Dee Dee's Meaty Baked Ziti

Diane Hopson Smith


This was my first attempt at Baked Ziti. I made a marinara sauce that I use in many of my other dishes. You could save time by purchasing already made sauce but this sauce is so good I won't.

Jimmy and I were both very pleased with this dish.

Company worthy and will feed a crowd!

Hope you enjoy!

★★★★★ 3 votes
8 to 10
20 Min
1 Hr 20 Min


2 to 3 Tbsp
olive oil, extra virgin
1 large
onion, chopped
1 large
green bell pepper, chopped
4 clove
garlic, minced
1 lb
ground sirloin
1 pkg
(19-oz) italian sausage, sweet casings removed
(14.5-oz) cans diced tomatoes
(8-oz) can tomato sauce
1 tsp
red pepper flakes
2 tsp
italian seasoning
1 tsp
sweet basil, dried
1 tsp
fennel seed
salt and pepper to taste
(15-oz) carton ricotta cheese
(16-oz) mozzarella cheese, shredded
(8-oz) provolone cheese, shredded
1/2 c
parmesan cheese, grated
1 large
(16-oz) box ziti cook not quite al dente

How to Make Dee Dee's Meaty Baked Ziti


  • 1Preheat oven to 375. Grease a large baking dish. NOTE: I used a 9 X 15 inch pan and I needed a larger pan. There was a little zitz and sauce left over.
  • 2Heat olive oil in large pot over a medium heat. Add onion, pepper, and garlic; saute until tender.
  • 3(Break up the Italian sausage). Add beef and sausage to sauteed veggies; brown meat and drain off grease.
  • 4Add tomatoes, tomato sauce, red pepper flakes, italian seasoning, basil, fennel seed, salt and pepper; bring to simmer and reduce heat. Simmer over med/low heat for 20 minutes covered. Remove lid and simmer another 20 minutes, stirring occassionally to thicken. Taste test and add additional seasoning if desired.
  • 5Cook ziti until not quite Al Dente. Drain ziti and rinse under cold water to stop the cooking process.
  • 6In a large bowl mix ricotta, parmesan and egg; add mozzella (save 1 cup for topping) and provolone cheeses. Stir to combine. This mixture will be thick.
  • 7Place 1/2 of noodles in large baking pan with all the noodles laying same direction. This takes a little time, but makes a really pretty presentation when you serve.
  • 8With a cookie or ice cream scoop, place dollups of the ricotta mixture over the pasta reserving 1/2 for the 2nd layer. Spoon 1/2 of the meat mixture over cheese. Repeat layer. Top with the reserved cup of mozzarella.
  • 9Bake 20 to 25 minutes or until you see bubbling around the edges. Remove from oven and let set for 5 to 10 minutes before serving.

Printable Recipe Card

About Dee Dee's Meaty Baked Ziti

Course/Dish: Pasta
Main Ingredient: Pasta
Regional Style: Italian