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Our Super Bowl 50 Top Pick: Ziti, Mushroom and Beef Casserole

Ziti and Beef CasseroleMany of you will be cooking for a crowd this Super Bowl 50 weekend. If you’re a football fan, even if you are just in charge of the family meal, you’ll want something easy to serve, but delicious. This casserole is a huge upgrade to plain baked ziti. The recipe also makes a ton of food. If you don’t have a very large lasagna pan, you’ll need two casserole dishes. It also keeps hot for a good amount of time wrapped in aluminum foil and towels if it is ready early. Don’t leave it in the oven. It will dry out.

Let the record show that both of my sisters-in-law get credit for this. Barbara Mathieu Semeraro provided the recipe, and Jill Mathieu did the cooking for a family birthday dinner. I’d like to take a bit of credit too. I suggested the recipe. Barbara shared it with me ages ago, and I had a big craving for this satisfying dish.

Ziti, Mushroom and Beef Casserole

  • 1 lb ziti, slightly undercooked
  • 3 lbs lean ground beef, browned and drained of all fat
  • 1 lb mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 cups onions, finely chopped
  • 2 gloves garlic, minced
  • Olive oil
  • 5 cups spaghetti sauce
  • 1/2 cup red wine
  • 2 tsp. oregano
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. pepper
  • 8 ounces mozzarella, shredded

Preheat oven to 350.

Cook onions and garlic in a little olive oil for about 3 minutes until they are soft and begin to change color.

Add mushrooms. Cook for another 3 minutes.

Mix everything together except cheese. I have a very large lasagna pan big enough for the whole recipe so I mix it right in the pan.

Sprinkle cheese on top. Cover. Bake 35-45 minutes. Check middle to see if it’s cooked through and very hot. Remove from oven when done; this dries out easily.

Serve with sour cream. (Optional)

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