LIFESTYLE

Make-Ahead Pasta Dishes For Super Quick Midweek Meals

18/09/2015 14:21 BST | Updated 18/09/2015 14:59 BST

Make-ahead meals are a time-saver that take the stress and hassle out of midweek cooking, whether you're just trying to feed yourself or are making food for the whole family.

An added bonus? Preparing food ahead of time and freezing it will also help you reduce food waste.

One of the best make-ahead and freezer-friendly dishes you can make is pasta. When it comes to convenience, simplicity and pure deliciousness, pasta is a versatile option that you can dress up or down for any meal (or dinner party).

Add meat or seafood to your favourite pasta recipe for dinner with friends, try a cheesy pasta bake when you're in need of serious comfort food, throw in some colourful vegetables as part of your five a day and experiment with exciting new pasta shapes the kids will love like tortiglioni or trottole.

penne pasta

Another reason pasta is so great is that it works just as well served cold as it does warm. Tasty pasta salads are a nutritious lunch idea, keep well in the fridge and work as side dishes with dinner or easy snacks when you're on the go.

Maximise flavour when freezing pasta dishes by storing your pasta meal in an air-tight container, labeling with the date you made it and allowing it to defrost in the fridge before serving. The top make-ahead pasta hack everyone needs to know is slightly undercooking the pasta before putting it in the freezer. This way, it won't be too mushy after you defrost it.

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From one-pan pasta dishes to old reliables like lasagna, click through the slideshow below for some convenient, easy and delicious make-ahead pasta meals you won't be able to resist.

As Fellini once said: "Life is a combination of magic and pasta." We couldn't agree more. Now, who's hungry?