Weeknight Wonder {Spaghetti Pie}

Spaghetti Pie is a relatively new discovery for me.  I didn’t eat it growing up, and had never even heard of it until after I was married.  I stumbled upon a recipe for Spaghetti Pie ten years ago in a magazine, and immediately wondered where this delicious dish had been hiding all my life.

My particular rendition {and I’m guessing there are a million different versions out there} combines the basics of spaghetti {pasta, sauce, ground beef} and adds creamy and cheesy components.  The bottom layer is cooked pasta coated with a mixture of cream cheese, sour cream, and green onions.  The middle layer is seasoned browned ground beef and jarred tomato sauce {Prego Traditional is the best}.  The top layer is shredded cheddar cheese.  You bake it all together and end up with something that looks like this…

This is the kind of dinner that kids and adults will both go crazy over.  And it only requires the simplest green side to round out the meal.  It can also be prepared up to a day in advance and then baked right before dinner.  And the leftovers are delicious too!

: : : Practical Pointers : : :

1.  Make sure the cream cheese is completely soft or your creamy mixture will be lumpy.  If you don’t have time to allow it to come fully to room temperature, then heat it in the microwave for short bursts at 50% power until it is soft.

2.  Don’t simply cook the ground beef until it’s no longer pink.  Brown it.  That means to let it continue cooking until it is crispy in some parts and most {if not all} of the fat has cooked off.  If you’ve adequately browned ground beef you won’t have to drain it.  The difference in flavor is remarkable.

3.  A word about shredded cheese:  One of the funniest questions I have ever been asked came from a single guy in his mid-twenties who was around one night when I was cooking dinner.  He saw a pile of freshly grated cheese next to my cheese grater and asked, “Is this grated cheese homemade?!?”  He assumed all grated cheese came pre-grated out of a bag.  I know this kind of cheese is way more convenient, but you need to know the truth.  Pre-grated cheese has been coated with a powdery substance that keeps it from clumping together in the bag.  It also keeps it from melting the way cheese is supposed to melt.  For the gooiest melting cheese, grate it yourself.

4.  Last note.  Spaghetti Pie bakes for 25 minutes covered with foil and then for 5 minutes uncovered.  Spray the foil with nonstick cooking spray before you place it over the casserole.  This will keep the melted cheese from sticking to the foil when you remove the foil.  No one wants a spaghetti pie with the cheese stuck to the foil.

The recipe is easy to follow, and I have tested it and measured out exactly how much of each ingredient {especially kosher salt} I use.  Don’t skimp on the seasoning…it’s part of the secret that makes this dish delicious instead of bland and boring.  Are you hungry?

Click below to download a printable copy.

{Spaghetti Pie}

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10 Responses to Weeknight Wonder {Spaghetti Pie}

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  7. Nuria says:

    Okay, here´s my report: My special guests on my husband´s birthday party LOVED IT! Thanks for the recipe and I´ll keep you posted on my next adventure, “Poppyseed Chicken”. (Mexican cook trying foreign recipes :-P )

  8. teri thatcher says:

    i LOVE spaghetti pie! i bet yours is the BEST!

  9. Sandra says:

    thanks…sounds yummy and easy…that’s what I like!

  10. Nuria says:

    Yeee! Was wondering if you´d post the recipe next Friday and thought: Oh! It would be too late! Since, I was planning a “welcome dinner” for my husband, and had no bright ideas. Then, HERE YOU COME WITH SPAGHETTI PIE! Thanks! On the way to buy ingredients and get ready for a special dinner time :D

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