Baked Italian Sausage Pasta

What an easy dish baked Italian sausage pasta is to make! Using just 1 pot to boil the pasta, and a cast iron skillet to fry the sausage, and then bake the pasta, clean up is a snap! First, everyone loves pasta! Secondly, nobody likes to do a bunch of dishes. And finally, this is the utmost in cheesy comfort food!

Clearly, you will need to also use a cheese grater and a knife and cutting board to cut up the spinach, but that is just a few dishes to wash! While the pasta is baking, you will have time for a quick clean up and a glass of wine!

You can switch up this baked pasta by using bow tie pasta, or shells! Change out the meat to hamburger, and use taco sauce instead of pasta sauce, and swap out the cheese for cheddar! If you don’t like spinach, leave that out!

Oh, and make your own tomato sauce with this recipe!




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Baked Italian Sausage Pasta

Baked Italian Sausage Pasta


This pasta comes together in no time and can be served in the pan it is cooked in!


Units Scale
  • 1 16 0z. box of dried penne pasta
  • 2 tablespoons salt (for pasta water)
  • 1 lb of Italian Sausage
  • 1 24 oz. jar of tomato pasta sauce or homemade
  • 1 8 oz. container of fresh mozzarella mini balls
  • 6 oz. baby spinach, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 cup of ricotta cheese
  • 2 teaspoons Italian Seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon granulated garlic
  • 4 oz. freshly shredded mozzarella
  • fresh parsley


First, put on a large pot of water to boil. Add about 2 tablespoons salt to the water. Bring to a rolling boil. Add pasta in while you are frying the sausage, and cook to 1 minute less than the time suggested on the package. The pasta will cook more in the oven.

While pasta is cooking, heat up a cast iron skillet and fry the Italian sausage. Drain the grease out by using the back of a spatula to hold meat in. Then, using a few paper towels, pat the meat and wipe any excess grease out of the pan.

Drain the pasta, reserving at least 1 cup of liquid. Add the pasta into the pan with the sausage.

Now, toss in the red sauce and the spinach and mix just enough to evenly distribute the spinach. At this point, if the mixture seems dry, add a bit of the pasta water. Depending on red sauces, you may or may not need to.

Drain the liquid from the mozzarella balls and place them over the top of the bake, gently pressing them into the pasta.

With a small ice cream scoop or spoon, dot the ricotta over the top. Smooth this out to form a bit of a covering. (don’t worry if it is not pretty, because you will be covering it with mozzarella later!) Sprinkle the Italian Seasoning and granulated garlic over the top of the pasta!

Now it is time to cover with foil and place in a 350 F degree oven. Set the timer for 15 minutes, and then spin the pan. Set for another 15 minutes. Watch for bubbling. All ovens vary, so it could take another 10 minutes.

Once it it is bubbling, pull the pan out of the oven and cover with shredded mozzarella cheese. Return pan to oven and bake until bubbly and cheese is starting to brown. Pull pan out of oven and let set up for about 10 minutes. Sprinkle with parsley, and serve.


  • Prep Time: 20
  • Cook Time: 40
  • Category: pasta
  • Method: stove top and oven
  • Cuisine: Italian

Keywords: pasta bake, pasta, easy dinners, family meals,

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Dina and Bruce at the Golden Gate Bridge

Hi, we are Bruce and Dina Miller. We love to cook every night. We enjoy making a few healthy dishes, and also comfort food. We love crafting cocktails too! Come take a look, we would love to share our recipes with you.


  1. Desi Reply

    You forgot to list the Italian sausage in your list of ingredients…..

    • Dina and Bruce at the Golden Gate Bridge

      theperksofbeingus Reply


      THANK YOU SO MUCH! I just added it! We appreciate you pointing this out! We hope you enjoy our recipes. Have the best day!

      Dina and Bruce

  2. Charles Flowers Reply

    Can’t wait to try this . ??

    • Dina and Bruce at the Golden Gate Bridge

      theperksofbeingus Reply


      Oh yay! We think you will love it! Let us know what you think!

      Thank you so much! And if you want to see more of our recipes, sign up for our e mail, and every Monday you will get an update on our new recipes!

      Have the best weekend!

      Dina and Bruce

    • Dina and Bruce at the Golden Gate Bridge

      Bruce and Dina Miller Reply

      Oh we hope you love it as much as we do!

      Bruce and Dina

  3. Renee Reply

    What do I do with the reserved 1 c pasta liquid?

    • Dina and Bruce at the Golden Gate Bridge

      theperksofbeingus Reply


      In case the pasta needs just a little extra water, if it gets too dry. I usually add in about a few tablespoons, and that makes the pasta a bit smoother, and less dry. Thank you for asking!

    • Dina and Bruce at the Golden Gate Bridge

      Bruce and Dina Miller Reply

      If the pasta is too dry, add some pasta water in.

  4. John M Reply

    When do you add the pasta water?

    • Dina and Bruce at the Golden Gate Bridge

      theperksofbeingus Reply


      Hello,the pasta water is if the pasta and sauce mixture are too dry. I will make a note on the recipe for that, than you for asking! We hope you make and enjoy this recipe! It is our most popular!

      Have the best day,

      Dina and Bruce

  5. Marquan Jones Reply


    Some of my cheese always sticks to the aluminum foil so I never get that awesome browning on the top layer. Any way I can avoid this?


    • Dina and Bruce at the Golden Gate Bridge

      theperksofbeingus Reply


      The foil goes on to do the first part of the cook before you put the extra mozzarella on it. This helps steam cook it. Then remove foil and add the shredded mozzarella and put back in oven with no foil! It will melt, and if you want it more brown, then turn on the broiler. Let me know if this works!

      Thanks! Have a great day!

      Dina and Bruce

  6. Marquan Reply

    Thank you! I will try it. I’ve made it twice already and love it, so I’m sure I’ll only love it more.

    • Dina and Bruce at the Golden Gate Bridge

      theperksofbeingus Reply


      Y’all just totally made our day! So glad you like it. We need to make more cast iron bakes like this! Have the best day!

      Dina and Bruce

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