Easy Baked Pasta Recipes

Life is busy, but that doesn’t mean you can’t have tasty, home cooked meals. Pasta dishes are both hearty and comforting. These three recipes take a bit of preparation at first, but once you put them in the oven, you have time to do other things around the house before dinnertime.

You can easily add extra, seasonal vegetables to any of these dishes, but you don’t have to. Serve any of these with a simple green salad.

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Stuffed Shells


Ingredients

  • 1 lb. spinach, washed and trimmed
  • 1 lb. large pasta shells
  • 2 tbs., plus 1 tsp. olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 -28 oz. can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 lb. ricotta cheese (or cottage cheese)
  • 4 oz. shredded mozzarella
  • ¼ cup Parmesan cheese
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 350°.

2. Boil the spinach until it turns bright green (about 30 seconds). Remove and drain.

3. Add shells to the boiling water, and cook according to package directions. Once cooked, drain the shells and toss with 1 tsp. of oil. Set aside.

4. Heat 2 tbs. oil and garlic together for about 30 seconds, and then add the tomatoes. Cook for 20 to 25 minutes.

5. Squeeze any excess water out of the spinach, and then coarsely chop it.

6. In a large bowl, stir the spinach together with the cheeses and egg. Salt and pepper to taste.

7. Stuff the shells with 2 tbs. of the cheese mixture each.

8. Spread 1 ½ cups of the tomato sauce along the bottom of a 9x13” baking dish. Arrange the stuffed shells on the sauce, and then pour the remaining sauce over the shells.

9. Bake for 25 minutes.

Baked Rigatoni Cake

Ingredients

  • 1 lb. rigatoni
  • 2 tbs. olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • ¼ tsp. pepper
  • salt to taste
  • 1 -28 oz. can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 lb. ricotta cheese
  • 1 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese
  • 8 oz. grated mozzarella

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 400°.

2. Boil the pasta until it is slightly underdone. Drain and rinse with cold water. Toss the pasta with 1 tbs. of oil, and then set aside.

3. Heat 1 tbs. of oil in a pan, and sauté the onions, garlic, pepper, and salt for about 2 minutes.

4. Add tomatoes to the onion mixture and simmer until thickened, about 20 minutes.

5. Spray a 9” springform pan.

6. Toss the pasta with the Parmesan cheese, and stir in the ricotta. Pack the pasta tightly into the pan.

7. Spread the sauce over the pasta, pushing the sauce down into the rigatoni holes. Bake for 15 minutes.

8. Sprinkle the mozzarella cheese on top of the cake, and then bake for another 15 minutes.

9. Let cool for at least 10 minutes before serving.

Cheesy Lasagna

Ingredients

  • 2 tbs. olive oil
  • 3 small zucchini, quartered and thinly sliced
  • 8 oz. mushrooms, thinly sliced
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 5 garlic cloves, minced
  • 30 oz. ricotta cheese (or cottage cheese)
  • ¼ cup Parmesan cheese
  • ½ tsp. Italian seasoning
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 28 oz. can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 -26 oz. jar tomato sauce
  • 16 oz. no-cook lasagna noodles
  • 16 oz. shredded mozzarella cheese

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 375°. Prepare a 13x9” baking dish.

2. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the zucchini, mushrooms, onion, and garlic. Cook and stir for 5 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender.

3. In a medium bowl, combine vegetable mixture with the ricotta, eggs, Parmesan, Italian seasoning, salt, and pepper.

4. In another bowl, combine the tomatoes and pasta sauce.

5. Spread ¾ cup of the tomato mixture into the prepared dish. Place a layer of noodles over the tomato mixture, overlapping the noodles. Spread half of the vegetable mixture over the noodles. Next, spread half of the ricotta mixture as the next layer, and then sprinkle about 1 cup of mozzarella over it.

6. Place the second layer of noodles over the mozzarella. Spread about 1 cup of the tomato mixture over the noodles. Top with the remaining ricotta mixture. Sprinkle with 1 cup of mozzarella. Top with third layer of noodles, remaining tomato mixtures, and remaining mozzarella.

7. Cover tightly with foil, and bake for 1 hour. (Stick toothpicks at each end of lasagna to keep foil from sticking to cheese.) Uncover, and bake for another 5 minutes or until the cheese is melted.

8. Remove from oven. Let stand for 15 minutes before serving.


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Comments 14 comments

Isabella Snow profile image

Isabella Snow 8 years ago

Omigod you have no idea how much I love stuffed shells. I could never find them the entire time years I lived in Texas, if you can believe that. Havent had them since I left Bklyn!! Thanks for the recipe!


Whitney05 profile image

Whitney05 8 years ago from Georgia

I'll be printing this one too. ;-) I'm a sucker for pastas.


tom941 7 years ago

Can someone advise as to how the ricotta cheese is incorporated into the "Baked Rigatoni Cake"?

thanks.......tom


Stacie Naczelnik profile image

Stacie Naczelnik 7 years ago from Seattle Author

Tom, I've updated that. Thanks for catching it!


LiamBean profile image

LiamBean 7 years ago from Los Angeles, Calilfornia

Mmmm. These all look so good. I'm certainly going to try the shells (just how big are they supposed to be) and the lasagna.

Oh, and what the heck, I'll have to try the baked Rigatoni too.

You might mention in the hub that these are all "vegetarian" versions.


tom941 7 years ago

Stacie, thank you for the quick update! Just wasn't sure if the ricotta was to be used as a "filling", or mixed in.

Looking forward to trying it.

Thanks again for the clarification.........Tom


Karen Ellis profile image

Karen Ellis 6 years ago from Central Oregon

Who doesn't love pasta - It's the number one comfort food, isn't it. I can't wait to try the stuffed shells. I've been wanting to make these. You've given me the perfect excuse.


myawn profile image

myawn 6 years ago from Florida

Nice hub cheesey lasagna looks good and yummy


sari 5 years ago

e muy bueno y apestoso jejeje


Jennifer Burss profile image

Jennifer Burss 5 years ago from Michigan

I love lasagna! Thank you for the recipe!


Tatara profile image

Tatara 5 years ago from Asia

Mmmmm.Umami...


Long 3 years ago

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Ntan 3 years ago

Don't worry. What's attractive chegnas. My tummy turned to mush, and my husband says he likes it. I used to think What, in a sci-fi kinda way?, until he took a photo of my stomach he snapped it when I was laying down and had my eyes closed thought he was taking a picture of something else then he showed me. I just stared at that picture thinking, Wow, that's actually beautiful. and Wow, this is how he sees me. You will still totally be attractive to your husband. Even if he doesn't like what pregnancy does to your tummy, he'll be too happily distracted by what it does to your breasts.

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