Baked Cream Cheese Spaghetti Casserole – Delight in this homely, mouthwatering Baked Cream Cheese Spaghetti Casserole. Dive into tender spaghetti strands, a creamy mix, and a hearty meat sauce. It’s the perfect comfort meal you didn’t know you were craving.
The first time I whipped up this Baked Cream Cheese Spaghetti Casserole was on one of those lazy Sundays. The sky was overcast, and the home felt especially cozy. My husband, always eager for something new, gave one of those hesitant “what’s-this-now?” looks. And as for my little one? She was just excited to see “noodles” on the plate. By the end of dinner, both were smitten. Their plates were wiped clean, and they were already asking when I’d make it next. It wasn’t just a dish; it was a memory we created together.
What makes this Baked Cream Cheese Spaghetti Casserole truly special?
This Baked Cream Cheese Spaghetti Casserole isn’t just another pasta dish; it’s an experience. Imagine the luxuriously smooth texture of cream cheese perfectly blended with the al dente strands of spaghetti, enriched further by a meat sauce that packs robust flavor. The addition of Italian seasoning and garlic takes the dish from good to sublime. It’s the ideal combination of simplicity and gourmet, ready in under an hour, making it an unparalleled choice for both swift weeknight dinners and special occasions.
What You Need To Make This Baked Cream Cheese Spaghetti Casserole Recipe?
Spaghetti: When it comes to spaghetti the brand you choose makes a difference. It’s important to go for a trusted brand that will keep the spaghetti from getting too mushy and maintain its shape. If you’re looking for an option whole wheat spaghetti could be an alternative.
Spaghetti Sauce: For the sauce whether you decide to buy it or make it yourself go for one with flavors. If you have some time making your own marinara or Bolognese sauce would take this dish to another level.
Ground Beef: When it comes to the meat lean ground beef works best for this recipe. It provides that meatiness without making the dish greasy. However, if you want a taste profile consider using ground turkey or Italian sausage for some added spiciness.
Italian Seasoning: Italian seasoning typically consists of oregano, thyme, rosemary and basil. Feel free to adjust the proportions according to your preferences or use herbs if you have them on hand.
Garlic: Fresh minced garlic is preferred because of its aromatic properties. However, if you don’t have fresh garlic, garlic powder can be used as an alternative although there might be a slight difference, in flavor profile.
Cream Cheese: Cream cheese is what gives this dish its richness. Make sure it’s, at room temperature so that it blends smoothly into the sauce. If you want a flavor twist consider using a combination of cream cheese and ricotta cheese.
Parmesan Cheese: When you grate parmesan it adds a flavor, with a hint of saltiness and umami. While pre-grated cheese can be convenient when you’re short on time, for the melting and taste experience it’s recommended to grate it yourself.
Steps To Make Baked Cream Cheese Spaghetti Casserole:
Step 1: Start by firing up your oven to 350ºF. As it warms up, grab a skillet and get that ground beef sizzling until it’s perfectly browned. Drain any excess fat and mix in your spaghetti sauce. Give it a taste and let the flavor transport you!
Step 2: While that’s simmering away, let’s tackle that spaghetti. Cook it as you usually would or follow the packet instructions. Once drained, toss it into a bowl, and here’s where the magic happens: mix in the cream cheese, that aromatic Italian seasoning, and the ever-so-important minced garlic. Mix until you’ve got a creamy, dreamy spaghetti mix.
Step 3: Grab a 9×13″ pan and lightly grease it. Spread out a touch of your meaty masterpiece at the bottom, lay down your spaghetti, and drown it in the remaining meat sauce. Finish with a generous sprinkle of parmesan.
Step 4: Pop it in the oven and bake until it’s bubbly and irresistible – around 30 minutes. And voila! A dish that’s sure to impress!
To enhance the taste and complexity you can try incorporating a bit of wine into the ground beef once it’s browned. Before adding the spaghetti sauce. Allow it to simmer and reduce for a few minutes. This simple addition will elevate the flavor of the meat sauce giving your Baked Cream Cheese Spaghetti Casserole a gourmet flair that is bound to make an impression.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Can I use a different type of meat?
Sure you have the option to try using a kind of meat if you prefer. Ground turkey or chicken are options that are lighter compared to beef.
Is it freezer-friendly?
Definitely! Once it’s cooled down wrapping it tightly will allow you to freeze it for a month.
How can I make it vegetarian?
If you want to make it vegetarian simply skip the meat. Add some vegetables like bell peppers, zucchini and mushrooms to make the sauce more substantial.
My name is Natasha and I am the owner of nodashofgluten.com, a blog dedicated to all kinds of recipes. On my website, you can find classic dishes, vegetarian delights, creative snacks, Gluten-free recipes, and desserts – all proving that cooking isn’t as hard as it seems! With easy-to-follow instructions and tips on how to make your meals even better, I strive to help everyone become master chefs in their own kitchen. Come join me at nodashofgluten.com for some delicious fun!