Baked ziti with chickpeas
A comfort food pasta casserole is just what your family needs after a cold and blustery storm or a fun day on the slopes. You can also make this vegan dinner recipe ahead of time to freeze for those days you don't have time to assemble a meal.
Baked Ziti with Chickpeas
- 1 pound ziti
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 carrot, chopped
- 1 stalk celery, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Pinch of cayenne
- 1 (26-ounce) jar spaghetti sauce
- 2 (15-ounce) cans chickpeas, rinsed, drained
- 1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
- 3 cups shredded vegan cheese
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. and spray a 13x9-inch baking dish with cooking spray.
- Cook ziti according to package directions. Drain and set aside.
- Meanwhile, heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion and carrot and cook, stirring often, for 3 to 4 minutes or until the carrot starts to soften. Add zucchini and cook, stirring often, for 2 to 3 minutes or until zucchini softens.
- Add garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Season with salt and pepper and red pepper. Stir in spaghetti sauce, chickpeas, and basil and bring to a simmer. Simmer for 10 minutes.
- Transfer pasta and sauce to the prepared baking dish and sprinkle with cheese. Bake for 30 minutes or until cheese is melted and pasta is heated through. Serve warm.
Cook's note: To freeze, don't bake pasta. Let pasta cool completely or even refrigerate overnight. Tightly cover baking dish with heavy-duty aluminum foil and freeze up to 2 months. Let casserole thaw in the refrigerator overnight then bake in an oven preheated to 350 degrees F. for 30 to 40 minutes or until heated through.