Easy Baked Mostaccioli (aka: Baked Cheesy Pasta)

April 2, 2020
Also known as Baked Ziti, Baked Penne, or Baked Cheesy Pasta as we like to refer to it, Easy Baked Mostaccioli is a hearty simple baked pasta dish made of tube-shaped noodles surrounded in meaty tomato sauce and melty cheese. But no matter what you call it, it's a tasty family-friendly and budget-friendly dish that should become a weeknight dinner staple for sure.
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Serving Spoon of Easy Baked Mostaccioli Image

Growing up in a Vermont town where everyone was seemingly of either Italian or French descent, Mostaccioli was a very common dish.

Pronounced "must-uh-CHO-lee," it's a hearty simple pasta dish made of tube-shaped noodles surrounded in meaty tomato sauce. This easy baked version also gets smothered with a good dose of melty cheese.

You may also know the dish as Baked Ziti, Baked Penne, or Baked Cheesy Pasta as we like to refer to it. -- But no matter what you call it, it's a tasty family-friendly and budget-friendly dish that should become a weeknight dinner staple for sure.

This is our family's baked version, loaded with ground beef, sauce, melted mozzarella and Parmesan, and big ridged rigatoni noodles to hold onto all that cheesy goodness.

In the town in which I grew up, Mostaccioli was a dish traditionally served at church suppers and events.  In the South where I live now, church suppers are always pulled pork barbecue or chicken pie.  But in my Vermont hometown? -- It was chicken and mostaccioli.  And I love the stuff.

This is our family's baked version, loaded with ground beef, sauce, melted mozzarella and Parmesan, and big ridged rigatoni noodles to hold onto all that cheesy goodness.

Whip up a pan for dinner, and I guarantee you'll want to have it make frequent appearances on your dinner table -- Just like it does at on our's.

Pan of Easy Baked Mostaccioli Image

To make a pan of Easy Baked Mostaccioli, start by cooking up a box of rigatoni noodles according to the package directions.

While the rigatoni noodles cook, prepare a simple sauce with ground beef, onion, garlic, and jarred pasta sauce.  I also stir in a can of diced tomatoes to make sure there's enough sauce to go around.  I like to make sure there's plenty of sauce so we don't end up with dry baked pasta.

Easy Baked Mostaccioli Ingredients Image

Add the cooked rigatoni to the sauce and stir to combine it all until the noodles are well coated.

Easy Baked Mostaccioli Noodle Mixture Image

Next layer half the pasta mixture in the bottom of a 9x13-inch baking dish coated with non-stick cooking spray. Top with half the mozzarella and Parmesan cheese.

Spoon the remaining pasta mixture on top of the cheese to create a second layer. Then top with the remaining mozzarella and Parmesan cheese.

How to Make Easy Baked Mostaccioli Image

Pop the pan in the oven and bake it up until it's all heated through and the cheese is melty, about 30 minutes or so.

Easy Baked Mostaccioli with Cheese Image

Then you're ready to serve up the cheesy deliciousness.  Pair it with a simple salad, and dig on in to one hearty and satisfying tasty meal.

So whether you call it Easy Baked Mostaccioli, Baked Ziti, Baked Penne, or Baked Cheesy Pasta as we often like to refer to it, this is one tasty family-friendly and budget-friendly dish that will become a weeknight dinner staple for sure.

Check out these other easy family-friendly pasta main dishes:
Easy Baked Mostaccioli Image
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baked mostaccioli recipe, baked ziti recipe, baked penne recipe, baked cheesy pasta, easy dinner recipes
Main Dishes
Italian
Yield: about 8-10 servings
Author:

Easy Baked Mostaccioli

Easy Baked Mostaccioli

Also known as Baked Ziti, Baked Penne, or Baked Cheesy Pasta as we like to refer to it, Easy Baked Mostaccioli is a hearty simple baked pasta dish made of tube-shaped noodles surrounded in meaty tomato sauce and melty cheese. But no matter what you call it, it's a tasty family-friendly and budget-friendly dish that should become a weeknight dinner staple for sure.
Prep time: 20 MCook time: 45 MTotal time: 65 M

Ingredients:

  • 1 (16 oz.) box rigatoni pasta
  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 (24 oz.) jar spaghetti sauce
  • 1 (14.5 oz.) can diced or petite diced tomatoes
  • 1/2 tsp. Italian seasoning
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 2 c. (about 8 oz.) shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1/2 c. (about 2 oz.) shredded Parmesan cheese

Instructions:

How to cook Easy Baked Mostaccioli

  1. Cook rigatoni pasta in salted water according to package directions; drain.
  2. In a large skillet over medium-high heat, brown ground beef until cooked through. Drain.
  3. Reduce heat to medium. Add onion and garlic to skillet with ground beef. Cook until onion is just tender, about 3 minutes.
  4. Add spaghetti sauce, diced tomatoes with their juice, Italian seasoning, and salt; stir to combine. Heat through until mixture just begins to bubble.
  5. Remove from heat. Add cooked rigatoni pasta and stir to combine until pasta is coated with sauce.
  6. Layer half the pasta mixture in the bottom of a 9x13-inch baking dish coated with non-stick cooking spray. Top with half the mozzarella and Parmesan cheese.
  7. Spoon remaining pasta mixture on top of the cheese to create a second layer. Top with remaining mozzarella and Parmesan cheese.
  8. Bake at 350℉ for 25-30 minutes until cheese is melty. Let stand about 5-10 minutes before serving.
TRACEY'S NOTES:
  1. You can substitute penne or ziti pasta for the rigatoni, if you'd like.  Pretty much any other kind of pasta will work, too.
  2. Substitute Italian sausage for the ground beef if you'd like.  Or, use a combination of the two -- it's great either way.
  3. For the best melty cheesy result, shred your own cheeses.
Created using The Recipes Generator

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This post is linked with Weekend Potluck, Meal Plan Monday.

6 comments

  1. I love Bake Zitti. I am going to try your recipe, it sure looks great !
    Thanks for sharing the recipe with us.
    Keep safe,
    Fabby

    ReplyDelete
  2. Yep, we call it baked ziti (no matter what type of pasta I use!). It's always such a crowd pleaser. Pinned.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I haven't had this since our favorite Italian Restaurant closed a couple of years ago. I can't wait to try it.

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  4. I make this with angel hair pasta frequently; the two of us can eat from the casserole for several days. It works with any pasta. My husband prefers not to have the chunky tomatoes.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Wow, your Baked Mostaccioli looks amazing! It's a pleasure being featured alongside you this week on Meal Plan Monday! :-)

    ReplyDelete
  6. Your recipes sound so good i can't wait to make a few recipes at a time.

    ReplyDelete

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