Spicy Beef Pasta Bake

Spicy Beef Pasta Bake

A complete meal in your freezer, this Italian favourite just needs to be thawed, warmed and topped with fresh basil leaves. 

Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 40 minutes

Ingredients (serves 6):
  • Olive oil, to grease
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1 brown onion, finely chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 100g short-cut low-fat bacon, coarsely chopped
  • 1 long fresh red chilli, finely chopped
  • 500g lean beef mince
  • 700ml btl passata (tomato pasta sauce)
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
  • 300g dried tortiglioni or rigatoni pasta
  • 250g cherry tomatoes
  • 100g (1 cup) coarsely grated reduced-fat mozzarella
  • 20g (1/4 cup) finely grated parmesan

  1. Preheat oven to 200°C. Brush a 3L (12-cup) capacity freezer-proof baking dish with oil. Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic, bacon and chilli. Cook for 5 minutes or until the onion is soft.
  2. Add mince. Cook, stirring with a wooden spoon to break up any lumps, for 5 minutes or until browned. Stir in passata and basil. Bring to the boil. Reduce heat to low. Cook for 15 minutes or until the sauce thickens slightly. Season with salt and pepper.
  3. Meanwhile, cook the pasta in a large saucepan of salted boiling water following packet directions. Drain. Transfer to a bowl.
  4. Stir the mince mixture and tomatoes into the pasta. Spoon into the prepared dish. Sprinkle with mozzarella and parmesan. Bake for 15 minutes or until golden.

Pasta Tips:

Freeze: Set the pasta bake aside to cool. Cover the dish with 2 layers of plastic wrap and 1 layer of foil. Place in the fridge to chill. Label, date and freeze for up to 3 months.

Thaw: Place the pasta bake in the fridge overnight or until thawed.

Reheat: Preheat oven to 200°C. Remove and discard the plastic wrap. Cover the pasta bake with the foil and bake for 30 minute sor until heated through.

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