Ever have one of those weeks where you don’t want to cook anything and end up eating random things out of your fridge? Well then…I have just the thing for you. This baked ziti is enough to feed a small army or yourself for several meals.
It is SO EASY to make and fairly hands off for most of the cooking time. Baked ziti is also a great comfort food, it has some sort of magical power to turn a bad day right around.
I usually have some veggies on the side such as a salad, green beans, veggies and dip, beer, anything will work really.
1lb Jennie-O Italian sausage removed from the casing (I used the sweet flavor, hot would work as well)
3, 14oz cans of tomato sauce (I used 2 cans no salt added and one can of regular…this keeps the sodium low)
16oz box of ziti noodles
2 cups of shredded mozzarella cheese
½ cup grated parmesan cheese
10 basil leaves, chopped
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon of onion powder
1 teaspoon of garlic powder
1 teaspoon of pepper
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- Preheat oven to 350.
- Cook ziti according to package instructions except cook for 3 minutes shorter than estimated cook time, noodles will finish cooking in the oven.
- In a large skillet, cook sausage (with casing removed) in EVOO until browned, drain excess fat.
- In a saucepan, combine 3 cans of tomato sauce and add all dried spices (oregano, basil, onion powder, garlic powder, pepper, red pepper).
- Stir 1 cup of finished sauce into the al dente ziti pasta.
- Place ½ of the ziti mixture into a 13×9 baking dish.
- Place 1 cup of mozzarella cheese and ¼ cup of Parmesan cheese on top.
- Top with remaining ziti mixture.
- Top with remaining cheese.
- Cover and bake for 25 minutes.
- Remove from oven, remove foil, bake additional 5-10 minutes uncovered until cheese is slightly browned.
- When done, sprinkle with chopped fresh basil and serve.