My family likes nothing better than an Italian, red sauce-y, baked pasta dish on a chilly night. I love how easy they are to throw together. This one is kind of like an unstructured lasagna. You can use any meat sauce (or even a vegetarian tomato sauce) in place of the Bolognese. Just make a simple green salad and you are good to go. Or, if you're rushing in the door and want to get this on the table with a vegetable to make it feel like a full meal, stock up on a few quality frozen side dishes like Tommy’s All Natural Seasoned Natural Greens with Uncured Bacon, Seasoned Cauliflower with Greens Beans, or Seasoned Root Vegetables with Carrots.
You can use rigatoni, ziti, penne, whatever you like for the pasta – let your kid pick the shape! Kids can also measure the ingredients, and slightly older kids can grate the mozzarella. Add some red pepper flakes if you want a bit of a kick.
You can assemble this dish in the morning or even the night before and keep it in the fridge, then bake it right before serving.
- ½ pound dried short tubular pasta
- 1½ cups ricotta
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- ½ teaspoon dried basil
- Salt and ground pepper to taste
- 2 cups Bolognese sauce, store-bought or homemade
- ½ pound grated mozzarella cheese
- Preheat the oven to 350°F.
- Cook the pasta in a large pot of salted water according to package directions.
- While the pasta is cooking mix together the ricotta, oregano, basil, salt and pepper in a medium-sized bowl.
- Drain the pasta and return it to the pot. Add the Bolognese sauce and stir to combine. Transfer the pasta to a shallow 2-quart baking dish. Spoon tablespoons of the ricotta mixture over the top of the pasta, tucking it down into the pasta slightly. Sprinkle the top with the grated mozzarella.
- Bake the casserole for about 30 minutes until everything is hot and the cheese is melted and the top is golden brown. Serve hot.
If you're looking for a vegetarian-friendly pasta sauce, try this Classic Tomato Sauce for Pasta or Kale Pesto recipe. For a gluten-free option, try this Gluten-Free Summer Penne with Tomatoes and Basil.
Also don't miss out on these other delicious pasta recipes: 8 Summertime Pasta Recipes, Pasta with Edamame, Mint and Basil Pesto, Shrimp Pasta, and Simplest Tomato, Corn, Basil and Mozzarella Pasta Salad. And for more easy recipes that involve cheesy layers, try out this Fresh Spinach Ravioli Lasagna and Three Cheese Butternut and Mushroom Lasagna.