I’m a very picky meat eater and could happily eat mostly vegetarian meals if my other half wasn’t a mega-carnivore. His reaction when we have steak for dinner? “Red meat good!” *grunt* Yes, my friends, I married a Neanderthal. But don’t most married women come to that conclusion at some point? Hehe.
So I’m always happy when I find a recipe sans dead animal that we both enjoy. Really, it’s hard to go wrong when pasta and cheese are paired together. This is a recipe I adapted from one I found on Recipezaar, my favorite online site to look for recipes. I was searching for something to do with a bunch of fresh spinach that was on the verge of going bad. We both pigged out on this (I was extra bad and even snuck in a few more bites when I was putting leftovers away). I think the pesto is really what gives this dish that extra something. I used homemade pesto from my freezer, which I’m trying to use up because I know I’ll have another mountain of basil again this summer from my herb garden. I think you’ll really like this recipe!
Spinach Baked Ziti
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 28 oz can diced tomatoes
- 1/4 cup pesto sauce
- 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
- 10 oz penna pasta (I used cavatappi)
- 6 oz fresh spinach, chopped
- 6 oz mozzarella cheese, cut into small cubes
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Cook pasta until al dente. Drain and set aside.
In a saucepan, saute onion and garlic until softened. Add tomatoes and simmer until slightly thickened, about 10 minutes. Stir in pesto sauce and red pepper flakes. Transfer to a large bowl, and add the pasta, chopped spinach, and mozzarella cheese. Stir until the spinach begins to wilt. Pour into a greased baking dish. Sprinkle Parmesan cheese on top.
Bake at 375F for 30 minutes or until bubbly.