My family LOVES this easy and delicious Baked Ziti recipe, and I love that it’s made all in just one pan! It’s as fast and delicious as comfort food gets and ready in less than 30 minutes!
If you haven’t noticed by now, I’m a huge fan of quick and easy homemade dinners. A lot of people associate homemade or “from scratch” cooking as being time consuming or too much work, but that’s an attitude I want to squash with my blog. I make easy homemade dinners for my family almost every night because they are just that–EASY!
Everything tastes better homemade! I don’t spend hours slaving away in the kitchen, and I’m in control of what goes in the dish. I have tons of easy meals on the blog, like this Creamy Chicken and Asparagus Pasta, Thai Basil Chicken, or Creamy Tomato and Spinach Tortellini that all take less than 30 minutes to make.
One Pan meals are appealing to everyone because the entire meal is made using just one pan! This One Pan Baked Ziti accomplishes my goal of an easy homemade dinner– only using one pan from start to finish! It’s these type of meals that qualify you as rock-star mom status in my book 🙂 It’s cheesy, sauce-y and totally delicious!
You can make it in any type of LARGE skillet, as long as it’s oven proof. A simple cast-iron skillet would work great. If you can’t find ziti noodles at the store, buy them online, or substitute penne, farfalle, or other type of bite-size pasta.
How to make Baked Ziti:
Can I make Baked Ziti ahead of time?
Baked ziti is best made fresh. If you want to make it ahead of time, follow the directions up to step 4. Don’t add and cook the noodles yet because you don’t want them to get soggy or to soak up too much of the liquid. Continue with step 5 just before you want to serve it.
What goes with baked ziti?
Consider trying these “one pan” favorites:
- One Pan Cheesy Chicken and Rice
- One Pan Skillet Lasagna
- One Pan Creamy Lemon and Chicken Tortellini
- One Pan Chicken Fajita Pasta
- One Pan Veggie Burrito Bowl
My family LOVES this easy, simple One Pan Baked Ziti recipe. It's as fast and delicious as comfort food gets and ready in less than 30 minutes!
- 1/2 pound ground Italian sausage (I use 'hot)
- 14.5 ounce can diced tomatoes
- 8 ounces tomato sauce
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- 5-6 cloves garlic , minced
- 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- 1 Tablespoon dried basil (or 1/2 cup fresh basil leaves but add it at the end)
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano leaves
- 3 cups water
- 12 ounces ziti pasta (or similar pasta)
- 1/2 cup half and half (or heavy cream)
- 1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
- freshly ground black pepper
- 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
- Preheat oven to 500 degrees F.
Add olive oil to a deep, 12-inch or larger oven-safe skillet over medium heat. Add sausage cook until browned, about 3-5 minutes.
Add the garlic and crushed red pepper flakes to the pan and cook for 1-2 minutes.
Add the diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, dried basil and oregano. Stir well. Reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 5-10 minutes.
- Add the water and dry pasta. Bring to a boil, cover, reduce heat to a low boil and cook, stirring occasionally, for 10-15 minutes or until noodles are tender.
Stir in the half and half, and parmesan cheese and season with salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle mozzarella evenly on top.
Transfer the skillet to the oven and bake until the cheese has melted and browned, about 5 minutes. Enjoy!
I love to serve this with easy Homemade Breadsticks!
Have you tried this recipe?!
RATE and COMMENT below! I would love to hear your experience.
*I originally shared this recipe February 2015. Updated November 2018.
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