Baked Rigatoni Pasta

Baked Rigatoni Pasta

Recipe by demoDifficulty: Easy


Cooking time





This easy baked rigatoni is all about crowd pleasing flavor! Bake this popular pasta with garlicky tomato sauce, fresh basil, and gooey mozzarella.


  • 1 pound rigatoni pasta

  • 24 ounce jar marinara sauce (or make Homemade Spaghetti Sauce)

  • 15 ounce can crushed fire roasted tomatoes (or best quality tomatoes)

  • 2 tablespoon olive oil

  • 4 cloves garlic, minced

  • ½ teaspoon fennel seeds

  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided

  • ½ cup basil, chopped, plus more for garnish

  • ½ teaspoon onion powder

  • 1 pinch red pepper flakes

  • 8 ounce fresh mozzarella cheese (or shredded)

  • ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for sprinkling.


  • Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Brush a 9 x 13″ baking dish with olive oil.
  • Start a pot of well salted water to a boil. Boil the rigatoni until it is just al dente (start tasting a few minutes before the package recommends: you want it to be tender but still a little firm on the inside; usually around 7 to 8 minutes). Drain.
  • Meanwhile, mince the garlic. In a separate pot, heat the olive oil over medium high heat. Add the garlic and fennel seeds and cook for 1 to 2 minutes until fragrant. Add the basil, marinara sauce, and tomatoes and stir for 1 minute. Stir in ¾ teaspoon kosher salt, ½ teaspoon onion powder and 1 pinch red pepper flakes and the ½ cup Parmesan cheese. Remove from the heat.
  • Pour the sauce and the drained pasta into the baking dish. Top with torn pieces of mozzarella. Sprinkle the entire top with generous sprinkles of Parmesan cheese.
  • Cover with foil and bake 15 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for an additional 10 minutes until browned.
  • Remove the pan from the oven and top with ¼ teaspoon kosher salt, divided over the top. Let stand 5 minutes. If desired, garnish with chopped basil. (Make ahead instructions: Make the pasta through Step 4 and cover with foil. Refrigerate until baking, up to 24 hours.)


  • This rigatoni recipe is Vegetarian. For gluten-free, use gluten-free or legume pasta.