Cheesy Baked Pasta Casserole
- 1 16-oz. box whole-grain pasta (bite-sized shapes like ziti, farfalle, rotini, or penne work best)
- 1 24-oz. jar of marinara pasta sauce
- 2.5 cups low-fat/part-skim shredded mozzarella cheese
- 1 lb. lean meat or protein, cooked (85% lean ground beef or turkey; shredded or cubed chicken breast; or Italian chicken/turkey sausage are all good)
- 2 cups raw spinach (you can also use broccoli, mushrooms, zucchinni, or squash—just cook them in a little bit of olive oil first)
- 1 cup part-skim ricotta
1. Cook pasta until “al-dente” or slightly undercooked (it will finish cooking in oven), then drain pasta and add it back to pot.
2. Mix in jar of pasta sauce, ricotta and 2 cups of shredded cheese, then add cooked meat and veggies.
3. Transfer mixture to a 13 x 9 inch casserole dish, top with remaining 1/2 cup shredded cheese and bake at 375 degrees for about 20 minutes, until cheese is melted and bubbly.
4. Divide into 6 servings, then freeze leftovers (each portion separately) so you can enjoy for weeks to come.