Pasta Roni Makeover

When I was a kid, one of my favorite instant meals was Pasta-Roni, the lesser-known sibling of Rice-a-Roni, the San Francisco Treat. At the top of the list was their Shells and White Cheddar, a slight upgrade on Kraft Mac & Cheese.

Okay, who am I kidding, I still buy this stuff. It's delicious! But last night I devised a Pasta Roni makeover to make it a tad closer to a balanced meal. By adding meat and a vegetable, it felt a little more grown up. First I cooked the shells (my favorite pasta!) and added a bunch of peas in for the last couple minutes.

Then I pan-fried some Italian sausage, leftover from my dinner of sausage and sweet potatoes, until cooked through.

After adding the sauce packet and some milk, I stirred in the sausage and let it sit for a few minutes so the sauce could thicken.

Served with a crusty baguette, this hit the spot. And made enough for leftovers for lunch!