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Horizontal image of a white bowl filled with a pasta zucchini bake next to a glass casserole dish on a bright blue surface.

Baked Penne with Sausage, Zucchini, and Feta

  • Author: Kelli McGrane
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x


Shake things up on pasta night with baked penne made with chicken sausage, zucchini, and feta. It’s a healthier option that the whole family will enjoy.


  • 2 1/2 cups (about 213 grams) uncooked whole wheat penne pasta
  • 6 ounces chicken sausage, casings removed and roughly crumbled
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon avocado oil, divided 
  • 4 cups sliced and quartered zucchini (about 1 1/2 pounds)
  • 1 small yellow onion, diced
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3/4 cup low-sodium chicken broth 
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 4 ounces crumbled feta cheese, divided
  • 6 ounces low fat cottage cheese
  • Cooking oil spray


  1. Preheat oven to 400°F and bring a large pot of water to a boil. 
  2. Place penne in boiling water and cook for 10 minutes, or until al dente. Drain and transfer to a large mixing bowl. Set aside. 
  3. While pasta cooks, place a large skillet over medium-high heat and add 1 teaspoon oil. 
  4. Once oil is hot, add crumbled sausage to skillet and cook until starting to brown and cooked through, about 5 minutes. Remove from pan and transfer to a paper towel-lined plate to drain.
  5. Return the same skillet to medium-high heat add 1 tablespoon oil. Once oil is hot, add zucchini, onion, garlic, salt, and pepper. Cook until the zucchini and onion are softened, about 8 minutes, stirring occasionally. 
  6. Whisk together flour and chicken broth. Add mixture to the pan, stir, and cook another 2 minutes, or until mixture has thickened. 
  7. Add zucchini, cooked sausage, cottage cheese, and about half of the feta to the mixing bowl with the pasta. Stir well to combine. 
  8. Lightly grease a 9-by-13-inch baking pan with cooking oil spray. Pour pasta mixture in the pan. Sprinkle reserved feta on top. 
  9. Bake for 20 minutes, or until cheese is bubbling and pasta is lightly browned on top. Remove from oven and set aside to cool for 5 minutes before serving.
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Category: Pasta
  • Method: Stovetop/Baking
  • Cuisine: Casserole

Keywords: penne, whole wheat, zucchini, feta, casserole