For those of us who don't have personal chefs ready to wow us with new and exotic foods every night, these stunningly easy pasta dishes are a lifesaver. You can fix them up on the quick no matter how big or small the crowd, use up all those leftover vegetables in your house, and enjoy an incredibly satisfying meal to boot. Spend more time enjoying your meal and less time cooking it with these time-saving, budget-friendly dishes.

Bacon and Parmesan Penne Pasta


Serving size: 8 

  • 1 lb (or about 15 slices) bacon, coarsely chopped
  • onion, diced
  • 1 lb (or about 5 cups) penne pasta
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, grated


  1. Place the chopped bacon and onion in a skillet over medium heat, and cook and stir until the bacon is crisp and the onion is beginning to brown, about 10 minutes.
  2. While the bacon and onion are cooking, fill a large pot with lightly salted water and bring to a rolling boil over high heat. Once the water is boiling, stir in the penne, and return to a boil. Cook the pasta uncovered, stirring occasionally, until cooked through, but is still firm to the bite, about 11 minutes. Drain pasta, transfer to a large serving bowl, and stir in the olive oil to coat the pasta.
  3. Drain the bacon grease from the skillet, leaving a couple of tablespoons or to taste. Stir the cooked bacon mixture into the pasta, and sprinkle the Parmesan cheese over the pasta. Stir to mix in the cheese, and serve.

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