First, let me apologize for not doing a Foodie Fridays post last week.  I forgot to schedule something, and it skipped my mind completely. 
I try my best to cook enough so that I don’t have to cook every day of the week.  The perfect option for Sunday’s meal was baked ziti.  I already had turkey meat thawed, so it was really a no brainer.  I didn’t have ziti noodles; however, I did have penne so I used those instead. 
This is my way. I remember I never even used to like it.  Since it’s one of my husbands’ favorites, I learned how to make it. Everyone has their own way of making ziti and lasagna. 
Ingredients
8 oz 97 % lean ground turkey meat
3 garlic cloves
1 large onion diced
3 small carrots shredded
3-4 plum tomatoes cubed
15 oz Light Ricotta cheese
2 cups Mozzarella Cheese, Grated (or more)
1/2 cup Grated Parmesan Cheese
1 egg
1 32 oz jar of spaghetti sauce (I used Classico Di Napoli Tomato & Basil)
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
Salt (to taste)
Pepper (to taste)
Parsley (fresh or dried. I only had dried)
1 lb box of ziti noodles (or penne in my case)
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Instructions
Heat olive oil in a pot over medium heat.  Add onions and garlic and sauté for several minutes, or until starting to soften.  Then add the carrots.   Sprinkle in some salt and pepper (to taste).  
Add ground beef turkey, sprinkle in a little more salt and pepper (to taste) and cook until browned.  If there isn’t enough room in the pot, brown the meat in batches.
Add tomatoes, spaghetti sauce, salt, pepper, oregano, garlic powder, and red pepper flakes. Stir and simmer for 25 to 30 minutes. After that time, remove 3 to 4 cups of the sauce to a different bowl to cool down.
In a separate bowl, mix together the ricotta cheese, 1 ½ cups of the grated mozzarella, Parmesan  egg, and salt and pepper. Stir together just a couple of times (do not mix completely).
Drain the pasta and rinse under cool water to stop the cooking and cool it down. Pour it into the bowl with the cheese mixture and toss to slightly combine.  Add the cooled meat sauce and toss to combine.
Add half the coated pasta to a large casserole dish or lasagna dish. Spoon half of the remaining sauce over the top, and then top with half the remaining mozzarella cheese. Repeat with another layer of the coated pasta, the sauce, and the mozzarella. Sprinkle on some parsley flakes
Bake for 20 minutes, or until slightly brown on top.  Remove from oven and let stand 5 minutes before serving.
What is your favorite, easy meal to prepare that can last you a few days without cooking something else?
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Kim S.
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Kim is the do-it-all mom (and wife) who not only works full-time and is a freelance makeup artist, but also blogs about her love of family, travel, beauty and skincare. Now that she has a kindergartener, Kim has added Class Parent to her resume. These are all tough jobs, but somehow, she makes them look easy.
  • this looks AMAZING! thanks for sharing the recipe!!

  • Looks Delish!!

  • I’ve only had baked ziti maybe twice. I really liked it both times and have no clue why I’ve never tried my hand at making it. Thanks for sharing this recipe because it has definitely inspired me to get in the kitchen and give it a try!

  • This looks so good! I make baked ziti too but your way is a lot more “involved” than mine… I’m sure it tastes better too. Because I”m always looking for the quick way out, I’m sure I sacrifice taste but I really hate cooking.
    I’m like you in that I try to cook more than enough for left overs so I only have to cook one Monday through Fridays!