Baked Million Dollar Spaghetti

Baked Million Dollar Spaghetti is creamy with a melty cheese center, topped with meat sauce and extra bubbly cheese.

Baked Million Dollar Spaghetti is creamy with a melty cheese center, topped with meat sauce and extra bubbly cheese. Tastes like a cross between baked ziti and lasagna with half the effort!

Baked Million Dollar Spaghetti is a hit in our house every time we make it and it isn’t hard to see why. With melted cheese, cream cheese, meat and homemade marinara sauce, and perfect as a make ahead meal you can freeze, this dish is a perfect meal in a pan and even better served with a nice side salad.

It may seem like there is a lot of meat and cheese going on in this 9×13 pan, but we frequently get 12 portions out of the meal, 9 if we’ve got a lot of hungry people to serve. The flavors are rich enough that a smaller portion is enough to satisfy.

Baked Million Dollar Spaghetti is creamy with a melty cheese center, topped with meat sauce and extra bubbly cheese. Tastes like a cross between baked ziti and lasagna with half the effort!

If you’re looking for alternative flavor ideas to the classic meat sauce here are some fun options we’ve gone with in the past:

  • Chunks of cooked chicken with a creamy Alfredo sauce (optional you can also toss in frozen peas)
  • Italian sausage instead of ground beef.
  • Roasted vegetables like zucchini, eggplant and red onion in place of meat.
  • Spinach, lemon juice and lemon zest with a creamy Alfredo sauce.
  • Pepperoni, chopped bell peppers, onions and sliced olives in place of meat for a combination pizza flavor

Baked Million Dollar Spaghetti is creamy with a melty cheese center, topped with meat sauce and extra bubbly cheese. Tastes like a cross between baked ziti and lasagna with half the effort!

I frequently make this Baked Million Dollar Spaghetti in a double quantity so I can have one tray to serve and one to freeze. For making ahead the only difference in the directions would be to follow all the steps until it says to put it in the oven. At that point, top with foil and freeze. To serve I highly recommend you remove from the freezer the day before you plan on serving so it can defrost in the fridge. If you don’t remember to remove it, you can expect your cook time to be about an hour long at least.  But look at the beautiful tray of Baked Million Dollar Spaghetti you’ll be left with:

Baked Million Dollar Spaghetti is creamy with a melty cheese center, topped with meat sauce and extra bubbly cheese. Tastes like a cross between baked ziti and lasagna with half the effort!

I usually let the Baked Million Dollar Spaghetti cool for about 5-10 minutes when it comes out of the oven. I find it is easier to cut into perfect squares using my favorite silicone spatula and in our house everyone is obsessed with the shape of it. I tried serving with tongs once and you would’ve thought I’d committed a crime. Can’t blame them though, it does look pretty cool cut neatly.

Baked Million Dollar Spaghetti is creamy with a melty cheese center, topped with meat sauce and extra bubbly cheese. Tastes like a cross between baked ziti and lasagna with half the effort!

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Baked Million Dollar Spaghetti

Baked Million Dollar Spaghetti is creamy with a melty cheese center, topped with meat sauce and extra bubbly cheese. Tastes like a cross between baked ziti and lasagna with half the effort!
Yield 9 servings
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Course Main
Cuisine American
Author Sabrina Snyder

Ingredients
 

  • 1 pound spaghetti , cooked two minutes shy of directions and drained
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 medium onion , chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic , minced
  • Kosher salt and pepper to taste (I used ½ teaspoon Kosher salt and ½ teaspoon black pepper)
  • 6 cups Quick and Easy Marinara Sauce
  • 8 ounces cream cheese , softened
  • 3 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
  • parsley , chopped (optional as a garnish)

