Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Baked Ziti

Ok, I have to admit that this is a very basic recipe and purists will complain that I use sauce from a jar.  Well, complain all you want.  My time is limited and I think some jarred sauces actually taste pretty good.  Pay the extra dollar for a jar of the good stuff.  It's worth it. 

This recipe is fairly simple, but the best part is how customizable it is.  Not enough ground beef?  Add sausage.  Have some fresh (or canned) mushrooms? Add 'em.  Got an onion or garlic clove sitting around doing nothing? Cut it up and add it.  


  • 12 ounces ziti or other small tube pasta
  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 1 (28 ounce) jar marinara (red, spaghetti) sauce
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 (15 ounce) container ricotta cheese
  • 2 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese, divided
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese


  1. Cook pasta according to package directions. Meanwhile, in a skillet, cook beef over medium heat until no longer pink; drain. Stir in marinara sauce. In a bowl, combine the eggs, ricotta cheese, 1-1/2 cups mozzarella cheese and Parmesan cheese.
  2. Drain pasta; add to cheese mixture and toss to coat. Spoon a third of the meat sauce into a greased 13-in. x 9-in. x 2-in. baking dish; top with half of the pasta mixture. Repeat layers. Top with remaining meat sauce.
  3. Cover and bake at 350 degrees F for 40 minutes. Uncover; sprinkle with remaining mozzarella cheese. Bake 5-10 minutes longer or until cheese is melted. Let stand for 15 minutes before serving.