Welcome back, fellow food enthusiasts! Today, we're diving into the heart of classic Italian flavors with a Weight Watchers meatless baked ziti recipe with a twist that's bound to become your new weeknight dinner hero.
Picture this: a bubbling casserole dish filled with the comforting aroma of Easy WW Meatless Baked Ziti. It's the epitome of easy comfort food—rich, satisfying, and guilt-free.
In the realm of great recipes, this one stands out as a wholesome and family-friendly option.
Whether you're a seasoned pro in the kitchen or a busy parent looking for a hassle-free meal, this easy baked ziti recipe is your ticket to a stress-free dinner. It effortlessly combines the essence of a classic Italian dinner with the convenience of a quick weeknight fix, making it a true family favorite.
As a dedicated Weight Watcher, I'm always on the lookout for recipes that strike the perfect balance between health-conscious choices and undeniable taste. This Meatless Baked Ziti with ricotta checks all the boxes—packed with flavor, satisfyingly cheesy, and, most importantly, mindful of your wellness journey.
So, join me in the kitchen as we explore the magic of this timeless dish. Let's turn our weeknight dinners into a celebration of great recipes, nourishing our bodies with a delicious and hearty Easy WW Meatless Baked Ziti. Your taste buds—and your family—will thank you,
One of the best things about this no meat baked ziti recipe is how easy it is to prepare.
All you need is some ziti pasta, ricotta cheese, fresh basil, red pepper flakes and a few other simple ingredients. In just a few simple steps, you can have a delicious and satisfying meal on the table in no time.
Another great thing about this authentic Italian baked ziti recipe is that it is perfect for a make-ahead meal for a group.
You can prepare the ziti ahead of time and simply reheat it when you're ready to serve. This makes it perfect for busy weeknights or for entertaining guests.
Overall, this meatless baked ziti recipe is the perfect combination of flavor, nutrition, and ease of preparation. So, whether you're a busy professional or a seasoned home cook, this recipe is sure to be a crowd-pleaser.
Check out some of my most popular Weight Watcher friendly side dishes and desserts like the Air Fryer Polenta, Easy Naan Bread , Air Fryer Avocado Fries, 3 Ingredient Cinnamon Muffins and my favorite Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins.
Why make this recipe?
You don't want to miss out on this easy meatless baked ziti!
Weight Watcher Friendly - An easy and delicious 9 Point Weight Watchers meat free baked ziti recipe. Who says you can't eat pasta and lose weight!
Baked ziti can be a healthy and satisfying meal when prepared with the right ingredients and portion sizes.
Since the new Weight Watchers plan is personalized you will have to input the ingredients used into your WW app to get your exact points.
Easy to Make - This meatless ziti recipe requires only a handful of ingredients and a couple of minutes to prepare.
Kid Friendly - Making a homemade meatless baked ziti recipe can be an excellent way to introduce kids to vegetarian meals. As kids are often picky eaters, making a meatless recipe that is familiar, like baked ziti, can help them feel more comfortable trying something new.
Additionally, many kids are becoming more aware of the environmental impact of meat consumption, and introducing them to meatless meals can help them understand the importance of sustainable eating habits.
Budget Friendly - Costs less than $20.00 to make this meatless baked ziti with ricotta and mozzarella.
Ingredients needed and substitutions for Meatless Baked Ziti
Ricotta Cheese - I used part skim ricotta mixture cheese for this recipe. If you don't like ricotta cheese you can swap with cottage cheese, light cream cheese or just leave it out for less calories and make a healthier meatless baked ziti without ricotta cheese.
Marinara Sauce - I used RAO's Marinara sauce which is one of my favorites but RAGU garden style and Bertolli Marinara are great as well. Homemade marinara sauce is the best if you have extra time to make a batch.
Seasonings - Fresh Basil and Red Pepper flakes add a nice flavor profile to this meatless pasta bake. If you don't have fresh basil handy you can use something like Simply Organic Basil or Italian seasoning.
Grated Parmesan - You can use a blend of grated parmesan cheese and Romano grated cheese for an extra cheesy casserole.
How to make Meatless Baked Ziti
1: Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. While your oven is heating start cooking your pasta in a large pot of salted water until al dente.
2: Once pasta is done cooking rinse with cool water and drain.
