Layered Meat and Cottage Cheese Macaroni Casserole

READY IN: 25hrs 40mins




  • Grease a 13 x 9-inch baking dish.
  • For the sauce; cook the ground beef or sausage meat with onion and garlic, chili powder, basil, oregano and cayenne; cook until browned; drain fat.
  • Add in tomato paste and stir over medium-low heat for 2 minutes.
  • Add in crushed tomatoes, bring to simmer and cook uncovered over medium-low heat stirring occasionally for 1-1/2 to 2 hours (the longer this sauce cooks the thicker and richer it will be, if you find that the sauce is too thick add in some water and continue cooking).
  • Season with salt and pepper; set aside.
  • Meanwhile cook the macaroni pasta until just al dente (do not overcook the pasta) drain then place into a bowl.
  • Add in 3 cups cottage cheese, 1 cup grated mozzeralla cheese, 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper; mix to combine with a wooden spoon.
  • Spread about 1-1/2 cups cup meat sauce into the bottom of the prepared baking dish.
  • Top meat sauce (just dollup the meat sauce then spread with a spoon, you do not have to cover completely with the meat sauce) then with 1/3 of the cottage cheese/macaroni mixture, then sprinkle about 1 cup shredded mozzeralla or cheddar cheese.
  • Repeat the layers 2 more times (make certain to save some meat sauce for the top of the casserole).
  • Top with remaining meat sauce.
  • In a small bowl combine the topping ingredients together until blended, then sprinkle over the top of the casserole.
  • At this point you can cover the casserole and refrigerate until ready to bake.
  • Bake at 350 degrees for 40-50 minutes or until hot and bubbly.
  • Let stand for 15 minutes before serving.
  • Delicious!