14 Easy, Cheesy Pasta Meals You Need to Try

Article posted in: Nutrisystem
Nutrisystem Three Cheese Chicken in a bowl with a plate of veggies on the side

You don’t have to give up pizza, lasagna, grilled cheese, spaghetti and your other cheesy, starchy, delicious favorites to lose weight. That’s what makes Nutrisystem so revolutionary and so successful for so many people who have had trouble with weight loss. Instead of telling you to stop eating the foods you love, Nutrisystem gives them to you in controlled portions that supports your goals.

And it can help calm cravings in ways that denying yourself your favorite foods can’t: When you have a craving for a specific food, Nutrisystem dietitians say that it’s better to have a sensible portion of the food you’re actually craving—you may actually wind up eating less than you would binging on “alternatives” that don’t scratch the itch you have for a cheesy, tasty treat.

That’s why Nutrisystem’s commitment to making sure you have options to sensibly calm your cravings doesn’t stop with Nutrisystem meals and snacks. The thousands of recipes for Flex meals and snacks on The Leaf help fill your recipe box with simple ways to prepare foods that give you what you’re really craving while staying on track for your weight loss goals—and keeping the weight off once you’ve nailed your goal weight.

So if you’re a lover of pasta and cheese, and you’re still on the fence about trying Nutrisystem, this roundup is for you—two weeks’ worth of Nutrisystem lunches and dinners that are packed with gooey cheesiness and satisfying bites of pasta. These meals—and a Nutrisystem plan—will give you the flavors you crave and the results you deserve.

1. White Cheddar Mac and Cheese

White Cheddar Mac and Cheese

This one is a rotation favorite for Nutrisystem members, with more than 1,350 five-star reviews. And that’s with good reason: Nutrisystem’s White Cheddar Mac and Cheese is as gooey and cheesy as any you’ll find, but it’s packed with 10 grams of protein to keep you feeling full all afternoon. Plus, it doesn’t need to be frozen! This cup can be stashed in your desk or purse and made easily in any kitchen with a microwave. Just fill the cup with water to the line inside, and zap it for 90 seconds. Five minutes of waiting later, and you’re ready for a cup of mac that one member says is “soft and perfectly seasoned; super creamy and delicious!”

Try a tip from another member: Mix some bits of broccoli into the cup before heating for a cheesy broccoli lunch that helps you get your daily servings of filling, non-starchy vegetables.

2. Three Cheese Chicken

Three Cheese Chicken

It’s called “Three Cheese Chicken,” but this meal has much more—the tender pieces of chicken sit on a bed of long, curly pasta with bits of tomatoes and broccoli, all smothered in a delicious, three-cheese sauce. The best part? There’s no refrigeration required, so this microwaveable meal makes a great lunch to grab and go for the office.

Members love how the sauce thickens as it cooks, creating a creamy, gooey consistency. One member likes to eat it over a bed of steamed broccoli; another adds a PowerFuel of fat-free cheese for even more cheesiness. Nutrisystem’s meals—and plan—make it easy to customize these already-delicious meals to make them your favorite!

3. Chicken Fettuccine Alfredo

Chicken Fettuccine Alfredo

This frozen Chicken Fettucine Alfredo meal is high in protein—with 18 filling grams of the vital nutrient—and high on the cheesiness scale, with a mixture of Parmesan and Romano cheeses in a slightly garlicky sauce that covers a generous plate of noodles and chicken chunks.

More than 1,300 members have given this dish five stars, and many love to add non-starchy vegetables as they prepare it. One favorite is sliced mushrooms and broccoli for an even more filling dish of deliciousness.

4. BBQ Chicken Pasta Bowl

BBQ Chicken Pasta Bowl

This BBQ Chicken Pasta Bowl is stuffed with flavor: barbecue sauce and cheese, of course, but also chunks of chicken, red lentil pasta, corn, black beans, and bits of riced cauliflower. All those ingredients also make it filling! This powerful meal has 17 grams of protein and four grams of fiber.

Members say the bowl tastes like a barbecue chicken pizza, that “the chicken is fabulous,” and that it’s got a good barbecue flavor without being too smoky. And, most important of all, “it was cheesy, and I love cheese!”

5. Chicken Parmesan

Chicken Parmesan

It doesn’t get much more classic “pasta and cheese” than a plate of Chicken Parmesan. This meal has all the things you crave in this go-to comfort food: breaded chicken, tasty tomato sauce, a generous pile of spaghetti, and tangy Asiago cheese. And it’s also got fiber and protein to help you feel not just satisfied by its flavor, but full!

No wonder more than 2,200 Nutrisystem customers have rated this meal with five stars. It can be cooked in the microwave, but for the maximum comfort food experience, members suggest using the oven instructions. It’s still ready in just 25 minutes when cooked this way! Pair it with a non-starchy vegetable, and you’ve found your new favorite weeknight meal.

6. Bistro-Style Toasted Ravioli

Bistro-Style Toasted Ravioli

Calories: 280

These Bistro-Style Toasted Ravioli are stuffed with three cheeses—ricotta, parmesan and mozzarella—and coated with a seasoned breading that gives them a toasty flavor and satisfying crunch.

The package suggests preparing these ravioli on the stove top, and they’re delicious that way. But for an extra crunch, try preparing your bistro-style ravioli in the air fryer. Put them in a pre-heated air fryer at 350 degrees for eight to 10 minutes, flipping once. When they’re done, they’ll be oh-so-crispy and perfect for dipping  into some low-sodium marinara sauce or some pureed red bell pepper sauce. It’s a perfect treat and you’ll never believe those crunchy morsels are helping you lose weight!