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  • In a large skillet add the beef, onions, garlic, salt and pepper into the pan and cook on high.
  • Once browned, turn off the heat, drain the liquid left in the pan and mix in one cup of the marinara sauce.
  • Add the cooked spaghetti to the remaining 5 cups of the marinara sauce and toss to combine.
  • Mix the cream cheese and 2 cups of mozzarella cheese in a bowl.
  • Add half the pasta/sauce to the bottom of a 9x13 pan.
  • Add the cream cheese mixture and top with the remaining pasta/sauce mixture.
  • Add the meat sauce mixture on top of the pasta and top with remaining cup of mozzarella cheese.
  • Cover and bake for 30 minutes.
  • Uncover and bake for an additional 10 minutes until cheese is melted and bubbly

Nutrition

Calories: 513kcal | Carbohydrates: 39g | Protein: 24g | Fat: 27g | Saturated Fat: 13g | Cholesterol: 92mg | Sodium: 351mg | Potassium: 311mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 590IU | Calcium: 233mg | Iron: 1.9mg
Keyword: Baked Million Dollar Spaghetti

Baked Million Dollar Spaghetti is creamy with a melty cheese center, topped with meat sauce and extra bubbly cheese. Tastes like a cross between baked ziti and lasagna with half the effort!

Baked Million Dollar Spaghetti is creamy with a melty cheese center, topped with meat sauce and extra bubbly cheese. Tastes like a cross between baked ziti and lasagna with half the effort!
Baked Million Dollar Spaghetti is creamy with a melty cheese center, topped with meat sauce and extra bubbly cheese. Tastes like a cross between baked ziti and lasagna with half the effort!
Baked Million Dollar Spaghetti is creamy with a melty cheese center, topped with meat sauce and extra bubbly cheese. Tastes like a cross between baked ziti and lasagna with half the effort!

About the Author: Sabrina Snyder

Sabrina is a professionally trained Private Chef of over 10 years with ServSafe Manager certification in food safety. She creates all the recipes here on Dinner, then Dessert, fueled in no small part by her love for bacon.

Sabrina Snyder is a professionally trained personal and private chef of over 10 years who is the creator and developer of all the recipes on Dinner, then Dessert.

She is also the author of the upcoming cookbook: Dinner, then Dessert – Satisfying Meals Using Only 3, 5 or 7 Ingredients which is being published by Harper Collins.

She started Dinner, then Dessert as a business in her office as a lunch service for her coworkers who admired her lunches before going to culinary school and becoming a full time personal chef and private chef.

As a personal chef Sabrina would cook for families one day a week and cook their entire week of dinners. All grocery shopping, cooking and cleaning was done along with instructions on reheating. As a private chef she cooked for private parties and cooked in family homes in the evenings for families on a nightly basis after working as a personal chef during the day.

Sabrina has been certified as a ServSafe Manager since 2007 and was a longstanding member of the USPCA Personal Chef Association including being on the board of the Washington DC Chapter of Chefs in the US Personal Chef Association when they won Chapter of the year.

As a member of the community of food website creators Sabrina Snyder has spoken at many conferences regarding her experiences as a food writer including the Indulge Food Conference, Everything Food Conference, Haven Food Conference and IACP Annual Food Professionals Conference.

Sabrina lives with her family in sunny California.

Dinner, then Dessert, Inc. owns the copyright on all images and text and does not allow for its original recipes and pictures to be reproduced anywhere other than at this site unless authorization is given. If you enjoyed the recipe and would like to publish it on your own site, please re-write it in your own words, and link back to my site and recipe page. Read my disclosure and copyright policy. This post may contain affiliate links.

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Comments

  1. This is the best spaghetti ever! I have made it so many times I’ve lost count. My 96 year old Mother says it’s the best she’s ever eaten. I just made it again last night – 2 of us eat almost all of the 9 x13 pan, freeze what’s left & eat it again. Thank you so much for the recipe! P.S – I also make your homemade marinara sauce

  2. I bought all in ingredients and am so ready to make this for a potluck. If I take it to the point for baking in oven but want to refrigerate it for 6 hours prior to baking, how much longer over 30 minutes
    might I have to bake it? I am not a cook!

