Here's comfort in a bowl. This meatball pasta bake can be a 5 ingredient recipe with store-bought items or with homemade Parmesan meatballs and marinara sauce.

Meatball Pasta Bake

  • Author: The Cooking Jar
  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 35 mins
  • Total Time: 45 mins
  • Yield: 8-10 1x


  • 16 oz. ziti/penne/rigatoni pasta
  • 1 jar (24 oz.) marinara sauce
  • 1 lb. frozen, pre-cooked Italian meatballs/homemade meatballs (see notes)
  • 8 oz. mozzarella, fresh/shredded
  • 3 tablespoons fresh basil, chopped (optional)


  1. Cook the pasta until just before al dente
  2. Drain and rinse pasta under cold water to stop the cooking process
  3. Simmer the marinara sauce oven medium heat in the skillet. Add the meatballs to the skillet, coat them fully in the sauce and simmer about 5 minutes
  4. Combine meatballs and sauce with pasta and mix well
  5. Transfer to a 9×13 casserole dish and top with mozzarella cheese
  6. Bake at 350 degrees F for 30 minutes or until cheese has melted and is bubbly
  7. Dish and serve hot sprinkled with chopped fresh basil


Homemade Parmesan Meatballs:

1 lb. ground beef
1 tablespoon garlic, minced
1 egg, beaten
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
½ cup Italian bread crumbs
½ cup grated Parmesan
Salt and pepper to taste

Combine all the meatball ingredients in a large mixing bowl and mix thoroughly with your hands
Scoop out about 1 golf ball sized meatball mixture, roll it in your hands to make meatballs. I used an ice cream scoop
If pan-frying: Over medium high heat, brown the meatballs in batches in some oil until evenly browned, about 5-8 minutes. Remove meatballs and drain on paper towels.
If baking: Bake the meatballs on a cookie sheet at 425 degrees F for 10-12 minutes