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I know that it may only be Thursday, but I am preparing you guys for Friday.

Dad's Friday Night Pasta Dish |

No but really, I am posting this specifically on Thursday so you can make this tomorrow.

It is a must.

Dad's Friday Night Pasta Dish |

Ready for another “when I was growing up” story?

Well, I still feel like I am growing up. Probably because I totally am, but you get the point. Anyway, this pasta is hands down one of my favorite dinners. Yes, I say this a lot, BUT this pasta will always, always, be something I love to death. Everybody loves this pasta. Ok, not the meat-eating brothers because the only meat on this pasta is the pepperoni and that just does not cut it for them. Like I say all the time, their loss. Except Brendan, this is his favorite, but he loves all food…..

Of course, I almost never get to cook for him because is off flipping upside down through the air somewhere. Figures.

Dad's Friday Night Pasta Dish |

Alright, so I think we all get by now that I was a pretty weird kid (still am, but I am kind of not considered a kid anymore). All throughout school when kids were going out on Friday nights I was probably home hanging with my family and eating this.

A lot of Fridays I would force myself to hang out with my friends because one, I did actually like them, and two, if I did not devote a little time to them outside of school I would not have any friends to hang with at school. I mean, it’s a two-way street, so I had to play my part, at least a little. Ok, that sounds bad. What I am trying to say is that even though I loved my friends, I still also really loved being at home with my family. Sometimes I would do a fun Friday night with friends and then the next week I would just stay home and chill out.

Still sounds totally weird, but what’s new.

Dad's Friday Night Pasta Dish |

Whatever I did though, this was almost always dinner on Friday night. Sometimes we would switch it up and do homemade pizza, but this pasta would then get made on Saturday.

I am not really sure when my dad actually started making this pasta, but he has made it for as long as I can remember. I am also not sure how it came to be, but my guess is he just started throwing some things in a baking dish and called it a day. To be honest, it is never made the exact some way twice. This is one of those dishes that normally does not have any measurements involved and things are just thrown in, tossed together and then loaded with cheese.

Dad's Friday Night Pasta Dish |

Also if I am being honest, no one will ever be able to make this as good as my dad. I have tried, over and over again, but for some reason his version always comes out better every single time. Sure, I can make a lot of things, and a lot of them I can probably do better than my dad, but this is just not one of them. Pasta and eggs are his thing.

A few key ingredients?

1.) Pasta

2.) Good olive oil

3.) Tons of mozzarella cheese

4.) Red bell peppers (most important)

Dad's Friday Night Pasta Dish |

This is one of the most simple pastas you will ever make. It requires dirtying only two dishes. One is the pot to boil the water in, the other is the dish to bake the pasta in.

Dad's Friday Night Pasta Dish |

Super simple because who the heck wants anything complicated on Friday night? Not me that is for sure.

Dad's Friday Night Pasta Dish |

The prep time on this is twenty minutes, TOPS. And that is only if you are slow.

But it does require baking for at least 45 minutes. This is key if you want the peppers to get all roasted and delicious and trust me YOU DO. Nothing is better than those peppers sitting on top. I am known to pick off all the peppers and leave everyone else with none. Sorry, I can’t help it. They are my favorite part.

Dad's Friday Night Pasta Dish |

Dad's Friday Night Pasta Dish

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings: 6 Servings
Calories Per Serving: 520 kcal

Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.

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  • Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Boil the pasta until al dente. Drain well.
  • While the water comes to a boil add the olive oil (make sure the oil covers the entire bottom of the baking dish, if not add more oil), dried basil, dried parsley, dried oregano, dried dill, crushed red pepper, salt and pepper to a 9 x 13 inch baking dish. To the baking dish add three fourths of the pasta, the olives, sun-dried tomatoes and pepperoncinis. Toss well until all the ingredients are evenly distributed. Drizzle the pasta with a little of the reserved oil from the sun-dried tomato jar. If pasta seems a little oily add in a little more angel hair or if you would like to use all the pasta be sure to add more oil to evenly coat all the pasta.
  • Add 3/4 of the mozzarella cheese and then scatter the sliced red peppers over top. At this point it will seem like there are too many peppers, but this is fine. They will cook down.
  • Sprinkle on the remaining mozzarella and evenly place the pepperonis on top. Sprinkle on top 2-4 ounces of parmesan and another drizzle of olive oil.
  • Bake in the preheated oven for 45 to 60 minutes or until the top is browned and the peppers have softened. Remove from the oven and garnish with fresh basil and more parmesan. Cut and eat!
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Dad's Friday Night Pasta Dish |

Oh and obviously, this dish is good any night of the week, but it is extra delicious on Fridays, because well it is Friday… and everything is better on Friday.

half-baked-harvestHEY GUYS, I NEED YOUR HELP!!

