These hearty baked pasta recipes are the perfect crowd-pleasing meal. Bake a melty masterpiece to enjoy right away, or stock up the freezer with these tasty make-ahead options.
Pasta tastes perfect fresh out of the pot, but these easy, baked pasta recipes show you how simple it is to savor pasta fresh out of the oven. When you need a make-ahead meal, you’ll appreciate a Southern staple like our Chicken-Spaghetti Casserole, the rustic goodness of Baked Ziti with Sausage, the Classic Chicken Tetrazzini, or any of our many other baked pasta recipes. Scrumptious Baked Smokin’ Macaroni and Cheese is light on both butter and cheese, and ideal for add-ins: think sweet peas and prosciutto, or ham and broccoli. So for a mouthwatering lasagna, a fresh new approach to your favorite mac ’n’ cheese, or a new way to enjoy vegetable casseroles, preheat your ovens and prepare to delight in one of these fantastic baked pasta recipes.
Meatball Pasta Bake
Recipe: Meatball Pasta Bake
Orange juice and fennel give this quick supper bright, fresh flavor. Chop fennel as you would an onion, or omit it, if desired.
Creamy Spring Pasta Bake
Recipe: Creamy Spring Pasta Bake
Baked pasta gets a spring spin with baby sweet peas and ham. We love the crunchy, savory topping made with croutons and Parmesan cheese.
Recipe: Chicken-Spaghetti Casserole
Casseroles are where you can see Southern ingenuity at its best, and the eighties had no shortage of inventive ideas. This particular vintage Southern standard gives us all the warm and fuzzy memories we crave for family gatherings and neighborhood potlucks. This recipe has you preparing the whole chicken at home in a Dutch oven for versatility – its thick walls and tight-fitting lid can easily go between a hot stovetop to a broiling oven. After simmering the chicken in the Dutch oven, you’ll have tender meat and a healthy homemade chicken broth. Cooking the spaghetti in the chicken broth for even stronger, more savory flavor.
The City and The Country Mac and Cheese
Smoky cubes of brined city ham and salty bits of country ham give this main-course mac its name and savory appeal. Pasta enrobed with a creamy sauce and melting pockets of gooey cheese take it over the top.
Recipe: Lean Lasagna
Our favorite recipe from the Cooking Light column, this lightened-up lasagna tastes every bit as flavorful as the traditional version.
Recipe: Pasta-Chicken-Broccoli Bake
Cheese-filled tortellini and a chopped pecan topping add extra flavor to this kid-friendly Pasta-Chicken-Broccoli Bake, while broccoli and red bell pepper contribute pops of color throughout this one-dish meal. Add even more fun color by using colored tortellini. The unlikely pairing of ingredients like white wine and pecans will impress guests, while the delicious buttery crackers and grated Parmesan cheese will please even the pickiest eaters. Make this casserole dish for a potluck group or your family and receive rave reviews from all. One reviewer said that she enjoyed it so much, that she immediately emailed the recipe to her girlfriends.
Baked Ziti with Sausage
Recipe: Baked Ziti with Sausage
Pancetta, or cured pork belly, is the same thing as bacon without the smoke. Find it in the deli case of most supermarkets. Native to Italy, San Marzano tomatoes are known for their sweet flavor. Consider trying them in place of regular crushed tomatoes in the sauce.
Pizza Casserole Deluxe
Recipe: Pizza Casserole Deluxe
Win over all of the kids and grown-ups in your house with this new instant classic that feeds more than two everything pizzas. Fresh and packaged mozzarella give it the best melty consistency.
Baked Smokin' Macaroni and Cheese
This delicious mac and cheese is light on butter and cheese yet still melts in your mouth. Change the flavor profile of the recipe with combinations such as sweet peas and proscuitto or ham and broccoli.
New Tuna Casserole
Recipe: New Tuna Casserole
Our take on the classic hits the high notes: creamy, cheesy, fresh, and crunchy. Resist digging into the casserole right out of the oven. Letting it stand for 10 minutes allows it to firm up to the perfect consistency.
Green Bean Lasagna
Recipe: Green Bean Lasagna
Lasagna may not be the first thing you think of when you imagine classic Thanksgiving sides, but our take on this classic holiday dish will have you loving this new twist. It mixes the smooth taste of perfectly cooked pasta noodles with the crunch of just-right green beans, the creaminess of ricotta and shredded Italian cheese, and the sweetness of onions and mushrooms. Top this casserole with crushed buttery crackers and French fried onions and you will wonder how you ever enjoyed your green bean casserole any other way. This will be the update that will become your go-to family classic casserole for years to come.
Classic Chicken Tetrazzini
Recipe: Classic Chicken Tetrazzini
Freshly-grated Parmesan adds the cheesy flavor to this casserole. This recipe is great for making ahead and freezing.
Crispy Chicken Thighs with Pasta and Pesto
This stovetop-to-oven method yields crisp, dark-golden skin and juicy, tender meat.
King Ranch Chicken Mac and Cheese
All the flavors of a favorite casserole come together in the comfort of mac and cheese. Freeze this hearty, cheesy favorite in lidded bakeware for easy transport between oven, freezer, and fridge.
Tomato-Basil Lasagna Rolls
Recipe: Tomato-Basil Lasagna Rolls
These lasagna rolls are the perfect meal to freeze individually and thaw according to your dinnertime head count.
Vanessa's Make-Ahead Beefy Lasagna
Ready in 90 Minutes
A container of refrigerated pesto adds distinctive flavor to this basic beef-and-cheese lasagna, and the unbaked lasagna can be frozen for up to three months.
Tex-Mex Mac and Cheese
Recipe: Tex-Mex Mac and Cheese
A little bit of heat from poblano peppers gives this classic comfort food its Tex-Mex flair.
Fresh Vegetable Lasagna
Recipe: Fresh Vegetable Lasagna
This vegetable lasagna showcases a plethora of fresh veggies from zucchini, to mushrooms, to red and yellow bell peppers.