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Cheesy Baked Ziti

Cheesy Baked Ziti

Cheesy Baked Ziti is a delicious and comforting dish that falls under the category of Cheese recipes. It is a classic Italian-American pasta dish that combines ziti pasta, rich tomato sauce, and lots of melted cheese. This recipe is perfect for a cozy family dinner or a potluck gathering. The gooey, cheesy goodness of this dish will leave everyone craving for more!

Prep Time Cook Time Total Time Servings
15 mins 45 mins 1 hr 6 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 pound (454 g) ziti pasta
  • 1 tablespoon (14.79 ml) olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 pound (454 g) ground beef
  • 1 can (28 ounces/794 g) crushed tomatoes
  • 1 can (6 ounces/170 g) tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon (4.93 ml) dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon (4.93 ml) dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon (2.46 ml) salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon (1.23 ml) black pepper
  • 2 cups (226 g) shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1/2 cup (56 g) grated Parmesan cheese
  • Fresh basil leaves, for garnish (optional)

Cooking Instructions

  1. Preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C).
  2. Cook the ziti pasta according to the package instructions until al dente. Drain and set aside.
  3. In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the chopped onion and minced garlic, and sauté until they become fragrant and translucent.
  4. Add the ground beef to the skillet and cook until browned. Make sure to break it up into small crumbles while cooking.
  5. Stir in the crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, dried basil, dried oregano, salt, and black pepper. Simmer the sauce for about 10 minutes to allow the flavors to meld together.
  6. In a large mixing bowl, combine the cooked ziti pasta and the tomato sauce. Stir until the pasta is evenly coated.
  7. Grease a 9×13-inch (23×33 cm) baking dish with cooking spray or butter. Transfer half of the ziti mixture to the dish, spreading it out evenly.
  8. Sprinkle half of the shredded mozzarella cheese and grated Parmesan cheese over the pasta.
  9. Add the remaining ziti mixture on top, followed by the remaining shredded mozzarella and grated Parmesan cheese.
  10. Cover the baking dish with aluminum foil and bake in the preheated oven for 30 minutes.
  11. Remove the foil and bake for an additional 10-15 minutes, or until the cheese is golden and bubbly.
  12. Once baked, remove from the oven and let it cool for a few minutes. Garnish with fresh basil leaves if desired.
  13. Serve the Cheesy Baked Ziti hot and enjoy!

Serving Suggestions

Cheesy Baked Ziti is a versatile dish that can be served as a main course for lunch or dinner. It pairs well with a side salad and garlic bread. This recipe is perfect for family gatherings, potlucks, or any occasion that calls for a comforting and cheesy pasta dish. Enjoy this delicious meal with your loved ones!

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