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  1. 3 stars
    I’m not sure what I did but This didn’t turn out as I imagined 🙁 I thought it would be cheesy and gooey but it’s more like a bunch of pasta with baked cheese on top. Did I do something wrong? I guess I just thought it would be a little more saucy?

    1. Hey April,
      Thanks for giving the recipe a try. This really isn’t meant to be a super cheesy, saucy, dish. If that’s what you are looking for, I would try one of these recipes:
      Please let me know if you have any other questions! xTieghan

  2. 5 stars
    Finally got around to making it and it is OUT OF THIS WORLD. Totally different from how I imagined it tasting, but no less moreish! I cut the recipe by about a third, but still ended up polishing it off between the two of us hihi. Only change I made was subbing marinated artichokes for the pepperoncinis. This is definitely going on the regular meal rotation and getting shared with family & friends!

    1. Hey there,
      Thanks so much for giving the recipe a try, I am thrilled that it was enjoyed! Happy Valentine’s Day❤️ xTieghan

  3. Quick question before I make this next week: how essential is the long baking time for the dish? Would it work to simply broil the top for a couple minutes to get the peppers cooked and cheese melted? After drooling over this in my Pinterest feed 100 times over the years, I’m finally going to be able to make it having finally located pepperoni I can eat!

  4. 5 stars
    Delish! Made this last night for dinner and found it simple to make!. My only modification was to stir fry mushrooms and an onion and then added it when mixing the pasta with the oil. I am excited to have it for leftovers tonight! I will make this again for sure!

  5. Just tried making this dish from the recipe out of your cookbook which explicitly states to add the DRY pasta to the pan and not cook it prior to baking… needless to say it was a total flop. 0/10. I was like, how can this be her favorite dinner??

    Jumped on here to see if there was any way I possibly went wrong and saw that on this version you cook the pasta before hand. *faceplam

    1. Hey Lauren,
      So sorry you had issues with the recipe in the book, these are two completely different recipes. Please let me know how I can help! xTieghan

  6. 5 stars
    I made this dish last year and loved it. But I used a version of the recipe where you put the pasta in the dish dry and just covered it in water. I can’t seem to find that version anywhere. I can’t remember if it changed the cooking time or not. Can you let me know where I can find that version again please? Thanks!!

    1. Hey Peggy! That version is in my cookbook, Half Baked Harvest. Do you have it?

      Please let me know if you have any other questions. Thank you!! xTieghan

  7. Hi there! Making this tonight! I have your book and there it says to add the uncooked pasta to the dish, but here you pre-cook it. What’s best?

    1. Hey Jules! The recipe in the book is a different method and slightly different recipe. I like both variations, so it’s really up to you! I make the recipe in the book most often. It’s a bit easier. Please let me know if you have any other questions. I hope you love this recipe! Thank you! xTieghan

  8. This looks amazing! Do you know if it can be made ahead of time, frozen, and reheated for serving?

    1. HI! Yes, you can make ahead and freeze. Thaw overnight in the fridge and then bake as directed! OR if baking before freezing, thaw in the fridge and warm at 400 for 20 minutes. Please let me know if you have any other questions. I hope you love this recipe! Thank you! xTieghan

  9. I made this after seeing your post on Instagram Story video. It was delicious! But the version I saw was made with the raw pasta put right in the dish and covered with water. Is that version of the recipe printed anywhere?

    1. HI! You should use dried dill wee. Please let me know if you have any other questions. I hope you love this recipe! Thank you! xTieghan

  10. Planning to make this for my family and a friend who just had a baby – would you bake to completion and just reheat or assemble completely (maybe minus the water?) and give instructions to add water and bake? Is this version or your cookbook version better for making ahead? Thanks for any help!

    1. HI! I think this is the better version to make ahead of time. I recommend using this recipe and assembling the pasta dish fully. Then place in the fridge, covered and just bake as directed when ready. That works great! Please let me know if you have any other questions. I hope you love this recipe. Thanks so much!! xTieghan

    1. HI! I Am sorry, I am confused. The boiling water is for cooking the pasta. Is there something else you meant to ask maybe?

