Meatball and Spinach Baked Ziti



  • Cooking spray, for baking dish
  • 2 c. ziti
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 lb. ground round
  • 1/2 small onion, chopped
  • 1/4 c. panko breadcrumbs
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tbsp. canola oil
  • 1/4 c. dry red wine
  • 1 (24 oz.) jar marinara
  • 2 bunches flat-leaf spinach, stems discarded and leaves torn (about 4 c.)
  • 3 tbsp. chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley, plus more for garnish
  • 3 tbsp. chopped fresh basil, plus more for garnish
  • 8 oz. bocconcini (small fresh mozzarella balls)


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease a 2-quart baking dish.
  2. Cook pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water until al dente. Gently combine ground round, onion, breadcrumbs, garlic, egg, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper in a bowl; shape into 16 meatballs.
  3. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add meatballs and cook, turning occasionally, until brown on all sides, 6 to 8 minutes. Stir in wine, gently scraping up brown bits from the bottom of the skillet. Stir in marinara, spinach, parsley, and basil; bring to a simmer. Remove from heat and fold in pasta.
  4. Transfer mixture to prepared pan; top with cheese. Bake until cheese is melted and edges are bubbly, 25 to 30 minutes.
  5. Let stand 10 minutes before serving. Garnish with parsley and basil.

Yield: 4-6 servings



6 thoughts on “Meatball and Spinach Baked Ziti

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