Sausage-Stuffed Rigatoni

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50 minutes, plus cooling time
Prep: 15 minutes, plus cooling time | Cook: 35 minutes | Servings: 4 servings

Recipe adapted from Jason Vincent and Ben Lustbader, Giant, Chicago, IL. The original recipe is via Tasting Table.


  • ½ pound dried rigatoni (medium to small works the best)
  • ¾ pound Italian sausage, uncased
  • 1 large egg
  • Olive oil
  • 1 cup minced onion
  • 2 tablespoons thinly sliced garlic (from about 5 cloves)
  • 20 cherry tomatoes, halved (approximately 2 cups)
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • Reserved pasta water
  • 1 cup rapini, chopped fine
  • 1 teaspoon chopped anchovy fillets
  • Parmesan or pecorino cheese, to garnish
  • Juice from 1 lemon
  • Salt and pepper, to taste


  1. Blanch the rigatoni in salted boiling water until it still has a very firm bite, approximately 8 minutes. It is better to have the rigatoni slightly undercooked so they are firmer when you get ready to do the stuffing process. Remove to a parchment-lined tray greased with cooking spray and allow to cool. (Do not coat the pasta in oil.) Reserve 1 cup of the pasta cooking water.
  2. In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the Italian sausage until it becomes sticky. Add the egg and continue to beat until it’s completely incorporated. Transfer the mixture into a piping bag or Ziploc with the corner cut off. Fill each of the rigatoni with the sausage mixture, making sure that the sausage extends past each end.
  3. In a wide, shallow pot, heat a few tablespoons of olive oil and sweat the onions and garlic until the garlic smells sweet, approximately 4 to 6 minutes. Add the halved tomatoes to the pan and cook until most of the liquid is gone.
  4. Add the stuffed rigatoni, butter and reserved pasta water. Gently shake the pan and cover with a lid, lowering the heat until the water is just simmering. After 2 minutes, remove the lid and continue to cook until most of the water is gone.
  5. Add the rapini, anchovies and a little Parmesan to the pot. Test one of the rigatoni to make sure the sausage is cooked through. Season with lemon juice , salt and pepper.
  6. Divide the pasta onto 4 plates, garnish with more Parmesan and olive oil, and serve.


  1. When I make this recipe, I use my home made Italian Sausage recipe. But make sure this sausage is double ground as the Italian sausage needs to be very fine.
  2. Make sure you use a disposable pastry bag, especially in the EU as the plastic sandwich bags are not very durable and will tear during the filling process.
  3. We also find it easier to fill the rigatoni if the Italian sausage is chilled and you use smaller portions in the pastry bag when filling.