Hotdish: Modified Mama Rose’s Rigatoni

Ground beef, pasta and cheese

This recipe is a selection from TPT Cooks: Hotdishes & Casseroles, the companion cookbook to the program TPT Cooks: Hotdish!, which aired on Twin Cities Public Television. 

TPT held an open call for recipes for its first-ever cookbook, spotlighting home-cooking, specifically hot dishes and casseroles. The response was terrific, and TPT collected dozens of recipes from viewers for the cookbook celebrating every Minnesotan's traditional meal, the hot dish.

Modified Mama Rose's Rigatoni
Submitted by Margaret Michaletz
Serves 6-8


1 pound ground beef
1/2 cup olive oil
2 cups chopped onion
8 cups diced tomatoes
3/4 cup tomato paste
5 teaspoons sugar
4 teaspoons dried basil
1 clove garlic, minced
salt and pepper to taste
1 (1 pound) package uncooked rigatoni pasta
2-3 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
grated Parmesan cheese


  1. In Dutch oven, brown meat and oil; add onion. Saute for 2 minutes. Add tomatoes, tomato paste, sugar, basil, garlic, salt and pepper. Simmer with cover ajar for 2 hours.
  2. Preheat oven to 450º F. Cook rigatoni until almost done; drain. Spray 13×9-inch baking pan with cooking spray. Arrange pasta in pan; pour sauce over pasta and mix well. Sprinkle with mozzarella cheese. Bake for 20 minutes. Garnish with grated Parmesan cheese.

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