|

Baked Ziti with Meatballs

Baked Ziti with Meatballs is an easy weeknight dinner that you can have on the table quickly. Using homemade or store-bought meatballs, this cheesy casserole will soon become a family favourite!

If you love this easy pasta recipe, add my creamy beef and shells, chicken and broccoli pasta and boursin cheese pasta to your next meal plan!


Want to save this recipe?

Enter your email below & we’ll send it straight to your inbox. Plus you’ll get great new recipes from us every week!

Save Recipe

You’re going to love this easy casserole dish that is perfect for a busy weeknight dinner! Serve it up with a house salad and some garlic bread and you’ll have everyone coming back for seconds!

I like to make a large batch of meatballs and use half for the baked ziti and freeze the other half for later.

The meatball recipe will be enough for two batches of baked ziti. You can also use them in a meatball sandwich or any of your favourite pasta dinner recipes.

If you love one dish pasta bakes, you’ve gotta try Gigi Hadid’s Pasta Recipe. It’s quick and easy too and you can reduce the spices if you prefer to have a milder sauce.

WHY YOU’LL LOVE THIS RECIPE

  • simple ingredients with no fancy equipment needed!
  • you can use homemade marinara sauce and homemade meatballs or store-bought!
  • delicious one-pot meal that will be in the oven in no time and the whole family will love!
  • tastes delicious leftover. Pop it into the microwave for a few minutes.
  • tasty and simple family recipes like my taglietelle ai funghi, philly cheesesteak casserole and pasta e piselli (pasta and pease) and giant cheese stuffed shells (Olive Garden copycat) are all family favorites that you will have to try next! You will love them too!

INGREDIENTS & SUBSTITUTIONS

Please see the recipe card for the full list of ingredients for meatballs as well as Bake Ziti recipe.

  • marinara sauce – use your favourite brand. I will have my homemade Marinara sauce on the blog in the next few weeks with all of the beautiful ripe tomatoes in season!
  • ziti pasta – depending where you live, you might not be able to easily find ziti pasta noodles. You could substitute with rigatoni (it’s larger) or penne pasta as well.
  • Parmesan cheese, freshly grated – I love the flavour the freshly grated Parmesan cheese adds to the meatballs. It really does take them up a notch. If you only have the jar of parmesan cheese, that will work too.
  • mozzarella cheese
  • fresh parsley – use Italian parsley or curly parsley. Fresh basil and oregano, chopped is also a great addition!
  • meatballs – in the recipe, I’ve used a combination of ground beef and ground pork. You can use all beef, or a combination of beef, pork and veal also for a delicious combination.
  • if you prefer to use ground chicken, try my easy baked chicken meatballs recipe instead!

STEP-BY-STEP INSTRUCTIONS

If you’re going to make your own meatballs, the recipe that I’ve included with in the recipe card will make 48 medium-sized meatballs.You will only use 24 for the ziti recipe.

Making meatballs from scratch is easy!

Place the ground beef and pork in a large mixing bowl.

Sprinkle breadcrumbs over the meat, followed by the milk. Let the milk soak into the breadcrumbs for about two minutes while you chop the onions.

Add in the finely chopped onion, eggs, freshly grated Parmesan cheese, Italian seasoning, garlic, salt, pepper and Worcestershire sauce.

(I like to mix my meatballs using clean hands. Rings off and stored in a safe spot! Alternatively, you can use a wooden spoon).

Mix gently until everything is mixed in. Be careful not to over mix!

Shape into 2-inch balls and place on baking sheet that is lightly brushed with olive oil. You will need two baking sheets and you can cook all of them at once by using two baking sheets.

Bake in 425°F for 25 to 30 minutes, turning once, halfway through.

Check to ensure that they are completely cooked and no longer pink inside.

Next, cook the pasta and drain.

Place drained pasta in large mixing bowl along with 24 meatballs. Pour the marinara sauce over top and stir gently until coated completely with sauce.

Transfer to a lightly oiled 9×13-inch baking dish.

(If you’re using store-bought meatballs, heat in marinara sauce over low heat on stove).

Sprinkle with mozzarella cheese.

Bake in 375°F oven for 25 to 30 minutes until cheese is melted and sauce is bubbly.

Sprinkle with fresh chopped parsley and additional freshly grated Parmesan cheese.

More Casserole Recipes to Try

Pizza Pasta Casserole

Chicken Noodle Casserole

Chicken And Stuffing Casserole

Broccoli Rice & Cheese Casserole

Cowboy Cornbread Casserole Recipe

Chicken Enchilada Casserole

Chicken Cobbler Casserole with Cheddar Bay Biscuits

I would love it if you left a comment about this recipe below! Subscribe to join the community and receive regular updates straight to your inbox! Let’s connect via Facebook, Instagram & Pinterest!

