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Creamy and spicy Cajun Pasta with Sausage is an easy dinner recipe you’ll come back to over and over again. Prep takes just 15 minutes, and it’s perfect for a crowd or leftovers and lunches throughout the week. You won’t be able to get enough of the Cajun flavor in this easy pasta dinner!
We love making Cajun food from Louisiana! Our New Orleans-Style Cajun Chicken and Sausage Gumbo is healthy as well as comforting and so easy to make. And for something a little lighter, try our Grilled Cajun Chicken Salad with Creamy Cajun Dressing through the summer months!
Cajun Sausage Pasta
Busy parents, this one is for you! Don’t you just love dinner recipes that are all made in one pot? It makes life and clean up so much easier! This one-pot Cajun Pasta with sausage and peppers is just that. My sister made this for us last summer when we visited her family over the 4th of July and I fell in love with it.
The flavors in this Cajun Pasta with Sausage are absolutely amazing! It’s creamy and tangy thanks to the cream cheese and parmesan, loaded with healthy vegetables including red and yellow bell peppers and onion, the andouille sausage is really one of a kind, bringing a delicious smokiness to the recipe, plus protein to fill you up.
And of course, pasta, the ultimate comforting carb! Any pasta shape that holds sauce well will be perfect for this one-pot cajun pasta. I used casarecce, but fusilli and farfalle, or even penne would be great!
I started by cooking the sausage and veggies in a pot, and then setting them aside before cooking the pasta…in the same pot! I did blend the creamy cajun pasta sauce in a blender, but as long as you do a quick rinse after, cleaning it will be really easy.
What You’ll Need
This is one of those recipes where the list of ingredients might seem long and daunting, but it actually comes together quickly without much fuss. There are a couple of special ingredients you will need to pick up from the store though that you might not have on hand.
SAUSAGE AND PEPPERS
- Olive oil: You’ll want to add a little olive oil to keep the sausage from sticking to the pot when cooking.
- Andouille sausage: Andouille is a strong-flavored sausage that is essential for jambalaya. Chorizo, kielbasa, or spicy Italian sausage will work too, in a pinch, although they will each impart a slightly different flavor and aren’t as authentic to real Louisiana-style cajun cooking.
- Onion & bell peppers: The Cajun Holy Trinity includes onion and bell peppers as well as celery. I skipped the celery this time, but the onions and bell peppers alone add plenty of flavor and nutrition.
- Garlic: Again, adding an extra boost of flavor. You can definitely tell if the garlic is missing from this dish! We also add garlic to the sauce.
- Tomatoes: Tomatoes add flavor to the pasta, as well as the rest over this cajun pasta with sausage recipe, as we don’t drain it after cooking.
- Water: Just a little extra liquid to help the pasta cook perfectly.
- Pasta: I used casarecce which holds the sauce really well. If you can’t find casarecce shaped pasta, fusilli or farfalle are excellent substitutions.
- Milk: Milk helps to thin the other ingredients down a little while adding a creamy flavor.
- Cream cheese: I wanted this cajun sausage pasta to taste rich and creamy and cream cheese does just that, while also adding some tanginess. SO good!
- Seasoning: Cajun or Creole seasoning will work just fine! We like Tony Chachere’s.
- Paprika: Smoked Paprika brings in a delicious smokiness and color to the pasta sauce. It’s one of my all-time favorite ingredients.
- Flour: Adding all-purpose flour helps thickens up the cajun pasta sauce just a bit.
- Parmesan cheese: Parmesan gives an extra zingy flavor, whilst helping to thicken the sauce up a little more. You can also add parmesan along with some fresh chopped parsley as a garnish to serve.
Let’s Make Cajun Pasta!
- Cook the sausage. Firstly, heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the sausage and cook for 2-3 minutes to sear slightly, stirring partway through.
- Cook the veggies. Secondly, add the onions and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the sliced peppers and garlic. Continue to cook and stir for another 3-5 minutes until onions have softened and peppers are tender-crisp. Transfer the sausage, peppers, and onions to a plate and set aside.
3. Cook the pasta. Next, add the diced tomatoes and water to the pan, scraping up any browned bits from the bottom with a wooden spoon. Bring to a boil over high heat, then add the pasta. Cover and reduce the heat to medium-low, simmering until the pasta is al dente and has absorbed most of the liquid.
4. Blend sauce ingredients. Meanwhile, blend the milk, cream cheese, Cajun or Creole seasoning, smoked paprika, and flour in a blender.