  11. 5 stars
    To make this delicious dish more hearty for the “growing boys,” I love to put chicken breasts down first then add the deliciousness in this recipe on top. So. GOOD!

    Thank you for sharing your family’s tradition!

  12. 5 stars
    I am making this for dinner tonight so I pulled out my HBH cookbook instead of printing off the internet. The cookbook version sounds like you don’t cook the noodles before assembling the casserole. Should I cook or not cook the angel hair pasta? Thanks for your help!! Your recipes are the best!!

    1. If you are using the cookbook version, do not cook the noodles before baking! Please let me know if you have any other questions. I hope you love this recipe. Thanks so much! xTieghan

  13. I made this dish for my in laws when I was short on time but still wanted to offer something beautiful and delicious. It was so so so good. My whole family loved it and it was so easy to assemble. I can’t wait to try more of your cookbook recipes!

  14. 5 stars
    One of our favorite dishes. We have made it at least 25 times since we discovered the recipe a couple years ago! And have passed it along to friends as well ? Just made it tonight, delish as always!

  15. Ok… you’ve won me. I wasn’t a regular, but now I am. This is the straw that broke the camel’s back. lol. What a beautiful dish. You rock!

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  18. I loved this recipe! It was such a neat twist on pasta, and my husband especially loves angel hair. I featured your recipe on my blog because I loved it so much. 🙂
    Thanks for a great recipe!

    1. Hey Kaity, I would not change the temperature, but I would cook it less. Probably 30-45 minutes. Hope you love this dish!

  19. I grew up in an Italian family & I have to say you & your Dad’s recipe is a winner. The only think I did different was to add minced garlic (I put garlic on everything!) & I also reserved 1/2 cup of the pasta water after it was cooked, to make it moister & easier to mix up before baking. Husband & kids loved it! Thanks so much for sharing this & your story. Will be making this dish often!

  20. I’ve got this in the oven right now and it smells amazing! I admittedly left out two of the ingredients – the pepperoncinis because I forgot them, and the olives because I don’t like them. Hopefully it will still be as good as it smells!

  21. hey girl. Thanks so much for sharing this recipe and your memories. Im making this tonight for the boyfriend. It looks absolutely wonderful and we are big pasta and veggie fans. I’m sure its going to be delicious and its no where near dinner time but I’m anxious to start cooking! Simple, small mess making recipes are a plus in this house as well because I have a toddler and cleaning is constant.
    Thanks again!

  22. Made this on the weekend and we loved it. It’s quite hearty! Great family dinner meal..excellent flavours!

  23. Great recipe. I made this last night (friday) night for dinner. My husband loves olives, and peppers so I thought it would be perfect for him. He had seconds it was that good. Would recommend this dish for any dinner party…It’s fairly easy to put together!

  24. Had this for dinner tonight. It was a big hit… my kitchen critic went back for a second huge portion. Thanks for the fantastic recipe, and for making me look like a star tonight.

  25. Tieghan the dish was a HUGE hit!!! YUMMY!!! so going in my regular rotation! thanks for an awesome recipe! 🙂

  26. Tieghan, I’m making this for my inlaws tomorrow night. Can’t wait! Thanks for a great recipe…we love love love red bell’s especially for the super high vitamin C content. Excited for dinner tomorrow night! 😀

      1. it was AWESOME!!!!! i loved it so much! my father in law had three helpings!! LOL can’t wait to make it again…going to add a bit more sundried tomatoes because I love them. excellent recipe!!! 😀

  27. Amy, are you lactose intolerant or vegan? If the former, you can usually find lactose-free cheeses at places like Whole Foods or Choices (in Canada)! It made my life a heck of a lot easier when I realized that I didn’t just have to seek out soy cheeses or cheese substitutes!

  28. It’s in the oven RIGHT NOW! And I’m super excited. I used 1/2 whole wheat and 1/2 spinach spaghetti, so hopefully that doesn’t ruin it. Really trying to be healthier!

      1. Oh we did!!! So amazing! Not even spinach pasta could mask the awesomeness!

    1. Thanks Amy! I would leave the cheese off, top with the peppers and bake only 40 minutes. I can’t say it will be as good without the cheese, but the noodles + peppers will still be delicious! Also, you could maybe use a vegan cheese, but I have never tried that. Let me know how it goes!