  3. It is just coming out of the oven and smells delish-I did some changes-used a large can of manwich and Michaels of Brooklyn spag sauce combined for the sauce. I also used 1 1/2 pounds of ground beef and three sweet sausages out of the skin cooked together with the onion, green pepper and garlic. I also used 12 oz of phili cream cheese mixed with sharp chedder cheese and sharp chedder on the top-cooked for 30 minutes and for the last ten minutes added pepperoni pieces on top and fresh basil and parsley. Awesome!!

  4. Fabulous! Found this recipe and made it for my family and they love it. I make it often for them. This definitely will be a keeper!

  5. I was in a rush and making 2 batches (one for us and one for a neighbor healing from surgery). I used an inexpensive store bought marinara and added a little Italian seasoning, onion powder and garlic powder to it for more flavor.
    We loved this. As did our neighbor! This is something I will make again and again. Can’t wait to try it with your marinara sauce recipe.

  6. Made this recipe the other night and it was amazing! What would you recommend as far as reheating it? I’d like to think that putting it in the oven at 350 for 15 minutes would be fine but wanted your advice. Thanks!

  7. Can I make this without noodles? Does it need a binder like eggs, if I don’t use the noodles. I am keto and have gotten use to not eating the noodles.

    Thanks!

  8. Wonderful recipe. I did add 2/3 cup cottage cheese, Italian seasoning to cream cheese mix. Bake few extra minutes. Family loves it. Freezes well too.

  9. Could this be made in smaller portions say dividing it into meatloaf size tins to be baked for a couple instead of the large family meal and if so, how long would you cook this for?

    1. Yes it could, I would bake for 25-30 minutes, long enough for it to brown and cook the middle through until it’s hot.

  10. In search of spaghetti with a twist, I stumbled upon this recipe. I like it my husband loved it and kids were happy. I will definitely be making again. I did find it to needing a bit more sauce(preference). Happy cooking everyone.

  11. This is so delicous! I am wondering if it would work to do everything but bake it the night before and then put it in the oven right before dinner? Has anyone tried that?

    1. That’ll work! It may need to bake a little longer since it’ll be coming from the refrigerator. Just keep an eye on it.

  12. So I just made this today, after finding this recipe this morning… I added ground pork( same amount as beef), I like to mix pork with beef. Anyway did follow the rest of your recipe- made a double batch ( in freezer for later date)actually- REALLY REALLY good. Will be on my rotation.. thank you for sharing thia

    1. Thanks for the 5 stars, LaTina. Mixing the pork and beef adds such great flavor. Thanks for the suggestion.

  13. Would adding ricotta to this recipe be a waste, because there is cream cheese already in this recipe?( like half cream cheese half ricotta)? Trying to use ricotta up.

    1. You could use half cream cheese and half ricotta or all ricotta instead of the cream cheese, if you’d like. Either way would work!

  14. I’ve made this several times! It’s a hit! But I load it up with veggies and I always double the recipe and put one in the freezer for later or to give to a friend in need. I chop up tiny carrots, bell peppers and spinach with it. I also found about 1.3 lbs beef per pan is better, or I just don’t use as much pasta. Speaking of pasta, I use whole wheat spaghetti noodles and no one even notices cause there’s so much goodness going on. Thanks!

  15. Great recipe! I only cook for 2 of us, so I halved everything and baked it in a medium-sized casserole. Even with half a recipe, there was plenty for supper and lots of leftovers as well. Used the microwave to soften the cream cheese–it got super soft and was easy to combine with the shredded Italian cheese and dollop onto the first spaghetti layer. That cheese layer is what sets this recipe apart and earns it the Million Dollar title. I think next time, I’ll try garlic/herb or veggie cream cheese in a tub to mix with the mozzarella.

  16. How long do I bake for a double recipe? I didn’t see the sliding scale you mentioned in one of the previous comments. Thanks!

    1. It would depend on if you’re making two lasagnas at once or one very large lasagna. If it’s two at once, you may only need to add about 10 additional minutes just make sure they are side by side in the oven or if they are one top of each other on different racks, make sure to swap them half way to ensure they’re cooked through. Good luck! Oh and the slider tool will pop up when you hover over the serving size.

