Vegetarian Pasta Bake! This one pot dish is NO BOIL! Just throw everything into a casserole dish and bake! Pasta, tomato butter sauce, cheese, vegan Italian sausage are all you need.
Pasta is my love language. Especially when covered in a silky tomato sauce and lots of cheese. It’s the one food that I almost always crave; the perfect combo of comfort, easy and absolute deliciousness.
Even though it’s my dad who is Italian, my Danish mother has the same affinity towards pasta as I do. It’s my mom who creates some of my favorite pasta recipes and my mom who I call whenever I’ve got a recipe question. She might not have Italian blood, but that woman knows her way around the cucina.
Growing up, her signature dish was baked vegetable ziti. A dish I’ve made hundreds of times and have used to celebrate new life, mourn death and fed many a hungry, broken hearts. It’s the dish that I almost always have ready to go in my freezer whenever anyone needs some nourishment or we need a ready-made dinner.
I love baked ziti but I don’t like the prep. Between slow-roasting the vegetables, making the homemade sauce, seasoning the ricotta and cooking the pasta it’s at least an hour process.
So when I saw this recipe from Pinch of Yum, I knew I had to try it. Very little prep and you don’t have to cook the pasta ahead of time? Sold.
I had visions of making lots of changes; doing a butter-free sauce, using vegan sausage and increasing the vegetables for this vegetarian pasta bake. But all of that ended up being more work- the exact opposite of what I intended. After all, I already own the world’s best baked ziti recipe; I needed something that could be put together for a weeknight and be just as delicious.
Therefore, I ended up keeping things mostly the same for this version of the vegetarian pasta bake. I lightened up the sauce, kept the vegan sausage and used baby spinach for extra greens. The result is a cheesy, creamy pasta dish that’s perfect for any just about any kind of gathering. Enjoy! xo