Recipe Review: Baked Ziti

Recipe Review: Baked Ziti

I love carbs. In any form. But especially when they’re coated in a yummy sauce and melty cheese. Enter this Pinterest miracle: a (supposedly) one-pot recipe for baked ziti, courtesy of Lauren over at Tastes Better From Scratch. It might not be as quick or easy as a package of Ramen or Easy Mac, but it is certainly more delicious and the ingredients won’t break the bank either!

“One Pan” Baked Ziti


  1. ½ lb. ground Italian sausage (I buy the “hot” kind that’s usually with the breakfast sausages)
  2. 1 can (15 oz.) diced tomatoes
  3. 1 can (8 oz.) tomato sauce
  4. 1 tsp. olive oil
  5. 5-6 garlic cloves, minced (or you can just buy pre-minced garlic and eyeball it until it looks like enough)
  6. ¼ tsp. red pepper flakes
  7. 1 Tbsp. dried basil
  8. ½ tsp. dried oregano
  9. 3 c. water
  10. 12 oz. ziti or similar pasta (Kroger has a vegetable penne rigate if you’re trying to be more carb-conscious like my parents)
  11. ½ c. half & half or heavy cream
  12. ½ c. freshly grated parmesan
  13. ground black pepper, to taste
  14. 1 c. mozzarella, shredded


  1. Preheat oven to 500 degrees Fahrenheit
  2. Add olive oil to a deep, 12-inch or larger oven-safe skillet over medium heat*
  3. Add sausage. Cook until browned, about 3-5 minutes. Add the garlic and crushed red pepper flakes to the pan and cook for 1-2 minutes.
  4. Add the diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, dried basil, and oregano. Stir well.
  5. Reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 5-10 minutes.
  6. Add the water and dry pasta. Bring to a boil.
  7. Cover, reduce heat to a low boil, and cook, stirring occasionally, for 10-15 minutes or until noodles are tender.
  8. Stir in the half & half and parmesan cheese. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle mozzarella evenly on top*. Transfer the skillet to the oven and bake until the cheese has melted and browned, about 5 minutes.
  9. Enjoy!

*Just a note: If you don’t have an oven safe skillet, you can prepare the sausage and pasta in the skillet and then transfer it to a baking dish before adding the mozzarella cheese and putting it in the oven. Works just the same, just means you’ll have a few more dishes to clean. (But if you’re making it with the intention of having leftovers, you can cover the baking dish more easily than you would a skillet!

There you have it folks! If you’re a pasta aficionado like me, you will not be disappointed by this recipe. It is  a perfect solution to those days when you just want something warm and carb-y and yummy. Better yet, you don’t have to pay $15 at a fancy Italian restaurant for one serving of fancy pasta!

baked ziti

Have you made baked ziti before? Just tried it? Leave a comment and let me know what you think!


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