Saturday, February 7, 2009

Baked Rigatoni

I saw this recipe on The Food Network a few years ago. i can't even remember what show it was, all I remember was how cheesey it look, and well, I love my cheese!

It's basic too: rigatoni pasta (16oz) ham (I use the deli sliced kind) butter, flour, cheese, and your seasonings.

Start out by melting your butter in a pan and starting your water for the pasta to boil.

We'll be making a basic white sauce, so once your butter is melted, whisk in your flour

You need 4 cups of milk, and well, my larger measuring cup was in the dishwasher, so I used all the other ones I had. Whatever works, right?

Slice up your ham, bacon, whatever type of meat you'll want to put in. I love the ham. Grate up your cheese as well. You'll need about 2 cups total.

When your water is boiling, add your pasta. cook it just past the al dente stage. You want it to have a bite to it, but not be too hard. We'll be cooking this in the oven as well, but not too much.

Keep whisking your white sauce until it thickens up nicely.

Add your seasonings (I love onion salt, pepper, and cayenne pepper--just a dash) and your ham. By this time, you can switch to a spoon.

Then add your cheese. Make sure you leave enough to sprinkle on the top! (I'll let you decide how much is 'enough').

Mmmm, this is the cheesyness I love! Taste it too, make sure you have enough seasonings in here so it's not bland.

Go ahead and add your pasta to the mix, and stir it all together.

Once your pasta is all mixed in, spoon it into a greased dish, and sprinkle your cheese on top. Then put a little pads of butter on the top. This helps it get nice and brown.

Bake it until the cheese is all melty and gooey (about 25 minutes) and just starting to brown on top. I think this meal is freezable, but I haven't tried that yet. I'll let you know when I do!

Courtsey of:
  • 1 pkg (16 oz) rigatoni pasta
  • 1 cube butter
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 qt milk (4 cups)
  • 2 cups grated mozzarella cheese
  • about 1/2 lb thinly sliced ham
  • seasonings (onion salt, pepper, cayenne pepper)
  • small pads of butter for top
Preheat oven to 425degs. Melt butter over meduim heat and start water boiling for pasta. Once butter is melted, whisk in flour. Add your milk, and continue to stir until the sauce is thick enough to coat the back of the spoon. When the water is boiling, add pasta and cook until just past the al-dente stage. Just starting to get soft. When the white sauce is done, add your seasoning, ham, and cheese. stir well, to get the cheese melted. Drain your pasta and add to the sauce. Pour mixture into a greased 9x13 pan, smooth the top and sprinkle with cheese. Dot the top with your pads of butter and bake for about 25 minutes, or until the top is bubbly and brown.
If you're trying to freeze this recipe, let it cool completly after pouring it into the pan, then add your cheese on top and the butter. Cover securely and freeze. I'd say give it about 3-6 months in the freezer for it to stay good. If cooking it frozen, add about 30 minutes on the time, and check the center before you take it out.


  1. Oh my word...this looks great!! Can you ever get too much of that great melted cheese?!?

  2. All that cheese can't wait to try. Looks great.

  3. YUMMY!!! I love pasta. And cheese. And especially pasta with cheese lol! Thanks for sharin'.

  4. Oh my..I can see I need to bookmark your blog! Cheese, butter...just what I like!

  5. I've got to try this one, too. It looks so yummy. I need more time to cook and eat all your recipes!

  6. Krystal- This looks very very good. Perfect weeknight meal. LOVE it!!

  7. Oh my, this looks heavenly! Love the melty cheese in the middle and the toasty cheese on top. Yum!!

  8. So, I think this is my next dinner group... It'll be a nice change from all the fried stuff I've been making lately. I really need to learn to cook more with my oven.

  9. That looks awesome. I just added it down on my menu for next month. I cant wait.

  10. Holy rigatoni! That looks good. Defintiely going on my "too try" list.

  11. I'm saving this recipe and it will definitely be making an appearance on my menu plan soon. It looks so yummy and the ham will be a nice change from the chicken and ground beef we eat so much of. Thanks for sharing your menu plan at

  12. Whoops, I wasn't paying attention. I got to this recipe on your blog from another menu plan posted at Thanks for sharing your recipe!

  13. I made this tonight and it was a huge winner! Thanks so much for a great recipe!

  14. I made this tonight and thought it was great!

  15. Omg this recipe is sooo good.. I tried it for the first time tonight, and I was a little scared at first, but omg it was so easy and sooo good!

    My son hates meat and I was a little worried about him picking out the ham, but he ate the rigatoni and the ham!!! He kept going "mommy this is soo yummy!!!"

    I can't wait to try another one of your recipes.. this is definitely going in my recipe box!

    Thank you sooo much,


  16. When I served this to my family they said, "Write this one down!!" I couldn't get enough of the baked cheesy top. Definitely going in my "keeper" list.

  17. I made this recipe a few years ago. I'm updating my recipes page on my blog and found this in an old post. This is going in the meal plan this week! Now that it's linked on my recipes page, I hope to have it more often.

  18. Just made this tonight and it was wonderful! Great recipe!


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