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Meatball & Ziti Bake



  • 6 oz uncooked whole wheat ziti
  • 1/3 cup panko
  • 2 Tbsp miced garlic
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp black pepper
  • 12 oz – 90% lean ground beef
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh basil
  • ½ tsp crushed red pepper
  • 1-28 oz can crushed tomatoes
  • 2 oz shredded part skim mozzarella cheese (1/2 cup)

Preheat broiler to high. Cook pasta according to package directions omitting salt and fat. Drain in a colander over a bowl reserving ½ cup cooking liquid. Place panko, 1 Tbsp garlic, ¼ tsp salt, black pepper, ground beef and egg in a bowl. Mix to combine. Shape into 12-1 inch meatballs. Heat a large oven proof skillet over medium high heat. Add oil and swirl to coat. Add meatballs to pan and cook 5 minutes browning on all sides. Add remaining 1 Tbsp garlic and cook 30 seconds. Add ½ cup reserved cooking liquid, remaining ¼ tsp salt, 3 Tbsp chopped basil, crushed red pepper and tomatoes to pan. Stir, reduce heat to medium, cover and simmer 15 minutes. Stir pasta into the tomato mixture and spread evenly in skillet. Sprinkle cheese over top and broil until cheese melts (about 1 minute). Sprinkle with remaining chopped basil & serve.

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