5. Cook the garlic. Melt the butter in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 60 seconds.
6. Add the sauce ingredients together. Next, add the blended milk mixture to the garlic and butter, and then cook and stir until slightly thickened enough to coat the back of a spoon. Remove from heat and stir in the parmesan cheese.
7. Put it all together. Add the sausage and peppers along with the cooked pasta to the sauce, stirring until everything is combined.
8. Serve! Finally, serve the Cajun Sausage Pasta with additional parmesan cheese and chopped parsley sprinkled on top.
How to store Cajun Pasta with Sausage and Peppers
This is an excellent meal prep recipe, as it serves 6-8 people, so can usually last for two weeknight dinners, or one family dinner and a couple of lunches.
To store this cajun pasta with sausages recipe, place the leftovers in an airtight container and store in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
To reheat, place the leftovers in a pot on the stove and heat until it is hot all the way through, double-checking the sausage isn’t cold in the middle. You may want to add a splash of milk to loosen up the sauce a bit as it tends to thicken as it cools.
Is Creole seasoning the same as Cajun seasoning?
Not quite, but they are similar. Creole seasoning tends to include a blend of herbs like thyme oregano and basil, as well as garlic, onion, pepper, and paprika. Cajun seasoning, on the other hand, is a little spicier skipping the thyme and basil and opting for some cayenne pepper along with paprika, as well as the garlic, onion, and black pepper. Either work well in this Cajun Sausage Pasta!
What kind of sausage should I use?
The traditional Cajun sausage is the andouille sausage and it’s perfect for this Cajun Pasta with Sausage recipe. It’s a spicy red sausage, loaded with flavor and seasoning. However, it can sometimes be tricky to track down andouille sausage at the local grocery stores, although it’s becoming more and more readily available. I found it at every supermarket I went to both in California and Utah.
If you run into trouble locating some though, I’d suggest substituting a strong flavored sausage like Mexican or Spanish chorizo, a German or Polish sausage like kielbasa, and in a pinch, even a spicy Italian sausage will do! Feeling adventurous? You can try to make your own andouille sausage. If you don’t want to mess with the casings, just make them into small meatballs before browning them in the pot.
More Pasta Recipes Like This
- Creamy Garlic Shrimp Pasta
- Homemade Hamburger Helper Cheeseburger Pasta Skillet
- One Pot Bruschetta Chicken Pasta
- Tuna Noodle Casserole
- Penne Alla Vodka
- Cheesy Baked Spaghetti Casserole
- Chicken Fettuccine Alfredo
Sausage and Peppers
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/2 pound andouille sausage, halved and cut into 1/4-inch slices
- 1 small red onion, halved and sliced
- 2 red or yellow bell peppers, sliced
- 3–4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 (15-ounce) can diced tomatoes
- 1 1/2 cups water
- 8 ounces casarecce pasta (or similar shape)
- 2 cups milk
- 3 ounces cream cheese, softened
- 1 teaspoon Cajun or Creole seasoning (we like Tony Chachere’s)
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for garnish
- Freshly chopped parsley, to garnish
- Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the sausage and cook for 2-3 minutes to sear slightly, stirring partway through.
- Add the onions and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the sliced peppers and garlic. Continue to cook and stir for another 3-5 minutes until onions have softened and peppers are tender-crisp. Transfer the sausage, peppers, and onions to a plate and set aside.
- Add the diced tomatoes and water to the pan, scraping up any browned bits from the bottom with a wooden spoon. Bring to a boil over high heat, then add the pasta. Cover and reduce the heat to medium-low, simmering until the pasta is al dente and has absorbed most of the liquid.
- Meanwhile, blend the milk, cream cheese, Cajun or Creole seasoning, smoked paprika, and flour in a blender.
- Melt the butter in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 60 seconds.
- Add the blended milk mixture to the garlic and butter. Cook and stir until slightly thickened enough to coat the back of a spoon. Remove from heat and stir in the parmesan cheese.
- Add the sausage and peppers along with the cooked pasta to the sauce, stirring until everything is combined.
- Serve with additional parmesan cheese and chopped parsley sprinkled on top.
- I recommend using fire roasted diced tomatoes, but regular works as well.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 332Total Fat: 21gSaturated Fat: 10gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 9gCholesterol: 51mgSodium: 716mgCarbohydrates: 23gFiber: 2gSugar: 2gProtein: 13g
All nutritional information is based on third party calculations and is only an estimate. Each recipe and nutritional value will vary depending on the brands you use, measuring methods and portion sizes per household.
Adapted from Our Best Bites.
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