Thursday, May 9, 2013

My Recipes: Baked Rigatoni

Hey guys! I had the day off today and John was done with his finals at three so we decided to make a quick comfort food meal and I wanted to share the recipe with you! Now that I'm thinking about it I wish I would have taken pictures during the process to show you guys the steps (another beginner blogger lesson learned), but it's a pretty simple recipe so you'll easily get the same results w/out step by step pictures! Next time I'm going to have to have a little photo shoot throughout the cooking process.

Prep time: 10 min. Cook time 40 min. Total 50 min.
  • 16 oz rigatoni pasta 
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/4 cup onion red or white chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic chopped
  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 48 oz jar of spaghetti sauce
  • six "deli slices" of provolone cheese, we used the cheese that's pre-sliced in the package.
  • 1 cup ricotta cheese
    •  Note:When my mom makes baked pasta dishes like this she uses cottage cheese, I don't like the texture of cottage cheese at all so I always use ricotta. You can use whichever one you like/is cheapest/etc.
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1 cup shredded parmesan cheese
  • pinch of salt
  • pinch of pepper
  • optional: 2-3 tsp Italian seasoning
  • cutting board, knife
  • bigger pot to boil pasta
  • skillet/pan to cook beef and sauce, spatula or spoon
  • baking pan (like a cake pan) to bake the pasta


1. Boil water with a little bit of salt in it,  add noodles boil for 7-8 minutes or until pasta is "Al-dente". strain from water and set aside.

2. Add olive oil to a skillet/pan, add in onions and garlic. Allow the onions to cook for a couple minutes until soft. (this part makes your whole house smell wonderful!)

3. Add ground beef to the pan, brown and add salt and pepper to taste. After beef is browned, drain out any fat if you have too (we use extra lean ground beef from a meat market in town and don't usually have any to drain out), then add spaghetti sauce. We only added about 40 of the 48 oz container. Let simmer for 10-15 minutes.

4. Preheat your oven to 350F, Layer the ingredients like this:
-1/2 the rigatoni noodles
-1/2 the sauce mixture
-six sliced of provolone cheese (lay it out flat)
-1 cup ricotta cheese, smooth it out as best you can.
-1/2 cup of mozzarella cheese
-the other 1/2 noodles
-the other 1/2 of the sauce mixture
-1/2 cup mozzarella
-1 cup parmesan cheese
optional: sprinkle a little bit of the Italian seasoning mix on top

5. Bake for about 30 minutes or until the cheese on top is melted and slightly browned. Take it out, let it cool for 5 minutes, and your ready to eat!

I love making baked pasta because it's easy and baking the dish brings out more flavor! I don't usually like to make big quantities of food because I'm usually just making dinner for two, but I made a whole pan of this because I know it is good re-heated!

If you try it out let me know! (:


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