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Pasta Bake with ziti pasta noodles, mozzarella cheese, cream cheese, jarred spaghetti sauce, diced tomatoes, and seasonings. Comes together in just minutes and it's a quick & easy dinner that's perfect for busy weeknights.

PASTA BAKE

This cheesy ziti pasta bake might not look like much but it just happens to be one of my kids’ favorite dinners. I love it because it comes together so easily, uses things that I normally have in my pantry, and it’s so inexpensive to make. 

We also love this Instant Pot Ziti Pasta or this One Pot Chicken Alfredo Pasta

Pasta Bake with ziti pasta noodles, mozzarella cheese, cream cheese, jarred spaghetti sauce, diced tomatoes, and seasonings. Comes together in just minutes and it's a quick & easy dinner that's perfect for busy weeknights.

This casserole is also very adaptable which means you can add or substitute (or replace) basically every single ingredient!

  • Use Italian style diced tomatoes (diced tomatoes with garlic, oregano, and basil) instead of regular diced tomatoes. 
  • Hate sour cream? Simply leave it out then or substitue with riccotta cheese or cottage cheese. 
  • Reduced-fat cream cheese works great in this recipe if wanted.
  • Ziti or Rigatoni pasta is the preferred but feel free to use any box of pasta you want.
  • Add parmesan cheese or use provolone cheese instead of mozzarella or a little of both!
  • Use any flavor of jarred pasta sauce you want.
  • I always love having meatless dinner recipes on hand but if you must have meat then add 1 pound of cooked ground beef or sausage into the spaghetti sauce mixture. I would season the meat with salt & pepper, and maybe a little Italian seasoning while cooking. Be sure to drain the meat well!

You get the idea. There really is no way to mess this recipe up. We love it as is but feel free to do your thing and leave me a comment letting me know what you tried.

Pasta Bake with ziti pasta noodles, mozzarella cheese, cream cheese, jarred spaghetti sauce, diced tomatoes, and seasonings. Comes together in just minutes and it's a quick & easy dinner that's perfect for busy weeknights.

HOW TO MAKE THIS EASY PASTA BAKE RECIPE

  • Boil a pot of water with some salt in it. You want the salt so that you don’t end up with flavorless pasta noodles. I add about 2 teaspoons or so. I never measure it, I just add some in.
  • While the pasta noodles are cooking to package instructions, combine spaghetti sauce, diced tomatoes, and very softened cream cheese into a mixing bowl.
  • Drain the pasta and add it into the bowl. Stir until all the noodles are coated.
  • Layer half the noodles in the baking dish and then spread the sour cream and half the shredded cheese.
  • Top with the other half of noodles and finish off with the remaining shredded cheese. 

If you’re looking for more easy pasta casserole recipes then try my macaroni & cheese ham casserole, this kid favorite pepperoni pizza biscuit casserole, this perfect comfort food creamy chicken pot pie casserole, this delicious million dollar ravioli casserole or this instant pot chicken pasta casserole

Pasta Bake with ziti pasta noodles, mozzarella cheese, cream cheese, jarred spaghetti sauce, diced tomatoes, and seasonings. Comes together in just minutes and it's a quick & easy dinner that's perfect for busy weeknights.
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Ziti Pasta Bake


Author Jessica
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Prep Time 12 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Servings 8 people
Pasta Bake with ziti pasta noodles, mozzarella cheese, cream cheese, jarred spaghetti sauce, diced tomatoes, and seasonings. Comes together in just minutes and it's a quick & easy dinner that's perfect for busy weeknights.

