also, in your "love filled days" post, you could not be any cuter. beautiful!

  9. I am most definitely going to make this!! Yummy.

  10. One of the best things that you can consider, for good health
    and the health of your loved ones, is to quit smoking.
    While you should not smoke marijuana regularly, you can save your health by
    knowing that its grown organically in safe soil and using a Vaporizer instead of a smoking device.
    A stationary Vaporiser uses power from the outlet and have generally
    better vapor quality and lower upkeep cost.

  11. I am in awe of the beautiful dishes you create! Sometimes I get too lazy in the kitchen! But I do aspire! :)

  12. This means that a Vaporizer are
    much more efficient and potent than other methods of extraction and will save
    on herb in the long term. Buy one now from the leading vaporizer stores online.

    Take a teaspoon of the pepper and put it into a glass of
    my webpage :: Vaporizer

  13. mmm, your recipes are always so well thought out! and the dishes are so lovely! i would love to try this minus the cheese and the meat. i have never had kale in pasta before!

    lindsey louise

  14. I personally also prefer the light olive oil type sauces to tomato based sauces. Stu on the other hand would LOVE this sauce. I'll bookmark this recipe for him. x

    PS: I'm hosting a Living Nature skin essentials pack giveaway at my blog, hope you enter:

  15. With all of those ingredients I bet it is delicious. I must admit with all the home cooking I do I rarely make homemade marinara, what's wrong with me? I'll have to try this, I bet it feels up the house with a wonderful aroma.

  16. I don't usually make tomato sauces either but this sounds totally delicious! Thanks for sharing Helen!

    Rowena @ rolala loves

  17. I'm suddenly very hungry :-) This looks absolutely delicious!

  18. OMG this looks so good!! I am going to have to make this!!!

    Ali of

  19. This looks so delicious. All the colours in this pasta look so beautiful.

  20. Oh YUM!!!! I have been looking for ways to incorporate Kale into my diet since it is supposedly so good for you and all! Can't wait to try this! YUM!!!!

  21. Oh my, you had me at the first photo! I love pasta, but funny enough, I don't make it that often at home. Now I'm feeling tempted to whip up this sauce immediately! It looks so scrumptious! I'm so happy I've stumbled upon your inspiring blog! You've earned a new follower with this sauce :)

    xx Ivana

    Macarons and Pearls

  22. yum!! this looks so good


Thank you kindly for taking time to comment. We truly appreciate each and every one!