Meaty Baked Ziti

Most saturday mornings, you can find me sitting in front of the TV with my daughter watching Pioneer Woman. We have watched it from the very first episode and my daughter loves to watch it as much as I do.

When we saw the episode titled Us and Them, I knew we had to try her baked ziti from the show. I already have 2 great baked ziti recipes, but this is kind of a combination of both recipes.  This recipe also uses beef and sausage, mine one with meat only uses beef. This does serve 12 so I was able to place it in two 9 x 9 pans for 2 meals.

I wish this dish would have photographed better. It might not be the prettiest, but is sure is delicious.

Meaty Baked Ziti |

Meaty Baked Ziti
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 1 lb. Italian sausage
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 (32 oz) jar marinara sauce (I use the Costco Kirkland brand)
  • 2 (14.5 oz) cans petite diced tomatoes
  • 2 tsp Italian seasoning
  • ¼ tsp red pepper flakes
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 ( 16 oz) pkg. ziti pasta
  • 6 cups shredded mozzarella cheese, divided
  • 1 (15 0z) container ricotta
  • ½ cup parmesan cheese
  • 2 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 eggs
  1. In a large pot, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onion and cook for a minute or two just until it begins to soften. Then add the beef and sausage and cook until fully cooked.
  2. Add garlic to beef and cook until fragrant. Drain off almost all of the fat.
  3. Add the marinara, tomatoes, italian seasoning, red pepper flakes, and salt and pepper to the meat. Bring to a simmer and simmer for 25 minutes.
  4. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  5. While sauce simmers bring a pot of water to a boil and cook ziti according to package directions to almost al dente. Drain and rinse with cool water.
  6. When sauce is cooked, remove 3 cups of the sauce from the pot and place in another dish to allow to cool down.
  7. In a large bowl, mix 2 cups of the mozzarella with the ricotta, parmesan, parsley and eggs. Mix just until egg is combined in.
  8. Mix the pasta with the cheese mixture. Then mix in the 3 cups of sauce you set aside to cool.
  9. Place half of the pasta in a 9 x 13 inch baking or lasagna pan (I used two 9 x 9 dishes so I could have 2 meals). Spoon half of the sauce over the pasta followed by 2 cups of the remaining mozzarella cheese. Repeat with another later of pasta, sauce, and and the remaining 2 cups or mozzarella cheese.
  10. Bake until bubbling, about 20 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes before sprinkling with chopped parsley to serve.
  11. Bake at 375 degrees for 20 minutes or until hot and bubbly. Let stand 5 minutes before serving. Serves 12.

Recipe adapted from Pioneer Woman on Food Network.

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