Spicing Up Your Pasta! (Win $100 Gift Card)

CONTESTS | | September 1, 2011 at 10:38 am


Congratulations Mami2jcn!

By now you know I am a Ragu “Mom’s the word on Dinner” ambassador and over the next few months I will be sharing ideas with you and doing some a lot of learning too. Changing up a meal can change up the mood. I am in a bit of a funk and was thinking of actually painting my lounge this long weekend. Food, though, is much easier to kick up a notch. Sometimes when you say pasta people conjure images of a bland and boring meal whilst I just believe it to be like a canvas for anything you want it to be. Whether a casserole, soup, sauce or sweet dish – pasta has the ability to morph as you desire.

When I heard about spicing up your pasta I wanted to share what I would do to spice up pasta: surprise – it is actually SPICE! I can’t help it, it runs through my veins – I spice up everything. Whether it is my chai or food I like to pep it up. I also love to know my spice and normally buy them whole. To spice up pasta I like to give the Ragu tomato sauce a little bit of sizzle.

Here’s what I used:

  • 2 garlic minced
  • 1/2 red onion – diced
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 1 small cinnamon stick
  • 1 cup of Ragu tomato sauce
Here’s what I did next…
I saute the onions in the oil until translucent, then add the garlic which roasts for a minute. Then I add all the rest of the ingredients except the sauce. I let the spice roast only for a quick minute, else it would burn, and then add the Ragu sauce. Heat through and turn off the heat. Now you can use this sauce for anything from veggies, meat or as is.

Now something for a lucky reader of Mommy Niri (and hint – there will be more of these coming along)!

Want to win a $100 American Express Gift Card?

To win tell me how would you spice up pasta?  Winner chose by random.org. USA  only.

To earn extra entries, after you have left a comment, do one of the following, but make sure you leave a separate comment entry for each extra thing you do (please DO NOT leave your email address within the comment!!!).

These give you additional ways to enter the contest but are optional entries. Contest closes 9th September 2011.

  • Subscribe to Mommy Niri (and verify the subscription to be valid) and leave a separate comment that you did. Already a subscriber (thank you) then leave a comment stating you are.
  • Tweet it using the green Tweet button above. Then leave a comment you did.
  • Fans of the Mommy Niri Facebook Page get an additional entry. If you are already a part of it leave a comment below.

Don’t forget to visit out other fabulous giveaways on MommyNiri.com

Disclosure: This is part of a campaign where I am an Ambassador in the Ragú® Mom’s the Word on Dinner Program. Visit www.facebook.com/ragusauce to join the conversation.


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    Allison Downes says:

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    Angella says:

    Basil, dried tomatoes, garlic, onion with some drizzled olive oil! Makes for a delicious pasta!

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    Angella says:

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    April B says:

    I would spice up my pasta with some red and green peppers ! Maybe grilled peppers, or onions would be tasty !

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    April B says:

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    Susan Ladd says:

    We spice up the sauce by adding extra garlic to it. Thanks for the great sweep and hope to win :)

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    brandlyn says:

    I like to add hot sauce and cayenne pepper

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    Nadine L says:

    I love to add Pepperoni and Green Olives as well as a Bay Leaf, Garlic, Green Peppers and Onion.

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    Ingrid says:

    I am following you and am conformed with my email. I have twitted this giveaway and liked you on facebook as well!

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    Susan C says:

    I add a spicy sausage to my pasta to make it special.
    smchester at gmail dot com

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    Susan C says:

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    John Stetson says:

    I just add extra garlic when cooking the sauce.

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    Marcia Goss says:

    I like to add garlic, onion, and parsley.

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    Jacob says:

    I spice up my pasta with mint! Mint and parmesan make such an interesting (and healthy) pasta!

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    Marcia Goss says:

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    Carolyn G says:

    I always add a little red chili flakes to my pasta

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    Carolyn G says:

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    Sarah Hirsch says:

    i’d spice up pasta with a little chili powder

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    Christy says:

    I cook fettuccine as usual but I use a jarred alfredo sauce. The way I spice it up is to saute chunks of chicken breast or shrimp (my favorite) in olive oil that has been sprinkled with a good cajun seasoning. I mix the pasta and sauce together and then add the spiced meat on top. The cajun spice makes its way into the sauce and really adds a kick. It’s one of our favorites.

