I got slightly off track there, didn’t I;) I will get back on now…..I have been getting some really good feedback about the easy family meals that I have posted. I know that we are all so busy at night, and getting dinner on the table is a challenge. Today’s recipe is an easy weeknight meal. It is not quick, as it bakes for almost an hour, but you can make it in the morning, and pop it in the oven as soon as you walk in the door. It is made almost completely of leftovers too. And, it is just as good served at room temperature as it is warm. This helps when you have everyone eating at different times. We definitely have that issue here. Addy has cheer practice, Chris gets home late, Paisley won’t come inside from playing with the neighbors, etc. I am the only one ready to eat at 6pm. Of course, I am always ready to eat.
So have I kept you in suspense for long enough? Are you dying to know what it is? It is a Spaghetti and Meatball Pie. Does that sound weird to you? It won’t to your kids….they will love it.
Remember, I said this is made of leftovers. When I make spaghetti and meatballs, I always make twice as much as I would need. I mix the noodles with a bit of sauce before I pop them in the freezer, just so they freeze a little bit better. The picture above is my spaghetti and meatballs, defrosted. I freeze the noodles and meatballs separately. When the meatballs are done defrosting, I fish them out of the sauce and slice them up, into about 3 pieces each.
I make my own sauce, but jarred will do. I will give you my recipe at the end of this post. It is super easy. I also freeze the excess sauce in its own dish. The extra sauce isn’t pictured above. It was feeling shy.
To bind the noodles together and make it a “pie”, I also used 2 eggs, smoked mozzarella cheese, parmesan cheese, extra sauce, and fresh tomatoes. The fresh tomatoes don’t bind. It was just a chance to get some more healthy stuff in….plus, I have a bazillion tomatoes from my friend Janna….so tomatoes in everything!
I prefer smoked mozzarella in this, but if you aren’t a fan, plain ol’ mozzarella will work too. I am just fancy like that.
In a large bowl, I gave the eggs a quick beating. I also swore at them to add to the horror of a beating. And called them names.
I dumped about a cup of the mozzarella into the eggs.
And about ½ a cup of parmesan cheese.
Then, I stirred in the leftover spaghetti, about ½ a pound. Notice that this isn’t too saucy yet. I will add more sauce later. Remember, when I froze my noodles, I had mixed them with a bit of sauce, about 1 ½ cups.
Half of the noodle mixture gets put into the bottom of a greased springform pan. My pan is 9 inches in diameter. Size doesn’t matter for this;)
I layered the sliced meatballs and chopped tomatoes over the bottom layer of noodles. I have been known to sneak veggies in at this point. I have used broccoli, zucchini, etc.
I put the rest of the noodles over the meatball/tomato layer and packed it down. I topped that with about ½ a cup of the extra sauce.
I also sprinkled on additional mozzarella and parmesan cheese. I covered the whole thing in foil and baked it for about 55 minutes. If you are putting the pie together in the morning, you would pop it back in the fridge after you cover it in foil. You can go to work, and when you come home….pop it in the oven for about an hour. After the hour, it needs its foil jacket removed, and it will bake for another 5 to 10 minutes.
After it cools for a few minutes, you can take it out of its springform sides. Doesn’t that look good? It is a whole ‘nother way to eat spaghetti and meatballs! Nobody will realize that it is leftovers!
I like to pour a bit more sauce over the top to serve. I love what the smoked mozzarella does to this. It gives it a smoky flavor that goes so well with the meatballs. My kids love that it looks like cake. It is good hot, room temperature or even cold!
Yummy, cheesy deliciousness! I hope you try this recipe!
I will see you on Tuesday with another pumpkin recipe! Nope, I’m not out yet;)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 small onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 teaspoons dried basil
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon sugar
2 tablespoons tomato paste
28 ounce can crushed tomatoes
In a medium sized pot, sauté onion and garlic in olive oil over medium heat until soft and translucent, about 5 minutes. Add basil, salt, pepper and sugar. Stir in tomato paste and sauté for additional 2 minutes. Add crushed tomatoes and cook sauce, over medium heat, for another 5 to 10 minutes.
Spaghetti and Meatball Pie
½ pound leftover spaghetti mixed with about 1 to 1 ½ cups marinara sauce
2 cups leftover meatballs, sliced
1 cup marinara sauce
1 ½ cups smoked mozzarella cheese, divided
1 cup parmesan cheese, divided
1 cup fresh tomatoes, chopped
Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9 inch Springform pan, or spray with cooking spray.
In a large bowl, beat eggs. Stir in 1 cup smoked mozzarella and ½ cup parmesan cheese. Add leftover spaghetti to bowl and mix well.
Pour ½ of the spaghetti into the bottom of the springform. Layer meatballs and tomatoes over the noodles. Top the meatball layer with the rest of the noodles.
Top pie with additional marinara and the remaining cheese. Cover with foil. Bake at 350 degrees for 55 minutes. Remove foil and bake an additional 10 minutes. Let cool for at least 10 minutes before slicing. Top with additional marinara if desired.