Easy Cheesy Baked Rotini

This recipe satisfies my cravings for lasagna – but it’s healthier and easier!
I like making this dish with rotini pasta – but it would also work well with spaghetti, angel hair, ziti, or elbow macaroni.
If you are interested in keeping things low in calories or saturated fat, I recommend using part-skim mozzarella and part-skim ricotta for this recipe.  That’s how I usually make it, and it tastes really great that way.  However, if you’re not as concerned about keeping things low in calories or saturated fat, then go for the whole-milk ricotta and whole-milk mozzarella.  It will taste awesome, and it’s still healthier than your average lasagna.
Serve this with a green salad and a veggie side (like maybe sauteed garlic asparagus or crispy garlic broccoli) for a filling, well-balanced meal.
Want more great pasta recipes?

Servings: 12
Serving size: 1/12 of the pan
Prep time: 20 minutes
Total time: 65 minutes

8 oz whole wheat rotini
1 lb ground beef
25 oz pasta sauce
1/2 C grated parmesan
15 oz ricotta cheese
8 oz shredded mozzarella
  1. Preheat the oven to 400F.  (Want to make the casserole in advance?  See the tip below.)
  2. Prepare a 9×13 baking dish with cooking spray.
  3. In a medium pot, cook the pasta according to the directions on the package.
  4. Meanwhile, in a large saucepan, cook the ground beef until the pink is gone.
  5. Drain the meat and return to the saucepan, with no heat.  Add the pasta sauce and combine.  Set aside.
  6. When the pasta is done cooking, drain and return to the pot.  Add the parmesan and ricotta.  Mix until well combined.
  7. Spread the pasta/cheese mixture in the baking dish.
  8. Pour the beef/pasta sauce mixture over the pasta.
  9. Top with shredded mozzarella.
  10. Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 30 minutes.  Then remove the foil, and bake for another 15 minutes.
ENJOY!
Quick Tip: I usually prepare this casserole in the morning, or sometimes even the day before.  For this, I just go through steps 2-9 and then cover the casserole with aluminum foil.  I keep it in the fridge.  Then, whenever we’re ready to eat it, I follow the baking directions in step 10.

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