Battle of the Sauces: A Taste Test and a Giveaway!

Not too long ago the folks at La Famiglia Delgrosso, the oldest major family owned manufacturer of pasta sauce in the United States, sent me a three pack sampler of their pasta sauces to try.

In the box?  Aunt Mary’s Sunday Marinara Sauce, Uncle Joe’s Vodka Celebration Sauce, and Uncle Fred’s Fireworks Sauce.  Isn’t it cute that each sauce is named after a family member?

All three of these sauces are all natural, gluten-free, and vegetarian.  You may remember the Uncle Fred’s Fireworks Sauce from my ground turkey and rice stuffed pepper recipe.  I loved that sauce, but still needed to make something using the other two.

I knew exactly what to do when Tim and I recently offered to host dinner for our friends Joe, Cate, Brett, and Jamie.  What better Sunday night couples activity than a pasta sauce taste-off?  And what better recipe to use for the battle of the sauces than stuffed shells?!

Turkey, Spinach, and Ricotta Stuffed Shells

Recipe below makes one batch, serves six


  • 1 package jumbo shells
  • 1 pound lean ground turkey
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 15 oz. container ricotta or cottage cheese
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
  • 1 jar sauce
  • 1 package frozen spinach, thawed
  • 1 medium onion
  • To taste:  black pepper, parsley, oregano, and thyme

We altered the above a bit to make sure we had enough to make two batches!


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Cook and drain pasta according to package instructions.
  3. In large skillet, over medium heat, cook ground turkey and garlic, stirring frequently until lightly browned.  Remove from heat; if necessary pour off excess drippings.
  4. Combine in a medium bowl:  ricotta or cottage cheese, mozzarella, 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese, spinach, and egg.  Stir in the turkey and mix in all the spices to taste.
  5. Spread 1 cup of sauce in a 13 x 9 inch baking dish.
  6. Spoon about 1/4 cup of the turkey mixture into each shell.  Arrange shells in a single layer in the baking dish.  Sprinkle any remaining mixture over the shells.  Top with sauce, sprinkle with additional Parmesan cheese, if desired.
  7. Bake for 25 minutes or until heated through.

Lining the dishes with the two different sauces — one with marinara, one with vodka!

Let the taste test begin!

My opinion?  I liked the taste of the vodka sauce better, but I thought the marinara sauce was a better fit for the stuffed shell recipe itself.

Group results?  Stalemate.  We seriously were divided three and three between who preferred marinara and who preferred vodka.

I think we need someone to taste-test for the tie breaker don’t you?

La Famiglia Delgrosso Pasta Sauce Giveaway

Luckily one of you can be this person!  La Famiglia Delgrosso has kindly offered to giveaway the same three-pack sampler to one Fitness & Feta reader.  All you have to do is leave a comment on this post telling me which flavor you think you’d like best – the marinara, the vodka, or the fireworks sauce.  Each person who enters the giveaway can receive one additional entry each by either posting this giveaway on Facebook or tweeting about it on Twitter.  Just make sure to leave me a separate comment telling me you did so!

I’ll announce the winner on Friday morning.  Good luck!

Sweaty Strength Sets + This Week’s Workout Plan

Good morning, everyone!

Hope everyone that celebrated Easter enjoyed their day yesterday, and that the weekend was fab too.  In case you missed any weekend posts, here they are:

Anyways,  Tim and I managed to get to the gym before we went to his aunt’s house yesterday for Easter dinner.  We did the following workout:

We went through these six moves exactly as they are listed above, doing 10 reps of each with heavier than normal weight, for four total sets.  By the end of the fourth set we were dying!  These were the same moves we did in this workout, but instead of doing them in a pyramid style we did tempo training in a 3/2/1 style.  Meaning, we took 3 counts for the first part of the movement, held for 2 counts at peak contraction, and then took 1 controlled count to return to start.  I often do different counting tempos in class, but really liked doing 3/2/1.  Thanks, Tina!

After we went through the four sets, we did 20 minutes of cardio (10 minutes steady state, 4 minute front Tabata, 1 minute recover, 3 minutes backward of 15 seconds on / 15 seconds off, 2 minute cooldown) and called it a day.

Made us feel not as guilty when we stuffed our faces with Easter deliciousness all afternoon.  🙂

This week is going to be another busy one. (yes, I’m more busy when I’m at home than when I’m on the road for work).  Planning my weekly workouts ahead of time helps me stay on track.  In case you missed it, last week’s workout plan looked like this:

I usually don’t have 3 off days, so this week it’s time to get my butt back in gear!

Here’s the plan:

  • Sunday:  Check!  The Sweaty Strength Set workout above
  • Monday:  Teaching Core Strength (I’m starting my floor hours tonight, so Mondays are gonna be really tough to get more of a workout in now.  But look for me!)
  • Tuesday:  Two A Day:  Kickboxing + Teaching Circuit
  • Wednesday:  CBC for Cutz & Kix, pending whether I can work from home or not
  • Thursday:  Teaching Circuit… I’m planning on doing PUSH
  • Friday: TBD or off
  • Saturday:  TBD or off

What are your workout plans this week?!  Do you make one?  Do they help you stay on track for the week?

Have a good one, and I’ll be back later with a giveaway!