  17. I have made this two times and it always gets rave reviews. Help – I misplaced the marinara recipe and I see that there is no link for it in this recipe. It would be appreciated if you could link the two recipes, especially for people who are making it for the first time.

    Thanks Sabrina – you ROCK

  18. Love, love, love this dish! Made it several times and always serve it to company with a side salad. However, I struggle every time with the cream cheese & mozzarella mixture. So hard to mix and cannot be spread onto the spaghetti. I let it warm to room temp. Do you or anyone have an easier way to do this part?

    1. I just scoop some up and make dollops in the pan. No need to smear it around as it’ll melt once baked. There’s a video of it on our Facebook page that you can refer to. Hope this helps! So glad you love it.

      1. Hi! I just made this for the first time last night and it was a big hit!! The only thing that was weird is that the cream cheese mixture didn’t melt spread out; it kind of just melted where I “dolloped” it. Have any suggestions as to why that happened? Thank you!!

        1. Hi! I am not sure! Maybe try smaller dollops more spread out? I’m sorry it didn’t turn out as expected :/.

  19. Good recipe altogether. Only adjustments I would say is 1 lb of beef is not enough for a whole pound of spaghetti. I used 1 lb
    angel hair pasta, 1 lb ground beef and 1 lb Italian sausage. I don’t think there would’ve been enough meat if you use only 1 lb compared to a whole pound of heavy pasta. Otherwise, you can keep the recipe the same and still get a great result! Also like to layer it, similar to a lasagna, rather than putting all the meat on top

    1. The marinara recipe yields 4 cups and you need 6 cups for this recipe so just increase it by half. Hope this helps!

  20. So, I put a few of my own twists on this and it turned out great! I used two cups of sauce to mix with the pasta instead of just one. I also jazzed up my meat sauce with some red wine, maple syrup and my secret ingredient fish sauce (don’t knock til you tried it lol)! The added some heavy whipping cream to the cream cheese mixture so it wasn’t quite so dry. And finally, I topped the casserole with a mixture of garlic herb butter, panko bread crumbs, minced Italian parsley and grated pecorino Romano cheese.

  21. Made it as per described in directions.
    First time doing a meal like this, but from responses it will not be the last.

  22. Made this last nite. Delicious!!! I used both ground beef and pork sausage. I no longer use the pre-shredded cheese in any flavor (cheddar, mozzarella, taco blend) because I’m not a fan of the preservatives they use to keep it from clumping. I had some BelGioioso Pre-Sliced Fresh Mozzarella and that makes pizza, lasagna and this dish so good. I just cut it into some chunks and mixed it in with the cream cheese. I’m anxious for the leftovers tonight with salad, rolls and a glass of wine!

    Thanks for sharing. I’m anxious to try more of your recipes. Happy Thanksgiving to all.

  23. how to make this spaghetti for my Thanksgiving dinner with the cream cheese and sour cream in it and I’m just fascinated about it thank you

  24. This was absolutely delicious!!! My kids tore it up. I am making it again tonight for all their cousins!!!! Thank you for a great go to meal!!

    1. Love this recipe! We have made it several times. We found 1 lb of meat isn’t enough so we use 2. We also have some family members with gluten intolerance so we use gluten free pasta and you can’t even tell the difference. Our favorite is the brown rice/quinoa/corn blend from Ronzoni. One of my kids loves spaghetti but 2 others never have until my husband found this recipe!

  25. This was really good! I made the recipe exactly as written (ok, ok – except for the bits of cream cheese I couldn’t stop myself from eating before adding it in). Adding this to my list of future recipes!

  26. We tried this tonight and loved it. I think the cream cheese is a great idea and gives a super flavour. Thanks for another great meal.

  27. What would be a good substitute for cream cheese in this recipe? None of us are big fans of cream cheese, except maybe a smear on a bagel. Ricotta, cottage cheese, and marscapone are no-go’s as well. Thanks again! Dig your recipes!

