If your family loves spaghetti, then get ready for this one! Spaghetti Casserole is a kicked up version of your old favorite with the addition of some different yummy cheeses and whole-wheat breadcrumbs on top. The other night my 7-year-old tried to help herself to thirds of this dish before I told her “no” because she was going to give herself a tummy ache! Serve this with a big green salad, and you’ll have a healthy weeknight crowd pleaser.
- 1/2 pound whole-wheat spaghetti
- 2 eggs
- 3/4 cup parmesan cheese - grated and divided
- 1 tablespoon olive oil - + extra for greasing the casserole dish
- 1/2 onion - peeled and diced
- 1/2 green bell pepper - deseeded and diced
- 1 pound ground beef
- 1 clove garlic - minced
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- red pepper flakes - to taste (a few firm shakes for us)
- 1 - 26 oz pasta sauce - or 3 cups homemade (link in notes)
- 3/4 cup ricotta cheese
- 1 cup mozzarella cheese - grated
- 1/4 cup whole-wheat breadcrumbs
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Brush a rectangular baking dish with olive oil and set aside.
Cook the spaghetti noodles al dente, drain, and then mix with the eggs and 1/2 cup of the Parmesan cheese. Put in the bottom of the casserole dish.
In a large saute pan over medium heat, warm the olive oil. Add the onion and bell pepper and cook until soft, but not brown, about 5 minutes.
Add the beef to the pan and break up the meat with a spatula. Cook until the beef is brown all the way through. Drain and discard the fat (I find putting a lid on the pan helps with this job).
Add the garlic, salt, and red pepper, and cook for 1 more minute before adding the red sauce to pan. Heat for an additional few minutes.
Pour the meat/sauce mixture on top of the noodles in the casserole dish. Top with dollops of ricotta cheese, grated mozzarella, breadcrumbs, and remaining 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes or until golden brown on top. Serve warm and enjoy.