Spaghetti is the ultimate easy dinner; delicious, loved by all, and you can easily sneak in some extra vegetables for the littles. Sometimes you just need to jazz it up, though, and what better way to do that than to top it with mozzarella, bake until bubbly, then drizzle with sweet and tangy balsamic glaze? I made this recipe by default (as per usual), but it was so delicious I decided to document. I’m telling you, it is like the Italian comfort food love child of spaghetti and lasagna: cheesy, saucy, delicious! I hope you give it a try – I’m willing to bet it will be a family favorite!
Spaghetti Bake with Balsamic Glaze
- 2 tbsp of olive oil
- 1 red onion, diced
- 8 oz of mushrooms, quartered
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 lb of lean ground beef or ground turkey
- 1 tsp of salt
- 2 tsp of dried parsley
- 1.5 tsp of dried basil
- 1 tsp of dried oregano
- 1/2 tsp of garlic powder
- 1 jar sugar free marinara
- 1/2 lb of whole wheat or gluten free spaghetti
- 2 cups (packed down) of fresh spinach
- 8 oz of fresh mozzarella, sliced Balsamic Glaze:
- 1/3 cup of raw honey
- 1/2 cup of balsamic vinegar
- Heat olive oil in a large pan over medium heat.
- Add mushrooms, onion, and bay leaves – cooking until tender.
- While cooking, boil salted water in a large pot – preparing to cook your spaghetti.
- Add ground meat to vegetables, crumbling while it cooks.
- Season with salt and spices, and continue to cook.
- Drain excess fat if necessary, and remove bay leaves.
- Once water is boiling, add your spaghetti noodles and cook according to package directions, using the minimum amount of time for cooking – the noodles will continue to cook in the oven.
- While noodles cook, preheat your oven to 375 F.
- Once noodles are cooked, drain and return to pot.
- Add cooked meat and vegetables, pasta sauce, and fresh spinach to the noodles; stir to combine well.
- Evenly spread spaghetti in a 9×13 pan, and top with mozzarella slices.
- Bake for 15-20 minutes, until cheese is browning and sauce is bubbling.
- While spaghetti is baking, make your balsamic glaze by combining honey and balsamic vinegar in a small pot, bring to a boil, then reduce heat and let it simmer until thickened.
- Serve spaghetti bake hot with a generous drizzle of balsamic glaze.
- Store leftovers covered in the fridge for up to a week.
For more pasta recipes, try my Zoodles with Meat Sauce or my Baked Ziti with Sausage. I hope this quick yet fancier version of spaghetti can become a family favorite for you! Indulge in some cheesy, saucy pasta…and enjoy your pinch of crazy!
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