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Cheesy Pasta Bake with Pesto and Meat Sauce

Delicious and cheesy, this pasta dish will be a hit with your family and friends! Serve with garlic bread if desired.

Cheesy Pasta Bake with Pesto and Meat Sauce Recipe


  • 1 Tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 jalapeno, diced
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 1 Tbsp Slap Ya Mama Original Blend Seasoning
  • 2 cans diced tomatoes, (14.5oz cans)
  • 1 can tomato sauce, (8oz can)
  • 1/3 cup pesto
  • 10 oz pasta shells
  • 1 ¾ cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • 1/3 cup Parmesan cheese, grated


  1. In a large sauce pan over medium heat, add butter and onions; sauté until translucent.
  2. Increase heat to medium-high, add ground meat and sauté, making sure to cook meat until it is no longer pink.
  3. In the same sauce pan, add jalapeños, basil, Slap Ya Mama Original Blend Seasoning, tomatoes and tomato sauce. Mix well and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes while stirring occasionally.
  4. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  5. While sauce is simmering, boil pasta according to package instructions but only cook pasta until it’s al dente*. Drain and set aside.
  6. Once sauce has finished simmering, remove from heat and stir in pesto. Add pasta shells to sauce and mix gently until sauce and pasta are well mixed.
  7. In a 2.5 quart, oven safe dish, add half of pasta and sauce to the bottom of the dish.
  8. Layer half of the mozzarella and Parmesan cheese, followed by the remaining pasta and sauce.
  9. Top with the remaining mozzarella and Parmesan cheese. Bake at 400 degrees F for 15 minutes or until cheese is bubbly and golden.
  10. Top with fresh basil leaves and more Parmesan, serve and enjoy!

*Al Dente: Pasta is cooked to be firm to the bite.

Recipe and Photo courtesy of Jack Walker at Slap Ya Mama

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