Slow Cooker Italian Style Penne (5 points +)

Slow Cooker Italian Style Penne (5 points +)

This is one of those meals that you can make somewhat last minute, but don’t need to sacrifice health or taste. This recipe only takes 1-1/2 to 2 hours in the slow cooker, and it’s wonderfully quick to throw together.  It’s perfect for those nights when you have to drop the kids off at practice and run errands, but want to get dinner started first so it’s ready when you get back. Slow cooker methods are great like this for saving time and for convenience.

Our slow cooker penne is packed with healthy ingredients and is great for when you have a hankering for a filling pasta dish. If you love the rich taste of noodles and ooey-gooey cheese mixed with fresh tomato sauce, this is the Italian style penne recipe for you. Just a small serving provides plenty of nutrition and leaves you feeling full for several hours after you eat. It pairs well with whole grain bread or a fresh salad, or is great reheated the next day for lunch.

Yields: 6 Servings | Serving Size: 1 Cup | Calories: 293 | Previous Points: 6 | Points Plus: 5 | Total Fat: 8 gm | Saturated Fats: 2 gm | Trans Fats: 0 gm | Cholesterol: 4 mg | Sodium: 190 mg | Carbohydrates: 22 gm| Dietary fiber: 4 gm | Sugars: 3 gm | Protein: 6 gm

Ingredients

  • 1 (28 oz.) or 2 (14.5 oz.) can(s) diced tomatoes, low or no sodium
  • 1 (15 oz.) can kidney beans, no sugar added, drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 pound dry, whole wheat penne pasta
  • 1 tsp. Italian herb seasoning
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. onion powder
  • 1/2 cup low sodium, chicken or vegetable broth, no sugar added
  • Balsamic Vinegar to taste
  • Parmesan cheese for garnish

Directions

For this recipe, you will want to layer your ingredients. Place the pasta on the bottom of your slow cooker insert. On top of that, pour the diced tomatoes. Then add the beans. Pour the broth over the top. Sprinkle the Italian herb seasoning, garlic and onion powder over the top and cook on low for 1-1/2 to 2 hours, or until pasta is cooked to your liking. It’s okay to lift the lid on this one to check. When finished, add a splash of balsamic vinegar to taste.

Top with a small amount of freshly grated parmesan cheese.

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