Baked Spaghetti recipe

Are you ready for a taste sensation that transcends the ordinary? Presenting the Ultimate Baked Spaghetti Extravaganza – a culinary masterpiece that marries the rich flavors of savory ground beef, vibrant bell peppers, and creamy cheeses into a symphony of taste and texture. This show-stopping dish promises not only to delight your taste buds but also to elevate your pasta night to a whole new level.

Cooking time:

The cooking time for the Ultimate Baked Spaghetti Extravaganza is approximately 30 minutes at 350 degrees Fahrenheit. This duration allows the dish to bake to perfection, with the cheese becoming melted and bubbly while creating a golden crust on top.

Here’s a breakdown of the cooking time:

  • Bake Time: 30 minutes at 350°F.

During this time, the flavors will meld together, the cheese will melt, and the spaghetti will absorb the delicious sauce. Keep an eye on the dish towards the end of the baking time to ensure that the top achieves the desired golden color.


  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 2 jars pasta sauce
  • 1 lb spaghetti
  • 2 bell peppers, chopped
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 16oz mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • 12 slices fresh mozzarella
  • 16oz ricotta cheese
  • 3 tablespoons cream cheese
  • A couple of handfuls of shredded Parmesan
  • Seasonings: Salt, pepper, Kinders (The blend), garlic powder, dried basil


  1. Prepare Ingredients:
    • Chop the bell peppers and onions.
    • Shred the mozzarella cheese.
    • Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Cook Ground Beef and Vegetables:
    • In a large skillet, brown the ground beef over medium-high heat.
    • Add chopped bell peppers, onions, and the seasonings of your choice (salt, pepper, Kinders, garlic powder, dried basil).
    • Once the meat is fully cooked, drain excess grease.
  3. Create Sauce Mixture:
    • To the cooked meat and vegetables, add both jars of pasta sauce, ricotta cheese, cream cheese, and a handful of Parmesan cheese.
    • Mix until all ingredients are well incorporated.
    • Let the mixture simmer for a few more minutes to allow the flavors to blend.
  4. Cook Spaghetti:
    • Cook the spaghetti al dente according to the package instructions (usually about 6-7 minutes).
    • Drain the spaghetti and add the sauce mixture to the noodles. Mix well until all the noodles are evenly coated.
  5. Assemble and Bake:
    • Transfer the saucy spaghetti into a baking dish.
    • Top with another handful of Parmesan cheese, the shredded mozzarella, fresh mozzarella slices, and a few sprinkles of dried basil.
  6. Bake in the Oven:
    • Bake in the preheated oven at 350 degrees for approximately 30 minutes or until the cheese is melted and bubbly, and the top is golden.
  7. Serve:
    • Once baked, remove from the oven and let it cool for a few minutes.
    • Serve the Baked Spaghetti with a side of garlic bread.

Why You’ll Love It:

  1. Flavor Symphony: Immerse yourself in a symphony of flavors with perfectly seasoned ground beef, vibrant bell peppers, and a rich blend of cheeses that will dance on your taste buds.
  2. Creamy Texture: The addition of ricotta and cream cheese brings a luxurious creaminess to the dish, elevating it beyond the ordinary baked spaghetti.
  3. Cheese Overload: Indulge in a cheesy extravaganza with both shredded and fresh mozzarella, creating a gooey, melty, and irresistibly cheesy topping.
  4. Versatile Ingredients: The recipe allows for versatility – experiment with your favorite pasta sauce, try different types of ground meat, or add vegetables to tailor it to your taste.
  5. Easy to Prepare: With clear instructions and readily available ingredients, this dish is easy to prepare, making it a go-to recipe for both busy weeknights and special occasions.
  6. Feeds a Crowd: The generous portion sizes and the decadent nature of the dish make it ideal for entertaining guests or feeding a hungry family with hearty portions and the promise of leftovers.
  7. Make-Ahead Friendly: Perfect for planning ahead, the dish can be prepared in advance and baked when ready to serve, allowing you to manage your time efficiently.
  8. Comfort Food Elegance: Enjoy the comfort of a classic spaghetti dish elevated to a new level of elegance and sophistication, making it suitable for both casual family dinners and more refined gatherings.
  9. Visual Appeal: The golden crust and melty cheese topping create a visually stunning presentation, making the dish not only delicious but also a feast for the eyes.
  10. Pairing Perfection: Serve it with garlic bread for a complete meal that complements the rich flavors, adding a delightful crunch to each bite.

How to store it :

Storing the Ultimate Baked Spaghetti Extravaganza properly will help maintain its flavor and texture. Here’s a guide on how to store it:

  1. Refrigeration:
    • Allow the baked spaghetti to cool to room temperature before storing.
    • Transfer any leftovers into an airtight container or cover the baking dish tightly with plastic wrap or aluminum foil.
    • Refrigerate the leftovers promptly.
    • Consume refrigerated leftovers within 3-4 days.
  2. Freezing:
    • For longer storage, you can freeze the baked spaghetti.
    • Portion out the leftovers into freezer-safe containers or wrap tightly in heavy-duty aluminum foil.
    • Label the containers with the date for easy tracking.
    • Frozen baked spaghetti can be stored for 2-3 months.
  3. Thawing and Reheating:
    • When ready to enjoy the frozen leftovers, transfer the container from the freezer to the refrigerator and allow it to thaw overnight.
    • Reheat the thawed baked spaghetti in the oven at a low temperature (around 300-325 degrees Fahrenheit) until heated through. Alternatively, you can use a microwave for individual portions.
    • Stirring the dish while reheating can help distribute the heat evenly.
  4. Note on Texture:
    • Keep in mind that pasta can change texture slightly after freezing and reheating. While the flavors remain delicious, the texture might be softer than when freshly baked.
  5. Avoid Overheating:
    • When reheating, be cautious not to overheat the dish to prevent the cheese from becoming excessively gooey. Heat it just until it’s warmed through.

