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    You are in: Home / Recipes / Baked Ziti from Cook's Illustrated Recipe
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    Baked Ziti from Cook's Illustrated

    Average Rating:

    31 Total Reviews

    Showing 1-20 of 31

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    • on June 18, 2010

      I read this in the original Cook's Illustrated issue but we lost it, so I'm so glad to see the recipe posted here. A few things I'd add: 1) to the people saying that you should substitute ricotta instead of cottage cheese: ricotta is the traditional cheese used for baked ziti, but if you read Cook's Illustrated they made it both ways and found that cottage cheese retained its moisture while ricotta dried out. They substituted cottage cheese instead of ricotta and got better results, so stay with cottage cheese. 2) to save some steps / time: you can use jarred alfredo sauce instead of mixing cream/cornstarch and get the exact same results. In fact, they did it that way in Cook's Illustrated and got the same results as mixing your own cream sauce. They just put mixing your own cream sauce in the final recipe because they wanted it to be all from scratch. So, save yourself some time and effort and use jarred alfredo sauce! 3) this is also great with vodka sauce instead of straight tomato sauce, and I do like to add more cubes of mozzarella. Great, great recipe that really feeds a crowd -- thanks for posting!

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    • on April 02, 2010

      OMG.....I had a really good ziti recipe but this one puts it to shame. My friend actually had the Cook's Illustrated and let me read it. It explains why cottage cheese over ricotta, why the mozzarella cheese is cubed, etc., and it all totally makes sense. I have been begging for her to send me the recipe all week and was so happy to find it here. I really don't like to make substitutions when I'm reviewing a recipe. I feel it should be prepared as written for a proper review. That said, we're not into "chunky", so I subbed another can of tomato sauce for the diced tomatoes. That's the only change I made. This is the creamiest, most flavorful ziti ever. Hands down, my family agreed, we throw out the old recipe!

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    • on April 15, 2011

      This was very good. Did not miss the meat, just added a salad and felt good about it. As someone suggested I used a jar of prepared alfredo sauce for ease (no cream or time). I also doubled the recipe (big family), I needed to use up some fresh basil but didnt have enough for two batches so I used a large (costco size) jar of Ragu chunky with the required other ingredients. When all the kids eat it is a 5 star meal! Thanks for posting.

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    • on September 20, 2010

      I was actually disappointed because it was so tasty. I know that doesn't make a lot of sense, but after spending a lot of time and totally demolishing my kitchen, I hoped that I would never have to make this recipe again. I was never able to get the cream sauce to simmer, and who has a double boiler these days? I think I'll look for an easier recipe.

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    • on June 05, 2010

      This is a wonderful recipe! The only change I made was to include homemade meatballs along the sides before adding the sauce. Definitely company worthy. I had enough to make two pans and freeze one for later. As always, your recipes shine.

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    • on June 08, 2014

      Fed a large group and was delicious.<br/>Not dry at all (cottage cheese vs ricotta is key) and to me, to my family, it was a baked ziti perfection.

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    • on January 09, 2014

      Seriously hands down the best pasta dish I've ever made or tasted! Delicious and my toddler loves it too. I make it at least once a month...so so good.

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    • on December 27, 2012

      This was fabulous! I made my own Alfredo sauce; this is a keeper. Thanks for posting this one. Sorry I took so long to post this review.

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    • on December 19, 2012

      Ziti was good, but I prefer my homemade sauce instead. This one is a little herby for my taste and I prefer a sweeter taste, less oregano/basil flavor. Overall recipe was excellent, minus the sauce, which I supplemented my sauce in the 2nd pan and it was outstanding. Enjoy!

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    • on October 15, 2012

      So good! Everyone liked it, even the 2 year old! It did take quite a bit longer to prep, and I boiled the water along with other prep. I think it took closer to 45 minutes for me. So worth it though! It didn't make my kitchen any crazier than normal from-scratch dishes, so don't be daunted by that. I used half n half instead of heavy cream because I forgot to buy the rich stuff :) But I think I would use the half n half again to cut calories a bit. I used 4% large-curd cottage cheese, next time I'll try smaller curd. I also split the dish into to 8x8s and froze the second for after baby #2 is born. Excellent dish, thanks for posting!

