Don’t order pizza in tonight. This crowd-pleasing casserole takes the classic flavours of pepperoni pizza and gives them a pasta, marinara, pepperoni, and cheese makeover.
A dish of Pizza Casserole is the ultimate in cosy food. It’s cooked pasta smothered in marinara sauce and topped with mozzarella cheese and pepperoni slices, two of everyone’s favourite pizza toppings. For a smorgasbord of colours, tastes, and textures, I throw in some peppers, onions, mushrooms, and black olives.
The fact that Pizza Casserole can satisfy my need for both pizza and pasta makes it my go-to comfort food. It’s a great option for a family lunch on a weekday, so invite everyone over.
Quick and Easy Recipes for Delicious Pizza Bakes
To help you create this dish successfully, I offer the following suggestions:
- The pasta should be served slightly chewy. That suggests there should be some bite left. The texture shouldn’t be mushy or squishy. If you don’t, it will burn during baking.
- After cooking the sausage, drain it to remove any extra fat that may otherwise contaminate your dish.
- Use a marinara sauce you enjoy, purchase a high-quality one, or create your own since it contributes most of the flavour.
Pizza Casserole may be adapted to suit individual tastes and ingredients on hand. What follows are some suggestions for spicing up the standard recipe:
- Add some artichoke hearts, broccoli, or spinach for a sneaky serving of veggies.
- You may use a different kind of short pasta, such as rotini, rigatoni, or cavatappi.
- Leave off the sausage and pepperoni, or use a vegetarian sausage substitute, to make this recipe vegetarian-friendly.
Lighter Side and Wine
Because of its heartiness, Pizza Casserole pairs well with a vegetable like roasted broccoli. A juicy Merlot or Cabernet Sauvignon would complement it well.
It’s easy to prepare a Pizza Casserole ahead of time. At this point, you may go one of two ways:
Prebake the dish: Put the casserole together, cook it, and then let it cool to room temperature. You may keep it in the fridge for up to five days if you wrap it well in plastic. Take it out of the plastic and wrap it in foil just before serving. It may be reheated in a preheated oven at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.
This casserole may be prepared ahead of time, stored in the refrigerator, and baked when ready to serve. The casserole may be assembled, covered with plastic wrap, and kept fresh in the fridge for up to two days, or frozen for up to three months. You’ll need to add around 10 minutes to the baking time since the casserole will be cold. Before baking from frozen, let it defrost in the refrigerator overnight.
Tips for Storing Extra Food
Place leftovers in the fridge or freezer by spooning them into an airtight container. It can be stored for up to five days in the fridge and three months in the freezer.
Eat cold leftovers after microwaving them for two or three minutes. A good way to reheat previously frozen leftovers is to put them in an oven-safe baking dish and cover them securely with foil before placing them in the oven. Reheat it for 45 minutes to an hour in an oven preheated to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
Pasta casseroles, even more of them!
- Baked Chicken and Noodles
- A Baked Casserole with Beef and Noodles
- Tortellini casserole with cheese
- Pasta Bake with Tuna and Tomatoes
- Pasta Bake with Ham and Cheese
- The Pasta Cooking Water Needs Salt
- 16 ounces of dried penne pasta Cooking spray for coating the casserole dish
- Italian links weighing 8 ounces (raw or pre-cooked)
- Seed and finely chop 1/2 red bell pepper
- Seed and finely chop 1/2 green bell pepper
- 1/2 small chopped red onion 4 ounces trimmed and sliced baby bella mushrooms
- Approximately 24 ounces (2 1/2 cups) sliced black olives handmade or store-bought marinara sauce
- Parmesan cheese, grated, 1/2 cup
- one teaspoon of garlic powder
- 1/2 fresh basil leaf
- Dried oregano, one teaspoon
- Cheese: 2 cups of shredded mozzarella
- pieces of pepperoni weighing 4 ounces
1. Turn on the oven to 350 degrees and have the baking dish ready:
It’s time to turn on the oven and set the temperature to 375 degrees. Spray a 9-by-13-inch baking dish with cooking spray and set aside. Get it out of the way.
2. Cook the pasta:
To boil the pasta, fill a big pot with water, salt it heavily, and set the heat to high. Pasta should be cooked in water that is boiling according to the package directions until it reaches a “al dente” state. Put the cooked pasta in a colander over the sink to drain.
3. prepare the sausages:
In order to cut the sausage links in half lengthwise, place them on a cutting board and use a sharp knife. Then, slice them into half-moons about an inch thick. It’s OK if the raw sausages you use break apart a little.
Bring a skillet up to temperature on the stove’s middle setting. Stir the sausages every minute or two for the first six to eight minutes of cooking time to ensure even browning. You won’t need any oil as the sausages will release enough to prevent them from sticking to the griddle. Shut off the stove. Using a spoon, carefully tilt the pan to remove as much fat as possible.
4. Get the sauce ready:
In a large bowl, combine the marinara sauce, Parmesan, garlic powder, dried basil, and dried oregano. Mix with a spoon to mix. The pasta pot may be used for this purpose as well!
5. Combine the filling:
Mix the filling ingredients together, including the cooked pasta, sausages, vegetables, and olives. Reconstitute by mixing everything together. A pair of big spoons comes in handy for me tossing the ingredients in the sauce.
6. Put together the dish by:
Pour the spaghetti mixture into the prepared casserole dish. Top with pepperoni slices and sprinkle with mozzarella cheese.
7. Bake and serve:
Put the casserole in a preheated 350°F oven for 30 minutes with the foil tightly covering the top. Take the foil off and broil the cheese for 2 to 3 minutes on high heat to get it to melt and brown. Make sure to keep an eye on it to prevent it from catching fire! Ten to fifteen minutes of cooling time is recommended.