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Kalyn's Kitchen

Rustic Pasta Sauce with Italian Sausage, Zucchini, and Sage

Rustic Pasta Sauce with Italian Sausage, Zucchini, and Sage is quick and delicious and it doesn’t take much pasta to make this into a wonderful meal. Use Sauce Recipes for more recipes like this one.

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Rustic Pasta Sauce with Italian Sausage, Zucchini, and Sage found on KalynsKitchen.com

For a few weeks now I’ve been ignoring my gardenless situation and buying zucchini, yellow squash, tomatoes, cucumbers, and peppers at the farmers market.  Since I grew my own veggies for so many years, the archives on Kalyn’s Kitchen has a lot of recipes for those garden veggies, and I’ve been making some of my favorites and updating the photos.  It’s been fun eating those old favorite dishes again, but now there are only a few more weeks until the arrival of fall, and I’m realizing I better get some of those updated recipes posted while summer vegetables are still abundant!

This delicious Rustic Pasta Sauce with Italian Sausage, Zucchini, and Sage doesn’t need a lot of pasta; when I took these photos I only used 5 oz. of Dreamfields Rotini to make 6 servings of pasta with sauce. This would also be delicious with whole wheat pasta if you prefer. If pasta is just not going to work for you, this sauce could be eaten with sauteed Zucchini Noodles or over Cauliflower Mash, or just eat the sauce plain without any pasta.

(Rustic pasta Sauce with Italian Sausage, Zucchini, and Sage was updated with better photos and step-by-step instructions, September 2014.)

Rustic Pasta Sauce with Italian Sausage, Zucchini, and Sage found on KalynsKitchen.com

I cut the squash into quarters lengthwise, scraped away some of the seedy part with a spoon, and then sliced in slices about 1/2 inch thick. Cut up enough zucchini or yellow summer squash to make 4 cups of zucchini. I used 5 oz. of Dreamfields Rotini, or just under 2 cups of dry pasta. I used a salad spinner to wash the sage leaves on the stem; then cut then into strips with these RSVP Herb Scissors I’ve been loving so much.

Heat a little olive oil, squeeze the sausage out of the casing, and cook over medium-high heat until it’s well browned.  I used a separate pan, but you can cook the sausage in the same pan and remove it if you don’t want to wash two pans.  (Start the water for the pasta when the sausage is done.) Add a little more oil, saute onions until they start to slightly brown; then add the minced garlic and Italian Herb Blend and saute a couple of minutes more.  (Start cooking the pasta as soon as the water comes to a boil.)

Add the squash pieces and cook about 8-10 minutes, or until the squash is tender and starting to brown. Then add the sausage and 1/2 cup of the pasta cooking water and cook 2-3 minutes more. When the pasta is done to your liking (9 minutes exactly for the pasta I used), reserve another 1/2 cup pasta water.  Drain pasta and add it to the pan with the other water if the mixture seems dry.  Cook about 1-2 minutes more, season with salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste and serve hot, with freshly-grated Parmesan to add at the table.

Rustic Pasta Sauce with Italian Sausage, Zucchini, and Sage found on KalynsKitchen.com

More Pasta Recipes with Garden Veggies:

The BEST From Scratch Slow Cooker Pasta Sauce Recipes ~ Slow Cooker or Pressure Cooker
Grilled Zucchini Mock Lasagna with Italian Sausage, Tomato, and Basil Sauce
Macaroni with Greens, Lemon, and Parmesan
Vegetarian Penne Pasta with Butternut Squash, Mushrooms, Scallions, and Goat Cheese

Rustic Pasta Sauce with Italian Sausage, Zucchini, and Sage

Rustic Pasta Sauce with Italian Sausage, Zucchini, and Sage is quick and delicious and it doesn’t take much pasta to make this into a wonderful meal.

