Baked Spaghetti – aka the lasagna impostor!!!

Last night I worked. I HATE my job. It’s mundane, drains EVERY last brain cell I have and is sooooooo repetitive. The cool thing about it is – CLOTHES. I work at a women’s clothing store in the mall. However, now the only good thing about my job is becoming  bad too – ie: I have no money for clothing.

Anyway, b/c I am working a lot this week Colin requested I tackle the baked spaghetti casserole dish I make basically b/c it yields more leftovers than anything else I make 😀

So here we go…..

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups dry spaghetti pasta (2 handfulls)
  • 1lb ground beef (or protein of choice)
  • 1/2 red pepper – chopped
  • 1/2 green pepper – chopped
  • 1/2 red onion – chopped
  • 1 clove of garlic (minced)
  • 2 cans of whatever tomato sauce you want 
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/3 cup shredded parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup of butter (softened) 
  • pinch of basil oregano, parsley and thyme
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • one container of ricotta cheese (we didn’t have any so we substituted cottage cheese)
  • 2 or more cups shredded mozzarella
let’s begin….PRE-HEAT your oven to 350F
Cook the spaghetti according to package instructions. Then drain and set aside. 
demonstrating a “handfull” you need 2 of these

 Chop all the veggies (peppers, onion) and sauté them in a bit of olive oil.

I love this man….always posing soooo nicely in the name of the blog

The onions were sooooooo fresh they were literally burning all of our eyes. This is how I had to stir them – no joke :)

Sauté ground beef until brown and DRAIN! then mix the veg and beef into a large pot and add the herbs and spices (garlic, basil, thyme, oregano, parsley) while on low heat.

Meanwhile you mix the 2 eggs, 1/3 cup or parm and butter together and then mix in /w the pasta until evenly coated.

Pour the sauce into the pot /w the MEAT and veggies 😀 NOT the noodles….and heat on low stirring until everything is mixed. Add S&P to taste!

(that’s Colin’s hand NOT mine…I just wanted to tell you incase you thought I all of a sudden got man hands and hairy arms)

Ok now the fun part!!! take a greased 9X13 baking dish (I don’t grease ours I just pour a bit of sauce on the bottom) and then LAYER all the ingredients like a lasagna!!!!

little L of course had to be involved! he just kept yelling “CHEESE” – and can you believe HE actually ran to get his step stool from the bathroom! the little dude just loves the kitchen
OK let’s get back to layering!!! I usually forget what order I do everything in and it always turns out different but here’s my suggestion; put some sauce on the bottom, then some spaghetti, then ricotta (or cottage cheese), then mozza, then repeat! so sauce, pasta, ricotta, mozza, sauce, noodles…. and when ever you finish the layers just throw more mozza on top :)
Bake uncovered for 20-25 minutes. Serve and ENJOY!!! this dish keeps nicely in the fridge and reheats for easy leftovers :) 
Anyway, I hope you all enjoyed yet another recipe in our meal rotation. Let me know if you tackle it and what you thought 😀
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Questions:

1. Do you make any mix-and-match recipes???: ie: this is spaghetti crossed /w lasagna!

20 thoughts on “Baked Spaghetti – aka the lasagna impostor!!!

  1. OH MY GOODNESS….girl, that looks incredible and I know billy would love me forever if I made that for him! Bummer about your job! Are you on the look-out for anything else? Come work with me and we could be the best of friends!

  2. @The Hungry Runner Girl

    I wish 😀 I think I would like living in the mountains AND teaching. I am on the look out for something else…and I still want to go back to school so I can get a better job! Life with a child is different though….so we'll see :)

  3. Okay, this is something I could and really would actually use! Thank you!!! I'm always looking for big casserole like dishes that can last for a while, because J eats like 5 meals a day! (I have to cook like we have a family of 5!!! I don't know what I'll do once we actually start having kids… we'll have to do things military style around here; big pots of beans and potatoes or something!)
    And I love spaghetti! I think Italian food is my weakness… pizza, pasta… mmmmm….
    And I cry every time I cut onions… even the little baby green ones. I keep thinking there has to be a better way… :)

  4. That looks INCREDIBLE! That's a lot from me because normally when people post meals, I'm like "Ugh, well if that's what they like, more power to them" lol

  5. @Kara
    than you Kara :) I think it looks good too. I am not a healthy eater…that's why I run! I like eating comfort foods and this is one of those meals!

  6. I have an onion trick!! And it mostly works! If you place a candle between you and the offending onions, the onion scent seems to either be burned off or absorbed or something. Either way, no crying eyes!

  7. Mm that looks so good! i love baked spaghetti, I will have to try this recipe thanks for sharing. I hate when the onions make my eyes water.

  8. This looks awesome! I told my husband about it and am now going to make it for dinner. Thanks for the dinner idea! By the way, I love that you demonstrate what a hand full of pasta looks like. :) Totally made me smile.

  9. @MindyG That sounds like you may be onto something….next recipe I use fresh onions /w be prepared for a HUGE candle in the picture btwn me and the onion 😛 thanks!

  10. @pthomas hahaha your comment made me laugh, I guess that was kinda redundant 😛 lol but people have different ideas about what a handful looks like. so better to be safe 😉 Let me know if it turned out and if the hubby liked it.

  11. Pingback: Pizza Making & Family Fun! | Running with Spatulas

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