    1. Hmm, I’d have to say sour cream. Be sure to do it in spoonfuls, don’t spread too thin. It should still be delicious! Thank you for the kind words about the recipes!

  28. Made this tonight but didn’t have enough mozz or any cream cheese, so used 4 oz goat chz with some mozz and mostly cheddar jack. Also forgot to add the salt/pepper. It was amazing! Served with hawaiian rolls/butter. Everyone is going for thirds….

        1. I’m so sorry I missed this comment. Yes, I’ve used cream cheese with this recipe and it’s been delicious!

  29. I really enjoyed this recipe! I had made baked spaghetti before, but couldn’t find the recipe and so I am glad I found yours. I wanted the recipe to include the cream cheese because it makes that cheese layer extra special! Thank you I always enjoy your recipes!!

  30. I don’t have any foil to cover the glass pan with. Would it work if I put a cookie sheet on top? I can’t get out to the store.

  31. Hello, I don’t have cream cheese nor ricotta. Will it taste alright? And can’t I add chopped red,green, and yellow peppers to the dish? Thanks

  32. Love, love, love! My husband had three helpings and said it’s his new favorite spaghetti! Thanks so much for a delightful dinner!

  33. Thank you for the wonderful recipe cannot wait to try will be making tonight I do not have cream cheese can it be made without cream cheese? I do have a little ricotta cheese how much can I substitute same amount? Thank you again so much for the wonderful recipe

      1. If I make this tonight so I can cook it tomorrow afternoon for a party and just keep it in the fridge, what would you suggest for the cook time?

        1. You might only need to add an additional 10 minutes of cook time if baking right out of the refrigerator. Enjoy!

    1. Sure you can! One caveat though…put the cheese on the top…cook your base, put it in, then melt last cheese on top. If you use an older, or taller pot, add cheese layer every 3 inches of noodles, last on top. Retired chef!

  34. I made this as an extra dish for Christmas dinner. It was amazing! Everyone loved it. We didn’t have any leftover and it will be a new tradition for our Christmas menu. Thank you!

    1. This is delicious! Especially with the homemade marinara sauce. So much so that this is the only spaghetti my family wants now. I have spoiled them. They said jar sauce doesn’t taste as good now. Thanks for the recipe ?

  35. My husband and I loved this recipe! I easily cut the recipe in half for a 9×9 baking dish. I used a jar of Newman’s Own Marinara to save time and it was excellent! I served it with garlic bread and a vegetable. We’re having it again this weekend! Thank you so much for this recipe, it’s easy and delicious!

  36. I made this recipe along with your ‘Quick and Easy Marinara Sauce’ and my family loved it! Simple and delicious! Will definitely make it again. Thank you for the recipe!

  37. I understand that you can freeze the unbaked pan, but I need to know if you can freeze leftovers is serving size portions? Thanks.

  38. I made this last night and it was wonderful. I followed the directions and didn’t change anything. I missed the cream cheese and mozzarella with my hand so it melted perfectly… Thanks Sabrina

  39. Hi! I’m making the now…can you substitute angel hair noodles for the spaghetti noodles? If so, how long should I cook the angel hair. It’s doesn’t take as long to cook as regular spaghetti noodles. Thank you!!!!

      1. You’ll cook the noodles 2 minutes less than what the package states but the bake time for the oven will stay the same. 🙂 Enjoy!

  40. Hi! The recipe was delicious! Was just curious if you have ever frozen it and if so how well it freezes. Thank you!!

  41. This recipe is FANTASTIC! Not only does my family love it but It’s a crowd favorite for game days or any occasion where I’m asked to bring a dish. Only 2 tiny changes I made: 1) made in slightly larger pan 2) sprinkled 2 cups (instead of 1) of shredded mozzarella on the top to make it extra cheesy.

  42. HI Sabrina–It looks like this one has a lower carb content—I have to be carb conscious because of the severity of my diabetes–I can eat a smaller portion and more salad—I will try this one first–thanks so much–

  43. This is delicious! Next time I’ll try to spread out the cream cheese mixture a bit more because some bites were too cheesy. Will make this again!

