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Three-Cheese Baked Ziti with Italian Sausage

Three-Cheese Baked Ziti with Italian Sausage


  • Author:
  • Prep Time: 15 mins
  • Cook Time: 40 mins
  • Total Time: 55 minutes
  • Yield: 10
  • Category: supper, pasta

Description

Cheesy, decadent, and hearty Three-Cheese Baked Ziti is baked to perfection with Italian sausage and quality store-bought marinara.


Ingredients

  • 1 lb dry ziti
  • 1 lb ground Italian sausage
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 large shallot, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • Salt, pepper, + red pepper flakes (to taste)
  • 46 oz. (2 jars) Ragu Traditional Thick + Hearty Homestyle Sauce
  • 15 oz. ricotta cheese
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup Parmesan cheese, divided
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1 tablespoon each fresh chopped parsley and basil (plus more for serving)

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees and bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.
  2. Cook the pasta until al dente. Rinse with cold water and set aside. Drizzle with olive oil and toss to prevent sticking.
  3. While the water is boiling, heat a deep skillet with a tablespoon of olive oil. Cook garlic and shallot until softened, but not browned. Season with sea salt, pepper, and a pinch of red pepper flakes. Add sausage and break up well, crumbling. Cook until the sausage is browned and cook through.
  4. Pour the marinara on top of the sausage mixture and mix well. Bring the mixture to a simmer to meld flavors and let cool slightly.
  5. Mix the ricotta in a bowl with a 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, sea salt, pepper, a pinch of red pepper flakes, 1 egg, and 1 tablespoon each fresh chopped parsley and basil.
  6. Reserve half of the sauce in a bowl. Mix the rest of the sauce with the pasta and toss gently. Mix in 3/4 of the ricotta and toss until just combined.
  7. Layer the baked ziti in a large baking casserole dish: Spread some sauce on the bottom of the dish. Layer half of the pasta. Dollop some small spoonfuls of the ricotta. Top with half the reserved sauce.
  8. Repeat the process once more.
  9. Evenly top the baked ziti with 1 cup mozzarella cheese and 1/2 cup of Parmesan.
  10. Bake until bubbly and slightly browned, about 40 minutes. Enjoy!