The Batch Lady baked spinach ziti

This is a great meat-free comfort meal that can be made ahead to sit in your freezer, ready to pop straight in the oven after a busy day at work. 

batch lady baked spinach ziti
Danielle Wood




300g dried ziti pasta
splash of olive oil
60g chopped onions, frozen or fresh
2 tsp chopped garlic, frozen or fresh
400g can chopped tomatoes
1 tsp Italian herb seasoning
180g fresh spinach
115g ricotta cheese
115g grated mozzarella cheese
25g grated parmesan cheese

1. Place the pasta in a large pan and pour over boiling water to cover. Cook according to packet instructions until just tender. 

2. While the pasta is cooking, heat a splash of olive oil in another pan over a medium heat, then add the onions and garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 minute, until softened. Add the tomatoes and Italian seasoning to the pan and stir to combine. Bring to the boil, then reduce to a gentle simmer while you prepare the other elements. 

3. When the pasta is almost cooked, add the spinach to the pasta pan and cook for 1 minute, until wilted, then drain and rinse the pasta and spinach using a colander. 

4. Transfer the pasta and spinach mixture to a large baking dish. Pour over the tomato sauce, then add all of the ricotta and half of the mozzarella. Stir the mixture until really well combined, then scatter over the remaining mozzarella and all of the parmesan. 

TO COOK To cook straight away, simply transfer to an oven preheated to 180C/160C fan/gas 4 for 25-30 minutes, until golden and bubbling. Serve hot. 

TO FREEZE If you have space in your freezer, this can be left to cool, then wrapped in a layer of clingfilm followed by a layer offoil, before freezing for up to three months. If you don’t have space, omit the final sprinkling of cheese and, once cooled, transfer the mixture to a labelled freezer bag and freeze flat. 

TO COOK FROM FROZEN This can be defrosted overnight in the fridge or cooked directly from frozen. If defrosting first, cook as described, above, until golden and bubbling. If cooking from frozen, double the cooking time, covering with foil if the top starts to catch and ensuring the dish is piping hot before serving.

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