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Baked Pasta with Spaghetti Sauce makes a wonderful, hearty meal for a family or even when entertaining.
Mercy! How is it possible to love Baked Spaghetti or Baked Ziti more and more every single time you taste it? Over the past couple of weeks, we’ve had it twice. Yes! You read that last sentence right. Twice in two weeks! It’s that good.
It reminds me of my Skillet Lasagna in how quick and easy it is to prepare and how much everyone loves it.
Baked Pasta with Spaghetti Sauce Recipe
For this baked pasta recipe, you’ll need:
- pasta – spaghetti, penne, rigatoni, elbow, twirl, etc.
- olive oil – if you omit the onion, you will not need the olive oil
- onion – optional
- oregano – use dried oregano if you plan to make ahead this recipe as a freezer meal
- lean ground beef – you can also use ground turkey if you prefer.
- tomato sauce
- diced tomatoes
- shredded Monterrey Jack cheese
This baked pasta with a meaty spaghetti sauce makes one of the easiest meals you can throw together in a hurry.
One of the best parts of this recipe is that you can really use whatever type of pasta you have on hand and that you love. We’ve been rather obsessed with twirl noodles lately, so rather than using ziti noodles as I normally would, I used these. Of course you can use spaghetti noodles, ziti, penne, rigatoni, elbow, or any other type that will hold the sauce well.
As for us, we’re using twirls.
And there’s another little secret that this baked pasta recipe and I have for you, too. It is a wonderful make-ahead meal.
As in, the reason we had it twice in two weeks was that I made a double recipe and rather than freezing one of them, I stuck it in the refrigerator. I meant to share the second pan with my sister, but she’d already made dinner plans for her family so we had it again. And we loved it just as much!
We could have just as easily had a sandwich, a quick breakfast-type meal or any number of recipes that only take about 30 minutes or less to prepare. Heck, there are plenty of those on this website for goodness sake. But, I have to tell you. Right then and there, that pasta was even better than take out. Delivered at that.
Make Ahead Instructions
Here’s my baked pasta with spaghetti sauce recipe. I hope it you love it, too.
Baked Pasta with Spaghetti Sauce Recipe
- 8 ounces pasta
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/2 medium onion diced
- 1 tablespoon dried oregano divided
- 1 1/2 pounds ground beef
- 1 clove garlic minced
- 1 (26-ounce) can tomato sauce
- 1 (14-ounce) can diced tomatoes
- 2 cups Monterrey Jack cheese shredded
- Preheat oven to 350º F. Spray 9×13 casserole dish with nonstick cooking spray, set aside.
- Cook noodles in boiling water according to package directions. Drain well. As pasta is cooking, drizzle olive oil into skillet over medium-low heat. Add onion and cook for about 3 minutes until translucent. Add garlic and half of oregano to skillet with onions and cook for about 2 minutes. Add ground beef to the skillet, stirring often.
- Add diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, and additional oregano to ground beef.
- Combine with noodles and pour into prepared baking dish.
- Top with cheese and bake for 25-30 minutes.
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Baked pasta is such a comforting dish and we love it. These are really great photos!
Thanks so much, Missy.
I will try this today
I love cooking
Looks yummy and ver easy ste
My husband could eat this every day!!! Yum!
Mine could, too!
Love meals like this! Especially make ahead ones 🙂
There’s not much that can beat a baked pasta dish. And I know what you mean…every time I make it we like it more than the last time. I don’t know why I don’t cook it more often!
Twice in two weeks…I can totally understand! YUM
We eat a version of this all the time! (Almost) everyone loves it. I make it for a different reason, I’m too lazy to make actual lasagna and this tastes pretty close! I hate when people say “I made this but changed this this and this” but I am going to. I put 1/2 the cheese into the meat mixture and get it all melty in there then toss it with the pasta and top with the rest of the cheese. I also used sharp cheddar inside and mozzarella on top. I bet jack cheese is good too- that is my favorite cheese. Next time, but since we have had it twice this week too- I might wait a bit to make this again.
Drool alert! lol!
this looks delicious and i like that it can be made ahead of time 😀
I say there’s absolutely nothing wrong with repeat performances of a good thing! And that first picture – the close-up on the fork? It literally made my tummy growl. Go pasta go!!
Anything with melted cheese and pasta is a hit in my book! Yummy!
Made this tonight and absolutely loved it. Easy to make and very fulfilling light recipe though I substituted ground turkey for beef. Very delicious!
I want to try this tonight, would it be okay if i substitute the tomato sauce with a can of ragu sauce?
I made this for dinner tonight, and it is fabulous! Thanks, Robyn!
What type if pasta did you use?
I used a twirl pasta.
Baking tomorrow. Quick question, do you bake this covered or uncovered?
If you had frozen the second one you made, how long and at what heat would you have cooked it at?
I would allow it to thaw in the refrigerator overnight and then cook as normal.
Ohmygosh – I made this as a “crazy night” meal – put it in a timed oven, came home to supper – it was delicious! I will definitely make this pasta dish again. Thanks Robyn, from a new fan!
Only 8oz of pasta? Are you sure about that part?
Will this turn out alright if I dont add the meat?
I did everything except no onion and I forgot to mix the noodles with the sauce before I out the cheese on top and out it in oven but I’m sure it will turn out ok even if i didnt mix it all up…cross my fingers😁…smells yummy though!
I made this for my family tonight and they asked if we could have it once a week! So easy, so delicious.
Sounds so delicious….I pinned it to try!!
Was I supposed to drain the beef before I added the sauce??? Really hoping not…
thankyou for the recipe
I have mine in the oven right now. It looks so good. The family can’t wait. Thank you.
Great! I hope you all enjoyed it, Jamie! Thanks!