Easy Cheesy Homemade SpaghettiOs

It’s time to ditch the can for good, and make my Easy Cheesy Homemade SpaghettiOs. This recipe will take you 20 minutes from start to finish, and it’s perfect for busy weeknights or picky eaters. This simple pasta dish is made in one pot, making cleanup super quick. The spaghetti O’s are boiled with the sautéed garlic, olive oil, tomato paste, tomato sauce, and topped off with delicious and nutty Parmigiano Reggiano cheese. This recipe is also incredibly fun as you can add any small kid-friendly pasta shape you like such as alphabet pasta or even pastina like stellette. I cannot say that I grew up on canned foods such as spaghetti O’s in Bulgaria and Greece, but I certainly noticed how many kids enjoyed them when I first came to Canada. I noticed that in this fast pace society these types of meals were not only affordable, but really time saving for parents. This is why I decided to re-create the classic canned food and show you how simple it is made at home. It’s not only simple, it also happens to be a thousand times tastier and more nutritious as well. Lastly, if you make my Easy Homemade Cheesy Spaghetti O’s, please leave a comment or give this recipe a rating.

Easy cheesy homemade spaghettios by the modern nonna easy cheesy homemade spaghettios

Easy Homemade Cheesy SpaghettiOs

Themodernnonnathemodernnonna
This recipe will take you 20 minutes from start to finish, and it’s perfect for busy weeknights or picky eaters. This simple pasta dish is made in one pot, making cleanup super quick. The spaghetti O’s are boiled with the sautéed garlic, olive oil, tomato paste, tomato sauce, and topped off with delicious and nutty Parmigiano Reggiano cheese.
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Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 12 mins

Ingredients
  

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 cloves minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning or dry oregano
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • ¾ cup plain tomato sauce mine has tomatoes, salt, basil
  • 2 cup’s spaghetti O’s linked in notes below
  • pinch of salt
  • 3 cups water add more if needed
  • one parmigiano rind is optional leave out if you don't have it
  • ½ cup freshly grated parmigiano reggiano cheese
  • basil for garnish

Instructions
 

  • Add the olive oil to a pot or big skillet with high sides. Add the garlic to the cold oil. Turn the heat to medium and let the oil and garlic come up to temperature together.
  • Once the garlic is sizzling, add the Italian seasoning and tomato paste. Give it a stir for 20 seconds. Add the tomato sauce and stir.
  • Add the spaghetti O’s formally called Anelli Siciliani, and water. Sprinkle a pinch of salt and stir. I do not over-salt as my tomato sauce has salt in it and my cheese is also salty as well.
  • I like to freeze all my Parmigiano Reggiano cheese rinds so I always have them on hand. I throw one rind in into any soups, stews, and sauces. Feel free to skip this step if you don’t have a cheese rind. You can also use a Pecorino Romano rind as well.
  • Let everything boil semi-covered on medium-low heat for 12-15 minutes or until the pasta is soft or al-dente if you prefer. Please be sure to stir the pasta a few times in between cooking as some of the pasta can get stuck to the bottom of the pot.
  • If you feel like all of the water has evaporated, the dish is super thick, but the pasta is not cooked yet, you can absolutely add on a splash more water at a time in the pot until it is cooked. This step will really depend on the pasta shape you use.
  • Once the pasta is fully cooked, take it off the heat, remove the cheese rind, add the freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano, and stir. Garnish with fresh basil and enjoy.

Notes

Feel free to use Passata or your favourite tomato sauce. We make hundreds of jars of tomato sauce every year so here’s the recipe to ours but if you can’t make your own, feel free to use a better-quality sauce like Rao’s.
The pasta shape I am using is called Anelli Siciliani so I am linking it here. If you cannot find it in your local grocery stores, feel free to use any shape you like.
If you are taking this meal for work or for the kids at school, you can boil the pasta in the sauce in the morning, and pop it in a thermos. A trick to keeping the thermos warm is to add boiling hot water to your thermos and dump it out before you add the pasta in so that it ensures the thermos stays hot for longer.
The amount of water you add will depend on the pasta shape you choose. Start with 2.5-3 cups and add more a little at a time as it cooks. Don’t forget to stir it so that it doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pot.
You do not need to cook the pasta with water in the same pot, but I am saving you time and dishes. You can absolutely let the sauce simmer for a few minutes and cook the pasta separately in boiling salted water. Add the pasta in to the sauce with the cheese and a touch of the starchy water and enjoy. 
The cheese rind is absolutely optional, if you don’t add it in you can add some extra cheese at the end if you desire. Make sure it’s good quality Parmigiano Reggiano and nothing that is pre-grated or boxed as it makes all the difference. 
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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