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

Bake a Better Cupcake

Food Network Magazine made more than 1,750 cupcakes while working on 50 Cupcakes! Here's what the editors learned.

Cheesy Baked Ziti — Most Popular Pin of the Week

Ease your way into 2017 and keep warm all winter long with piping-hot comfort food, like this cheesy Baked Ziti.

Top Tips for Baking Better Cupcakes

Cupcakes are easy to bake, but little tips and tricks will help you make the best batches. Here are a dozen rules of thumb — plus a bonus one — for how to bake like a pro.

How to Bake a Better Potato

Hot tips from Food Network Kitchens' Katherine Alford: To improve your baked potatoes inside and out, brush the skin with olive oil or melted butter before baking; it'll crisp the skin.

Ron Ben-Israel Bakes a Better Chocolate Cake

Chef Ron Ben-Israel of Food Network's Sweet Genius gives home bakers tips on baking the best-ever chocolate cake.

The Weird Tool That Made Me a Better Baker

When Jacques Torres made chocolate cake on the Food Network Kitchen app, he revealed this clever trick.

Use Butter Better

Is butter bad for us, or does it just have an image problem?

Better Butter Alternatives

Are you substituting butter with margarine as a "healthier" alternative? Some butter substitutes may actually clog your arteries just as much -- if not more -- than good old butter. Learn more about the butter-versus-margarine debate and find out what butter alternatives to try.

How to Become a Better Baker in Just One Month

This March is Baking Month on the Food Network Kitchen app.

4 Easy Ways to Be a Better Cake Baker Right Now

You need some planning, some patience — and this cheap, must-have tool.