Cheesy and creamy baked spaghetti coated in a delicious meat sauce. Less than 10 ingredients and only 45 minutes to make!
Table of Contents
Homestyle Baked Spaghetti
This cheesy baked spaghetti is one of my favorite freezer meals. It’s super simple and perfect for busy weeknights. I also love chicken broccoli rice casserole, green chile enchiladas, Mexican lasagna and chicken pot pie.
If you’re looking for an easy and delicious comfort meal, this baked spaghetti (also known as spaghetti casserole) is perfect for you. It has 4 different kinds of cheese inside and is coated in a flavorful pasta sauce. It’s similar to lasagna and my favorite million dollar spaghetti but with a few small tweaks. Talk about delicious!
This is the perfect meal for family gatherings or to bring someone when they need a meal. We also make this occasionally when we have guests over. It makes a lot!
My whole family loves this delicious baked pasta dish and requests it again and again. It’s definitely one of my kid’s favorite meals. We love serving this spaghetti with a big salad and homemade garlic bread or these easy breadsticks.
How to Make Baked Spaghetti
Step 1: Brown the ground beef
Add hamburger to a large pan and heat over medium-high heat. Break apart with a spoon, then add in onions. Cook until they become soft, about 3 to 5 minutes. Then add garlic and cook for 1 additional minute. Cook meat until browned. S&P to taste, then add in Italian seasoning.
Step 2: Add sauce and simmer
Add in spaghetti sauce and let simmer uncovered for about 10 minutes.
Step 3: Cook the noodles
Cook spaghetti noodles about 6 minutes, or until al dente. Do not overcook. Reserve 1 cup of water for pasta sauce and then drain. Add up to 1/2-1 cup of the water to the red sauce.
Step 4: Mix in remaining ingredients
Once noodles are drained, add in the cream cheese and toss together. Once it begins to melt, add in the cottage cheese, 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese and 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese. Then toss together with the sauce. Then press into a greased 9×13″ pan.
Step 5: Bake in oven
Add remaining mozzarella cheese, fresh basil and parmesan to the top of the casserole if desired. Then bake in the oven at 350°F for 30-40 minutes.
Can I Freeze Spaghetti Casserole?
This recipe makes a lot, so most of the time I will freeze half of the spaghetti (before baking) to save for a busy day. Follow the simple instructions below to freeze and then thaw.
- To freeze: Do not bake. Combine the sauce and noodles and then allow to cool completely. Once cooled, add to a freezer container and top with remaining cheese. Label with the date (I love these freezer labels), then store in the freezer for up to 3 months.
- To thaw: Remove from freezer and place in refrigerator. Let thaw overnight, then cook in the oven at 350°F for 30-40 minutes.
If you love easy Italian recipes try my easy spaghetti with meat sauce, baked ziti or baked chicken parmesan recipe next!
More Pasta Dishes
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- 1 pound lean ground beef or turkey , or Italian sausage
- 1 cup chopped onion
- 2-3 cloves garlic , minced
- 24 ounce jar marinara or spaghetti sauce
- 12 ounces thin spaghetti noodles
- 4 ounces cream cheese , softened
- ½ cup cottage cheese , can sub ricotta cheese or sour cream
- ⅓ cup grated parmesan cheese , divided
- 1-2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
Optional: Fresh basil, S&P, Italian seasoning
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray a 9×13 pan with non-stick spray and set aside.
- Add hamburger to a large pan and heat over medium-high heat. Break apart with a spoon. Add onions and cook until they become soft (about 3-5 min). Then add garlic and cook a minute longer. Cook meat until browned. Salt and pepper to taste. Add in a teaspoon of Italian seasoning if desired.
- Add in spaghetti sauce and let simmer uncovered for about 10 minutes.
- Cook spaghetti noodles al dente, about 6 minutes. Do not overcook. Reserve 1 cup of water for pasta sauce and then drain. Add up to 1/2-1 cup of the water to the red sauce.
- When the noodles are drained, add in the cream cheese and toss together. Once it has started to melt, add in the cottage cheese, 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese and 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese. Then toss together with the sauce. Then press into the pan.
- Add remaining mozzarella cheese, fresh basil and parmesan to the top if desired.
- Bake for 30-40 minutes.
- For a thinner sauce, add in 1/2 cup of the pasta water before simmering.
- To freeze: Do not bake. Combine sauce and noodles and then cool completely. Then add to a freezer container and top with remaining cheese. Label with the date, then store in freezer for up to 3 months.
- To thaw: Let thaw in the fridge overnight, then cook in the oven according to directions.
Nutrition provided is an estimate. It will vary based on specific ingredients used.
Did you make this recipe? Don’t forget to give it a star rating below!
I do not like cottage cheese any suggestions rd substitution?
Thanks, can’t wait to make 😁
Just saw all the substitutes, sorry
Amazingly easy, I love to make ahead dinners and freeze…
The mozzarella cheese quantity doesn’t seem to add up. It asks for 1-2 cups in the ingredients but then within the directions, only 1/2 cup is used.
The remaining cheese will be sprinkled on top. :)
Total comfort food – can’t wait to make this tomorrow!
Great idea freezing before baking. I Just made large pan of Bake Ziti which I will divide half is going in feezer. Thank you for sharing your recipes.
Love the cheesy factor…..it makes spaghetti so much better!
Just what I was looking for for dinner tonight! Looks amazing; worthy of a restaurant, indeed!
Perfect for a busy weeknight! My spaghetti loving family will go nuts for this!!!
I happened to have all the ingredients so we made this tonight, loved it! A new favorite!
This is my all time favorite meal and I absolutely love this recipe!