Cheesy Mostaccioli

From The Pampered Chef: Recipes from the Heart Cookbook

Prep: 10 Minutes | Bake: 40 Minutes | Oven: 350°F | Makes: 10-12 Servings

1 package (16 oz) mostaccioli pasta, uncooked
1 1/2 lbs ground beef
1 jar (28 oz) spaghetti sauce
1 can (11 oz) condensed cheddar cheese soup
1 tsp ground black pepper
1 tsp dried Italian seasoning
3 cups (12 oz) shredded mozzarella cheese, divided

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cook pasta according to package directions; drain. In medium nonstick skillet, cook and stir beef over medium-high heat until browned. Remove from heat; pour off drippings. Stir in spaghetti sauce, soup, pepper and seasoning. In greased 4-quart baking dish, combine pasta, sauce mixture and 2 cups of the cheese. Sprinkle remaining 1 cup cheese on top. Bake 40 minutes or until heated through.

This is one of those super simple throw it in a pan and bake kind of recipes. It’s a great dish when your schedule is a little off because there will be plenty of leftovers.

I did change the recipe up a bit. I cooked my pasta a little less and on the raw side knowing it would continue to cook while being baked. I actually could have cooked it even less because the mostaccioli was a hair overcooked. (The pasta was a just little larger and softer than I’d like.) I also didn’t use an entire box of pasta. I left a little more than a half cup left in the box. (I didn’t want there to be too much pasta sucking up the yummy sauce and having a dry meal.)

I also only used a pound of hamburger. It’s packaged in one-pound quantities for a reason. I browned the hamburger with some minced garlic and a little bit of diced onion. I like big flavor and thought this would do it. Success!

As for the cheese, I only used two cups. Again, it’s packaged in bags with two cups. I really didn’t want to open another bag of cheese and use half. (I’ll need the entire bag for a meal later on or to add to frozen pizza. Yes, I eat frozen pizza.)

Although not entirely healthy or fresh, the cheesy mostaccioli was a great variation of pasta bake. I served it with fresh-made (sort of) garlic bread. Next time I think I’ll swap the ground beef for Italian sausage.

PS: It tasted even better the next day when I had it for lunch.


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