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Baked Spaghetti and Mozzarella

This new take on spaghetti is baked with fresh mozzarella, canned tomatoes, and aromatic basil for a crispy casserole main dish.

  • prep: 25 mins
    total time: 1 hour
  • servings: 4

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Ingredients

  • Coarse salt
  • 2 cans (28 ounces each) whole peeled tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, smashed and peeled
  • 3/4 pound spaghetti
  • 2 cups packed basil leaves (from 1 bunch), torn if large
  • 3/4 pound fresh mozzarella, cut into 1/2-inch pieces (2 1/2 cups)

Directions

  1. Step 1

    Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Set a large pot of salted water to boil. In a food processor, pulse tomatoes until coarsely chopped. In a large skillet, heat oil over medium-high. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add tomatoes and bring to a boil. Cook at a rapid simmer until sauce thickens, about 12 minutes. Meanwhile, cook pasta 5 minutes (it will still be crunchy). Drain pasta and return to pot. Add tomato sauce, basil, and half the mozzarella and toss to combine. Transfer mixture to a 3-quart baking dish and top with remaining cheese. Bake until cheese is golden and edges are bubbling, about 25 minutes.

Source
Everyday Food, September 2010

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Reviews (13)

  • Eat Only If Its Oh So Good 4 Apr, 2013

    I wanted to like this meal but I didn't. Not enough depth. Also it feeds a lot so if you don't have 4 or more people who eat large servings then cut it in half. I see this more of a meal that I would make for my son's college friends.

  • MairiC 26 Mar, 2012

    We really enjoyed this, although I considered the recipe a base to which one would add their own mix of vegetables and spices...as is I think it would be dreadfully bland. I doubled the garlic and added a sliced onion. I was perplexed why the recipe called for whole tomatoes if they were processed, so I used a can of diced and one of crushed. I used shredded mozzarella mixed in, and fresh on top and recommend this. I added quartered fresh mushrooms, hot pepper flakes, and salt and papper.

  • truecritic 19 Mar, 2012

    Fortunately, I always have to substitute ingredients. I did not have 2 cans tomatoes. I used 1 large ripe tomatoe, food processed with 2 cloves of garlic, salt, paprika,cayenne pepper, and jarred wet basil. I added this fresh mix and a 1/2 jar of spagehtti sauce to the oil&garlic pan. I boiled a high quality dried penne about 80% al dente, then layered sauce to noodles until my square 9x9 pyrex pan was topped. I added the cheese on top, but also smashed garlic butter croutons! so good!

  • scenicworld 6 Mar, 2012

    this came out great. the pasta was a little mushy but we used fresh spaghetti rather than the box kind so i assume thats why, but it tasted good regardless. like the other reviewers, i suggest using grated cheese as well mixed in with the pasta because the mozzarella alone does not cover the entire area. i definitely recommend making this dish!!

  • sjb48 28 Dec, 2010

    I too have always wondered why the nutrional values are never added. I had requested it many times. I guess Martha just doesn't care. Shame, I am afraid to make many of the recipes, it's important to me as a diabetic to know.

  • klanigan 10 Dec, 2010

    This was really good and really easy to make. I had all the ingredients on hand, including fresh mozzarella and shredded. I mixed the shredded in with my noodles and put the fresh on top. The shredded melted in with the noodles and gave it a good flavor, not crunchy at all. The fresh mozzarella on top seems more authentic to me - personally, I really liked it. The best part is how easily you can modify the recipe by changing the sauce or adding your own spices and vegetables.

  • Suezy 10 Dec, 2010

    This turns out much better than it looks like in the picture. I used grated mozzarella to avoid the "seagull effect," lol. My family liked it

  • ohigirl67 9 Dec, 2010

    I made last night. Used dry basil instead of fresh...next time fresh. I added pepper and onion to add flavor. Also added a bit of sugar because we like a sweeter sauce. Did use fresh mozzarella, however it just clumped in the spot where I placed it. Next time I will use shredded. I loved the idea of not fully cooking the noodles. My husband liked it so much, we had the leftovers again the next night.

  • wdnana 9 Dec, 2010

    The spaghetti looks terribly dry ? Not very appealing.

  • dinahlee 8 Dec, 2010

    I made it and the grandkids and their parents thought it was great! Added some garlic toast and a salad and voila--dinner!

  • DeannaC 8 Dec, 2010

    I really wish Martha Stewart would add nutrition information to all their recipes.

  • Crocagator 8 Dec, 2010

    I think it's looks devine! I can't wait to make it.

  • joduluth 8 Dec, 2010

    That doesn't even look good! First thing I thought of was a flock of seagulls