ArrowDownFill 1arrow-small-lineFill 1Cooking Light - EasyCooking Light - FastCooking Light - So GoodCooking Light - How-ToCooking Light - Staff FaveCooking Light Badge - Wow!GroupClose IconEmailEmpty Star IconLike Cooking Light on FacebookFull Star IconShapePage 1 Copy 3Page 1 Copy 2Grid IconHalf Star IconFollow Cooking Light on InstagramList IconMenu IconPrintSearch IconSpeech BubbleFollow Cooking Light on SnapchatFollow Cooking Light on TwitterWatch Cooking Light on YouTubeplay-iconWatch Cooking Light on Youtube

Baked Polenta with Sausage and Tomato-Pepper Sauce

Iain Bagwell
Total time 45 mins
Yield

Makes 6 servings

This simple casserole makes a comforting weeknight dinner as the weather turns cooler. Using ready-made polenta saves you the step of making it from scratch, and our quick tomato sauce can be cooked in just 25 minutes. All you need is a fresh green salad and a loaf of crusty Italian bread to round out the meal.

Ingredients

  • 5 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 can (28 oz.) crushed tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano
  • 1 medium yellow onion, halved lengthwise, then cut into thin wedges
  • 1 medium yellow, red, or orange bell pepper, cut lengthwise into thin slices
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon each salt, freshly ground black pepper, and red chile flakes
  • 1 pound bulk Italian sausage, sweet or spicy (or 1 lb. Italian sausage links removed from their casings)
  • 2 tubes (16 oz. each) prepared polenta, sliced into 1/2-in.-thick rounds
  • 8 ounces fresh mozzarella, drained and sliced into 1/4-in.-thick rounds

Nutrition Information

  • calories 510
  • caloriesfromfat 53 %
  • protein 23 g
  • fat 30 g
  • satfat 10 g
  • carbohydrate 33 g
  • fiber 4.8 g
  • sodium 1505 mg
  • cholesterol 82 mg

How to Make It

  1. Preheat broiler to high. Heat 3 tbsp. oil in a 2- to 3-qt. saucepan set over medium heat, then add tomatoes and oregano and simmer, uncovered, for 15 minutes.

  2. Meanwhile, in a large frying pan, heat 1 tbsp. oil over medium-high heat. Add onion, bell pepper, garlic, salt, pepper, and chile flakes, and stir to combine. Cover pan, lower heat to medium, and cook until vegetables soften, about 5 minutes. Add sausage, stirring and breaking it into small pieces with a wooden spoon as it firms up, about 5 minutes. Cover pan and cook until vegetables are tender and sausage is cooked through, 5 to 8 minutes more. Add tomato sauce and simmer 10 minutes.

  3. While sauce is cooking, pour remaining 1 1/2 tbsp. oil into a 9- by 13-in. baking pan and tilt to coat bottom. Add polenta slices to pan and turn to coat with oil, then arrange slices lengthwise in 3 slightly overlapping rows. Broil polenta about 4 in. from heating element until golden brown and crispy, 10 to 15 minutes.

  4. Pour sauce over broiled polenta, then arrange mozzarella slices over the top. Broil until cheese is melted and beginning to brown, about 2 minutes. Let cool slightly before serving.

  5. Note: Nutritional analysis is per serving.

Cook's Notes

Prepared polenta is sold in most major supermarkets; look in the Italian-food aisle (where pastas and sauces are sold) or in the refrigerated section.