Aug 5, 2014

Easy Baked Ziti

Easy Recipe Baked Ziti

If you like lasagna you will love this easy casserole. Baked ziti is a classic Italian dish and my version is light and healthy, made with lean ground sirloin and part skim cheeses. If you’re tempted to buy pre-shredded mozarella for this dish you may be disappointed. Any cheese that is pre-shredded will never melt as well as real cheese that you shred by hand. That’s due to the stabilizers that are added to packaged shredded cheeses. It takes about a minute to shred your own cheese so just do it. You’ll be rewarded with a creamy, melty dish that’s as close to lasagna as I’ve ever had.

Homemade marinara sauce is great if you choose but for this dish, bottled sauce works really well. Ziti is not always available so you can use other shapes of pasta with penne being the closest. The man in my life recently had a birthday and I offered to make him anything he wanted for dinner and for his birthday cake.  He could have had anything that I make and guess what he wanted? He asked for baked ziti for dinner and my fresh strawberry cake for dessert. Good call, since I was eating here too. To try my Easy Baked Ziti click here for the recipe. – Jenny Jones

25 Comments on "Easy Baked Ziti"

  1. JeannieD

    2 thumbs up, a twist and a kiss! This was delicious! Going to “veganize” it for some friends next time… will keep you posted!

  2. Mary

    Hi Jenny!

    Discovered your site during “lockdown” and I love it. Have made many of your recipes, my favorites are the pizza dough, cinnamon rolls and ziti. My question is about the ziti, can it be frozen and baked later?

    Thanks for who you are and all you do!!


  3. Eric

    This is a hit in my family. As usual Jenny comes through with great recipes!
    I like that I can add different spices and ingredients to make this dish many different ways.

  4. Michelle B.

    Jenny, The Ziti was DELISH! Thankyou for sharing your recipe(s). You are so sweet! My husband liked the ziti so much he ate it for Breakfast the next day! I am attempting the lemon brownies yesterday. If you have a easy eggs benedict recipe will you share?

  5. Sheri

    Jenny, I made your baked ziti tonight for dinner. I followed your instructions and all I can say is “wow”. My husband isn’t easy to please with Italian dishes but let me say he had 4 servings of it and asked me to save the leftovers for lunch tomorrow. It’s a winner in my home. Thanks.

  6. Rosemarie Gilmour

    Hi Jen

    Best recipes best shows thanks a bunch, Everyone of them I want to try.
    You make them fun, which I love and healthy too.

    Bless you


  7. Mary

    Hi Jenny.
    Love your website and videos!
    I had trouble preparing pork chops until I discovered the ‘reverse sear” method for cooking them. They are evenly cooked and not dry! A bone-in loin chop is recommended for best flavor. An instant read thermometer is essential to prevent over cooking. 165 degrees is recommended by the USDA. Visit for instructions.

  8. Gerri

    I’m having an awful time trying to print your recipes.
    And usually get pages and pages of comments which I can read and don’t have to print-
    All I want is the recipe.
    What am I doing wrong?

    • mayzee

      l have the same problem whats the solution?

    • Jenny Can Cook

      If the “Print” button at the top right does not work, please see the FAQs.

    • M Zoom

      Specify the pages you want to print when the print screen pops up. Suppose the recipe is on the first page, so you should type in 1-2 that will also make sure you get all the directions also probably on the second page. There are other ways to get just the info you want also but this is the easiest

  9. Jane Lloyd

    This Baked Ziti is my go-to. I love this recipe. I use more onion and garlic in the sauce, and sometimes I use Italian sausage along with grass fed beef. I use a whole lb. of mozzarella cheese. Can’t thank you enough for your wonderful recipes.

  10. Jane Lloyd

    Where are your videos on YouTube?
    Where are you on Pinterest?
    I miss you, and I’m wishing you well.

    • Jenny

      There are links for my videos, pinterest, instagram, facebook, and youtube on this website. On a desktop they are along the right; on mobile, they are at the bottom.

  11. Marvin Hunkin

    hi. my mum’s going to make zitty, and love your videos. and your site is well laid out, for blind computer users who use a screen reader like i use jaws for windows from and able to navigate the headings, find items via the search, or listen to some of your videos using winamp on m windows 10 toshiba laptop. keep up the good work. some sites i have visited, not very blind friendly. one of the better sites. marvin from australia.

    • Jenny

      Hi Marvin. That’s good to hear – thanks for letting me know. Greetings back to you from California.

  12. Dan Szawica

    Exceptional baked ziti recipe !
    Djenkuje bardzo !

  13. Hailey

    I just made this tonight- it was delicious!
    One thing that I wish I had added to mine was more seasonings. The recipe doesn’t call for any, and mine needed it! (I didn’t use a really great quality sauce, middle of the road I would say, so this may be why I noticed the difference)

    • Jenny

      I intentionally did not add seasonings because there are so many difference sauces available all over the country (& internationally) but it’s easy enough for anyone to adjust based on the sauce you use.

  14. Robin

    I made this on Thursday, and it’s so good! The only thing I would add is – you don’t want to add saute the garlic with the onions right away. The garlic doesn’t take as long and burns easily. Add the garlic just before the onions are done, and it won’t burn. I splurged on a great marinara sauce (one of the high-end Italian restaurants sells their sauce at a local market), and it was excellent! Thanks for your great recipes!

    • Bruce Nelson

      I agree Robin. I see so many recipes where they add the garlic with the onion and burnt garlic can spoil the whole dish. Adding it as you said is better and safer for most cooks. I always add it later too.

  15. sue

    I am famous in my family for this meal!! And happy belated birthday Denis!! Jenny I was wondering if you have a recipe for vanilla and butterscotch pudding? Your chocolate is out of this world! !! Sue

    • Jenny

      For vanilla pudding I make my custard pudding that’s posted here. And I will be posting my butterscotch pudding soon.

      • Jane Lloyd

        Where are you? I miss you so much on YouTube .
        You are my favorite!
        Jane Lloyd

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