I love to make pasta with red sauce and meatballs for dinner. One of my favorite comfort foods. Its such an easy meal to make, filling and always a hit with any crowd. Meaty Ziti is that crowd pleaser for sure.
But, Mr. G isn’t a real big fan of a lot of tomato sauce. Oh, he likes spaghetti sauce, but he wants a LOT of meat in it. I mean, he wants to see more meat then sauce. So, Meaty Ziti was born in my kitchen.
You could actually use different kinds of meat in this recipe. All ground beef, different flavors of sausage and even ground turkey and ground turkey Italian sausage. The ground turkey Italian sausage is really tasty without all the fat.
I have also used different cheeses in this recipe too. Just what I usually have in the fridge or whatever is on sale at the store. But, it must be creamy and ewey gooey cheese.
I also served a simple green salad and some Easy Italian Breadsticks in the Bread Machine which are out of this world good.
- 1 pound ziti
- 1 pound of ground beef
- 1 pound of Italian flavored sausage
- 1 jar of Pasta Sauce
- Chopped Onion to taste
- 1/2 pound of grated mozzarella cheese
- 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- Cook pasta according to directions until the pasta is al dente edible but still a little firm. Drain the pasta in a colander. Toss with a little olive oil so the pasta does not stick together while you make the sauce.
Brown well sausage and ground meat. Add the onions and stir well to combine. Saute everything until the onions are translucent and beginning to brown, about 4-5 minutes. Then add the tomato sauce and stir well. Bring to a simmer.
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Spread pasta on the bottom of a 9×13-inch casserole pan, then layer half of the mozzarella cheese. Layer on the pasta and then the rest of the mozzarella cheese. Last, layer the parmesan cheese.
- Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes. I have found if I cover this it keeps the cheese from burning and drying out the casserole since the meat sauce is so thick.
I didn’t tell Mr. G what I was making for supper and when I brought it out of the oven, he gave it a quick glance and asked, “How much tomato sauce did you use?”
He really did love this recipe and said it was “A Keeper”. When I hear those 2 words, I know I will be making this recipe again. The sauce was perfect for his taste.
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I’m just a country girl loving my geeky life with my wonderful husband, always taking pictures, getting my hands dirty in the garden, being crafty, exploring with travels and enjoying all this on a budget. But above all, living my faith as a child of God!