  29. This is so amazing! My mama makes something almost exactly like this, and we gobble the whole pan in minutes!!! Gorgeous photos too!

  30. Tieghan, my stomach literally growled while I was looking at these photos. I think I’ll have to eat some of my leftover pasta to satisfy my craving (it’s midnight!).

  31. I’ve been scouring cookbooks and blogs for something to make for my eight boy friends, who are all home for reading break and want me to cook for them. This is the perfect pasta dish for hungry young men. Thank you for sharing it!

  32. I can already tell this will be a regular meal at our house. I made it last night (Friday, obviously) and my family inhaled it! Thanks so much – LOVE this one

  33. I love the growing up stories! I was very similar, I’d do my part in hanging out with friends during high school (and I did like them!) but most of the time I’d prefer to be at home. Not much has changed really! This looks like a wonderfully easy and tasty dish, great for after a long day. Easily vegetarian-ified too!

  34. This was perfect to have ready this weekend when we got a foot of snow. Delicious, and easily adaptable. I used red and yellow peppers and linguini and oven-dried tomatoes from my garden, since that’s what I had. And left out the pepperoni — I’ve been a vegetarian for 25 years. I think next time I’d add a little garlic and onion. Maybe even some artichoke hearts. The possibilities are endless! But as is, it was a perfectly delicious treat to have with a glass of wine after clearing snow for two hours. Thanks for the recipe!

    1. So happy you loved this!! And artichokes are typically added to this over here too! I forgot them in the recipe, but am adding them now!

  35. What a great looking pasta dish! Isn’t it amazing how we can never seem to perfectly recreate dishes our parents made/make for us?! It’s like they purposely leave out an ingredient or step when they tell us their recipe, haha. And these photos are gorgeous!

  36. Oh, my word! That is one amazing pasta dish! Seriously gorgeous…of course I think I say that about all your food 🙂 And congratulations for being nominated for BHG…you are one crazy talented girl!!!

  37. We eat pizza every Friday night at my house, so his would be such a fun new spin on that. Congrats on being nominated by BHG!

  38. I tried to vote but I don’t do Facebook any more so couldn’t. This looks wonderful. I love red peppers and I would be picking them off the top too. Love your posts.

  39. gorgeous! I love that you only dirty two dishes, and how beautifully those peppers roast on top. oh and ps, that’s the biggest casserole dish I’ve ever seen lol.

  40. Spending time with quality people matters most, weither they are friends or family. Sounds like you have quality family and enjoy it, not weird @ all. Will be making this, yum!
    I couldn’t vote cause I don’t do F.B., but you totally deserve to win!

  41. Looks really amazingly yummy! Red peppers are one of my favorites. Will be making this for sure!

  42. First, HUGE congrats on getting nominated by BHG! So excited! Voted. This pasta dish is the perfect way to end the week. Love the pepperoni on top.

  43. The recipe says to use 3/4 of the pasta and to add more if you want, but if you don’t add more, what do you do with the remaining 1/4? Or did I not have enough coffee this morning and miss something 🙂

    1. Hey Kathy, if I do not use all the pasta someone normally eats it. But you can just store it in the fridge and use it for another use. Sorry if that was confusing!

      Thanks so much!

  44. I swear sometimes food just tastes better when other people make it. Especially when its your family and a dish you’ve had growing up! Love the angel hair!! But think you forgot to include it in the recipe 😉

  45. I love the creativity and simplicity here! It sounds to die for. I will have to try this as I am more of a simple the better type pasta gal!

  46. I voted or at least I think I did. After I clicked vote it went to a facebook thing for a comment. I don’t do facebook so I click cancel. Does my vote still count???

  47. I am totally drooling all over my keyboard! This look phenom!
    I love me a delicious meal that is totally simple
    and those photos? Dang girl, you good! Beautiful 🙂

  48. Best pasta dishes ARE the simplest ones and this one looks delicious! Consider me convinced to make it this Friday!

  49. Yay! It is almost Friday! And this looks delicious… And I love the ‘when I was growing up’ stories… 🙂
    PS Gorgeous photos – especially of the peppers being washed!

  50. This is like pizza on a pasta dish, Tieghan .. pizza pasta! Love everything about it, especially the peppers and pepperoni … and the fact it’s so easy! I often make pizza on a Friday night, so it wouldn’t be too much of a switch to make this instead one time!