Vegetarian Oven-Baked Pasta With Ricotta Cheese and Spinach

Vegetarian pasta bake with spinach
  • 40 mins
  • Prep: 10 mins,
  • Cook: 30 mins
  • Yield: 6 servings
Ratings (157)

Is there anything more comforting than a cheesy, hot, vegetarian baked pasta casserole? And the best part of all is that you don't have to add meat to the mix to create a baked pasta dish that is nourishing, satisfying and enjoyable for the whole family. It's the perfect vegetarian dinner idea

This oven-baked pasta casserole recipe is made with basil, Parmesan cheese, spinach, ricotta cheese, tomatoes, and spinach to create a cheesy casserole that is healthy enough that adults will approve, yet cheesy enough that kids will eat it. For a complete meal, add a side green salad and perhaps some toasty garlic bread

Looking for more meatless pasta casseroles? Here's more vegetarian pasta casseroles to try. 

What You'll Need

  • 2 cups pasta (use penne, ziti or medium shells)
  • 1/2 cup loosely packed fresh basil, chopped
  • 1 cup fresh grated Parmesan cheese
  • 10 ounces frozen spinach, thawed and drained
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • small drizzle of olive oil
  • 1 cup ricotta cheese
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 large tomatoes, chopped
  • 1/2 cup Italian seasoned bread crumbs
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

How to Make It

  1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees and lightly grease a large casserole dish.
  2. Cook pasta in lightly salted water according to package directions (about 10 minutes). Drain well.
  3. Combine fresh chopped basil, Parmesan cheese and minced garlic with a small drizzle of olive oil, just enough to moisten. Stir in ricotta cheese.
  4. In a bit of olive oil or a non-stick pan, heat onions for about 5 minutes until just soft,  then reduce heat to medium-low. Stir in balsamic vinegar and tomatoes and season with salt and pepper. Heat for another 3 to 4 minutes.
  1. In a large bowl, combine cooked pasta with spinach, tomatoes and onions, then place in casserole dish. Spoon ricotta mixture on top and spread into an even layer.
  2. Sprinkle bread crumbs on top then drizzle with one tablespoon of olive oil.
  3. Bake in a pre-heated oven for 25 to 30 minutes, until lightly bubbly. Let cool slightly before cutting into squares.