3: Pour your cooked pasta back in the pot you cooked it in and add in all of your ricotta cheese, red pepper flakes, about half of your shredded cheese, grated cheese, basil and 2 cups of your sauce then mix well.
4: Grab you casserole dish and add a 1 cup layer of sauce to the bottom of the dish. Then pour your pasta mixture into the casserole dish.
5: Top with the rest of the sauce and your remaining shredded cheese and pop into the oven for 30-40 minutes until the cheese is golden. If you like it really cheesy add on a couple of slices of mozzarella cheese about halfway through the baking.
6: Remove from oven when baking is complete. Let cool for 10-15 minutes then serve. Enjoy!!!
Watch the How to Make Meatless Baked Ziti video here...
Yes, you can freeze baked ziti. Baked ziti is a great dish for freezing because it reheats well and can be prepared in large batches.
To freeze baked ziti, make sure it has cooled down to room temperature. Then, transfer it to a freezer-safe container or wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and aluminum foil. Label the container or package with the date and contents.
When you're ready to reheat the baked ziti, remove it from the freezer and let it thaw in the refrigerator overnight. Then, preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C), transfer the ziti to an oven-safe dish, cover with foil, and bake for 25-30 minutes or until heated through.
Note that freezing may affect the texture and taste of the baked ziti slightly, but it should still be delicious and satisfying.
To prevent the pasta from “steaming” and to allow the top to brown it should be baked uncovered. As long as the noodles are covered in sauce there shouldn't be a problem with the ziti drying out and I like the top extra crispy.
- Choose the right type of pasta for baked ziti, such as penne or rigatoni. They are sturdy enough to hold up to the sauce and won't overcook in the oven.
- Cook the pasta al dente, which means it should be cooked until it's tender but still slightly firm to the bite. This will prevent the pasta from becoming mushy when baked.
- Make sure to salt your pasta water generously to flavor the pasta and ensure it doesn't taste bland.
- Use a high-quality tomato sauce for the dish, preferably homemade, or use a good store-bought one.
- To add depth of flavor, sauté onion and garlic in olive oil before adding the tomato sauce.
- Add some herbs such as basil or oregano to the tomato sauce for additional flavor.
- To give the dish some creaminess, add ricotta cheese or a béchamel sauce.
- Mix the pasta with the sauce and cheese before baking to ensure even distribution of flavors.
- Top the pasta with shredded mozzarella cheese or a blend of Italian cheeses for a crispy, gooey crust.
- Let the baked ziti cool for a few minutes before serving to allow the cheese to set and the flavors to meld together.
- For a touch of freshness, sprinkle chopped parsley or basil over the top before serving.
- Serve with a green salad and garlic crusty bread for a complete meal.
- Enjoy with family and friends while savoring the delicious flavors of homemade meatless baked ziti.
Are you a Weight Watcher?
If you follow my Blog you probably already know I am a lifetime member of Weight Watchers and I like to point all of my Recipes with the WW Points System.
This Easy classic meatless baked ziti recipe is only 9 Points on my app for a healthy serving of meatless baked ziti - one meatless pasta bake makes about 12 servings.
Weight Watchers has a new individualized program right now to make it easier to enjoy the foods you love and still lose weight.
Just plug the ingredients into your WW app to confirm the points for your individual program.
Make sure you check out my Newbie WW Tips and Tricks Guide if you are just getting started.
I used to go back and forth between the Purple Plan and the Blue Plan prior to the new program and whenever I hit a plateau I did my own 30 Day Low Carb Meal Plan which jumpstarts the Fat Burning again, so if you feel stuck try it!
Embark on a transformative culinary journey with '30 Days of Fat Burning Recipes,' a meticulously crafted guide written by the expert author and food blogger, Susan from Sueseaqpi.com. This comprehensive book seamlessly blends a 30-day meal plan with over 90 delectable low carb recipes, making it an indispensable companion for anyone looking to embrace the keto lifestyle. Susan not only demystifies the world of keto but also imparts invaluable lifestyle tips, acting as your trusted companion on the journey toward success in adopting a low carb lifestyle.
If you are impatient like me... blog visitors can get instant access to the digital download version today for only $1.00 just click here...
More recipes you will love!!
This post contains affiliate links for your convenience. See my full disclosure policy here.
Want to stay connected? Make sure you hit SUBSCRIBE HERE...