Freezer Friendly: Easy Baked Ziti

Sisters

I leave for Italy tomorrow. I’m so excited I can hardly contain myself. My sister and I will spend a full week gallivanting around Rome, Sorrento, and Capri. I’m most excited about Capri and luckily we get three days there. I’m also thrilled to be spending the week with my sister. We live and work so close to each other, yet we don’t see one another nearly enough. I love my sister dearly. I feel supported and loved by her everyday. It’s very rare to know, really know, that another person has your back no matter what. She has given me the amazing gift of Italy and I will not soon forget it.

I leave you with one of my favorite freezer dinners. I have been all over the freezer dinners lately. Our lives have been so chaotic lately that I have relied on cooking dinner for the week over the weekend. I also love my slow cooker….

Easy Baked Ziti

Ingredients:
1 lb of whole wheat pasta (penne or ziti)
1 lb of ground organic sirloin
1/2 yellow onion, diced
1 clove of garlic, minced
2 cups of shredded mozzarella and parmesan
2 jars of store bought pasta sauce (we used organic)
salt and pepper
Olive oil spray

Directions:
Pre heat oven to 375 degrees. Cook pasta to package directions, omitting extra salt & oil. Brown sirloin in a large sauce pan. You can use a couple sprays of olive oil if it’s sticking to the pan, but it should be fine. Drain the fat and add the onion, garlic, salt, and pepper. Add sauce to the pan and cook for an additional 10 minutes to let the flavors come together. Toss pasta with the sauce.

Spray a large casserole dish with olive oil and pour part of the mixture into the dish. Top with shredded cheese. Continue this way until you are out of pasta/sauce and cheese, being sure to end with a layer of cheese on top. Pop the dish in the oven uncovered for 20 minutes until the top layer of cheese is bubbly and browned slightly. Let it cool for several minutes before serving.

Baked Ziti

This freezes beautifully! Simply re-heat your oven to 375 degrees and cook for 1 – 1.5 hours. I like to cut it into pieces and put 2 servings per freezer bag. That way we have a perfect portion size.

Enjoy!

My next blog will be in a couple weeks when I return. I can’t wait to share my beautiful photos and experiences with you all 🙂 !

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