7. Ravioli Formaggio

Ravioli Formaggio

Nutrisystem’s Ravioli Formaggio meal is stuffed with a delicious combination of ricotta and Romano cheeses, in a sauce made with onion, garlic, and a blend of Italian spices. All of that is classic, but here’s the bonus—14 grams of protein make these ravioli filling!

To kick it up a notch, try shaking on some red pepper flakes for an extra kick of spice or add sodium-free Italian seasoning mix, oregano or garlic powder for a custom kick that’s perfect for your palate.

8. BBQ Chicken Mac and Cheese

BBQ Chicken Mac and Cheese

Barbecue with mac and cheese may surprise you—many members say they hadn’t tried the flavors together before, but this dish has convinced them … the combo’s a hit!

“The sweet and cheesy together is so perfect. I’d eat this every day,” says one of our customers. The pasta in this BBQ Chicken Mac and Cheese bowl is al dente, the cheese is creamy, and the barbecue sauce is slightly sweet and slightly smoky. Add that to satisfying chunks of chicken, and you’ve got a bowl that packs in flavor and 20 grams of protein. Mix in some broccoli or have some green beans on the side for even more cookout-worthy flavor, and you’ve got a lunch that will power you through the afternoon!

9. Mushroom Bolognese

Mushroom Bolognese

If you’re looking for a way to enjoy more plant-based meals, this Mushroom Bolognese has a secret: it’s meatless! But you’d never know it from the flavor: The mushroom punch gives this plate of pasta a hearty, meaty flavor that will make you believe it’s still packed with beef.

It’s also packed with flavor: Many members say that this plate has their favorite sauce flavor of any Nutrisystem Italian dish. And mushroom fans love to add even more mushroom goodness to this plate, sautéing sliced portabella or baby bella caps in a pan with garlic to top their meal. Pair this meal with a side of steamed broccoli or a small green salad, or mix in some steamed spinach for a serving of non-starchy vegetables and an even heartier meal.

10. Four Cheese Manicotti

Four Cheese Manicotti

The tangy tomato and red bell pepper in the sauce give this Four Cheese Manicotti a surprising kick that pairs perfectly with ricotta, parmesan, and Romano cheeses inside … and a topping of mozzarella on the outside. Some members love to add even more goodness—onions, mushrooms, garlic, basil and oregano—while others prefer to pair it with a crunchy salad with Italian dressing.

Our favorite? Fresh spinach. Try adding it to the sauce for an extra serving of vegetables and flavor. It pairs incredibly with the four cheeses of this Italian dinner.

11. Bistro-Style Chicken Alfredo

Bistro-Style Chicken Alfredo

This Hearty Inspirations meals takes care of everything for you: It’s got 30 grams of protein—more than you’d get from a quarter-pound strip steak—so you’ll definitely feel full. And this Bistro-Style Chicken Alfredo is already packed with broccoli, so there’s no need to add a vegetable on the side. Just heat it up, and you’re on your way to reaching all your weight loss goals for the day.

You’ll also be on your way to your daily servings of deliciousness—the chicken inside is char-grilled to maximize flavor, and it’s paired with tender pasta and an indulgent alfredo sauce. The best part? When you’re hungry, you won’t have to wait. This powerful bowl is ready in just three minutes!

12. Mac and Cheese

Mac and Cheese

Nutrisystem’s frozen Mac and Cheese entrée has a cheese sauce that’s as velvety as any homemade mac … but in a portion that’s perfect for your goals. 10 grams of protein make that portion feel satisfying.

Some members like to mix it up—or mix things in—by adding vegetables to their bowl of mac. One member said she adds peas and carrots for a double veggie kick, while another adds a can of Rotel, creating a kind of mac and queso dip. Another said she tries something new every time; adding grilled chicken and squash has become her new favorite. With so much creamy sauce, it’s bound to become your favorite, too. All on its own, or with your own custom mix-ins.

13. Ravioli With Meat Sauce

Ravioli With Meat Sauce

The meat sauce takes this high-protein meal to the next level. It’s the three cheeses and the delicious sauce that give it all the flavors of the comfort food favorite.

Tender Ravioli With Meat Sauce are stuffed with ricotta, mozzarella and romano cheeses, then topped with a hearty meat sauce for a dish that’s ready to devour in one minute or less. This bowl of goodness pairs perfectly with some simple sautéed spinach or a crunchy salad on the side. And with no refrigeration required, it’s a great choice for a day at work or on the run!

14. Manicotti And Chicken With Spinach

Manicotti And Chicken With Spinach

Our signature four cheese-stuffed manicotti and robust red pepper sauce are taken to the next level in this Manicotti And Chicken With Spinach dinner, a popular pick in our premium Hearty Inspirations line of meals. We top the cheesy, stuffed pasta with white meat chicken and sautéed spinach for a well-rounded meal that packs in the flavor and protein! Each meal contains 32 grams of protein, which is over 55% more protein than our standard dinners.* You also get a serving of Vegetables, so there is no need to add your own sides. Just pop it in the microwave for six minutes and enjoy!

Explore the Nutrisystem menu and stock up on easy meals here! >

*Hearty dinners with extra protein contain 20-32g protein vs. standard dinners at 8-22g protein.