Recipe by Bec
I love this recipe because it is so easy, and pretty fast! This makes a nice fresh tasting pasta bake; the tender noodles with the tomato-meat sauce and cheese is an excellent change from the regular spaghetti using a regular jar of sauce. The herbs give so much flavor to this dish- especially the rosemary! I don't remember where I got this, but the whole family loves it!
Top Review by misty6786
Pretty good. I made a lot of substitutions. Mainly, I used some of my dehydrated potatoes for the pasta and added a little water, soaking them with the rest of the casserole overnight. This is a keeper because it is accommodating, tasty, affordable, and with a little tweaking gluten free.
- 12 ounces uncooked fiori pasta (or any other type you want, like ziti, bow tie, or rotini)
- nonstick cooking spray
- 2 cloves garlic, minced (medium sized, larger if you want)
- 1⁄2 lb lean ground beef (or 1/2 pound of Boca 'ground beef' or other beef substitute)
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon dried rosemary (If you have the leaf kind, be sure to crush it a little)
- 1⁄2 teaspoon salt
- 1⁄2 teaspoon black pepper
- 28 ounces canned diced tomatoes (or two 14.5 oz)
- 1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded (more if desired. You can use other cheeses as well, like mozzarella)
Directions See How It's Made
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.
- Cook the pasta according to the directions on the box. (while it is cooking, go to step 4)
- Drain and set aside.
- Spray a medium sized saucepan with the cooking spray, or if you want you can use a tsp of olive oil.
- Add the minced garlic and cook for a minute or so over medium heat.
- Add the ground beef and cook until browned, breaking up the meat as it cooks, and drain the liquids. (If you are using a meat substitute, like Boca, you won't have to cook it, just throw it in and add a few tablespoons of water) Keep the pan at medium heat.
- Add the thyme, oregano, rosemary, salt and pepper. Stir to coat the beef, and cook for another minute or so.
- Add the tomatoes and bring the mixture to a boil.
- Then, reduce the heat and let the mixture simmer for 5 minutes (or until you are ready to place it into the dish) Spoon a small amount of the mixture into the bottom of a 4- quart casserole dish (this should be barely enough to cover the surface).
- Top with half of the cooked pasta, and then layer half of the tomato mixture over the pasta, then layer half of the cheese.
- Layer the remaining pasta on top, and top the pasta with the remaining sauce (the sauce may be liquidy, so just pour it on) and cheese. I always just use enough cheese to make each layer, so it is probably going to be more than the 1 cup.
- Cover the dish with foil and bake until the cheese is golden and bubbly, about 30 minutes. (During the last couple of minutes I take off the foil.)