Quick Weeknight Dinners: Hot Sausage & Tomatoes Over Fried Polenta

by Julie Ruble on September 19, 2013 · 20 comments

Hot Sausage & Tomatoes Over Fried Polenta
Hot Sausage & Tomatoes Over Fried Polenta

Hot Sausage & Tomatoes Over Fried Polenta

Recipe by: Adapted from Cooking Light
Yield: 4 servings

This recipe only takes about 25 minutes to prepare, but it packs a LOT of flavor! Mike and I loved it and are sticking it in our regular dinner rotation.

1 tablespoon olive oil
2 links Italian chicken sausage
1 link hot Italian sausage
1 cup chopped onion
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
2 (14.5-ounce) cans diced tomatoes, undrained
3 heaping tablespoons sundried tomatoes in oil
1/4 cup red wine
1/2 cup chopped fresh basil, divided
1 tube cooked polenta (I used mushroom & onion polenta)
3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese, divided

Add 1 tablespoon olive oil to a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Brown the sausage (cutting it out of its casing, if it has one, and crumbling it in the pan). Add the onions and cook for 5 minutes until tender. Add the garlic and cook for just 30 seconds or so, until fragrant but not burnt, before adding the tomatoes, oregano, red pepper flakes, sundried tomatoes, and wine. Use a wooden spoon to scrape up the sausage bits off the bottom of the pan. Bring this mixture to a boil before reducing the heat and allowing it to simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

While the mixture is simmering, heat the other 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. When the pan is hot and the oil is shimmering, add the slices of polenta, frying them for a few minutes on one side (until golden brown). Sprinkle them with salt and pepper before flipping them to fry, salt, and pepper the other side. When they’re almost done, sprinkle them with a little Parmesan cheese. Remove them to your serving plate.

Stir 1/4 cup of basil and 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese into the tomato mixture. Cook for 5 more minutes before spooning the mixture over the fried polenta, sprinkling with a little extra grated Parmesan and basil, and serving.

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{ 18 comments… read them below or add one }

Belinda @themoonblushbaker September 19, 2013 at 4:53 pm

I find the freezer isle is my best friends for budget quick meals. Beans , corn, soy and peas are great frozen. Also I prepare a big chicken or two on Sunday then ration out the whole chicken though the week. So one day breast in a salad, drumsticks one day. What ever is left in stock then add beans, noodles/rice and lentils.
I am going pass this on to my sister she is a new mother and needs recipes like this!


Julie Ruble September 19, 2013 at 5:02 pm

Thanks, Belinda!


gracekelle at leangirlsclub September 19, 2013 at 6:19 pm

I make a big pot of bolognese with carrots, onions, celery, crushed tomatoes, herbs, and white wine…I use it with brown rice, a salad, tacos, or pasta. Add a little crushed pepper or hot sauce…it makes all the difference in the world and tastes like a new recipe.

Thanks for sharing your recipe. I’m not usually a fan of polenta but this looks delish!


Tieghan September 20, 2013 at 2:00 am

I love, love, love crispy polenta!! This is so my families kind of meal!


Coco @ Opera Girl Cooks September 21, 2013 at 10:57 pm

This looks great, Julie! I develop recipes for Garlic Gold, and just came up with a polenta recipe last week. In case you ever get a wild hair to make a batch of the creamy, soft kind (rather than this tasty-looking crispy version!) come on over and check it out: http://garlicgold.com/2013/09/garlic-gold-rosemary-polenta-recipe/


dale in denver September 23, 2013 at 1:49 am

Thank you for this. My 7 year old son was diagnosed with Celiac Disease this May. So, I’m learning to cook all over again with gluten-free ingredients. This recipe was just the ticket for dinner tonight. I have corn meal in the house and didn’t want to go to the store, so I did a google search for how to make firm polenta (turns out, it is just regular polenta spread in a pan and chilled). Polenta is easy, breezy, so think I’ll make up extra and freeze it for uses such as this recipe.


Julie Ruble September 23, 2013 at 2:58 am

Aw, it makes me so happy to hear this was helpful! Bless you; I know it’d be SO hard on me to adjust to cooking gluten-free. Some of my favorite g-f blogs (or blogs that include g-f recipes) are Deliciously Organic, Celiac Teen, and Gluten-Free Girl. I hope they’re helpful to you :)


Rachel Petska September 23, 2013 at 4:05 pm

I made this meal for me and my husband on Friday night and it was a huge hit. I will definitely be making this meal again soon. Thanks for sharing!


Julie Ruble September 23, 2013 at 4:07 pm

That makes me so happy to hear, Rachel! :)


Kimberly September 24, 2013 at 2:21 am

Holy buckets, Batman! This was so refreshing and tasty. My kids loved it, especially the crispy polenta. Super easy and flavorful. I loved that there was little salt added to the recipe overall as all the flavors sang beautifully together. So far, I have had no recipe fails from Willowbird. Thank you!


Jenni September 30, 2013 at 7:34 pm

This looks so delicious! I love polenta, but the rest of my family doesn’t care for it. Maybe I can sneak some “oven fried” goodness in! Loving all these quick weeknight dinners! :)


Kaellen October 6, 2013 at 1:59 am

I just made this meal for dinner tonight and it was killer! I’ll be adding this into my meal plans! :)


Julie Ruble October 6, 2013 at 2:12 am

Yay! So happy to hear that, Kaellen! That’s how we felt, too!


Maria Kollision October 25, 2013 at 1:48 pm

Hey, this reminded me that I have sausage in the freezer! I may just make this for dinner tonight :) Thanks for the great recipe!


Rebecca November 11, 2013 at 5:12 pm

I made this the other night and both my hubs and my 1-yr-old thought it was awesome (as did I)! I think we’ll be seeing it in our rotation pretty often as well!


Julie Ruble November 11, 2013 at 5:14 pm

Hooray! So glad you all enjoyed it!


Tara Chumley September 11, 2014 at 6:20 pm

Oh. My. Geeez this was yummo!!! Thanks!


Julie Ruble September 11, 2014 at 11:08 pm

So glad you enjoyed it, Tara!! It’s one of our faves :)


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