Pizza Pasta #flavorsofsummer

Pizza Pasta | Cravings of a Lunatic

Okay I need to be honest with you here.

I love a good picnic…


I’m a hot food kind of gal. I’m not saying I never eat cold food but given the choice I almost always opt for hot cold, including pastas. I have a tried and true cold one I bring to picnics. Everyone loves it, including me. But typically you’ll find me hovering by the hot section of any picnic or potluck. I like my food hot and my desserts cold. Unless the dessert is cobbler, then it has to be hot.

Okay clearly I’m just proving I have some serious hang-ups and rules about which foods should be hot and which should be cold. But seriously people, there are rules about these things. <clearly I’ve got some problems

Nowadays you can get away with bringing hot food to picnics. Technology makes it easy. I have a mini fridge I can plug into my car to keep food cold. And what’s unique and sort of cool about this “fridge” is it also has an option to keep food warm. You just flip the plug around and “voila” you’ve got a little heater for your food. Genius invention if you ask me. It means people like me, also known as hot food addicts, can always keep their rules, options open.

I also have a couple of those cast iron dutch ovens. If you don’t have one I’m telling you now you need to invest in one, or three. Here’s the cool thing about them. If you want to bring food to a picnic or potluck party these bad boys will keep your food warm for quite some time. The cast iron retains heat like no one’s business. You can warm this up before you go and if the picnic is within 30 to 60 minutes of you this thing is going to stay warm. I love using them for picnics.

Now here’s another really cool factoid about cast iron, it also keeps cold for a long time. Last year when we threw a surprise party for B-Dude out at Point Pelee we needed to keep certain foods cold. So here’s a trick for you. Pop a few of these cast iron beauties in the freezer for about an hour, take them out and you can pop in things like cold pastas and salads. Slap the lid on it and you’ve got cold food for up to 2 hours. I know right. It’s a cool trick.

Another trick we used for cold dishes is buying extra tinfoil pans. You can pop bowls of things like dips and veggies in the pan, then pour ice inside the pan. Your dip and veggies will stay cold for eons like this. We keep a large tote filled with various sizes of them and pull them out whenever we head out to Point Pelee. It’s a great way to keep food cold so you don’t have to hover. You want to spend time with people, not babysit the food.

There’s also insulated covers nowadays for casserole pans. Genius idea right. Those things work beautifully for picnics. As do pizza sleeves. If you’re lucky, and slightly charming, you might be able to talk your local pizza place into giving you one of theirs. Not that anyone here has ever flirted for some extra pizza sleeves or anything. That would be wrong!

So long story, well, getting longer, keep your pasta hot. Just like your pool boys!

Pizza Pasta | Cravings of a Lunatic

Pizza Pasta
Prep time
Cook time
Easy peasy pizza pasta that's a hit with the family any night of the week!
Serves: Tons of pasta! Enough for a crowd!
  • 12 cups of cooked pasta, I used rotini (reserve some pasta water when draining)
  • 3 jars of pasta sauce, homemade or store-bought
  • ¼ to ½ cup pasta water
  • 2 cups chopped pepperoni, more if you like
  • 2 cups green peppers, diced
  • 2 cups mozzarella cheese, grated
  1. Preheat over to 400 degrees F.
  2. Bring a large stock pot of water to a boil, salt the water generously, and drop in the pasta. Cook for about 8 minutes, or according to the directions on the package, minus 1 minute.
  3. Reserve about a cup of pasta water. Then drain (but do NOT rinse) pasta.
  4. Pop the pasta into a large dutch oven. Place on stove top and turn the burner on a medium heat.
  5. Add your pasta sauce, pepperoni, green peppers into the dutch oven and give it a good stir. Add about half the pasta water and continue to cook and stir until the pasta comes together. If you need more water to help bind everything together add it now.
  6. Remove from heat.
  7. Toss cheese over top.
  8. Pop the dutch oven in a preheated oven long enough to melt the cheese. It will take about 15 to 20 minutes.
  9. Remove from oven and place lid over top to keep warm.
  10. Head wherever you're going for you picnic.
  11. Serve with a big old I love Hot Pasta smile!
You could swap out parmesan for the mozzarella, or use both!

