Okay, so you could spend hours upon hours coming up with a classic Sunday pasta dish… or you can save your time and patience and bring the whole meal together in just an hour! That sounds like a fair trade to us! This Quick Rigatoni Bake has everything you could want: a melted cheese topping with plenty of delightful, tender rigatoni pasta, and of course, the sauce. A rich, sweet, and savory meat sauce with all of those amazing sausage spices you dream about. Quick Rigatoni Bake has speed and scrumptiousness on its side!

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Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 pound sweet or spicy Italian sausage, casings removed
  • 3 cups marinara sauce
  • 1 cup water
  • kosher salt, to taste
  • ground black pepper, to taste
  • 12 ounces rigatoni, can substitute ziti
  • 1 cup fresh basil leaves, chopped, plus more, for garnish
  • 1 1/2 cups mozzarella, chopped, divided
  • 3/4 cup ricotta
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano, grated
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Directions

Step 1 –Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.

Step 2 –Heat the oil in a large oven-proof skillet over medium-high heat.

Step 3 –Add the sausage and cook, while crumbling, until browned and cooked through, about 8 minutes.

Step 4 –Stir in the marinara sauce and the water.

Step 5 –Season the sausage mixture with the salt and the pepper.

Step 6 –Allow the sausage sauce to simmer for 10 minutes.

Step 7 –Cook the pasta in a pot of salted boiling water until just shy of al dente, about 2 minutes less than the package instructions.

Step 8 –Reserve 1/2 cup of the pasta water, then drain the pasta.

Also Read:  Ham & Cheese Hash Brown Bake

Step 9 –Add the pasta, the reserved pasta water, 1 cup of the basil, and 3/4 cup of the mozzarella to the skillet and toss to combine.

Step 10 –Season the pasta mixture to taste.

Step 11 –In a bowl, whisk together the ricotta and the heavy cream.

Step 12 –Season the ricotta mixture with the salt and the pepper.

Step 13 –Spoon the ricotta mixture evenly over the top of the pasta.

Step 14 –Sprinkle the top of the bake with the remaining mozzarella and the Parmigiano cheese.

Step 15 –Transfer the skillet to the oven and bake until the rigatoni is browned and bubbly and the edges begin to crisp, about 20 minutes.

Step 16 –Let cool for 15 minutes.

Step 17 –Garnish with the extra basil and serve.