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Lunch / Dinner

Baked Ziti with Italian Sausage

Baked Ziti with Italian Sausage is something everyone can get on board with — who doesn’t like bubbling baked pasta with a rich tomato sauce, Italian sausage, and loads of cheese? This comfort classic, with a make-ahead option, feeds a crowd and is sure to be an instant hit.


12 servings

Total Time

1½ hours + resting

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Test Kitchen Tip

To make sure you’re getting tomatoes in purée, be sure to check the ingredients list. If you can’t find them, substitute one can whole tomatoes in juice and one can crushed tomatoes.



Preheat oven to 400°. Coat a 4-quart casserole dish with nonstick spray.

For the sauce, cook sausage in oil in a saucepan over medium heat, crushing with a potato masher until fine and cooked through, 57 minutes; transfer to a bowl.

Sweat onions, garlic, Italian seasoning, and pepper flakes in drippings over medium heat, covered, stirring occasionally, until onions soften, 10 minutes.

Stir in tomatoes and sausage, bring sauce to a simmer, and cook 15 minutes; cool 15 minutes. Stir in mascarpone, then season sauce with salt and black pepper.

For the pasta, cook ziti in a pot of boiling salted water 8 minutes; drain.

Combine sauce, ziti, and provolone; transfer to prepared dish, then sprinkle with Parmesan.

Bake ziti until hot throughout and bubbling around the edges, about 30 minutes. Let ziti rest 20 minutes before serving.

To make the ziti ahead, cool the components before assembling, then cover and chill overnight. Bake the ziti, covered, 30 minutes, and uncovered, 30 minutes.

Nutritional Facts

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