Months ago, I bought a Prevention grocery aisle cookbook that showcased meals that were under 500 calories. I admit I am such a sucker for grocery aisle cookbooks and I have been better about resisting them, but in this case I am so glad that I didn’t. I went home and tore out almost all of the pages to file away for future meal ideas. I have made a few so far but this has been my favorite. It’s quick, substantial and surprisingly healthy. You could say that I adapted it but actually I just screwed up one of the steps. We’ll call it a happy accident.
Gnocchi and Spinach Casserole
3/4 cup part-skim ricotta cheese
1/4 cup fresh basil, thinly sliced
2 Tbsp grated Parmesan cheese
1 egg, lightly beaten
3 cups jarred marinara sauce
1 pkg potato gnocchi
2 cups fresh spinach, thinly sliced
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Lightly coat a square casserole dish with cooking spray.
- Combine ricotta, basil, mozzarella, parmesan and egg.
*This was my ‘happy accident.’ Apparently, I was not supposed to add all the mozzarella cheese at once but I did and loved it. If you want to follow the rules, then only add only 1/4 cup of mozzarella and spread remaining 1/2 cup on the top of casserole.
- Spread thin layer of marinara on bottom of pan. Layer half of the gnochhi and cover with 1/3 of cheese mixture. Top with Spinach.
- Repeat layers.
- Cover with another layer of sauce and remaining cheese mixture.
- Bake 40 minutes or until top is bubbly. Let stand for 15 minutes.
*We were starving so we just ate it and it held together surprisingly well.
Even though the spinach got a little crispy on top, the taste was awesome. Even Manatee, my pasta-hating husband, loved it. We will definitely keep this in rotation as a regular meal.