Three-Cheese Baked Spaghetti
Spaghetti pasta tossed with three cheeses, topped with a meat sauce and baked
8 ounces spaghetti
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoons dried parsley
1 cup cottage cheese
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
6 ounces (1 1/2 cups) shredded mozzarella cheese*
2 ounces crumbled feta cheese, optional
8 ounces ground beef
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 onion, chopped
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
3 cups spaghetti sauce
1/2 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
2 ounces (1/2 cup) shredded mozzarella cheese, optional
1. Cook spaghetti according to package directions (al dente). Drain and return to pan (remove from heat though!). Add butter and stir until butter is melted. Add remaining pasta ingredients, stirring to combine. Spread pasta-cheese mixture in the bottom of a greased 8-inch square baking dish.
2. Brown ground beef with the garlic and onion. Drain grease and return to pan. Add pepper, spaghetti sauce, sugar, and Italian seasoning. Stir well and then pour over the pasta, spreading evenly. Sprinkle cheese on top if desired.
3. Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for 35 minutes or until top cheese is browned and spaghetti is bubbly.
*If desired, substitute part of the mozzarella cheese with shredded cheddar cheese.
This recipe is based on "Old Country Baked Spaghetti" from the Little Red Hens blog. Measurements, instructions, and photos are all mine. :)
This recipe was included in my freezer meal plan of main dishes when preparing for the birth of my fourth child. Read my update on how this recipe and the others turned out after freezing!
This is the BEST spaghetti recipe!! When I first made it, I was expecting a so-so easy version of one of our favorite meals. As I was mixing the pasta and cheeses, I tasted some of it, and it was SO yummy! I think I could have eaten the pasta just by itself, before baking. ;)
The original recipe didn't call for the meat and sauce to be baked too, but since my husband doesn't like dry pasta (from being baked uncovered) and I like easy, one-dish baked meals, I decided to make it into a complete "spaghetti and meatball casserole".
It turned out perfectly. At first we thought it might be a little too runny, but as soon as it cooled slightly on our plates, we saw that it was a perfect saucy spaghetti. We tasted it and decided that this is our new way of making spaghetti!
I love that it's a baked meal, since that means I can wash the dishes while the food is in the oven, or make it up ahead of time instead of last-minute, trying to keep the pasta hot and cooking the sauce and meat in another pan.
This recipe is great. Served with a green salad and/or green vegetable and some fresh bread, this meal is perfect for a busy night's dinner or for sharing with guests. My rating: 10/10