Better-For-You Baked Ziti

baked ziti

Baked ziti is a comfort food staple. But with loads of full-fat ricotta, mozzarella and sometimes even sour cream too, one serving can rack up the calories and saturated fat.

Flavor soars in this slimmed-down version made with part-skim cheeses, oregano, thyme, garlic and onion. The baked pasta is a great choice for a make-ahead meal or a potluck dinner.

 Better-For-You Baked Ziti

Serves 8
1 pound ziti
15 ounces part-skim ricotta cheese
1 1/2 cups part-skim shredded mozzarella cheese, divided
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 cups pasta or marinara sauce, divided

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Cook the ziti according to the package directions. Drain and set aside.

Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine the ricotta, 1 cup of the mozzarella, oregano, thyme, onion powder, garlic powder, salt, and black pepper. Mix well.

Spoon 1/2 cup of the pasta sauce into the bottom of a baking dish. Arrange half of the ziti over the sauce. Top with the ricotta mixture and spread out in an even layer. Top the cheese layer with 1/2 cup of the sauce. Top with remaining ziti, remaining cup of sauce and remaining 1/2 cup of mozzarella cheese.

Bake, uncovered, for 15 minutes, until the cheese melts.

Nutrition Info Per Serving
Calories: 371
Total Fat: 9 grams
Saturated Fat: 5.5 grams
Total Carbohydrate: 51 grams
Sugars: 7 grams
Protein: 20 grams
Sodium: 426 milligrams
Cholesterol: 28 milligrams
Fiber: 3 grams

Robin Miller is host of Quick Fix Meals, a nutritionist and author of 10 cookbooks, including “Robin Takes 5” and “Robin Takes 5 for Busy Families.” She is the busy mom of two active boys. Her boys and great food are her passion. Check her out at www.robinmillercooks.com.

Next Up

How to Make Better Stuffing

Get the right stuff for your stuffing.

Chicken Is Better with Grill Marks

When this go-to white meat hits the grates and lets out a searing sizzle, the meat that always has your back becomes tender, juicy and full of charred flavor.

Is Guinness Actually Better in Ireland?

Many say yes, but is it all just in our heads? Here’s what experts think.

Are McDonald’s New Burgers Actually Better?

We did a side-by-side comparison. Here’s what we found.

How to Make Box Cake Better

We baked fourteen cakes to figure out the best tips and tricks — here are the five you should remember.

Maybe Mountain Dew Can Make Fruitcake Taste Better

The beverage brand wants to rehabilitate the image of the 'much-maligned holiday classic' with MTN Dew Fruit Quake.

Friendly PSA: Palomas Are Way Better Than Margaritas

If you find 'ritas too sweet, you might favor this more-refreshing tequila-based cocktail.

The Key to Better Fruit Salad Isn't More Sweetness

It's, well, the opposite. End summer on a delicious note with this genius tweak.

Are Short Intense Workouts Better Than Long Moderate Ones?

Whether you love a quick HIIT workout or prefer a long walk, here's how each benefits your health.