Ingredients:

  • 5 links (19.5 ounces) hot or mild turkey Italian Sausage
  • 2-3 T olive oil (depending on your pan)
  • 1 large sweet onion, chopped
  • 2 T minced garlic
  • 2-3 medium zucchini or yellow squash (about 4 cups squash cut into pieces about 1/2 inch wide)
  • 1 tsp. Italian herb blend
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped sage (about 20-30 sage leaves, washed and finely chopped)
  • 5 ounces dried Penne, Rotini, or other pasta shape of your choice
  • salt for pasta cooking water (about 2 tsp.)
  • 1/2 cup + 1/2 cup pasta cooking water
  • salt and fresh-ground pepper to taste
  • fresh grated Parmesan cheese for serving if desired

Directions:

  1. Cut stem and blossom ends off squash, cut lengthwise into quarters, use a spoon to scrape away seedy part, and then slice into pieces about 1/2 inch thick.
  2. Measure out the dried pasta and set aside.  Fill a pot with water, add the salt and bring to a boil.
  3. Wash the sage, spin dry or dry with paper towels, and cut into thin strips.  (I used my RSVP Herb Scissors to cut the sage.)
  4. Heat 1 T olive oil in large dutch oven type pan with high sides, crumble in Italian sausage, and cook over medium-high heat until well browned, breaking apart with turner as it cooks. This may take 10-15 minutes or more.  (As soon as the water boils, add pasta, stir, and cook  until al dente according to directions on your pasta package.)
  5. When the sausage is done, remove from the pan and set aside. In the same pan, heat 1 T olive oil, add onions, and cook over medium-high heat about 4-5 minutes or until onions are starting to brown.
  6. Add garlic and Italian Herb Blend and cook 1-2 minutes, then add more oil if needed and add cut squash.  Saute squash about 8 minutes or until it’s tender and starting to brown.
  7. Then add the sausage, sage, and 1/2 cup pasta cooking water and cook 2-3 minutes more.
  8. Drain pasta as soon as it’s al dente, saving another 1/2 cup cooking water.  Add the cooked pasta to the pan (with the additional water if it seems needed.)  Cook 1-2 minutes more, season to taste with salt and fresh-ground black pepper and serve hot, with freshly grated Parmesan cheese to add at the table if desired.

Notes:

This is the Italian herb blend I used.

Recipe created by Kalyn.

All images and text ©

Low-Carb Diet / Low-Glycemic Diet / South Beach Diet Suggestions:
With whole wheat pasta this dish would be suitable for phase two or three of the South Beach Diet. It’s probably too high in carbs for a low-carb diet plan, even with the moderate amount of pasta I used.

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    16 Comments on “Rustic Pasta Sauce with Italian Sausage, Zucchini, and Sage”

  1. Michelle, unfortunately it's a lot more complicated than that. And you would have to be a scientist to know if the way they calculate the carb content of the pasta is really accurate.

    I guess you didn't read the part of the post where I said this "I'm still a Dreamfields fan despite the legal issues they've had, and it's never caused me to gain weight, but this would be delicious with whole wheat pasta if you prefer."

  2. Hi this recipe looks great! Just wanted to let you know Dreamfields pasta is a scam and currently getting sued for not being near as "healthy" as they claim. Google it 🙂

  3. Lydia, I think that's my favorite Dreamfields shape!

  4. I still use Dreamfield rotini all the time, and I love it. I'm pretty good with chopsticks, and the rotini is easy to grab — and chopsticks make me eat more slowly, which is a good thing!

  5. Beth dried sage would work here as well. It's a strong flavor especially when dried so I would probably start with only about 2 teaspoons, added when you add the fresh sage.

  6. We'll, darn it. I just pulled up my sage because I couldn't find a recipe I liked using it. Would dried sage work? If so, how much would you recommend? This recipe sounds so delicious!

  7. Sage and sausage go so well together, don’t they?

  8. I miss Italian sausage! That’s something we can’t seem to find in my part of France — maybe in the Southeast…

  9. That looks and sounds wonderful! Sage is definitely one of my favorite fall flavors, after pumpkin of course. I also wanted to thank you for linking to my turkey sausage use in your collard greens recipe that I loved so much.

  10. This sounds like th perfect fall pasta dish!

  11. What a great way to use some of my overgrown sage. As usual, Kalyn, you’ve done a great job with great produce!

  12. Sage and squash is a favorite flavor combo of mine. So fallish! And the best part is that any kind of squash seems to cozy up to sage- and pasta. I can picture this sauce on spaghetti squash, too.

  13. Katerine, I have so much sage too! This is a good way to use some, but try making the dried sage blend – it’s wonderful.

    Deborah, thanks.

    Tanna, will have to look for that. We barely got Whole Foods here.

  14. I love Whole Foods Hot Italian Chicken Sausage! It is so often what I turn too when I have no dinner plan because it works magic in just such as this. This looks really wonderful.

  15. This looks awesome- just the thing for these cooler evenings!

  16. This looks really good! We have so much sage and my boyfriend adores it so he would love this.