Baked penne pasta and Awesomeness!

I’ve been cooking this dish so long I have no idea where I first ran across it. I like this dish because it’s simple to shop for as well as make. The second benefit, is it can easily be modified: add some sauteed mushrooms, substitute the Mozzarella with Fontina, or use a different marinara sauce. All these modifications will change the dish to the point it’s almost another recipe.

A sea of delicious cheesy goodness!

A sea of delicious cheesy goodness!


  • 8 oz. penne pasta
  • 1 pound ground beef or turkey
  • 24 oz. (1 jar) of your favorite pasta sauce
  • 8 oz. shredded mozzarella cheese (usually a bag)
  • Salt for pasta water

Extra Info:

Cook time:
        almost no prep, 30 minutes cook time
        6-8 people


  1. In a large pot bring water and salt to a boil and add pasta, cook pasta for approximately 12 minutes or until al dente.

  2. Meanwhile in a skillet brown the beef or turkey (note if you’re using turkey you will need to drain off the extra juices or it won’t brown) once brown dump pasta sauce on top of meat and simmer for a few minutes.

  3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

  4. When done, drain pasta and put in a 9×9 (or anything of similar volume) casserole dish.

  5. Pour the browned meat and sauce mixture over the pasta and spread around til even.

  6. Sprinkle the shredded mozzarella cheese on top and put into oven.

  7. Bake for approximately 12 minutes or until the top is golden brown.

  8. Let cool for 5-10 minutes then dish up with a basket full of warm and flaky rustic bread.

  9. Optionally add some Parmesan cheese to the top to finish.

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