As a vegetarian, I’ve eaten quite a bit of pasta in my day, but this is one of the best I’ve ever eaten!
My mission was to create a deliciously cheesy pasta that was heavy on both flavor and veggies so that it didn’t sit as heavy as other pastas can on my stomach.
We’re going all in on this pasta with cherry tomatoes, onions, fresh garlic, mushrooms, bell peppers, zucchini and spinach! A true veggie lover’s perfect pasta recipe.
How to make veggie lover’s baked rigatoni
Step 1: Toss the cherry tomatoes with the olive oil and place them in an even layer on a baking sheet. Roast the tomatoes at 400 degrees for 15 minutes, or until they start to wilt and burst. This brings out such a lovely flavor in the tomatoes!
Step 2: Cook your rigatoni according to instructions and set aside. While the rigatoni is cooking, start cooking your vegetables. In a large skillet, combine the onions, mushrooms, bell pepper, zucchini, garlic, dried basil, salt, pepper, and 1 tablespoon of olive oil.
Step 3: Sautee the vegetables on medium high heat for 12-15 minutes, or until the liquid is released and vegetables have started to cook down. Add the spinach and wilt for several minutes, continuing to stir.
Step 4: Add the pasta sauce and stir to combine it with the vegetables. We like to use Raos brand for the best flavor.
Step 5: Add the cooked tomatoes to the sauce with the other veggies and stir. Mix the mozzarella and parmesan cheeses together in a bowl. Add 1 cup of the cheese mixture to the veggie pasta sauce and stir it up.
Step 6: Combine the cooked rigatoni noodles with the veggie pasta sauce and transfer the mixture to a greased 13 by 9 baking dish.
Step 7: Top the pasta with the remaining parmesan and mozzarella cheese, then bake until cheese is bubbly and beginning to brown. Serve and enjoy!
I love the texture and firmness of rigatoni, and it doesn’t get soggy quickly when baking, making it perfect for this pasta bake. Beautifully symmetrical pasta with tons of veggies and crispy pieces of cheese on top.
Freaking delish! We are new to the world of veggies but this dish here let’s me know what we’ve been missing! I followed the directions and it came out perfect!
I used a blend of mozzarella and parmesan on top of the pasta and cooked it just long enough for the cheese to melt and start to get a little browned on top. Those browned bits will be your favorite bites!
If you want it more browned on top, simply broil the pasta for the last 1-3 minutes, watching closely.
I love this recipe! We are trying to eat vegetarian every other day. This meal is filling and satisfying. – Kasey
This makes a huge 13 by 9 casserole dish and we enjoyed the leftovers for several days. Serve as is or with some red pepper flakes on top if you like a little heat! You can’t go wrong with this delicious rigatoni recipe.
Made this for Meatless Monday and it was delish!!! Used whole wheat penne and a 28 oz bottle of Rao’s. Thanks for the recipe.
Tuesday 26th of December 2023
This is one of the best things I have ever tasted. My Italian, meat-loving husband gave it an A+.
Wednesday 27th of December 2023
Love to hear it! So glad you enjoyed the recipe :)
Friday 22nd of December 2023
Can I use frozen veggie?
Wednesday 27th of December 2023
No, it will not taste the same
Thursday 12th of October 2023
I made this tonight for dinner. Kindof spur of the moment. We actually wanted to make a meat baked rigatoni but realized we didi not have the sausage it called for. So we switched to vege rigatoni bake and found your recipe. We used the 1/3 of a pound of ground beef that we had plus onion, tons of crimini mushrooms and red bell pepper. Mixed that with the Rao‘s marinara. We had all the cheese and put that together. This was outstanding and just what we wanted. Next time I will make it fully vegetarian. Thank you for sharing your recipe.
Friday 13th of October 2023
I am so glad you enjoyed the recipe! Thank you for the lovely review :)
Sunday 24th of September 2023
I’ve made this several times. I usually add Italian sausage cause my family likes meat. I’ve found I don’t usually combine the entire package of rigatoni cause I don’t seem to have enough sauce. If I were to add an additional can of diced tomatoes or tomato sauce, it might stretch the sauce just enough. I also roast other veggies with the tomatoes: broccoli, carrots or whatever is on hand. It’s a family favorite. Thanks.