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Baked Ziti

Baked ziti is a pasta bake recipe that’s sure to be a hit with the whole family! It’s packed with pasta, cheese, and a meaty marinara sauce, and it’s perfect for assembling in advance for an easy weeknight dinner.
Prep Time20 minutes
Cook Time25 minutes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: baked ziti, ground beef
Servings: 12


  • 1 lb ziti pasta
  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 5 cups marinara sauce
  • 15 oz fresh ricotta
  • 12 oz mozzarella cheese shredded, divided
  • 1 cup grated parmesan cheese divided


  • Cook pasta in salted water until just al dente - drain.
  • In a deep pan or dutch oven, over medium-high heat, add olive oil and onion and cook until softenened.
  • Add ground beef to pan and cook with onions - breaking up the beef with a spatula, until beef is fully cooked through and onions are softened (5-7 minutes).
  • Add minced garlic, 1 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp pepper and saute another minute.
  • Add marinara sauce and bring to a simmer for 5 minutes.
  • Remove from heat.
  • Spread a ladle of meat sauce over the bottom of a 9x13 casserole dish.
  • Add ricotta cheese into the sauce and meat mixture just until combined.
  • Add cooked pasta and stir just until noodles are coated.
  • Transfer half of the pasta to the casserole dish. Top with 1/2 of shredded mozzarella and 1/2 grated parmesan. Add remaining pasta and top with remaining mozzarella and parmesan.
  • Bake at 350˚F for 25 minutes. Broil 1-2 minutes to brown the cheese.
  • Let cool 5 minutes then garnish with basil if desired and serve with a side of garlic bread and salad for a full meal.