{Easy} Kid-Friendly Spaghetti with Meat Sauce

Do you have those certain meals? The ones that, no matter what experiments you try in your kitchen, you know you can always come back to? I have ’em. Most of them are comfort meals…ones I know like the back of my hand, that I can throw together anytime I’m feelin’ a little down. True comfort foods.

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This spaghetti is one of those meals. It’s funny…as a kid, I hated spaghetti. It was the only thing my dad knew how to cook (or chose to cook) whenever my mom was gone. Side note: his cooking skills have improved tremendously. This recipe I actually got from my bestie back in our college days. It’s warm, very hearty, and comes together in no time flat. I’ve been counting down the days to cold weather, when this dish sounds most appealing, and I always serve it with a glass (or bottle) of red wine, some steamed broccoli, and warm garlic bread. Yup. Comfort food at its finest.


  • 1 lb. ground beef (or turkey)
  • 1 28-oz. can of tomato sauce — plain
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 packet of McCormick’s “Thick N’ Zesty” spaghetti sauce flavoring — you can use other brands if you can’t find this one
  • 1 package of spaghetti noodles — I use whole wheat
  • 1 1/2 cups sliced mushrooms (optional)
  • Parmesan cheese and fresh basil for garnish (optional)
  • Salt and pepper

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  1. Cook pasta according to package directions.
  2. Brown ground meat and drain any excess liquid. Add meat back to pan along with mushrooms and minced garlic. Saute for a couple minutes, and then add in: tomato sauce and seasoning packet. Let simmer for 10 minutes, then season with salt and pepper as needed. If sauce is too thick for your preference, feel free to add a little water (a few tablespoons at a time) but keep in mind that you’ll need to add some extra seasoning so that it doesn’t taste watered down.
  3. Serve over spaghetti noodles with cheese and bail. Enjoy!

Yields: 6 servings


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