Baked Rigatoni & Creamy Tomato Sauce with Spinach, Mushrooms, & Fresh Mozzarella

Baked Rigatoni & Creamy Tomato Sauce

with Spinach, Mushrooms, & Fresh Mozzarella

40 MIN
4 Servings
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From the Test Kitchen

Tonight is all about the cheesy, hearty flavors of baked pasta. We’re coating fresh rigatoni with a simple tomato sauce that gets a boost of silky texture from heavy cream. Mushrooms and spinach add hearty texture and balance out the richness. For another layer of savory flavor, we’re topping the pasta with fresh mozzarella, then baking it to melt the cheese and bring all the flavors together.

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  • Nutrition
    PER SERVING
  • Calories
    750 Cals (est.)
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fresh
ingredients
time-saving
tips & techniques
Prepare the ingredients:
1 Prepare the ingredients:

Preheat the oven to 475°F. Heat a large pot of salted water to boiling on high. Wash and dry the fresh produce. Remove and discard the mushroom stems; quarter the caps. Peel and thinly slice the shallot. Peel and roughly chop the garlic. Place the tomatoes in a bowl; gently break apart with your hands. Tear the mozzarella cheese into bite-sized pieces.

Cook the pasta:
2 Cook the pasta:

Add the pasta to the pot of boiling water. Cook 5 to 6 minutes, or until just shy of al dente (still slightly firm to the bite). Turn off the heat. Reserving ½ cup of the pasta cooking water, drain thoroughly and return to the pot.

Start the sauce:
3 Start the sauce:

While the pasta cooks, in a large pan, heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the mushrooms and cook, stirring occasionally, 4 to 5 minutes, or until lightly browned and slightly softened. Add the shallot and garlic; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 2 to 3 minutes, or until softened and fragrant.

Finish the sauce:
4 Finish the sauce:

Add the tomato paste to the pan; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, 1 to 2 minutes, or until dark red and fragrant. Add the tomatoes and heavy cream (shaking the bottle before opening); season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 2 to 3 minutes, or until slightly reduced in volume. Turn off the heat.

Finish the pasta:
5 Finish the pasta:

Add the finished sauce, spinach, and half the reserved pasta cooking water to the pot of cooked pasta. Stir vigorously until the pasta is thoroughly coated and the spinach has wilted. (If the sauce seems dry, gradually add the remaining pasta cooking water to achieve your desired consistency.) Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Bake the pasta & serve your dish:
6 Bake the pasta & serve your dish:

Transfer the finished pasta to a baking dish. Top with the mozzarella cheese and half the pecorino cheese. Bake 9 to 11 minutes, or until the cheese has melted and the sauce is slightly thickened. Remove from the oven and top with the remaining pecorino cheese. Let stand for at least 2 minutes before serving. Enjoy!

Tips from Home Chefs

1 Prepare the ingredients:

Preheat the oven to 475°F. Heat a large pot of salted water to boiling on high. Wash and dry the fresh produce. Remove and discard the mushroom stems; quarter the caps. Peel and thinly slice the shallot. Peel and roughly chop the garlic. Place the tomatoes in a bowl; gently break apart with your hands. Tear the mozzarella cheese into bite-sized pieces.

2 Cook the pasta:

Add the pasta to the pot of boiling water. Cook 5 to 6 minutes, or until just shy of al dente (still slightly firm to the bite). Turn off the heat. Reserving ½ cup of the pasta cooking water, drain thoroughly and return to the pot.

Cook the pasta:
Start the sauce:
3 Start the sauce:

While the pasta cooks, in a large pan, heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the mushrooms and cook, stirring occasionally, 4 to 5 minutes, or until lightly browned and slightly softened. Add the shallot and garlic; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 2 to 3 minutes, or until softened and fragrant.

4 Finish the sauce:

Add the tomato paste to the pan; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, 1 to 2 minutes, or until dark red and fragrant. Add the tomatoes and heavy cream (shaking the bottle before opening); season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 2 to 3 minutes, or until slightly reduced in volume. Turn off the heat.

Finish the sauce:
Finish the pasta:
5 Finish the pasta:

Add the finished sauce, spinach, and half the reserved pasta cooking water to the pot of cooked pasta. Stir vigorously until the pasta is thoroughly coated and the spinach has wilted. (If the sauce seems dry, gradually add the remaining pasta cooking water to achieve your desired consistency.) Season with salt and pepper to taste.

6 Bake the pasta & serve your dish:

Transfer the finished pasta to a baking dish. Top with the mozzarella cheese and half the pecorino cheese. Bake 9 to 11 minutes, or until the cheese has melted and the sauce is slightly thickened. Remove from the oven and top with the remaining pecorino cheese. Let stand for at least 2 minutes before serving. Enjoy!

Bake the pasta & serve your dish:
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