Print
clock clock iconcutlery cutlery iconflag flag iconfolder folder iconinstagram instagram iconpinterest pinterest iconfacebook facebook iconprint print iconsquares squares iconheart heart iconheart solid heart solid icon
Baked ziti with meatballs in blue baking dish.

Baked Ziti with Meatballs


5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star

4.9 from 10 reviews

  • Author: Sandra Flegg
  • Total Time: 55 minutes
  • Yield: 8 servings

Description

Baked Ziti with Meatballs is an easy weeknight dinner that you can have on the table quickly. Using homemade or store-bought meatballs, this cheesy casserole will soon become a family favourite!


Ingredients

Meatballs

1 and 1/2 lbs. ground pork

1 and 1/2 lbs. ground beef

2 cups dried breadcrumbs

1/2 cup milk

3 eggs

1 small onion, chopped

1 tsp Italian seasoning

3 cloves garlic, minced

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp. freshly ground pepper

2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce

1/2 cup fresh Parmesan cheese, grated

to assemble casserole

500g Ziti pasta, cooked and drained

6 cups (2 jars) marinara sauce

2 cups mozzarella cheese, shredded

3 to 4 tbsp. fresh chopped parsley (flat leaf Italian or curly)

4 tbsp. fresh Parmesan cheese, grated


Instructions

  1. Place ground pork and ground beef in a large mixing bowl. 
  2. Sprinkle breadcrumbs over the meat, followed by the milk. Let the milk soak into the breadcrumbs for about two minutes while you chop the onions.
  3. Add in the finely chopped onion, eggs, freshly grated Parmesan cheese, Italian seasoning, garlic, salt, pepper and Worcestershire sauce.
  4. (I like to mix my meatballs using clean hands. Rings off and stored in a safe spot! Alternatively, you can use a wooden spoon).
  5. Mix gently and until everything is mixed in. Be careful not to over mix!
  6. Shape into 2-inch balls and place on baking sheet lightly brushed with olive oil.
  7. Bake in 425°F for 25 to 30 minutes, turning once, halfway through.
  8. Check to ensure that meatballs are cooked completely. They should no longer be pink inside.
  9. This will make 48 meatballs and you will only need 24 for the recipe.  You can store cooled meatballs in ziplock bags in the fridge up to three days or in the freezer for up to 2 months).
  10. To assemble: Place drained pasta in large mixing bowl along with 24 meatballs. Pour the marinara sauce overtop and stir gently until coated completely with sauce.
  11. Transfer to a lightly oiled 9×13-inch baking dish.
  12. Sprinkle with mozzarella cheese.
  13. Bake in 375°F oven for 25 to 30 minutes until cheese is melted and sauce is bubbling.
  14. Sprinkle with fresh parsley and a few tablespoons of freshly grated Parmesan cheese.

Notes

  1. Ingredients Substitutions:Meatballs – I have written the recipe with ground pork/beef mixture.  I try to by lean meat whenever possible.  You can also use all beef for the meatballs or a beef/pork/veal combination. 
  2. Breadcrumbs – you can use fresh, homemade breadcrumbs or the boxed variety, either plain or with Italian seasoning. 
  3. Milk – use any kind of milk in the meatballs.
  4. Meatballs – I’ve included the recipe for homemade meatballs. Alternatively, you can also use store bought fresh or frozen meatballs.  If you choose to do so, heat the meatballs in sauce over low heat while the ziti pasta noodles are cooking, and proceed with the recipe.
  5. Storage: store cooled, leftover meatballs in the refrigerator for a few days or you can freeze them by placing in a ziplock bag for up to two months.
  6. Storage: store leftover Baked Ziti with Meatballs, covered in the refrigerator for up to three days.  
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Category: Dinner Recipes
  • Method: Oven Baked
  • Cuisine: American

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1 helping
  • Calories: 875
  • Sugar: 14.9 g
  • Sodium: 1701.1 mg
  • Fat: 30.1 g
  • Saturated Fat: 10.8 g
  • Trans Fat: 0.1 g
  • Carbohydrates: 84.7 g
  • Fiber: 7.6 g
  • Protein: 62.4 g
  • Cholesterol: 196.7 mg

13 Comments

  1. We had this ziti for dinner last night and everyone loved it! The meatballs are so tender and delicious!






  2. This is such an easy, simple, and delicious meal for any night of the week. The meatballs are my favorite!






Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe rating 5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star