Eating Vegan on a Dime and a Busy Schedule

The other night I made a quick and easy dinner and my youngest daughter said “mom, did you take a picture of this? It’s the best dinner yet!”  And of course I hadn’t.  I thought to myself, it was so easy I didn’t even think it was worth it.  The next day when Max was over and eating the leftovers and again talking about how good it was we talked about how maybe I should’ve taken that picture and written a post about vegan cooking isn’t always expensive or fancy or intricate.  It can really be just simple, everyday cooking that you can do with a busy schedule.  So here’s a simple recipe that can be thrown together on a week night when you have more places to be than time allows!

Vegan Brenda’s Easy Bake Rigatoni


1 box rigatoni

olive oil

1 jar your favorite vegan pasta sauce

1 block Daiya Montery Jack Cheese


Diaya – Monterey Jack Cheese Block


Cheese grater

Large stock pot


Large cast iron skillet


Preheat oven to 350°. Boil the rigatoni pasta in a large pot of salted water until just al dente, about 2 minutes less than the package directions as the pasta will continue to cook in the oven.


When the pasta is ready remove from heat, drain in a colander and rinse with cold water to prevent sticking. Toss the rigatoni lightly with olive oil and add to the cast iron skillet.


Using your favorite pasta sauce toss into the rigatoni in the skillet. Grate the block of cheese over the pasta and spread around evenly. Place into a 350° preheated oven for 15 minutes or until cheese starts to brown and pasta is heated through.


Notes – You may choose to grate additional cheese as you serve individual plates. My family can never get enough cheese!!

Also, you maybe curious about using a cast iron skillet with tomato sauce.  As long as your cast iron is well seasoned there should be no worries.  A well seasoned cast iron skillet will fair well with the acidity from the tomato sauce.  It is not well advised to do this recipe in a cast iron skillet that is not well seasoned as your dish may have a metallic taste.


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An inspired vegan sharing my learning and recipes with those interested!

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