  44. Is it OK to use a marinara sauce from the grocery store instead of your recipe – I am lazy! If so, which one would you recommend?

    1. Rao’s Marinara is the best I’ve tried other than making it from scratch using San Marizano Tomatoes with Basil already in the can…

  45. Me and my kids love this recipe but I mix the noodles, cream cheese, motz, and sauce all together with the noodles. Then you don’t get big chucks of cream cheese.

  46. Omg! So simple and delicious! As others stated, I was worried about the cream cheese, but it turned out to be among my favorite parts of this recipe! It added a creaminess and tang that elevated the flavor. Shared with my family and brought a 1/2 tray to my parents who loved it! Can’t imagine anyone not liking it. I used a premium jar marinara and put a little extra garlic in the meat but outside of that, followed the recipe to a tee. It was perfect and the leftovers kept getting better! Thanks so much for sharing this recipe. Truly worth a million bucks!!!

  47. Made this tonight & it was delicious! Followed recipe as written with the exception of adding mushrooms. Will definitely be making again. Thanks for sharing!

  48. What did we do wrong? We didn’t have a creamy center. I expected the cream cheese to melt, but it did not. Other than that we like the recipe.

    1. Oh no! You want to make sure that your cream cheese is softened enough before mixing it with the mozzarella. That’ll ensure that it will melt properly. Hope this helps for next time. Glad you still enjoyed it!

  49. This may be the absolute best meal I’ve ever made!! Thank you so much for this awesome recipe! I made it with Italian sausage & added some canned mushrooms. It was super simple to put together but tasted like I had toiled in the kitchen for hours! Thanks again for a true keeper! I can’t wait for leftovers tomorrow!!

    1. Next time, try making smaller dollops of cream cheese as the layer. Also, enusre that the cream cheese is softened before adding. Hope this helps!

  50. I’ve made this baked spaghetti several times since I found it online omg I can tell you it is beloved by many my family my coworkers especially, I usually make to big lasagna pans of it and freeze one (by the way this freezes very well mine has been in there for a over a month and it comes out after unthawing just as good as the day I baked it). This week for the company Italian themed pitch in I’m making 4 lasagna pans of it because everyone wants this. I can tell you add lib to the recipe by adding mushrooms, green peppers, and Italian sausage to the sauce and I use a few different kinds of cheese parmesan and mild cheddar. This is a robust meal I love it its heaven in a pan, thank you so much for sharing this wonderful recipe you made so many happy!

  51. Just made this recipe for the first time and wow. Grandma likes it…hubby loves it and grandma devoured it. I love how the option of using parsley as a option for flavor really bring it to a mouth watering meal. The smell the colors the texture and the taste are amazing thank you so much. Definitely will make this recipe ahain.

  52. Can I substitute the cream cheese with cottage cheese? If so, How much cottage cheese would you recommend to mix in with mozzarella?

    1. I wouldn’t recommend cottage cheese. If you want to use something other than cream cheese, I would recommend ricotta cheese as a better substitute. Hope this helps!

  53. Trying this tonight! Didn’t have enough spaghetti noodles so substituted for campenelle and penne…had partial boxes of both. Added some shredded parmesan cheese to the mozzarella as well as an egg…like in a lot of lasagna recipes. Turned out fantastic! Really love the addition of cream cheese…might have to add that to my actual lasagna!

  54. My family absolutely loved this! This will become a regular staple as our meal rotation! I made the homemade marinara with it and I think that and the cream cheese is what made this recipe so good!

  55. I tried this recipe for my Italian themed Christmas dinner – it was soooo wonderful!!! It is very hearty!! Since my guys are huge meat-eaters, I did use 2 pounds of ground beef instead of one and a 6 ounce pack of sliced pepperoni. Spaghetti has never tasted so good!! Thank you so much!!

