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meatball pasta bake

Meatball Pasta Bake

Amanda Cooks & Styles
The ultimate ziti pasta bake made with homemade meatballs in a delicious tomato sauce with parmesan and mozzarella cheese.
Prep Time 25 mins
Cook Time 40 mins
Total Time 1 hr 5 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Italian
Servings 4 people

Ingredients
  

  • 1 lb Ziti Pasta
  • 1 15 oz. Diced Tomatoes canned
  • 2 15 oz. Tomato Sauce canned
  • 2 tbsp Balsamic Vinegar
  • 1 1/2 cups Mozzarella Cheese grated
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan Cheese grated
  • 1 tsp Dried Parsley or 2 tsp fresh chopped
  • 1/2 tsp Dried Basil or 1 tsp fresh chopped
  • 2 cloves Garlic minced

Meatballs:

  • 1 lb Ground Beef
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan Cheese grated
  • 1/4 cup Onion finely chopped
  • 2 cloves Garlic minced
  • 1 tsp Worcestershire Sauce
  • 1 Egg
  • 2 tbsp Ketchup
  • 1 tbsp Brown Sugar
  • 1 tsp Mustard
  • 1 tsp Parsley or 2 tsp fresh chopped
  • 1/2 tsp Basil or 1 tsp fresh chopped
  • 1/2 cup Breadcrumbs
  • 1/4 tsp Salt & Pepper each
  • 2 tbsp All-Purpose Flour

Instructions
 

  • Start by making the meatballs: In a large bowl mix all of the meatball ingredients (except for the flour) until well combined. Form meatballs into tablespoon sized balls. Transfer to a baking sheet or large sheet and place in the freezer for 20 minutes to chill. Once meatballs are done chilling, roll in flour to fully coat.
  • While the meatballs are chilling, boil ziti pasta and cook until al dente. Drain pasta and set aside.
  • Heat 1 tbsp of oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add meatballs to the skillet and brown on all sides. Cover meatballs and let cook for another 10 minutes over medium-low heat until meatballs are cooked through. Remove meatballs from skillet.
  • Heat oven to 350 degrees while you cook the sauce.
  • Drain excess grease from skillet and add tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, balsamic vinegar, minced garlic, and remaining seasonings. Stir sauce to combine and cook over medium heat until sauce begins to simmer. Once simmering, break up tomatoes with your spatula. Then, remove sauce from heat.
  • Arrange the Meatball Pasta Bake in a large 9"x 13" baking dish of your choice. Pour 1/3 cup pasta sauce to coat the bottom of the dish. Follow by adding half of the ziti pasta. Next, evenly sprinkle half of the meatballs on top of the pasta. Pour half of the remaining sauce over pasta/meatballs. Sprinkle half of the parmesan and mozzarella cheese on top. Repeat these steps for the second layer.
  • Place dish in the oven and bake for 20 minutes until cheese is melty and edges are golden. When done, remove from oven and let cool for 10 minutes.
  • Serve with your favorite garlic bread or fresh salad. Enjoy!
Keyword baked meatball pasta, meatball baked ziti, meatball pasta bake