Ziti Wars – Part 2: My Recipe for Ziti

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Any good Italian wife had better make ziti once in a while. And any good Italian-family summer potluck includes at least one giant vat of ziti. The Italians are experts at making delicious, easy food that doesn’t break the bank, and ziti is at the top of that list. Even though my name is Maria, I am not Italian, but since my husband and his family are 100% Italian, I consider myself an honorary one.

My homemade ziti

Here is my recipe for a simple, quick organic ziti:

Maria’s Ziti


1 bag organic whole wheat pasta of some tubular shape for holding sauce
1 large jar organic tomato sauce
1 package Organic Valley Mozzarella cheese
1 package either fresh mozzarella cheese or ricotta



  1. Preheat the oven to 350–375 degrees.
  2. Boil the water and cook the pasta until done.
  3. While the pasta is cooking, shred the cheese.
  4. Transfer the drained, cooked pasta to a casserole dish
  5. Add the sauce and cheese and mix it up a bit.
  6. Put it in the oven and cook until the cheese is golden and bubbly (about a half hour).
  7. Enjoy!

If you want to, you can add some shredded Romano cheese on top, or put some veggies in the ziti (spinach, broccoli rabe, mushrooms, or peas). You can add meat if you want, but it’s not necessary (however, it tastes just like lasagna and is a heck of a lot easier to make).

Serve with a simple salad with Italian dressing, and you’ve got a delicious, nutritious, and affordable meal your whole family will love.


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4 Responses to Ziti Wars – Part 2: My Recipe for Ziti

  1. Brook July 3, 2010 at 8:04 am #

    Enjoy your blogs, Maria, and this recipe sounds easy enough but not sure how much “1 bag,” “1 jar,” and “1 package” are in cups, ounces, etc. (I’m guessing maybe the recipe is very flexible and forgiving and turns out great every time?)

    Also, could you come up with a variation that uses fewer packages of and relies less on cheese for us folks who are watching our intake of sat fat, total fat, and cholesterol?


  2. Donna in Delaware July 5, 2010 at 5:04 pm #


    Use partial skim milk, or all skim milk cheese and make sure to check the sodium content also. I believe the packages comes in ounces, unless you go to one of the clubs such as Costco, and get a very large package then you can use it several times. If too much, you can freeze the cheese in that case. Otherwise, it’s still a good and simple meal.

    The fresh mozzerella usually comes in a ball the size of a small or medium size balled up fist and wrapped in plastic. You could also visit an Italian market/deli/store, if there is one in your area and get it really fresh, in its own liquid and it’s not salty. Fresh ricotta usually comes in a small tub that you could probably reuse, this also comes in ounces, unless you can find a 16oz/1lb tub. Check around to see what suits you and how much you need for 1 person or several people.

  3. Kate July 24, 2010 at 3:10 pm #

    Tofu makes a good substitute for ricotta if you drain it and press the moisture out (wrap in cloth and put under some heavy books). This cuts down on calories and too-much-cheese induced tummy aches. It also adds some protein. I’m going to try this recipe today. Thanks!

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