Baked Rigatoni with Sausage
A creamy pasta al forno: Baked Rigatoni with Sausage. This hearty pasta dinner is perfect for weeknights or entertaining.
Servings: 8 servings
- 1 pound dried rigatoni pasta
- 1 pound Italian Sausage bulk or casings removed
- 8 ounces mushrooms sliced
- 32 ounces marinara sauce I use Rao's Marinara,( about 3.5 cups )
- .5 cup heavy whipping cream
- 16 ounces fresh mozzarella cheese sliced
Preheat the oven the to 350°F and bring a large pot of water to a boil.
Add the pasta to the boiling water and cook for two minutes less than the directions on the box specify for al dente. You want the pasta to be slightly more underdone than al dente.Drain the pasta, reserving .5 cup of pasta water.
Wipe out the large pot you cooked the pasta in. After the pot has been wiped dry, place it back over medium high heat. Once the pan has heated up, add the bulk sausage, breaking it up into small bits as it cooks and browns for 6 minutes.
Once the sausage is browned, remove it from the pot and set it aside, leaving only 1 Tablespoon of sausage grease in the pot. Working in batches, add a single layer of sliced mushrooms to the pot and cook over medium high 3 - 5 minutes in the sausage grease until all of the mushrooms are cooked.Add the sausage and pasta back to the pot with the mushrooms. Stir in the marinara, pasta water, and the heavy whipping cream until everything is evenly coated.
Pour everything from the pot into a large, greased casserole dish (3 quarts should fit everything ). Layer the fresh slices of mozzarella on top.
Bake uncovered at 350°F for 15 minutes, then broil for an additional 3 - 4 minutes or until the top of the cheese starts to brown.