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    Christy says:

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    janna says:

    roasted red peppers
    Thanks so much!! Janna Johnson jannajanna@hotmail.com janna@feedyourpig on gfc

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    kjasus says:

    i love to spice up the pasta with garlic and red pepper flakes

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    NJJ says:

    I spice up my pasta by using fresh ingredients: roma tomatoes, italian seasoning, fresh garlic, onions and ginger Yes, ginger :) and baby portabella mushrooms

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    NJJ says:

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    DJ says:

    I’d add a little hot sauce to it.

  47. 247
    Geoff K says:

    I’d spice up my pasta by adding crushed red pepper to my marinara sauce and grilling up some red and green chiles to add to the mix. Thanks!

    gkaufmanss at yahoo dot com

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    Geoff K says:

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    Ashley says:

    I would spice it up by using lots of garlic and onions!

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    Christine says:

    We like food hot so I always add a little Red Hot to my sauce and that spices up the pasta. Thank you!

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    Christine says:

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    Christine says:

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    Diane T. says:

    Add extra garlic and onions!

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    Tiffany Thomas says:

    I usually use half hamburger and half spicy italian sausage.

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    loni says:

    I love making a nice red sauce with some basil

    trippyjanet at gmail dot com

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    beth shepherd says:

    I love to add a little cayenne to it
    thank you

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    Aisling says:

    Garlic, oregano, onions and green pepper are the basic add-ins (with Roma tomatoes) for my pasta sauce.

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    Elle Thomas says:

    Technically an herb, but I love adding rosemary and sliced olives to my pasta sauce.

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    Tia says:

    We spice up our pasta with crushed red pepper.

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    Tia says:

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    Tia says:

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    Christine says:

    I would spice up my pasta with garlic! Yum!

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    Christine says:

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    Gina Ferrell says:

    We spice up our pasta with some Slap your Mamma spice.

    ginaferrell3 at yahoo dot com

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    Michelle Espinoza says:

    I would use chili powder

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    Danny Lindsey says:

    I just take cooked linguini and toss it with melted butter, a little calm juice, sea salt and fresh black pepper. I also add just shy of a ton of crushed garlic. Very Tasty!

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    Karlene says:

    I add a spinach sauce to my pasta ;D

    xyoulovekarlene at gmail dot com

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    stephanie Hodges says:

    I like to mix up onion/garlic and even mix in meats that have spice to it like sausage and sweet honey/maple bacon to even out the taste.

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    stephanie Hodges says:

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    nanjhall says:

    I use onion and garlic to spice up the sauce. Your recipe with the cinnamon stick has me intrigued as I have never seen that.

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    MaryT says:

    I add a little Buffalo Wing Sauce to my pasta sauce to give it a little zing. Thanks!

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    Deanna G. says:

    I’d add some jalapeno & garlic.

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    Deanna G. says:

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    McKim says:

    I would spice it up with fresh garlic.

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    McKim says:

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    McKim says:

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  95. 295
    Catherine says:

    Fresh garlic and herbs – the simpler the better!

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    Catherine says:

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    nancy says:

    I spice up pasta with capers, anchovies, and olives.

    nblexp ( at ) gmail (dot) com

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    Jill Myrick says:

    I like to add a touch of Chili powder and Jalopeno peppers to my Pasta sauce.

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    William G. says:

    I like to use spicy sausage and hot sauce

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    Jimmy says:

    I spice up pasta up with red pepper flakes

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    Kyl Neusch says:

    add some sausage

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    luckylifepath22 says:

    i would add nigerian ceyenne pepper for extra spice!

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    luckylifepath22 says:

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  108. 308
    Jacob LaFountaine says:

    Olive oil, black pepper and sprinkle of red hot pepper flakes

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    Jenn S. says:

    I like to add mushrooms, green bell pepper and a touch of tabasco

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    Jenn S. says:

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    Mary Brown says:

    I would add a pesto sauce with grilled chicken, yum!

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    Mary Brown says:

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  115. 315
    Lucy Schwartz says:

    Zip it with added minced fresh garlic and onion.

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    Cindy M says:

    Dice 1 eggplant, 2 Red bell peppers, 1 large onion and a few green chilis: Drench in olive oil, place in large baking pan and bake at 400 degrees 20 minutes or until peppers are fork tender. Pour this mixture over any pasta you like, I prefer it on rotini.

