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Baked Ziti (Pasta Bake)

WITH Sarah McCarthy

Dinner/Lunch • 60 Minutes • Serves: 6 • Cost: $17.00 ($2.90 Per Serve)

Baked Ziti is a baked pasta that’s loaded with flavour from seasonings and cheese. Cosy winter food that’s easy to whip up for a midweek dinner with friends and family. It’s also another reliable freezer-friendly meal. Pasta is a great carbohydrate source, packed with fibre that can improve heart health. 


  • 300g ziti or penne pasta
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves , minced
  • 1 brown onion, finely chopped
  • 500g beef mince
  • 700g tomato passata
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 1 cup ricotta
  • 1 cup grated cheese
  • 1 cup parmesan , freshly grated (optional)
  • Finely chopped parsley or basil (optional garnish)
  • Seasonings: 1 tbsp paprika (plain or sweet), 1 tsp chilli flakes, 2 tsp onion powder


  1. Preheat oven to 180C.
  2. Cook ziti for the recommended cooking time on the packet minus 2 minutes. Drain, then return to pot.
  3. Heat oil in a large pan over high heat. Add onion and garlic and cook for 2 minutes or until onion is translucent.
  4. Add meat and cook, breaking it up as you go.
  5. When it is just cooked, add seasonings and cook for 2 minutes.
  6. Add passata, water and basil. Bring to simmer, reduce heat to low and cook for 10 minutes. Adjust salt and pepper to taste.
  7. Pour about 2 cups of the pasta water into the pot, turn up to medium heat until sauce thickens.
  8. Spread pasta into baking dish and pour 2 cups of the sauce with the pasta, toss.
  9. Dollop with ricotta. Pour over remaining sauce. Top with cheese and parmesan.
  10. Cover loosely with foil. Bake 20 minutes. Remove foil, bake further 10 to 15 minutes until cheese is golden.
  11. Sprinkle with parsley or basil if desired, then serve!