All of us have those times when we need a great dish that can really feed a crowd and please everyone’s taste buds. Pasta chock full of vibrant veggies, tasty meats, gooey cheeses bubbly and baked to perfection! This dish started out being a simple baked ziti-esque dish… sauce, pasta, cheese. My older daughter, Hania and I kept adding in different ingredients as time went on. She pointed out that it was like pasta with all the pizza toppings… and so Pizza Pasta was born!! This dish is versatile enough for you to add your own spin also cause the potential ingredients are just never-ending. So give it a try…
Tri-color pasta with a chunky vegetable sauce, sausage, pepperoni and many different kinds of cheese. Like an everything pizza in baked pasta form!
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 4 cloves of garlic, minced
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 (28 oz) cans whole peeled tomatoes
- 3/4 cup red wine
- 1/3 cup fresh basil, chopped
- 1/2 cup carrots, roughly chopped
- 1 cup zucchini, roughly chopped
- 1/4 cup fresh parsley, roughly chopped
- 1 cup sliced fresh mushrooms
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 pound tri-color rotini, cooked according to package directions
- 1 pound hot or sweet italian sausage, browned and drained
- 2 cups diced pepperoni
- 1 cup ricotta cheese
- 1 cup grated Italian four-cheese blend
- 1 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
- Heat the oil in a dutch oven over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until tender. Stir in the garlic, tomatoes, wine, carrots, parsley, basil, sugar and salt. Bring to a boil and then simmer for about an hour, uncovered. Stirring frequently. Add the zucchini and mushrooms; cook until thickened, about 30 minutes longer.
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spray a 9x13 glass baking dish with nonstick cooking spray. Set aside.
- In a large pot, combine the pasta, pepperoni, sausage and 2 cups sauce.
- Place 1/2 cup of pasta sauce on the bottom of the prepared baking dish and spread around.
- Spoon half the pasta mixture into the baking dish. Pour about a half cup of pasta sauce over. Spoon small dollops of 1/2 cup ricotta cheese over pasta and then sprinkle with Italian four cheese blend.
- Top with the remaining pasta mixture. Again, pour about a half cup of pasta sauce over. Dollop remaining ricotta over pasta and then sprinkle with mozzarella cheese.
- Spray a large piece of foil with nonstick cooking spray. Cover pasta with foil. Bake in preheated oven for 1 hour. Remove foil during last 15 minutes of baking.