No Boil Baked Penne

No Boil Baked Penne – SUPER easy weeknight meal. Simply mix together a few simple ingredients, pour it into a baking dish, and bake. No need to precook the pasta. It bakes along with everything else! Penne pasta, ricotta cheese, Italian sausage, spaghetti sauce, water, mozzarella, and parmesan cheese. Serve the pasta with a salad and some garlic bread for a restaurant-quality meal! #pasta #casserole #familydinner #noboilpasta

Originally posted 10/6/2010

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Easy One-Pan Pasta Casserole

This No-Boil Penne Pasta is a weeknight favorite. I call this a “no excuses meal”. There are no excuses to not eat at home with this recipe. This recipe is SUPER simple to make. You simply mix together a few simple ingredients and pour it into a baking dish. The best part about the recipe is that there is no need to precook the pasta before adding it to the casserole dish. It will cook in the dish with everything else. It takes longer for the oven to preheat than it does to make this dish. You can’t ask for an easier home-cooked meal.

We had this for dinner, and I had it again for lunch and dinner yesterday.  The leftovers tasted just as good reheated. I can not wait to make this again!

casserole dish of baked penne pasta

How to Make No-Boil Baked Penne

As I said, this casserole is SUPER easy to make. Start with browning some sausage or ground beef. In a large bowl, combine the cooked sausage, ricotta cheese, spaghetti sauce, water, uncooked penne pasta, mozzarella, and parmesan cheese. Spread the mixture into a baking dish and top with extra mozzarella. Cover the dish with aluminum foil and bake. Remove the foil and bake a few more minutes until the cheese is nice and bubbly.

  • Do NOT cook the pasta. Add the pasta uncooked to the casserole mixture. It will cook along with the rest of the ingredients.
  • You can use sausage, ground beef, ground turkey, or no meat at all in this recipe.
  • I used Italian sausage, but this is also great with a roll of breakfast sausage such as Jimmy Dean.
  • This is a very basic recipe. Feel free to add some vegetables to the pasta mixture. Spinach, cooked mushrooms, onions, bell pepper would all be good.
  • My favorite store-bought spaghetti sauces are Rao’s, La Famiglia DelGrosso, and Trader Joe’s Roasted Garlic Marinara (green label).
  • Can No-Boil Baked Penne be made in advance? Sure. You can assemble the casserole and refrigerate overnight.
  • Can No-Boil Baked Penne be frozen? Yes! I suggest freezing this after baking and reheating when ready to serve.
plate of baked penne pasta casserole with salad and bread

What to Serve with Pasta Casserole

This baked pasta is a family favorite. It is easy to make and tastes fantastic! We make this at least once a month. It is just as good, if not better, than a restaurant. It is also just as easy as grabbing takeout. PLUS it is fresh and hot when we sit down to eat.

We usually serve this with a salad and some garlic bread. Here are a few of our favorite recipes from the blog that go great with this easy pasta casserole:

Creamy Italiano Salad

Creamy Italiano Salad – our favorite salad!!! Romaine, tomatoes, thinly sliced seedless cucumbers, sliced banana peppers, croutons, parmesan cheese, and…

Garlic Parmesan Skillet Bread

Garlic Parmesan Skillet Bread – refrigerated biscuits chopped and tossed in butter, garlic, italian seasoning and parmesan cheese. Baked in…

Italian Green Bean Salad

Italian Green Bean Salad – quick and delicious side dish! Green beans, tomatoes, garlic, olive oil, prosciutto, and mozzarella tossed…

scooping pasta from baking dish

No Boil Baked Penne

Yield: 8 people
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 1 hr
Total Time 1 hr 10 mins
No Boil Baked Penne – SUPER easy weeknight meal. Simply mix together a few simple ingredients, pour it into a baking dish, and bake. No need to precook the pasta. It bakes along with everything else! Penne pasta, ricotta cheese, Italian sausage, spaghetti sauce, water, mozzarella, and parmesan cheese. Serve the pasta with a salad and some garlic bread for a restaurant-quality meal!

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb sausage, cooked and crumbled
  • 1 (26-oz) jar spaghetti sauce
  • cups water
  • 1 (15-oz) container ricotta
  • 2 cups shredded mozzarella, divided
  • ¼ cup parmesan cheese
  • 8- oz uncooked penne

Instructions:

  • Preheat oven to 400ºF. Lightly grease 9x13x2-inch casserole dish; set aside.
  • In a skillet, cook sausage until no longer pink. Drain fat.
  • Combine sauce, water, ricotta, 1 cup of mozzarella, cooked sausage, parmesan, and uncooked penne pasta.
  • Pour into prepared baking dish and cover with foil.
  • Bake for 55 minutes. Remove foil and top with remaining mozzarella cheese. Bake for 5 to 10 minutes, until bubbly.

Notes:

  • Do NOT cook the pasta. Add the pasta uncooked to the casserole mixture. It will cook along with the rest of the ingredients.
  • You can use sausage, ground beef, ground turkey, cooked chicken, or no meat at all in this recipe.
  • I used Italian sausage, but this is also great with a roll of breakfast sausage such as Jimmy Dean.
  • This is a very basic recipe. Feel free to add some vegetables to the pasta mixture. Spinach, cooked mushrooms, onions, bell pepper would all be good.
spaghetti sauce
  • My favorite store-bought spaghetti sauces are Rao’s, La Famiglia DelGrosso, and Trader Joe’s Roasted Garlic Marinara (green label).
  • Can No-Boil Baked Penne be made in advance? Sure. You can assemble the casserole and refrigerate overnight.
  • Can No-Boil Baked Penne be frozen? Yes! I suggest freezing this after baking and reheating when ready to serve.

Steph

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plate of baked penne pasta casserole with salad and bread
scooping baked penne pasta from casserole dish
casserole dish of baked penne pasta

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Comments

  1. I used your recipe as a "template", and made it with what I had on hand…it turned out fabulous, and the whole family loved it! Thank you!

  2. I made this tonight and it's wonderful. Very forgiving, too. I didn't have any mozzerella, so I used Mexican mix shredded cheeses. I also didn't see that it had sausage in it, but I didn't have any. I ended up breaking up some breakfast sausage patties into the mix and then put four hotdogs on top of the casserole. Then, I didn't have any penne, so I used rotini. No matter – it is DELICIOUS!!! Thank you!!!

  3. Stephanie, I just wanted to tell you how nice it was to meet you in person today, and NOW I have to say that I will definitely be trying this recipe out on my family! This looks delicious and EASY, which is a total prerequisite in my house. I think I've tried three of the recipes you've posted over the last six months or so, and they've all been wonderful. Thank you so much, and again, it was lovely to meet you at the Harbert Plaza!

  4. Perfect meal for busy night with kids and hubby going in all different directions! Made it tonight — kids and I liked it! Dennis at game so he will probably opt for DQ dip cone for his supper. 🙂 Katherine still waiting on Sherbert!

  5. When you said "no boil", I was imagining, "Gee Steph….why is this so crunchy?"

    But it looks and sounds great. I guess the sauce and ricotta give it enough liquid over the baking time. And it is so easy too. Thanks for sharing this one.

  6. Oh, yeah my kinda pasta dish. You know what will put me off pasta more than anything? Having to wash that huge pot.
    ~ingrid

  7. This is what we're having for dinner tonight — I'll let you know how it turns out. But I can say that if I can make it, anybody can make it.

  8. Mmm, this looks tasty. Quick with barely any effort, that's what I like to see! I'll be trying this one out soon.

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