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Meatball Pasta Bake Recipe

Meatball pasta bake is one of those ultimate comforting dishes. Mini meatballs tucked away in gooey cheese and saucy pasta make this a comforting weeknight meal.
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Total Time40 mins
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Pasta Bake
Servings: 5 Servings
Calories: 405kcal
Cost: $10


  • 2 tablespoons Italian bread crumbs
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 1 pound ground beef (90%/10%)
  • 1/4 cup finely shredded Parmesan
  • 1/4 yellow onion or red onion grated
  • 3 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 3/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1 large egg beaten
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 1 23-ounce jar of marinara or homemade
  • 4 ounces crème fraîche
  • 1 pound of pasta I used orecchiette, cooked to al dente
  • 1 1/4 cup shredded mozzarella


  • Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. In a large bowl, combine the bread crumbs and milk. Allow to soak for 5 minutes. Add the ground beef, Parmesan, onion, garlic, dried oregano, salt, crushed red pepper and egg.
  • Mix until combined.
  • Using a tablespoon (or small cookie scoop—my favorite tool for meatballs), scoop out the meat mixture, forming meatballs using your palms. Repeat until you’ve worked through all of the meatball mixture.
  • In a medium skillet, set over medium heat, add the oil. When hot, cook the meatballs for 2 to 3 minutes, flipping them and cooking on the opposite side for an additional 4 minutes. Transfer the meatballs to a bowl. Pour the marinara into the skillet, along with the crème fraîche and stir until smooth. Cook until warmed, about 5 to 7 minutes, seasoning the marinara sauce to your liking (I added a bit of crushed red pepper and some additional salt).
  • To a large baking dish, add the cooked pasta, marinara sauce and toss until combined. Add meatballs atop the pasta and sprinkle with the mozzarella. Transfer to the oven to bake for 8 to 12 minutes, until cheese is nice and melty. Garnish with Italian parsley, if you like.


  • You can freeze this! Just make the dish up until it needs to go into the oven. Transfer it to a freezer and oven safe pan and let cool before topping with the cheese and transferring it to the freezer. When you go to bake just be prepared to bake it for around 45 minutes to an hour for it to cook through from frozen.
Le Creuset Braiser | Food Processor | Chef's Knife


Serving: 4g | Calories: 405kcal | Carbohydrates: 5g | Protein: 23g | Fat: 32g | Saturated Fat: 14g | Cholesterol: 99mg | Sodium: 663mg | Potassium: 323mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 390IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 200mg | Iron: 2mg