Tips for Perfecting Your Ultimate Baked Spaghetti Extravaganza:

  1. Choose Quality Ingredients: Opt for high-quality pasta sauce, fresh vegetables, and premium cheeses to enhance the overall flavor of your dish.
  2. Precook Spaghetti Al Dente: Cooking the spaghetti al dente ensures it maintains a pleasant texture even after baking. It will continue to cook slightly in the oven, so starting with al dente is key.
  3. Season Thoughtfully: Taste the sauce before combining it with the spaghetti and adjust the seasonings if needed. This ensures a well-balanced flavor throughout the entire dish.
  4. Experiment with Cheese: Try different cheese combinations to add variety. Consider adding a layer of provolone or a sprinkle of asiago for additional depth of flavor.
  5. Add Fresh Herbs: Fresh herbs like basil or parsley can add a burst of freshness to the dish. Sprinkle them on top just before serving for a pop of color and flavor.
  6. Incorporate Vegetables: While bell peppers and onions are classic, feel free to experiment with other vegetables like mushrooms, zucchini, or spinach for added nutrition and flavor.
  7. Make it Spicy: If you enjoy a bit of heat, add red pepper flakes or diced jalapeños to the sauce mixture for a spicy kick.
  8. Customize the Meat: Try using a mix of ground meats like beef and Italian sausage for a more complex flavor profile. Season the meat liberally for an extra flavor boost.
  9. Herbed Garlic Bread: Elevate your garlic bread by mixing minced garlic and fresh herbs like parsley or oregano into softened butter before spreading it on the bread.
  10. Individual Servings: For a fun twist, bake the spaghetti in individual ramekins or muffin tins. This creates portion-controlled servings with an attractive presentation.

Variations to Explore:

  1. Vegetarian Version: Omit the ground beef and experiment with meat alternatives or simply load the dish with a variety of flavorful vegetables.
  2. Chicken Alfredo Bake: Substitute the pasta sauce with Alfredo sauce and add cooked chicken for a creamy and indulgent twist.
  3. Mushroom Madness: Incorporate sautéed mushrooms into the sauce for an earthy flavor that complements the richness of the dish.
  4. Sun-Dried Tomato Delight: Add a handful of chopped sun-dried tomatoes to the sauce for a burst of tangy sweetness.
  5. Pesto Paradise: Swirl pesto into the ricotta mixture for a vibrant green layer and a burst of basil flavor.
  6. Spaghetti Pie: Press the spaghetti mixture into a pie dish, creating a spaghetti pie. Bake until set and slice into wedges for a unique presentation.

Popular Questions and Answers:

Here are some anticipated questions and their corresponding answers for your Ultimate Baked Spaghetti Extravaganza:

  • Q: Can I use a different type of pasta for this recipe? A: While the recipe is designed for spaghetti, you can certainly experiment with other pasta shapes. Penne, rigatoni, or even fettuccine can work well.
  • Q: Is there a substitute for ricotta cheese if I don’t have it? A: Yes, you can substitute ricotta with cottage cheese or even cream cheese for a slightly different texture and flavor.
  • Q: Can I make this dish ahead of time? A: Absolutely! You can prepare the entire dish up to the point of baking, cover it, and refrigerate. When ready to serve, bake as directed.
  • Q: What can I serve as a side dish with this baked spaghetti? A: A simple side salad with a light vinaigrette or steamed vegetables can complement the richness of the baked spaghetti. Alternatively, garlic bread is a classic pairing.
  • Q: Can I freeze leftovers? A: Yes, you can freeze the leftovers for future meals. Ensure they are stored in airtight, freezer-safe containers or wrapped tightly in heavy-duty foil.
  • Q: Can I use ground turkey instead of ground beef? A: Certainly! Ground turkey can be a leaner alternative with a slightly different flavor. Season it well for best results.
  • Q: How can I prevent the top from burning during baking? A: If you notice the top browning too quickly, cover the dish with foil for the first part of the baking time and remove it towards the end to allow the cheese to melt and bubble.
  • Q: What type of pasta sauce works best for this recipe? A: Choose a pasta sauce that you enjoy, whether it’s a classic marinara, tomato basil, or any other favorite variety. Experimenting with different sauces can add variety to the dish.
  • Q: Can I add extra vegetables to the sauce? A: Absolutely! Feel free to customize the dish by adding your favorite vegetables. Mushrooms, spinach, or zucchini are popular choices.
  • Q: Can I use a different cheese instead of mozzarella? A: Certainly! You can experiment with different cheeses like cheddar, provolone, or a blend for a unique flavor profile.
  • Q: Can I halve the recipe for a smaller portion? A: Yes, you can easily adjust the quantities to fit your needs. Halve all the ingredients for a smaller serving size.

Add Comment