Penne with Sausage & Eggplant Bolognese


Here, we infuse eggplant Bolognese with savoriness by cooking the eggplant in the sausage drippings. Serve this family-friendly baked pasta with a salad and pour the adults a glass of Chianti.

Penne with Sausage & Eggplant Bolognese
Active Time:
25 mins
Total Time:
25 mins
Nutrition Profile:


  • cup whole-milk ricotta cheese

  • ¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese

  • 1 large egg

  • 8 ounces sweet or hot Italian sausage, casing removed

  • 1 medium eggplant, cut into 1/2-inch cubes

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

  • 1 (24 ounce) jar low-sodium marinara sauce (see Tip)

  • 1 teaspoon fennel seeds

  • ¼ teaspoon ground pepper

  • 8 ounces whole-wheat penne

  • ¾ cup shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese

  • Fresh basil for garnish


  1. Position rack in upper third of oven; preheat broiler to high. Bring a large pot of water to a boil.

  2. Combine ricotta, Parmesan and egg in a small bowl. Set next to the stove.

  3. Cook sausage in a large broiler-safe skillet over medium-high heat, breaking up big pieces with the back of a spoon, until no longer pink, about 5 minutes. Stir in eggplant and oil; cook, stirring occasionally, until the eggplant starts to soften, about 2 minutes. Stir in marinara, fennel seeds and pepper. Reduce heat to maintain a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, until the eggplant is very soft, about 7 minutes more.

  4. Meanwhile, cook pasta in the boiling water according to package directions. Drain and transfer to the pan with the sauce. Add the ricotta mixture and gently stir to combine. Bring to a simmer, then remove from heat. Evenly sprinkle mozzarella over the top.

  5. Transfer to the upper rack and broil until starting to brown on top, 1 to 2 minutes. Serve topped with basil, if desired.


Choosing lower-sodium marinara sauce is an easy way to make more room for other flavorful, salty ingredients like Parmesan cheese and sausage. Look for a brand with less than 300 mg sodium per 1/2-cup serving.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

493 Calories
23g Fat
50g Carbs
25g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 5
Serving Size about 1 1/2 cups
Calories 493
% Daily Value *
Total Carbohydrate 50g 18%
Dietary Fiber 8g 29%
Total Sugars 10g
Protein 25g 50%
Total Fat 23g 29%
Saturated Fat 8g 40%
Cholesterol 82mg 27%
Vitamin A 623IU 12%
Sodium 717mg 31%

Nutrition information is calculated by a registered dietitian using an ingredient database but should be considered an estimate.

* Daily Values (DVs) are the recommended amounts of nutrients to consume each day. Percent Daily Value (%DV) found on nutrition labels tells you how much a serving of a particular food or recipe contributes to each of those total recommended amounts. Per the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the daily value is based on a standard 2,000 calorie diet. Depending on your calorie needs or if you have a health condition, you may need more or less of particular nutrients. (For example, it’s recommended that people following a heart-healthy diet eat less sodium on a daily basis compared to those following a standard diet.)

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a special diet for medical reasons, be sure to consult with your primary care provider or a registered dietitian to better understand your personal nutrition needs.

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