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An easy freezer meal (pasta based)


Forum: Cooking, Entertaining and Party Planning

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  #1  
July 5th, 2012, 11:54 PM
plan4fate's Avatar I may bend, but not break
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There are no measurements. I don't cook with a measuring spoon lol.

Ziti bake. 6-8 servings (or two meals of 3-4 servings)

you can omit the meat if you wish, it's not required anywhere but our house. LOL

1 large jar of pasta sauce, your favorite flavor (we use 45 oz of Prego sauce)
1 small can of tomato sauce (I think it's 3oz)
1 lb of ground beef (we used 90% lean, but I'd recommend as lean as possible or you'll have to drain it)
1 box of ziti pasta
Onion
garlic
Seasonings to taste
Cheese to top it with (I used about 1 cup for 8 servings)

Turn your sauce into meat sauce. Fry the meat with onion and garlic. Drain if needed. Season as desired. I use chili powder, oregano, basil and sugar (yes, sugar, about 1/4-1/3 cup cause dh likes it sweet).

Once sauce is ready now you make a choice. Cook it all, or freeze it.

To cook it, pour the ziti in. Add water to the sauce and sir. Cook on low. You want a true simmer, not a boil, keep an eye on it you will probably have to add more water. Once Ziti is to your liking (we like it well done), transfer it to a baking dish, top with cheese and bake until cheese is to your liking.

To freeze it. Allow the sauce to cool slightly. Stir in the ziti. Separate into storage bags/containers and freeze. To eat, allow to thaw (if you want to cook it frozen, you need to freeze it as flat as possible and able to fit in the pot you wish to use or the pasta will cook unevenly), add water and simmer. Repeat the above to bake.


This could also work splendedly in a crock pot. You may need more, or less water, so I recommend cooking it while paying attention the first few times until you know how much water you need.


I've been making ziti bakes for years, but this is the first time I've cooked the noodles right in the sauce. The flavor was out of this world!
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  #2  
July 6th, 2012, 08:51 AM
babyloves2dance's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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I'll have to give it a try! I've never cooked the pasta in the sauce before.
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  #3  
July 6th, 2012, 11:12 AM
plan4fate's Avatar I may bend, but not break
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It's pretty much an ingredient controlled Hamburger Helper... the options are endless to what you could add... We don't like chunks of veggies, but I'm sure you could toss in zucchini, or diced tomatoes, eggplant.. during the simmering stage and it'd be awesome!
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  #4  
July 7th, 2012, 05:27 PM
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Looks good! I had no idea what ziti was, so I had to google it lol
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  #5  
July 8th, 2012, 12:09 PM
plan4fate's Avatar I may bend, but not break
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tiki View Post
Looks good! I had no idea what ziti was, so I had to google it lol
lol, any pasta with a decent sized hole in it will work. Even rotini and fussili can work. DH picked out the ziti, I'd have used Penne myself.
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  #6  
July 9th, 2012, 08:30 AM
esparando para bebé's Avatar Proud Car Seat Technician
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Sounds yummy!
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