Quick Meal Pasta Bakes

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Spring sports are in full swing in my house. Spring is also the time that my kids all seem to grow, or at least come home from school ravenous. Because of these two things, we tend to eat dinner early instead of an after school snack.

An easy go to for meals for us a pasta bake. Meals are inexpensive and adjustable to tastes (or whatever you have around), andĀ  you can prepare them ahead of time and then just toss it in the oven to heat up for 20-30 minutes while you scramble around looking for uniforms and cleats or to help with homework.

Baked ziti is probably the most well known pasta bake.

You really don’t need recipes. But google search for whatever ingredients you have on hand or in mind if you don’t feel comfortable cooking without a recipe.

Otherwise, you just boil pasta as directed on the box (however much you think your crew will eat and pretty much any shape/kind, ziti, spaghetti, cavatappi, elbows, or mix it up with gnocchi, ravioli, or a grain like quinoa) and throw in what you like with it – you’ll want some sort of sauce (tomato, cream based, cheese, butter, pesto, etc), probably cheese and then you can add in vegetables or meat of your choosing. I like to put it together in a casserole dish in the morning, then when the buses start coming, preheat the oven and stick it in and it’s all ready by the time my kids have taken care of their home to school transitions rituals, washed their hands, and start complaining about being hungry, and before we have to race out the door for practice.

My kids favoritesĀ  are baked ziti with ricotta, gnocchi and sausage, and ziti and broccoli (with or without chicken). But I always been partial to spaghetti pie.

Happy Spring!

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