  56. I made this for the first time for an Italian themed party. It was really good. My family that likes my regular spaghetti said it was great and I should make it more often. I followed the directions exactly as stated. Thanks a million!

  57. Made this for a fellowship at church and nothing was left over. Very delicious! I used Italian cheese blend and Parmesan cheese mixed together for topping. Broiled for a few minutes before pulling out of oven. Will be making again.

  58. This dish is amazing! I have made it so many times and every time it is delicious and full proof. I use jarred sauce, and always split it between two pans and freeze one. I have served this for dinner parties and people just love it! Thank you 🙂

  59. Hello! I want to make this for Christmas to have as a side dish. We’re eating around 2pm so I’d like to make ahead the night before. Should I make and freeze it or can I pre make it and put in the fridge until the next day and if so, how long should it bake for?

    1. You can put it in the refrigerator and then bake the next day. It might only take 15 minutes longer baking coming straight from the fridge. Enjoy!

  60. I use Paul Newman’s Marin ara Sauce for a fasre, easier recipe. I get in and out of the kitchen as fast as I can as a senior caring for a parent with dementi a, and having guardianship of 8 month old and 2 1/2 year old grandsons. Anything that is fast and has some nutritional value works for me!!!!

    1. YES, we keep his pasta sauce on hand too for quick and easy meals when we aren’t cooking from scratch. We love the taste and the ethics behind the company. I’m also with you about fast and nutritional, and you certainly have your hands full, that is definitely a houseful. Good for you for cooking at home, that is a serious commitment to make to your family’s health. <3

        1. Denise, 100 pct of proceeds from all of Paul Newman’s products go to charities. His salad dressings are foosntoo!

  61. Great recipe my family and friends love it. I did a little twist to it to fit us better like more sauce and cheese.

    1. I would recommend freezing it before baking it. When ready to bake, let it thaw out overnight in the refrigerator and then bake. Enjoy!

  62. This looks delish!! The only thing I had trouble with was spreading the cream cheese mixture as a layer? It just clumped up and a mess of noodles and cream cheese. Just curious what you did? I

    1. It’s such a delicious dish! Next time, try putting dollops of the mixture as a layer vs spreading it on. It will melt into a flatter layer and you’ll get yummy pockets of it. Hope this helps!

  63. I want to make this for a dinner party. I plan to make it the day before, but don’t plan to freeze it. Should I just follow all directions except for putting it in the oven? Should I cover and refrigerate and cook about an hour before serving?

  64. I just made this yesterday for my family. It was amazing and super easy to put together, made it in no time flat! My family just kept raving about how delicious it was and said it was a keeper and oh…to PLEASE make it again, which I most definitely will. Even my 13 yr old great-nephew said it was GOOD. Quick note…I used Angel Hair pasta, just my preference instead of spaghetti. Thank you for sharing your wonderful recipe… ?

  65. Delicious, perfect just as written! I didn’t change a thing except substituted ground deer for beef. Everyone in my family loved it!

  66. 4.5 stars (would have been 5, if pan depth was specified)

    Did not fit in corning/pyrex baking dish. Thought this would be bland but was I surprised! The cream cheese gave it all that was needed. Not too wet, not too dry and reheats well. It’s a keeper !

  67. This was fabulous!!! Stuck during Hurricane Florence trying to make dinner for three very picky kids and extended family. Everyone loved it! Served with a bowl of extra sauce and was a complete winner. Thanks so much!

  68. Tasted great. Loved the cream cheese mozzarella middle. I used store bought marinara but next time I will use the recipe from this site.

  69. I’d like to try this recipe but I’m pregnant and can’t have soft cheeses like cream cheese. Can you recommend how to alter this recipe to accommodate that? Thanks!

    1. Congrats on your pregnancy!
      I think Philadelphia cream cheese is on the ok list as long as you check it’s pasteurised. You can also use ricotta cheese.

  70. I dont have an oven. Do you think this would work on high in a crockpot, or do you think it would come out to mushy? I have an oblong crockpot.

