Italian Love Nests

14 Feb

Print the recipe card!  italian love nests

I thought this recipe would be a fun one to save for Valentines week.  This “outside the box” pasta idea uses angel hair pasta tossed with an alfredo sauce, along with chopped ham or sausage, and bakes it into cute {crisped} muffin sized nests.  Here’s the non-food storage recipe it’s based off of (no, I didn’t make this idea up myself).  Once again, to keep these little babies held together, chia powder takes the place of the eggs it once called for.

Everyone here loved these!   Using a marinara sauce would work too, btw, so don’t feel limited to the cream sauce if you want to branch out.  Ha ha!  Get it?  “Branch out”, “love nests?”  Have fun and enjoy!

makes 18 nests



Italian Love Nests (4)

8 oz. angel hair pasta

1/4 cup heavy cream powder (to 3/4 cups water) or 1 cup evaporated milk

3/4 cup grated parmesan cheese

1 5 oz. can diced ham, chopped fine

1/4 cup white grape juice

2 TBS ground chia seed

1 tsp. ground sage

1/2 tsp. salt (plus 1 TBS for cooking pasta)

3/4 tsp white pepper

1/2 tsp. nutmeg

scant 1/8 tsp. hot sauce

green olives stuffed with pimento or black olives


Italian Love Nests (1)

to reference, 8 oz pasta equals 4 servings 



Heat oven to 350 degrees (*see note).  Grease muffin cup pan.  Bring 4 quarts of water to a boil and add pasta with 1 TBS salt to cook.  Cook only until al dente.  Drain pasta and return it to pot.

Whisk cream (or milk), 3/4 cup Parmesan cheese, chopped ham, white grape juice, sage, salt, pepper, nutmeg and hot sauce in a bowl.  Pour over pasta and toss.  One TBS at a time, sprinkle chia powder over top and toss to combine.  Allow to sit for 30 minutes.

Using tongs, portion pasta mixture into prepared muffin cups, twisting pasta to form nests.  Press an olive into each nest.

Bake until centers are set and tops are golden brown, 20-25 minutes.  Let nests cool in pan for 5 minutes before using a knife to remove from pan.  Serve warm.


Cook angel hair pasta until al dente, drain and return to pot.

Italian Love Nests (5)

If using heavy cream powder, mix with water separately beforehand.

Italian Love Nests (2)

Italian Love Nests (3)

Chop the ham fine.

Italian Love Nests (6)

Combine the cream (or milk), Parmesan cheese, chopped ham, white grape juice, sage, salt, pepper, nutmeg and hot sauce in a bowl.

Italian Love Nests (7)

Add the cream sauce mixture to the cooked pasta and toss.

Italian Love Nests (9)

Sprinkle one TBS at a time of chia powder evenly over top of the pasta and toss.  There’s enough liquid in the sauce that in this recipe we don’t need to add any additional liquid for the chia to do it’s binding.  Allow to sit 30 minutes.

Italian Love Nests (10)

Italian Love Nests (11)

Portion into muffin cups using tongs, top with an olive and bake for 20-25 minutes until golden brown.

Italian Love Nests (13)

Allow to cool slightly before using a knife to remove.  Serve warm.

Italian Love Nests (15)



  • Once again, with the right sized muffin tins, this becomes an easy one to cook in a sun oven.  Preheat mid morning to get the hottest temperature.

One Response to “Italian Love Nests”


  1. Create Your Own Food Storage Recipe Book - January 24, 2014

    […] Italian Love Nests […]

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