Sunday Recipe: Chef Dad's Italian Pot Luck

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Chef Dad's Italian Pot Luck

1 Bag of Wide Egg Noodles
1 Red or Green Bell Pepper (diced)
1 Cup Yellow Onion (diced)
24 oz. Jar of Marinara (your favorite)
1 lb. Ground Beef
16 oz. Cheddar Jack or Colby Jack Cheese (shredded)
Olive Oil
Salt & Pepper

1) Cook your egg noodles one minute less than recommended on the bags' instructions then drain well.  When they start looking a bit dry (about 2-3 minutes), put them in a large bowl then add all of your marinara on top.  Mix well then set aside.
2) In a large skillet over medium high heat, add your olive oil once the pan gets hot then your diced bell pepper and onion.  Add a few heavy pinches of salt & pepper then sauté until tender, about 4 minutes.  Remove from the pan and put in a medium sized bowl that's large enough for us to add the cooked meat when that's done.  We'll use that same skillet for the meat.
3) Cook your ground beef in your skillet over medium high heat with a few pinches of salt and pepper, breaking it up with your wooden spoon as it cooks.  When done, drain the excess fat and put in the bowl with your cooked veggies.  Mix them well together.
4) For assembly, grab your crock pot then put ½ of your pasta in the pot first.  Next add ½ of your meat/veggie mix then ½ of your cheese.  Repeat the process then cover and turn on LOW for 2 ½ - 3 hours then serve.  I don't recommend using the HIGH temp with your crock-pot as it will burn the bottom.  If you're in a hurry, see my cooks notes seen below.

Cooks Notes: If you'd like to make this dish faster, preheat your oven to 350 degrees and assemble the dish as described in Step 4, but use a casserole dish instead.  You don't need to cover the dish if baking in the oven.  Cook in the oven for 30 minutes.  If you like spicy, add ½ teaspoon of crushed red pepper to your pasta & sauce mix.

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