Ingredients
  

  • 1 box (16 oz) ziti pasta noodles
  • 1 jar (24 oz) spaghetti sauce
  • 1 can (14.5 oz) petite diced tomatoes (do not drain)
  • 1 bar (8 oz) cream cheese (softened)
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese (or more if wanted)

Instructions

  • Heat oven to 375°. Prepare a 9x13-inch baking pan and spray with cooking spray. Set aside.
  • Cook pasta according to package directions. Remember to add salt to the water to help flavor the pasta.
  • While pasta is cooking, combine the spaghetti sauce, diced tomatoes, softened cream cheese, basil, parsley, and garlic powder in a large mixing bowl. Stir together until combined.
    ** You want the cream cheese very softened before adding it so it mixes in smooth with no chunks. Place unwrapped cream cheese bar on a microwave-safe plate and cook for 1 minute. This will get the cream cheese very softened.
  • When pasta is done cooking drain it and then add it into the spaghetti sauce mix. Stir together until the pasta is coated.
  • Pour half of the pasta into the baking dish. Spread the sour cream over top and then sprinkle half of the mozzarella cheese over the sour cream. Top with the other half of pasta and finish off with the remaining shredded cheese.
  • Bake, uncovered, for 15-20 minutes. Serve hot! If you don't want that 'baked pasta' on top then cover the baking dish with tin foil.

Nutrition

Calories: 459kcal | Carbohydrates: 52g | Protein: 16g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 30mg | Sodium: 704mg | Potassium: 603mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 8g | Vitamin A: 757IU | Vitamin C: 11mg | Calcium: 200mg | Iron: 3mg

Did You Make This Recipe?

I'd love to see it! You can share it with me on @togetherasfamilyblog and follow on Pinterest @together-as-family-blog-recipes or Facebook @togetherasfamilyblog for more!

Ziti Pasta Bake | Pasta Casserole | Casserole Recipes | Pasta Recipes | Pasta Bake with ziti pasta noodles, mozzarella cheese, cream cheese, jarred spaghetti sauce, diced tomatoes, and seasonings. Comes together in just minutes and it's a quick & easy dinner that's perfect for busy weeknights. #dinner #casserolerecipes #pasta #recipeoftheday #easydinnerrecipes

 

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Recipe Rating




18 Comments

  1. easypeasylifematters says:

    This looks and sounds to die for!!! 🙂

    1. Together As Family says:

      Thank you!! It’s so quick and easy 🙂

  2. 5 stars
    This was so easy and delicious! I added turkey sausage as well. Have you ever added vegetables to your recipe?

    1. Together As Family says:

      I have not but veggies would be yummy in this. I would add them at the end of the cook time and just mix everything together. Turkey sausage sounds amazing in this!

  3. 5 stars
    This was so delicious! I loved the sour cream and cream cheese, and the tomatoes were such a great addition. This pasta has great seasoning, my family raved about it, will definitely make this again! Thanks for a great recipe!

  4. Made this last night & my family loved it..I added peppers & turkey Italian sausage.

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  6. This was very good. Can you freeze leftovers?

    1. Together As Family says:

      I personally would not just because I don’t like pasta once it thaws and reheats and dairy usually separates after it’s been frozen and reheated. You could always try it and see what you think.

  7. Have you tried freezing this meal?

    1. Together As Family says:

      No I have not. I don’t really like how pasta reheats once frozen so I don’t ever freeze it. Plus the recipe also has dairy in it which separates once thawed. I would guess it won’t freeze well but it may be worth a try if you’re familiar with freezing stuff.

  8. I’m confused where the cream cheese is coming from to layer in the middle as it says to mix it all together in the sauce. Am I only supposed to use half the cream cheese in the sauce mixture and then the other half to layer in the middle? Thanks!

    1. Together As Family says:

      The middle layer is the sour cream and half the mozzarella cheese. The cream cheese gets mixed in with the spaghetti sauce and then in with the noodles. Layer half the noodle mixture, top with the sour cream and half mozzarella cheese, then top with the other half of the noodle mixture. Hopefully that helps. I just rechecked the recipe to make sure it was correct and it is.

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  10. Stefanie Rosw says:

    What about adding chicken to the dish? Just worried the chicken would be dry. Any advice?

    1. Together as Family says:

      I think that would be good to add chicken. It shouldn’t get dry because it’s not in the oven too long and the sauce will help keep it moist.

  11. 5 stars
    This is my kids’ favorite dish! So good and easy!

    1. Together as Family says:

      That makes me so happy to hear! Kids are the toughest critics!