Yes, sometimes I just grab a big ole jar or two of spaghetti sauce at the grocery store instead of making a big batch of homemade sauce. There’s nothing wrong with that. But I don’t just heat up the sauce and toss it over cooked pasta. Nope, I gotta make my shortcut spaghetti. It’s a dish I started making in my bachelor years, and have perfected over time.
You can use ground beef instead of Italian sausage, but I wouldn’t. The first years I made shortcut spaghetti I used beef. Sausage is better. Much better. And my homemade Italian sausage is fantastic. I make a batch and freeze it in one pound packages. Perfect for a shortcut dish.
Oh, and I almost forgot! Instead of pasta, serve the meat sauce mixture on a hoagie or sub roll as a sandwich and top with tons of shredded mozzarella. It’s the perfect messy Sloppy Italian Joe sandwich. Or substitute meatballs for the sausage.
- 2 (14 ounce) packages Jacksonville Italian sausage links, casings removed or ground sausage OR my homemade Italian sausage
- 1 pound fresh mushrooms, sliced
- 1 large sweet onion, chopped
- 2 (24 ounce) jars your favorite spaghetti sauce (I used Prego Fresh Mushroom)
- Pasta, cooked per package instructions
- Fresh parsley, chopped, for garnish
- Freshly grated Parmesan cheese, for garnish
- Crumble the sausage into a large skillet over medium-high heat.
- When the sausage is almost browned add the mushrooms and onion and continue sauteeing until the onion starts to soften. Remove from heat and drain.
- Add sauce to a large pot over low heat.
- Add in the meat mixture.
- Cover and let simmer for 2-3 hours, stirring occasionally.
- Serve over cooked pasta (or mix the pasta in with the sauce first) garnished with parsley and Parmesan.