1poundziti noodles (regular or gluten-free)penne may be substituted
1pounditalian sausageloose or bulk (not links)
1medium yellow onionchopped
125-ounce jarpasta sauce
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Cook the pasta according to package instructions until al dente. Drain (and rinse depending on package instructions). Toss the noodles with a drizzle of olive oil (to prevent them from sticking together).
As the pasta cooks, add 1 tablespoon of olive oil to a large skillet over medium high heat. Add the sausage and cook breaking the sausage into small pieces until lightly browned, cooking for about 5 - 6 minutes.
Add the onion to the skillet and stir. Cook for 3 - 4 minutes, until the onion is translucent.
Stir the Italian seasoning into the sausage and onion mixture. Cook for 1 minute more.
Pour in the tomato sauce, stir to combine and bring the skillet to a simmer.
Spray a 9-inch by 13-inch baking dish with nonstick cooking spray. Add a thin layer of the sauce mixture to the bottom of the dish.
LAYER 1:1. Add half of the pasta noodles into the bottom of the baking pan. 2. Top with half of the remaining sauce. 3. Add half of the ricotta in large spoonful-sized dollops. Spread lightly with the back of a spoon. 4. Sprinkle with half of the mozzarella cheese and half of the chopped basil.
LAYER 2:Repeat the layering steps from Layer 1.
Bake in the oven, uncovered, for 15 minutes. Sprinkle the Parmesan cheese over the top and continue to bake 5-10 minutes longer until the top is lightly golden brown and the cheese begins to bubble.
Serve hot with additional fresh basil for garnish.
Tips For The Recipe ● Substitute penne pasta: if you’re having trouble tracking down ziti pasta, you can substitute penne pasta. Any medium-sized noodle pasta would also work.● Substitute ground beef: another popular substitution is ground beef in place of sausage. This is a tasty switch that you can make if you prefer.● Cook the noodles al dente: be sure to cook your noodles al dente (so that they still have some firmness). This will prevent them from overcooking when they go into the oven.