One Pan Baked Cheesy Basil Pasta. The perfect dish for nights when you’re craving a slow-baked pasta, but also need something simple and easy to prepare. Dry pasta tossed with olive oil, herbs, and topped with lots of bell peppers and cheese…so delicious! The secret to this one-pan pasta? Cooking the pasta in water right in the baking dish. No boiling water, no extra pans! This dish is great to serve any night of the week. Fancy enough for Friday night, but easy enough for any ole’ weeknight. It’s delicious and looks pretty on any table. Bonus…everyone LOVES a GOOD baked pasta.
Tonight feels like we could all use a good pasta dish to get us through until Friday night. I know it’s only Thursday, but it’s already been such a full week, and this is my comfort food. I’ve been looking forward to sharing this recipe with you guys for quite some time, and today’s the day. Mainly because I love it and am excited for you to try it out. But also selfishly, because I now get to make this again today for IG stories.
SO EXCITED for tonight’s dinner. This is one of my all-time favorite recipes.
Jumping right into things today because, well, we have pasta to mix up and enjoy!
The reason I love this recipe so much is simple, I drew inspiration from my dad’s Friday Night pasta that he’d often make when I was a kid. We’d call it Friday Night Pasta Dish because he’d make it almost every Friday night. It was, and still is, one of my mom’s and my favorite dishes.
This is Dad’s pasta, just made in a much simpler way and with a shorter cut of pasta. And you guys, it’s so delicious. My dad even said that he likes this variation better. I think it’s the short-cut pasta that he loves. Me personally? I’m all about the cheesy peppers on top…best part of this dish.
Here are the details.
This One Pan Baked Cheesy Basil Pasta is the perfect dish for when you are busy and have practically zero time to put any effort into dinner. Kind of what I call the effortless dinner.
So…you ready for this? Add every single ingredient to a large baking dish (the deeper the better). Add water, then cover the dish and bake. No boiling water, no pots, nothing fancy at all.
Once everything is mixed up in the baking dish, simply add the water right into the dish. I know it may seem odd, but trust me, it works. Just cover with foil and bake until that cheese is bubbly. Cooking the pasta together with the herby oil saves you from additional prep work and having to break out another pot. Not sure about you guys, but I’m all about fewer dishes.
So easy to create, and with such a DELICIOUS outcome.
A few notes.
First, you’ll want to use a shorter cut of pasta for this. Since we’re cooking the pasta all together in the baking dish, the short cut is able to cook more evenly. I love using a fun squiggly shape, but you can use any short-cut pasta you love!
Second, be sure to use a baking dish that’s large enough to fit all your ingredients. Since we’re tossing the pasta right into the baking dish, it’s easier if your dish is on the larger, deeper side. You will have less mess this way.
Also key? The sun-dried tomatoes. You’re going to use both the tomatoes and that oil left behind in the jar. Between the herbed oil and the sweet tomatoes, you’ll get so much flavor from this one ingredient.
And lastly, the cheese! My dad always used more mozzarella and parmesan cheese than you ever thought a pasta dish could have…but it’s essential to creating the dish. I used a combination of melty mozzarella, cheddar, and parmesan. ‘Tis a delicious combination and “classic” to what my dad would use when I was growing up. But feel free to use whatever cheese you have on hand.
All cheese is good cheese.
And lastly, the bell peppers. Oh, the peppers. They make this pasta dish really shine. My dad would pile them high on top of the cheese, then let them roast in the oven low and slow on top of the pasta. The outcome?
Thin slices of roasted bell peppers. A slight char on the edges are my personal favorite way to cook these. So delicious.
It’s going to feel like A LOT of peppers, but trust me here. The peppers will roast as the pasta cooks and they’ll slowly shrink down, slow roast, and become ridiculously delicious in the process.
As soon as you pull the pasta out, top with lots and lots of fresh basil…also very important. When the basil hits the hot pasta, you’ll immediately smell it and it is wonderful.
As mentioned above, I’m already so excited to recreate this today on Instagram. This is such a beloved pasta dish for our family. And the best part is just how easy it is to prepare. The prep time is very minimal and leaves you with zero extra dishes.
An hour after starting, you’ll have a gloriously cheesy baked dinner all ready. ‘Tis perfection.
Oh, and add lots of grated parmesan on top to finish!
Looking for other fun pasta dishes to make? Here are some favorites.
Lastly, if you make this One Pan Baked Cheesy Basil Pasta be sure to leave a comment and/or give this recipe a rating! Above all, I love to hear from you guys and always do my best to respond to each and every comment. And of course, if you do make this recipe, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram! Looking through the photos of recipes you all have made is my favorite!
One Pan Baked Cheesy Basil Pasta
Calories Per Serving: 396 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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- 1/3 cup chopped sun-dried tomatoes, oil reserved and drained
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon dried basil
- 1 tablespoon dried oregano
- 1 tablespoon parsley
- 2 teaspoons dried dill
- 1 pinch red pepper flakes
- 1 pinch each kosher salt and black pepper
- 1/3 cup halved kalamata olives
- 2 tablespoons sliced pepperoncini (optional)
- 1 pound short cut pasta
- 1 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
- 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
- 2-3 red bell peppers, very thinly sliced
- 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
- fresh basil, for serving
- 1. Preheat the oven to 400° F. 2. Drain the sun-dried tomato oil out into a 9x13 inch baking dish. Add the olive oil, basil, oregano, parsley, dill, and a pinch each of red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper. Toss in the chopped sun-dried tomatoes, olives, pepperoncini. Add the dry pasta and toss with the oil, making sure the pasta gets fully coated in oil and herbs. Pour over 2 1/2 cups water. Stir to combine. Push down on the pasta to submerge it. 3. Add the mozzarella and cheddar, then layer on the bell peppers and parmesan. It will seem like a lot of peppers, but they cook down in the oven. 4. Rub the underside of a piece of foil with oil. Tightly cover the baking dish with the foil, oiled side facing down. Bake for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake another 20-25 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and bubbly. Remove from the oven and top with fresh basil.