Pizza Pasta Bake

baked pasta

I love making meals from scratch but, lets be honest, sometimes….it just isn’t going to happen. We’ve had a really busy few weeks here in Chez Piehole and we needed some comfort food, stat.

I originally had this dish at a restaurant in the mall I used to frequent with a friend of mine in my angsty-mall-shopping teenage years. Between the trips to Bath and Bodyworks and the bookstore, my friend Katy and I always stopped at the American Cafe (creatively named, no?) and had this pasta dish. The restaurant is long gone but I still make this at home occasionally when we need something easy that will give us some leftovers.

pasta

Undercook a little bit of pasta (by 45 seconds or so), mix with a jar of pasta sauce of your choice in a 9×13 baking dish. If you are feeling FANCEE, you can add some herbs to the mix. I used oregano, thyme, and basil from the garden.

pepperoni

Cover that with a layer of pepperoni. Try to make a pretty solid sheet so your cheese doesn’t melt into your sauce. You want a nice melty cheesey layer like you have on lasagna.

cheese

Cover with some mozzarella cheese. Ok, a lot of mozzarella cheese. This isn’t even healthy to start with, so you might as well make even more enjoyable.

Now, you can get creative. What do you like on pizza? Olives? Peppers? Put it here. I usually do artichoke hearts and green peppers but I was going for ease and speed last night.

Bake! 400ish for….20 minutes? Until it looks like this:

finished

Oh yes. Baked pasta. Let it cool for about five minutes and serve it up like you would lasagna. Cut into squares and then serve up as nicely as you can. Bonus points for adding some additional fresh basil on top.

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