1 pound lean (at least 80 percent) ground beef
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
12 ounces beef flavored broth
1 can (15 ounces) tomato sauce
1 can (14.5 ounces) fire-roasted diced tomatoes, undrained
1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
1 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 cup uncooked elbow macaroni or other short pasta
3 ounces cream cheese, cubed
1 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese (4 ounces)
1/2 cup flavored croutons, coarsely crushed
1. Heat 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium-high heat; add beef and onion. Cook 7 to 9 minutes, stirring frequently, until beef is brown; drain, and return to skillet. Add garlic; cook about 1 minute or until garlic is fragrant.
Stir in broth, tomato sauce, tomatoes, Italian seasoning, paprika and pepper. Heat to simmering, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat; cover and simmer about 20 minutes or until slightly thickened.
2. Stir in macaroni; cover and cook 16 to 18 minutes, stirring occasionally, until pasta is tender.
Stir in cream cheese until completely melted, about 3 minutes.
Sprinkle with shredded cheese; top with crushed croutons. Makes 6 servings.
Expert tip: If you don’t have Italian seasoning, substitute 1 teaspoon each of dried basil, dried oregano and dried rosemary in the recipe.