When you think baked pasta dishes, or pasta al forno, usually lasagne comes to mind as the king! Or maybe mac and cheese if you are so inclined and living that all-American lifestyle. But another one that we love is a baked ziti or rigatoni! And this Baked Rigatoni with Tomato Herb Meat Sauce will quickly climb your list of favorite pasta al forno dishes!
The Tomato Herb Meat Sauce
This is one of our newer tomato-based sauces that includes roasted bell pepper, Italian sausage, and ground beef, and various herbs among other things. Sauces with roasted pepper are a bit sweeter than tomato sauces without them and have a distinctive, yet subtle, flavor setting them apart. This flavorful sauce is perfect for using in a baked pasta dish or as a standalone pasta sauce for your favorite noodle.
Layering 3 Cheeses
The cheese really adds that wonderful flavor throughout, and we think these three cheeses are the best choices. While lasagne will often have a béchamel sauce and/or ricotta cheese, this dish does not. Or at least our version doesn’t!
Using the combination of provolone, mozzarella and parmesan cheeses layered throughout the sauce and rigatoni results in delicious cheesy bites every time. Also, the cheeses used here allow the pasta and sauce to be more prevalent in the flavor profile than lasagne.
We hope you enjoy this recipe for Baked Rigatoni with Tomato Herb Meat Sauce. If you give it a try, leave us a comment below, or tag us on Instagram @cooking_with_wine!
Looking for more recipes like this? Check these out:
- Roasted Zucchini and Tomato Pasta
- Cherry Tomato Garlic Basil Risotto
- Fettuccine with Winter Spiced Cream Sauce and Rosemary Sage Meatballs
- Pork and Shiitake Mushroom Ragù
Looking for more Italian recipe inspo?
If you want even more Italian-inspired recipes, check out our cookbook, Mangiamo, filled with 60 original recipes!
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