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TCP Kitchen

Five Ingredients or Fewer

Count on these dishes to make each flavor stand out—with minimal fuss

If your passion for cooking outweighs your enthusiasm for shopping, you’re in good company. From quickie salads to no-brainer desserts, we tasted our way through your shortcuts while enjoying the idea that we could make these at home with minimal fuss and perhaps save a trip to the store for ingredients.

This Mexican-themed baked pasta is a regular at my house because it calls for things I almost always have on hand. Plus, it can be changed up a bit by using different salsas or swapping beef for turkey or even vegetarian crumbles. As written, this feeds a large family, but if halved and baked in an 8-inch square pan, you can feed a smaller group.

Mexican Pasta Bake

1/2 pound whole-grain corkscrew or penne pasta
20 ounces lean ground turkey
1 can corn or Mexican corn blend (15 ounces), drained
3 cups chunky salsa of your choice, plus more for garnish
2 cups shredded “Mexican blend” cheese, divided use

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9-by-13-inch casserole dish.

2. Cook the pasta in salted water until it’s “al dente,” as directed on the package.

3. Cook the turkey in a skillet until it is thoroughly browned. Combine cooked pasta, turkey, corn and salsa.

4. Spread half the mixture in the dish, then sprinkle with half the cheese. Add remaining mixture and cover dish tightly with foil.

5. Bake 35-40 minutes. During last 10 minutes, remove foil and sprinkle with remaining cheese. Garnish with extra salsa if desired.

Servings: 8. Serving size: 8 ounces. Per serving: 360 calories, 25.12 g protein, 14.87 g fat, 33.23 g carbohydrates, 3.48 g dietary fiber, 989 mg sodium, 6.80 g sugars, 82 mg cholesterol