If you know me, then you know that I LOVE going to Noodles & Company and ordering the Penne Rosa. Its a perfect blend of penne pasta, spinach, mushrooms, tomato sauce, and cheese. I wanted to recreate this so I did some research and used what I had on hand to make this copy-cat “college” version. ❤
Cooking/prep time : 15-20 minutes
Good size pot to boil pasta
Medium/large size saucepan (enough to hold 2 jars of sauce and pasta)
Strainer (for pasta)
1 box of penne pasta
1 jar (12 oz) traditional marinara sauce
1 jar (15 oz) of alfredo sauce
1 generous handful of fresh spinach
1 generous handful of fresh mushrooms (sliced)
1 tablespoon of olive oil
Parmesan cheese and red pepper flakes (garish, optional)
1. Cook penne pasta according to the box’s instructions until al dente (firm, but not hard). Drain and set aside.
2. Heat olive oil over medium/high heat in a medium/large size saucepan. Once olive oil is warm, saute mushrooms for about 2-3 minutes.
3. Reduce heat to medium/low and add the tomato and alfredo sauce. Heat through stirring occasionally for about 6-10 minutes.
4. Stir in cooked penne pasta and coat.
5. Stir in spinach and let it cook just enough for it to wilt slightly.
6. Plate the dish and garnish with some Parmesan cheese and/or red pepper flakes if desired. Serve immediately and enjoy. 🙂
Tip From Nonna: Add a splash of olive oil or sauce to cooked pasta after straining to keep it from sticking together.
FACT: “Rosa” means pink (or rose) in Italian. Penne Rosa gets its name from the sauce which is a tomato and cream based sauce. The mixture of the red and the “white” cream gives it a pink (or rosa) hue.