Baked Pasta

Pasta is a favorite of mine.  There’s so many different things you can do with it.  This recipe is a great one because it’s an easy way to make a ton of food.  I ended up making three pans of this.

Ingredients for baked pasta with meat sauce.  I have this listed as a vegetarian option too since the meat sauce isn’t required!

  • Pasta. (dealer’s choice – I prefer rotini, ziti or penne)
  • Mozzarella cheese.
  • Parmesan cheese.
  • Ricotta cheese.
  • Tomato sauce.
  • Ground meat. (dealer’s choice – I used turkey)
  • Milk.
  • Parsley and Italian seasoning. (for ricotta mix).
  • Garlic, Onion and sugar.  (optional for sauce)

You’re going to be starting off by doing two things at once for this recipe.  The meat sauce will be made first.  Take out one deep frying pan and one small sauce pan.  In the frying pan melt a little bit of butter and then start cooking up the ground meat.  The meat should be defrosted before you put it in the pan.  As the meat gets more and more cooked you can a wooden spoon to break up the meat.  While this is going on, start the sauce in the sauce pan.  I start out with some butter, diced onions and garlic.  Fry those a bit, and then add some more butter and some sugar.  After the sugar is melted into the butter add the can of your favorite tomato sauce (or two).   You can also start the water for your pasta of choice and prepare the pasta.

Once the sauce is warm and the meat is cooked it’s time to add the two together.  This is why it’s important to have a deep frying pan!  Add the sauce to the meat in the pan.  Stir the mixture up and add any spices if you want.

In a mixing bowl, mix ricotta cheese with milk.  Mix it up well so it’s mixed evenly.  Add some parsley and Italian seasoning mostly for aesthetics.  The green makes the mixture look more appetizing.  I tried to show in the picture to the left the ideal consistency to shoot for.

Once the meat sauce is ready to go, the pasta is cooked and the ricotta mix is prepared it’s time to combine them in the pan.  Preheat the oven to 350*.  I’ll describe the steps a bit and then show you pictures of the steps.  It’s honestly pretty straight forward. Start by putting a little bit of sauce on the bottom of the pan.  Then put a layer of pasta down.  After the pasta layer, scoop and spread a layer of ricotta mix.  If you want you can add a layer of mozzarella on top of the ricotta mix.  On top of the double cheese layer spread out a layer of meat sauce.  Repeat the process until you fill up the pan.  Try to have a pasta layer on top and top that off with a little bit of sauce and some Parmesan cheese.  Bake it in the oven for between 25 – 35 minutes.



To make the three pans that I made I used two boxes (pounds) of pasta, two cans of tomato sauce, a pint of ricotta and two packages of shredded cheese.


~ by NJC on March 13, 2011.

One Response to “Baked Pasta”

  1. Looks really good! Baked pasta is always a hit!

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