This cheesy baked spaghetti casserole is kid-friendly, filling, and perfect for feeding a crowd. Melty cheese, meaty sauce, and al dente pasta make this a great weeknight meal!
There is just something about a good, hearty casserole that I can’t resist. This cheesy baked spaghetti casserole is one from my childhood. I remember my mom making it on Halloween night, year after year, before we went out trick-or-treating because she wanted us to have something healthy and filling in our bellies before we glutted ourselves on our hoard of candy. She knew that all five of her children would eat up this kid-friendly dinner super fast so we could get out and get trick-or-treating. It is so good and so timeless that I am still making it as an adult for my own family.
There are layers of pasta, a hearty, meaty spaghetti sauce, melty mozzarella cheese, and a unique filling of cottage cheese, sour cream, and onions that gives this casserole a unique flavor all it’s own. It may look or sound like a poor man’s lasagna, but the flavor and texture of the sour cream and cottage cheese is different from the ricotta cheese that is used in a traditional lasagna. And it makes enough to feed an army, so it’s great if you are feeding a crowd or taking a meal to a friend. And as long as you are making one casserole, it’s not hard to double it either, so you can freeze one for later. Just heat it up, add a nice salad and some garlic bread and you are set! And like most baked pasta dishes, this one’s just as good (if not better) as leftovers the next day.
If you really want to make things easy, go ahead and just use a jar of your favorite spaghetti sauce in this recipe with some browned ground beef and onions to create the meat sauce. But if you have the inclination, you should definitely give this classic homemade marinara sauce a try!
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