      **Don't use Mostacolli, it's too thin. And do undercook the pasta (I made the mistake and had a mushy dish this time). Also use high quality tomato products, not storebrand (I've used both and it makes a difference).

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    • on August 30, 2012

      Whoops forgot to post my 5 stars in the previous review!!! 5 stars worthy for sure!

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    • on May 04, 2012

      This is my go to ziti recipe from now on. I did use cottage cheese, small curd. and will use that from now on. Also baked in one 8x8 and froze the other 8x8. Excellent recipe.

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    • on January 13, 2012

      Excellent! I used 2 1/2 T dried basil in the sauce as my fresh has died for the winter. More steps than other recipes, but was still in the oven fairly quickly. The results were well worth the effort. Thanks for sharing the recipe!

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    • on September 18, 2011

      I thought this was very good considering that it didn't have any meat which I am use to having with ziti. Yes, there are a few steps, but I cannot see purchasing store bought alfredo sauce though. It is so simple to make and isn't time consuming like some people are saying. There is no comparison to fresh and bootled ragu sauce. I will be making this again in the future.

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    • on June 20, 2011

      Leave it to Cook's Illustrated to take a relatively simple recipe, fiddle with it so that it requires dirtying up every dish you own, and leaving you with a big pan of mediocrity. It wasn't bad, my family actually enjoyed it, but for the amount of work and dirty dishes, I expected it to absolutely knock our socks off. We'd say 0 stars for prep, and 3-3.5 stars for the end result, thus the 2 stars.

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    • on February 15, 2011

    • on January 23, 2011

      This is the best recipe for baked ziti! They really do their research at Cook's Illustrated and have taken the guess work out of everything. Served this with garlic bread and green salad. Everyone enjoyed!!

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    • on June 17, 2010

      Made exactly as written and really appreciated the detailed instructions. I thought this would be phenomenal, but I'm a little let down. I think I would have liked a thicker tomato sauce as this one kind of disappeared and wasn't as flavorful as I expected. I also thought it could have used more mozzarella and basil. All in all it was very good, just not that perfect recipe I've been searching for. We'll have leftovers for a while though! Makes a ton! Definitely freezing some for lunches. 1 more thing; just adding the starch to the cream didn't work for me. It never thickened up, i had to add flour in the end. I've since been enlightened by other Zaar members that starch won't/shouldn't work that way. You should mix the starch with a tidbit of water in a separate bowl and add to the already simmering cream. Thanks Mary!

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    • on June 07, 2010

      Very good recipe. I made half a recipe and we still have lots left. Probably two or three meals for the two of us. Will freeze some for later.

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    • on January 22, 2010

      Outstanding recipe! I made a full batch (baked half, froze the other) exactly according to instructions and it came together beautifully: the pasta was creamy and full of flavour, the sauce just perfect. My husband, who rarely comments on any meal, declared this to be 'spectacular'! Incidentally, I did all of the prep work, made the two sauces, cooked the pasta, etc. about 24 hours before actually baking, and it didn't seem to harm it at all. Served with a green salad and homemade sourdough bread to dip in balsamic vinegar and olive oil, this is definitely going into our rotation!

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    Nutritional Facts for Baked Ziti from Cook's Illustrated

    Serving Size: 1 (284 g)

    Servings Per Recipe: 8

    Amount Per Serving
    % Daily Value
    Calories 573.7
     
    Calories from Fat 240
    41%
    Total Fat 26.7 g
    41%
    Saturated Fat 13.8 g
    69%
    Cholesterol 121.3 mg
    40%
    Sodium 1130.9 mg
    47%
    Total Carbohydrate 54.9 g
    18%
    Dietary Fiber 4.0 g
    16%
    Sugars 9.6 g
    38%
    Protein 29.0 g
    58%

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