Baked Ziti/ Baked Rigatoni has always been a favorite of mine. I’ve shared before how I grew up around Italians and we would go to authentic Italian restaurants that served up some of the best meals.
This is such an easy dish to make and is very similar to how I prepare my lasagna.
Let’s get started!
- 1 lb ground beef
- 1 medium onion, chopped (optional)
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 large can or jar of tomato sauce
- 1 15 oz can diced tomatoes
- 2 tsp Italian seasonings
- 1 tsp salt & pepper
- 2 cups mozzarella cheese, shredded
- 1 cup cottage cheese
- 1 cup ricotta cheese
- 1 egg
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 16 oz box ziti or rigatoni noodles, cooked
Preheat oven to 350°F.
In a large pan, add olive oil, chopped onions and garlic. Saute for 3-4 minutes.
Add ground beef and cook until completely browned, drain fat. Return to pan.
Add tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, Italian seasonings, salt and pepper.
Bring to a simmer and cook for approximately 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Cook pasta according to package directions for al dente, rinse and set aside.
While the pasta is cooking mix together your ricotta, cottage cheese, 1 egg, 1/2 cup of Parmesan and a dash of italian seasonings.
Lightly spray a baking dish with a non stick spray then add a small amount of meat mixture in the bottom of dish. Spread around.
Add half of the noodles. Next, spread 1/2 of the ricotta cheese mixture on top of pasta. Spoon 1/3 meat mixture on top. Next add 1/3 of the mozzarella cheese.
Repeat with another layer of pasta, ricotta cheese mixture, meat mixture, mozzarella cheese.
Final layer is pasta, remaining meat mixture and cheese.
Cover with foil, cook for approximately 25 minutes. Remove foil and cook for an additional 10 minutes.
Eat Till It Hurts Friends!