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Baked Ziti with Crunchy Italian Salad and Garlic Bread


The classic Italian supper comes together remarkably quickly -- garlic bread bakes alongside the ziti, and a green salad is tossed in mere minutes.

  • Prep:
  • Total Time:
  • Servings: 4

Photography: José Manuel Picayo Rivera

Source: Everyday Food, October 2007


For Baked Ziti

  • Coarse salt and ground pepper
  • 8 ounces ziti rigate (ridged) or other short pasta
  • 1 cup part-skim ricotta
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 3/4 cup finely grated Parmesan
  • 1 cup shredded part-skim mozzarella
  • 1 jar (24 to 26 ounces) best-quality tomato sauce (about 3 1/2 cups)

For Garlic Bread

  • 1/2 loaf italian bread (5 ounces)
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced

For Crunchy Italian Salad

  • 1 tablespoon sherry vinegar or red-wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 head Belgian endive, stem end trimmed, thinly sliced
  • 2 bunches arugula (3 1/2 ounces total), thick stems removed


  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook pasta until al dente, according to package instructions; drain and reserve.

  2. In a small bowl, combine ricotta, egg, 1/4 cup Parmesan, and half the mozzarella; season with salt and pepper.

  3. In the bottom of a shallow 2-quart casserole dish, spread half the tomato sauce. Top with ziti, then ricotta mixture and remaining sauce. Sprinkle with remaining 1/2 cup Parmesan and remaining mozzarella. Place casserole on a rimmed baking sheet, and bake until top is browned and sauce is bubbling, 20 to 25 minutes.

  4. Meanwhile, prepare garlic bread: Make deep, even cuts into the bread, about 1/2 inch apart, without cutting through the bottom. In a small bowl, combine butter and garlic; season with salt and pepper. Brush garlic butter between cuts in bread. Wrap bread loosely in aluminum foil, and bake with ziti during last 10 minutes of baking.

  5. In a large bowl, whisk together vinegar and oil; season with salt and pepper. Add endive and arugula, and toss to coat. Serve baked ziti with salad and garlic bread.

Reviews Add a comment

  • schisholm1026
    9 NOV, 2016
    Very good ziti recipe. I added frozen spinach & some crumbled ground beef. But it all fell into place nicely.
  • ajon84
    18 SEP, 2016
    Love this. I double the recipe and add 1 lb ground beef and 1 lb mild italian sausage and put it in 4 quart dish. Enough to serve a crowd. To make it a little easier to layer, I just mix the noodles in with the ricotta mixture and then put 1/2 sauce on bottom, then ricotta noodle mixture and layer of sauce on top covered with the remaining cheese.
  • margaret bechtel
    16 MAR, 2015
    Very quick and easy, and delicious! My new ziti recipe :)
  • sly203
    27 FEB, 2014
    This is the best ziti recipe I have ever had. Super easy, too! I added cooked ground hamburger to my sauce as well. Excellent dish!
  • humus
    19 SEP, 2013
    This is my go to dish when I need something in a hurry but taste delicious! I would love to be able to print the food photo along with the recipe. Thanks for this great dish.
  • Danush
    9 OCT, 2012
    This recipe is delish!!!! I also add chicken sausage to it.
  • bonniefollett
    9 JUL, 2011
    delicious,i added hamburger in it also
  • CalgarySJ
    3 JUL, 2011
    Really easy and really delicious!! I added frozen choppen spinach to the cheese mixture and sauteed garlic and onion to my jarred pasta sauce. Will definitely make again!
  • CiaNahac
    11 APR, 2011
    Perfect -- easy, quick, and delicious. This is a go-to of mine for when I don't have a lot of time but want a nice Sunday dinner.
  • myke828
    10 NOV, 2010
    Really an ideal recipe for large groups and/or freezing individual meals for the week. Most easiest tastiest baked ziti I've made! Not to say that I have made a lot.