5-cheese baked ziti with tomato cream sauce
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: dinner
Serves: 4-6
  • 1 pound ziti or penne pasta
  • 1 pound mild italian sausage
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 14.5oz cans crushed tomatoes
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • ½ teaspoon dried basil
  • ½ teaspoon dried oregano
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
  • ½ cup parmesan cheese
  • ¼ cup heavy whipping cream
  • ½ cup ricotta cheese
  • ½ cup gouda cheese, shredded
  • ½ cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • ½ cup monterey jack cheese, shredded
  1. cook pasta in boiling water until al dente, according to package directions. meanwhile, cook italian sausage and diced onion in a skillet over medium heat until sausage is browned and onion is softened. add minced garlic and cook for 30 seconds or until fragrant.
  2. add crushed tomatoes, sugar, basil, oregano, salt, and pepper to the sausage mixture and stir to combine. reduce heat to a simmer and let sauce reduce by about one third or until thickened to desired consistency. add parmesan cheese and heavy whipping cream and stir to combine.
  3. combine cooked pasta and sauce. spoon half the mixture to the bottom of a 9"x13" baking dish (or freezer pan) or a large oven-safe skillet. nestle spoonfuls of ricotta cheese into the pasta and then sprinkle with shredded gouda.
  4. layer the rest of the pasta and sauce. then top with mozzarella and monterey jack cheeses. if you have a little parmesan cheese leftover from the sauce, add that on top too!
  5. bake in a preheated 375 degree oven for 20-25 minutes or until cheese is melted, golden, and bubbly! serve with some of your favorite bread, and enjoy!
  6. if freezing, follow the recipe through step 4, making sure to layer the ingredients in a freezer-safe baking dish. let cool to room temperature and cover with foil before freezing.
  7. to bake: bake it straight from frozen in a 400 degree oven for about 1.5 hours or until heated through, taking off the foil for the last 20 minutes; or you can reduce the cooking time by letting it thaw in your fridge overnight and baking at 400 for about 30 minutes, or until heated through, with the foil off.*
Recipe by Live Craft Eat at https://www.livecrafteat.com/eat/5-cheese-baked-ziti/