Diabetes-Friendly Recipes

Tex-Mex Pasta Bake

This recipe for Tex-Mex Pasta Bake makes enough to make two 8-inch pans.  You can make one now and freeze the other one!  Or you can make one 13x9 pan now.  A heads-up, though:  this casserole is better if you allow it to sit overnight in the refigerator.

Servings: 8
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total: 30 minutes


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 pound ground white turkey breast
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 2 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 fresh jalapeño chile peppers, seeded and chopped
  • 1 quart tomato sauce
  • 2 teaspoons crushed dried oregano
  • 3 teaspoons good-quality chili powder
  • 1 cup dry red wine or water
  • ¼ cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 pound penne pasta
  • 4 ounces shredded extra sharp cheddar cheese


  1. Heat 1/2 tablespoon olive oil in a large non-stick skillet. Crumble the ground turkey into the skillet and brown, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes. Using a slotted spoon to drain away all fat, transfer browned turkey meat to a dish and set aside.
  2. Wipe out skillet and add remaining 1/2 tablespoon olive oil. Place over low heat and add onion, garlic, and chile pepper. Sauté, stirring occasionally, until onion is limp, about 5 minutes.
  3. Stir in tomato sauce, oregano, chili powder, wine, parsley, and browned turkey meat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until sauce flavors blend, about 20 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, cook pasta according to package directions to al dente. Drain pasta and either put into a 13x9 pan or divide equally between two 8-inch square baking pans.  (You can always cook one now and freeze the other!)
  5. Spoon sauce over the pasta and top each with half of the shredded cheese. If cooking soon, coer and let set in refrigerator overnight (to allow the casserole to set).  If freezing, cover and freeze.
  6. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350°F. Bake the dish, covered, until cheese is melted and sauce is bubbling, about 30 minutes.

Nutrition Information


Per serving:376 calories (11% calories from fat), 27 g protein, 4 g total fat (1.2 g saturated fat), 54 g carbohydrates, 4 g dietary fiber, 42 mg cholesterol, 242 mg sodium
Diabetic exchanges:1 1/2 very lean protein, 3 1/2 carbohydrate (3 bread/starch, 1/2 vegetable)


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