Make-Ahead Three Cheese Baked Ziti w/ Springtime Veggies
Weaving vegetables into pasta is a wonderfully simple way to make the unhealthy, sorta healthy.
There’s still loads of carbs, of course. And a mountain of cheese, if you know what’s what. But incorporating vegetables into a luscious baked pasta is the smart solution to pasta guilt, and this make-ahead dish is the perfect example.
When Better Homes & Gardens invited me to reinterpret a BHG recipe for their Delish Dish blog, I was immediately drawn to their Make-Ahead Baked Ziti. Not only do I love the convenience of make-ahead dishes, but the three cheeses it was packing? My attention was officially won.
The changes I made were minor, but they did pack a major punch in terms of flavor, texture, and the overall nutrition of the recipe:
Loads of springtime veggies threaded with care? I did it with peas, sliced leeks, and halved cherry tomatoes.
Ditching pungent gorgonzola for milder bocconcini? Mozzarella has broader appeal, so this felt like a smart swap.
A slimmed down sauce made with skim milk + a roux instead of heavy cream? ALWAYS. All the luscious texture of a cream-based sauce, but with half the calories and fat.
These simple switches made this recipe my own, all while staying true to the original concept. Fast, easy, and ready to be prepped up to 48-hours before baking, there’s nothing not to like about this flexible and versatile dish.