You can add in any other pizza items you want, salami, sausage, onions, peppers of any type, veggies. It's a versatile dish.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: Depends how hungry you are!

Pizza Pasta | Cravings of a Lunatic

This post is part of our Virtual Picnic.

Celebrate Sweet Vidalia Flavors of Summer with the great tastes of fresh Vidalia Onions, Avocados from Mexico, Gourmet Garden Herbs, Johnsonville Italian Sausage, mangos, watermelon and Stemilt Cherries. Great food and good friends make everyday a party to remember so start entertaining and visit for recipes, coupons and entertaining tips.

AND be sure to check out the delicious recipe contest happening on Flavors of Summer. You could win 1 of 4 cash prizes of $1,000 or the grand prize of a $5,000 Sears Gift Card. It’s time to get cooking!



We would love for you to join us at 4:30 pm (Edt) on July 3rd for our Pin Chat Live event. We’ll be awarding prizes and talking about picnics. Fun to be had by all. You can find us on our Flavors of Summer Pinterest Board at that time. Follow along and comment on pins, it’s oodles of fun. We’ll also be on G+ so if you search the events page you will find us.

Make sure you stop by my lovely friends sites. They are all sharing picnic posts with you too.

Mother Thyme
Cook the Story
It’s Yummilicious
White Lights on Wednesday
{i love} my disorganized life
Jane’s Adventures in Dinner
Sweet Remedy
Big Bear’s Wife
Cravings of a Lunatic
Katie’s Cucina
The Tasty Fork
Scarletta Bakes

Link up your favourite picnic food. We love to share.

Toodles and smoochies! xx

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    • Kim Beaulieu says

      Thanks lady. It’s super yummy. I froze a big batch too for one of those days where I just don’t feel like cooking.

    • Kim Beaulieu says

      Glad I’m not the only one.

      I pretty much scarfed like I hadn’t eaten in a week. So good.

  1. says

    A car fridge/warmer? Have I been living under a rock? You know I’m going to have to find and buy this immediately. Once I do, I’m going to make this damn good lookin’ pasta dish and take it on a picnic with me. That’s right, just me and the pasta…no one else. I’m afraid sharing isn’t an option with a recipe like this.

    • Kim Beaulieu says

      Seriously, it’s wicked cool. Except the one time I took Easter Jello Eggs to my kids school and hubs put it on heat instead of cold. Let’s just say they had koolaid instead of jello eggs.

      I never share. Sharing is over-rated.

  2. says

    When we lived in Florida, we had a pool. Guess who used to be the pool boy? 😉 I’m OK with cold food, but I hear where you’re coming from – I know lots of people who feel the same as you do. Anyway, this pizza pasta looks terrific. I’d definitely want it hot. Then straight from the refrigerator for breakfast the next day!

    • Kim Beaulieu says

      Ha, I love it John. Not only were you the hawt pool boy but if it was Florida you were also the hot pool boy. Hilarious.

      It’s so good hot and cold. And it freezes beautifully.

    • Kim Beaulieu says

      I know right. Works perfect for salads.

      Oh this one has so many options. You could do just about anything with it.

  3. says

    I am sorry but when you combine my two favourite meals, you know that I am going to simply collapse from sheer happiness 😀
    This looks way too delicious!


  4. says

    Quite frankly, I was too mesmerized by that big pool of gooey melted cheese to really pay much attention to your latest neurosis. But I will say that Brian has food temperature issues, too. I’m much more easy going about this kind of stuff…but not any other stuff. 😉

    • Kim Beaulieu says

      Ha, I know right. I got a little carried away with the cheese. I just keep adding more, and more, and more.

      I swear I have so many food quirks it’s amazing I can even eat. Silly.

  5. says

    I read the title and thought it was the other way around: pasta as a pizza topping. Yours is a much better idea :) And hey, you can go for that picnic afterwards!


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