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Family meal time is so special to me. It’s a chance for us all to catch up, discuss current events, and of course enjoy some good food. I love making baked pasta dishes with tomato and meat sauce, and this Rigatoni Pasta Bake is one of my favorites.
Rigatoni Pasta Bake
This recipe will feed a hungry crowd, and is also great for leftovers. I know my family really likes it too, if the clean plates are any indication. It sure makes washing the dishes a lot easier when there is a stack of clean plates in the sink. But it is still hard to get the pan clean. The last thing I want to do after a family dinner, is scrub the pan. Using pan liners are a huge help. It cuts down on scrubbing dishes.
I love how this recipe will feed my large family and still yield a few leftovers. It’s also very simple to prepare. I admit that on occasion I use already prepared sauce, but it’s so simple to make this sauce and it truly does taste a lot better.
This is a hearty meal. All you need to add is a salad and some crusty bread. If you’re like me, you’ll grab a bottle of Italian wine too. Need a great homemade salad dressing? Check out my zesty House Salad Dressing recipe. It is oh-so delicious and comes together easily.
This is a lot of pasta. You could easily freeze half of this for a later time, or pop in the fridge for later in the week.
My family loves this pasta dish. Mmmm…
Rigatoni Pasta Bake
Yield 8-10 servings
- 1 lb. rigatoni pasta, cooked until al dente
- 1 lb. ground beef
- 2 links Italian sausage, casings removed
- 1 15-ounce can crushed tomatoes
- 1 15-ounce can tomato sauce
- 2 Tbsp. tomato paste
- 1 tsp. garlic powder
- 1 tsp. Italian seasoning
- 1/2 teaspoon sugar
- salt and pepper, to taste
- 1 1/2 cups shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
- In a large pot of boiling water, cook pasta according to package directions, until al dente.
- In a large saucepan, brown ground beef and sausage until crumbly and cooked through. Stir crushed tomatoes, tomato sauce, and tomato paste. Stir in garlic powder, Italian seasoning, sugar, salt and pepper. Allow to simmer 3 - 5 minutes, allowing the flavors to combine. If the sauce seems a little thick, add a small amount of water. Gently stir pasta into sauce.
- Grease a 9 x 13 inch baking dish with cooking spray. Add half the pasta and sauce mixture to the baking dish. Sprinkle half the Mozzarella and Parmesan over the pasta. Repeat with a second layer.
- Bake in preheated 325 oven, covered with foil, for 20-25 minutes. Uncover and bake an additional 15 - 20 minutes, until hot and bubbly.
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