Rigatoni sausage bake

Rigatoni sausage bake

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(151 ratings)

Prep: 20 mins Cook: 45 mins - 50 mins

More effort

Serves 6

A great way to get kids to eat spinach, this comforting sausage supper dish is also perfect for a hungry crowd

Nutrition and extra info

  • Freezable

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal749
  • fat33g
  • saturates16g
  • carbs84g
  • sugars0g
  • fibre5g
  • protein31g
  • salt2.32g
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  • 400g good quality pork sausage
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
    olive oil

    Olive oil

    ol-iv oyl

    Probably the most widely-used oil in cooking, olive oil is pressed from fresh olives. It's…

  • 1 onion, chopped



    Onions are endlessly versatile and an essential ingredient in countless recipes. Native to Asia…

  • 1 large carrot, grated



    The carrot, with its distinctive bright orange colour, is one of the most versatile root…

  • 150ml red wine
  • 300ml vegetable stock
  • 3 tbsp tomato purée

For the sauce

  • 50g butter



    Butter is made when lactic-acid producing bacteria are added to cream and churned to make an…

  • 50g plain flour
  • 600ml milk



    One of the most widely used ingredients, milk is often referred to as a complete food. While cow…

  • freshly grated nutmeg



    One of the most useful of spices for both sweet and savoury

  • 500g rigatoni or penne
  • 200g fresh spinach



    Used in almost every cuisine across the world, spinach is an enormously popular green vegetable…

  • 140g mature cheddar, grated



    Once cheddar was 'Cheddar', a large, hard-pressed barrel of cheese made by a particular…


  1. Slit the sausages and remove them from their skins, then chop them into small pieces. Heat the oil in a pan, add the onion and fry for 5 minutes, until softened and lightly browned. Stir in the sausages and fry until lightly coloured. Add the carrot, then stir in the wine, stock, tomato purée, and season.

  2. Bring to the boil, then simmer uncovered for about 15 minutes until thickened. Taste and season. Set aside.

  3. Put the butter, flour and milk in a pan. Gently heat, whisking, until thickened and smooth. Add a sprinkle of freshly grated nutmeg, season, then simmer for 2 minutes.

  4. Preheat the oven to 190C/Gas 5/fan 170C. Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil. Add the pasta, stir well, then cook, uncovered, for 10-12 minutes, until tender. Remove from the heat, stir in the spinach and, when just wilted, drain well.

  5. Tip half the pasta into a shallow ovenproof dish, about 2.2 litre/4 pint, and level. Spoon over the sausage sauce, then cover with the remaining pasta. Pour the white sauce evenly over the top and sprinkle with the cheddar. Bake for 20-25 minutes until golden brown. Leave for 5 minutes before serving.

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Comments, questions and tips

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8th Jul, 2016
Forgot to say, I added a good dollop of tabasco to the sausage sauce.
8th Jul, 2016
We all loved this recipe. 2 adults and 2 teenagers devoured it all on a Saturday night. Highly recommended and will be making again :)
21st Apr, 2016
I wasn't blown away. It was flavourless considering the contents. I think adding cheese to the white sauce or increasing the quantity of the sauce with the sausage in it may help. Don't think I'll re-attempt as I managed to use 101 pots making something which tasted very simple. Highly mediocre.
16th Jun, 2016
We love this recipe, but as always with a white sauce, I lift the flavours a bit with a dash of vinegar and a healthy dollop of dijon mustard. Another tweak is to add about a teaspoon of hot smoked paprika to the sausage sauce. If you try it again with those additions I would be surprised if you still found it bland. It's a favourite recipe in our house and always goes down well.
Joesyjo's picture
20th Jan, 2016
Made this twice now and found it to be very bland. Made it the second time as thought with all the great reviews that maybe I had done something wrong, but the second time was the same as the first. I followed the recipe exactly and used 500g of pasta which may be why. Not sure if it worth trying a third time as it is very time consuming and uses lots of pots and pans.
27th Sep, 2015
This will become a regular! So delicious! I added peas and sweetcorn too to sneak in some extra veg and the whole lot was polished off. EVERYONE had seconds, including my two year old. Big thumbs up.
22nd Aug, 2015
Omg this was amazing. I thought it was just gonna be another pasta dish but it tastes so different. I omitted the red wine and used more stock (although it wasn't needed) used mozzarella instead of cheddar and frozen spinach instead of fresh It was delicious, I'd definitely make it again
25th Jul, 2015
really nice- just cooked this for my family- used mozarella and parmesan. Felt the white sauce could have done with, dare i say it???.... a little bit of garlic!!!! They all enjoyed it though and will cook it again
11th Jul, 2015
Re previous comment from me - the sausage sauce can indeed be made ahead and frozen so I make double quantities and freeze half for next time.
24th Apr, 2015
I love this recipe (see my previous post) but I just thought I would post again and say that it does NOT freeze successfully. It just turns into an amorphous gloop and all the different flavours and textures are lost. I think it would be worth making the sausage and tomato sauce ahead in bulk and freezing it if you wanted to cut prep time and I will try that because I like to have easy dishes in the freezer for busy weeks.


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