This all-in-one-dish baked pasta with ricotta and spinach recipe is easy to make and delicious. Think of a creamy mixture of ricotta, parmesan, and mozzarella cheeses mixed with chopped spinach and pasta, all topped with tomato sauce and a layer of melted mozzarella! My mouth waters just thinking about it!
Ingredients you’ll need:
- Tomato puree or passata. You can transform this simple ingredient into a delicious pasta sauce by simply mixing in spices, olive oil, salt, and pepper.
- Onion and garlic powder to flavor the tomato sauce
- Italian seasoning. If you don’t have the blend, you can use dried oregano, basil, and marjoram
- Olive oil adds flavor to the sauce as well as a smooth consistency
- Red pepper flakes for added spice. Omit them if feeding this to children
- Ricotta, parmesan, and mozzarella cheeses make the perfect blend for this amazing bake. They all have different textures and flavors that add the perfect touch
- Spinach. Using frozen spinach makes it very easy. No washing or cooking fresh leaves. All you need to do is thaw it and chop it
- Minced garlic to mix into the cheese mixture for added flavor
- Ziti pasta. I love this cylindrical-shaped pasta. The sauce gets trapped inside and makes for yummy morsels. You can use any short pasta if you can’t find it.
How to make baked pasta with ricotta?
You won’t believe how easy and fast it is to make this amazing baked pasta with ricotta and spinach!
- Prepare the tomato sauce: into the tomato puree jar or can, mix in the garlic and onion powders, Italian seasoning, chili flakes, olive oil, salt, and pepper. Put the lid on and shake it until everything is well blended. If using a can, stir it with a spoon until well-mixed.
- Place the thawed spinach inside a colander and squeeze it to remove any excess liquid. Chop it and mix it in a bowl with the minced garlic, ricotta, parmesan, and mozzarella cheese. Add enough pasta cooking water to make it a creamy consistency. Season with salt and pepper.
- Boil the ziti according to package instructions minus one minute. Reserve half a cup of the cooking water and drain. Mix the cooked pasta into the bowl with the cheese and spinach mixture.
- Spoon the pasta into the baking dish, pour the tomato sauce on top, and sprinkle with freshly shredded mozzarella cheese. Bake for 35 mins or until the cheese is melted and bubbly. Serve with freshly chopped parsley on top.
What goes in Spinach Pasta Bake?
Spinach pasta bake is made by mixing cooked ziti pasta with a blend of ricotta, parmesan, mozzarella cheese, and chopped spinach.
All this is topped with tomato sauce and freshly grated mozzarella cheese and baked to perfection. When you scoop it out, you get perfectly cooked pasta with layers of melted cheese, creamy spinach, and tomato sauce that explode in your mouth.
Freeze and reheat pasta with ricotta:
You can freeze spinach pasta and bake it in an airtight container for up to 3 months.
To reheat, you can simply microwave it or bake it in a preheated oven. I recommend adding a bit of water to the pasta before reheating it. Sometimes pasta sauces dry out a little bit when frozen so they need to be rehydrated before reheating.
Spinach and Ricotta Pasta Bake Recipe
- 10 oz ziti or any short pasta of your choice, cooked and drained (reserve one cup cooking water)
- 1 cup mozzarella cheese, freshly shredded
For the cheese mixture:
- 16 oz ricotta cheese
- ½ cup parmesan cheese
- 1 cup mozzarella cheese
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 12 oz frozen spinach, thawed and chopped
- Salt and pepper to taste
For the tomato sauce:
- 24 oz tomato puree
- 1 ½ tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp onion powder
- 1 tbsp Italian seasoning
- ½ tsp red pepper flakes
- 1 tsp sugar
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat the oven to 350 F. Into the can or bottle of tomato puree, mix in the olive oil, garlic and onion powder, Italian seasoning, red pepper flakes, sugar, salt, and pepper.
- Shake it or mix it with a spoon until well combined
- Prepare the cheese mixture: chop the thawed spinach and place it in a colander. Press it down to drain any excess liquid. Transfer it to a large bowl and add the minced garlic, ricotta, parmesan and mozzarella cheeses.
- Mix everything well and season with salt and pepper. Add enough pasta cooking water to make the mixture creamy, about ¼ cup (may be more or less depending on the consistency of your mixture)
- Add the cooked pasta to the cheese/spinach mixture and spoon in into a 9x13 inch baking dish
- Pour the prepared tomato sauce evenly on top
- Sprinkle one cup of freshly grated mozzarella on top and bake for 30-35 minutes or until the cheese is melted and bubbly. Serve with freshly chopped parsley as garnish.