Cheese Stuffed-Meatball Rigatoni Bake with Pesto Toasts
This family-friendly meal will have everyone on the table happy. Perfectly seasoned meatballs are stuffed with shredded mozzarella, tossed in our zesty homemade marinara sauce, then sprinkled with buttery panko, parmesan & more mozza, served with savoury pesto toasts.
IN THE KIT
12 ozground beef
8 ozshredded mozzarella cheese
6 ozrigatoni pasta
10 ozmarinara sauce
4 ozparmesan cheese
6 ozseasoned panko
1 ozgarlic butter
1 sliceTuscan bread
2 ozItalian seasoning
1 ozchopped garlic
Salt & pepper
Kitchen Items Needed
Small skillet or pot
Oven proof dish
Adjust racks to middle & top positions & preheat oven to 400º F;
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil;
Remove leaves from stems & roughly chop basil;
Cut bread in half if necessary. Spread with pesto on one side of each toast;
Break egg into small bowl & whisk together until smooth.
Bring water to a boil. Add beef, Italian seasoning, egg, pinch of salt, pepper & mix together. Make 8 little patties. Divide mozzarella between the centers of each pattie. Gently fold meat around cheese, shaping & sealing to create cheese-stuffed meatballs.
Lightly oil a baking sheet. Spread meatballs out across entire sheet. Bake on middle rack until cooked through, 20-22 minutes. (It’s OK if some cheese oozes out!)
Remove sheet from oven. Heat broiler to high.
Once water is boiling, add rigatoni to pot. Cook, stirring occasionally, until al dente, 9-11 minutes. Reserve 1 cup pasta cooking water, then drain & set aside.
While pasta cooks, melt butter in a small skillet over medium heat. Add panko & toast, moving around in pan, until golden.
Heat a drizzle of olive oil in large skillet. Add garlic & cook for 30 seconds. Add marinara sauce & reserved past water, salt & pepper, simmer & cook until slightly thickened, 3-4 minutes.
Stir drained rigatoni & meatballs into pan with sauce. Transfer mixture to baking dish. Top pasta with parmesan & parmesan mixture. Broil until panko is golden brown & cheese has melted, 1-2 minutes. Let cool slightly.
Turn oven to bake, add toasts directly on the rack pesto side up. Toast, watching carefully to not burn.
Divide pasta bake & toasts, sprinkle with basil. Enjoy!