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    Carol Bryant says:

    Minced garlic, diced onions, red bell peppers, let it simmer for an hour.

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    kunkie says:


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    Tammy says:

    We like to “spice” up our pasta by adding oregano to breadcrumbs then sprinkling those on top of the dishes some grated cheese – and then baking it for a few minutes, just so the cheese melts :)

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    sweeter the berry says:

    I spice it up with sauteed onions and sometimes I add cheese

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    Patricia Treskovich says:

    I sautee onions green peppers and garlic to add to the sauce

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    amy deeter says:

    garlic and onions

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    Holly C. says:

    I spice up my sause with hot italian sausage and shrimp, yum!

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    Holly C. says:

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    Heather H. says:

    One way I spice up some pasta sauce is by adding fresh pepper and onions.
    hendymartin1 at yahoo dot com

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    Heather H. says:

    Sorry, didn’t see the comment not to leave your email address, I did in my first comment.
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    Gayle C says:

    I mince roasted red peppers very fine and add them to spaghetti sauce, along with a dash of hot pepper sauce.

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    Kristie says:

    I spice up pasta by using great Italian sauces. Sometimes as a main course and sometimes as a side dish.

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    Patti Berry says:

    I could buy alot of pasta with this … and maybe a new bowl to serve it in!

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    VickieB says:

    One of the ways I spice up pasta is with pesto, but a cold spaghetti salad with a zesty Italian dressing is good too. A simple one is spaghetti, chopped bell peppers, cucumbers and a spicy Italian dressing.

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    VickieB says:

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    Katharina says:

    I was so glad to see your recipe! I thought for years I must be the only person who uses cinnamon in sauce. :-) That’s what I do to spice it up, along with a touch of datil pepper sauce sometimes and our favorite Italian herbs. Katharina

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    Katharina says:

    I am already an email subscriber. :-)

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    Raejean says:

    I like my pasta casserole style; sauce, sausage, pepperoni and mozzarella cheese!

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    sparkedcat says:

    We add fresh and I mean fresh mushrooms to the sauce.

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    Ladytink_534 says:

    I actually can’t eat spicy food at all but I always add garlic to my spaghetti!

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    stacy h says:

    i add fresh sauteed garden veggies like zucchini!

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    D Schmidt says:

    I think I would spice my pasta up by adding chili powder, cayenne pepper, ground beef, onions, jalapenos and cheese

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    Tonya Hopkins says:

    I would add some spicy polish sausage


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    Nicole B says:

    We spice up our pasta sauce with a little bit of cayenne and spicy chorizo.

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    Karen D says:

    I would add very lightly cooked green peppers and onions to spice up my pasta!

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    Natalie J Vandenberghe says:

    I’m a little embarrassed to admit this…but, I don’t do much to spice up pasta–especially if I’m using Ragu! I love to sprinkle parmesan (or a parm/romano mix) cheese on top. Sometimes I make a “fake” lasagna using zucchini instead of noodles. It’s such an easy casserole to make (zucchini, Ragu, cheese–yummy!)
    Thanks for the giveaway.

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    Natalie J Vandenberghe says:

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    Lexigurl says:

    I add two tablespoons of pesto to alfredo sauce!
    lexigurl_17 (at) hotmail (dot) com

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    Sarah says:

    I spice up my pasta by adding veggies to the sauce and lots of garlic. It’s healthy and takes great!

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    Sarah says:

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    Lexigurl says:

    I subscribe via email
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    Lexigurl says:

    I am a fan on FB: Alexandra Herring

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    Birdie S says:

    Id spice up my pasta with by boiling the pasta in water with 8 cloves of garlic then add the boiled garlic to my pasta sause spiked with cayenne pepper..

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    Jennifer T. says:

    I add fresh basil and oregano.

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    Jennifer T. says:

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    ky2here says:

    My go to ingredients for pasta are olive oil, garlic cloves, fennel seeds, mushrooms and scallions. Shaved ginger root is good as well.

    ky2here at msn dot com

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    Daniel M says:

    Basil, garlic and onion are my favs

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    ferriz says:

    i would add mild italian sausage. yum! and garlic. always garlic.

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    ferriz says:

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    Kim Smith says:

    I would add some chopped onion and a bit of fresh minced garlic.

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    Erica C. says:

    I add spicy chicken to my pasta to give it a little bam!

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    ellen says:

    I spice up my pasta by adding a kick of hot sauce :)