Middle of the Week “Spaghetti”

Have you ever seen a 5 and 6-year-old attempt to eat spaghetti?  Let me tell you, it isn’t pretty.  And neither is the table, chairs, the floor, and their clothes when they are done.  Especially my son, who is 6.  He LOVES to hold that long dangly noodle as far aways from his mouth as he can and try to suck it in.  I know, I know, we’ve all done that, but not when I was the one doing the laundry!  And then there is sauce all over the place, including his face.  His little sister thinks it’s awesome to copy her brother.  You can see where I’m going with this and what my dining room looks like when dinner is over.  I thought my problem was solved when Barilla started selling their cut pasta.  How smart was that??  Already cut pasta!  But then I discovered that was almost harder for them to eat because the cut pieces would slip and slide off their fork.  So we tried spoons.  Same thing.  So, I went back to using elbow macaroni, penne, rotini, rigatoni, etc.  And that usually results in wrinkled noses and requests to make “pascetti”.  Not this time, though!  They were perfectly happy with the elbows and my son even had 2 helpings!  PS – You can easily make this vegetarian by subbing the meat with mushrooms, zucchini, eggplant whatever you have.


1 medium onion, chopped
2 tsp minced garlic
1 Tbs olive oil
1 lb lean ground beef
2 (14.5 oz) cans diced tomatoes
1 (14.5 oz) can water
1/2 can tomato paste
8 oz elbow macaroni
1 Tbs Italian seasoning
Salt and pepper, to taste
Parmesan cheese


Cook pasta according to package directions.

Add olive oil to a large nonstick skillet.  Sauté onions and garlic over medium high heat until translucent, 2 – 3 minutes.  Add ground beef and cook until browned, then spoon off any grease.  Add tomatoes, water, tomato paste, Italian seasoning, and salt and pepper to skillet with beef and onion mixture.  Turn heat down to low and allow to cook 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally.

While sauce bubbles away, drain pasta.  When sauce is done, slowly add pasta to sauce and mix to combine.  Serve topped with Parmesan cheese.

Wine Pairing Suggestions:

Pinot Noir


Serves 4
Prep time: 10 minutes; Total time: 35 minutes

*Original Serves 4 recipe