Baked Ziti with Sausage and Broccoli

zitiBaked Ziti is good any way you make it. But with some sausage, provolone cheese and the texture of broccoli… Madone! This recipe makes a very good sized meal for 4-6 people, or in our case, dinner for tonight and enough leftovers for The Wife to take a couple lunches to work during the week. And, I get to snack on some too! It’s a win, win. There are more cooking vessels in this one than I usually like, but very few ingredients and once it’s done, it’s super worth it.



16oz Ziti (you can also use penne or rigatone)
16oz Italain sausage (no casings)
16oz Broccoli
2 cans Diced tomatoes (29oz total)
2 cups Shredded provolone cheese
2 tbsp Extra-virgin olive oil
1 tsp Garlic (chopped)
1 tsp Dried basil




*In a large pot bring water to a boil and add 1 tablespoon of salt and broccoli. Boil for 5 minutes, drain and chop into large pieces.
*In a different pot, bring water to a boil and add 3 tablespoons of salt and pasta. Cook for 10 minutes, or until the pasta is al dente. Once it is firm, but not hard, drain the pasta.
*Set the broccoli and the pasta aside.


*Preheat your oven to 400 degrees and lightly spray a large baking dish (13×9 inch) with non-stick spray.
*Heat 2 tbsp of oil in a large pan over medium-high heat. Add the sausage and cook for 5 minutes while breaking it up with a spatula.
*Stir in the 2 cans of diced tomatoes, basil and garlic. Reduce the heat so that it simmers and leave it for 10-12 minutes, or until the sauce thickens.
*Once the sauce thickens, stir in the broccoli and remove the pan from the heat.



ziti-mid2*In a large bowl, mix the pasta, sauce and 1 cup of parmesan cheese. Season with Salt-n-Peppa.
*Pour (or spoon) it all into the cooking dish and sprinkle the last cup of parmesan cheese on top.
*Bake it in the oven for 15-20 minutes (until the cheese is golden brown).




**I like a-da spice. If you do too, go for the hot sausage. If the family likes a little spice, use half hot and half mild. If someone can’t handle the heat, don’t use hot at all. You can always add some heat to individual plates. You can not remove heat from the entire dish.



Happy eating, my friend!


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