    1. I’ve never tried it but I don’t see why it wouldn’t work. If you decide to try, I’d love to know how it turns out.

  71. 6 cups of sauce left it very dry so it was a big fail for us tonight. It would be good if really moist and gooey. If I try it again, I wil expect to use at least 8 cups.

  72. Absolutely delicious. I made a meat version (for my hubby and son) and a meatless version (for daughter and myself). My daughter ate 2 helpings. So good! Thank you for sharing!

  73. This was absolutely delicious! All my family, ages 1 to 78, loved it! Thank you! Made this to take to my family after losing a family member and his widow said that was the first thing she had ate in 6 days. This food is good for the soul! Thx for sharing

  74. Made this tonight and hubby loved it. Said it was “very cheesy”. A good thing! Thanks for the recipe!

  75. This looks amazing. Question: can this be made ahead of time? Can I make it the night before I need it? Like prepare it then bake it the next day?
    Thanks!

  76. I’ve made a similar pasta dish a long time ago. I used a egg noodles and barely pre cooked them, before layering with other similar ingredients. Egg noodles didn’t become overcooked and “mushy”. Better texture. I also used sour cream, cottage cheese, parmesan cheeses mixture, with mozzarella om top. Just a different recipe to try !

  77. I made this using my own pasta sauce and baked it a little bit longer. It was a big hit. Hubby said next we have pasta make it like this!!! Super easy

  78. I made ‘‘tis and it was great but I used 3 jars of Newman’s sausebutthe mixture with the cheese and cream cheese was very lumpy and very difficult to spread nonetheless it worked ok. Next time I will use ricotta instead of cream cheese. That’s my opinion.

  79. Hello! If we are to make this with chicken and Alfredo sauce, would we still add the cream cheese mix in the middle?

  80. Ive made this several times and it is delish! I was wondering though can u sub ricotta cheese for cream cheese? How do you think that will affect the taste?

  81. This is my 3rd time making this dish my whole family loves it! the first time I made it I used a 13×9 and it was too much for my family of 5, so now I make two 8×8 pans that I get from the dollar tree and freeze one and cook one. I love that every time I make this dish its like a two for one; not only is it amazing but then I’m also getting a free night of cooking for another day! SO glad I found this recipe! Thanks 🙂

    1. Such a great idea splitting it up into two meals! I’m happy to hear how much your family enjoys it!

  82. This is delicious! Do you think this would turn out good without the meat? I have a friend I’m making this for and she would prefer it to be meatless. 

  83. Nice recipe, but you never never put foil on top of tomato sauce, it will corrode the foil and ruin your dish, you should always use plastic wrap under the foil, or another type cover. Perhaps this hasn’t happened since you put in freezer immediately after covering but if left in fridge or on a counter it will happen.

    1. You are aware that your food should go against the shiny side of the tinfoil? Or use the non-stick foil. I have never had any problems with the acid from the tomatoes.
      Katherine

  84. Would it be possible to make this with Vodka Sauce instead of marinara sauce?? I have some at home so I didn’t know if you have tried this.

  85. Made this tonight and it turned out amazing!! Had to stop myself from eating more and more! I added Parmesan with mozzarella! Will use this recipe for years to come!!

  86.  Really enjoyed this million dollars spaghetti. My husband loved it also. Makes a lot. One thing. How do you spread the cream cheese and cheese on the noodles. Do you let your first?

    1. I’m so glad you all enjoyed it! To answer your question, I don’t really spread it on per say. I drop it in scoops on top. You can find a video on my facebook page of this recipe to help you out too.

  87. Thank you for this recipe. It was so easy, (way easier than lasagna) and my guests loved it. It is now my new go to dinner party main dish. 

    1. You made my day! Anytime I can get the little ones to enjoy something I feel like I have won the lottery! Thanks for taking the time to come back and let me know!

    1. You can do it either way 🙂 If you decide to freeze before cooking, I recommend thawing it in the refrigerator the day before placing in in the oven. You might need to add additional time to the cook time based on how thawed out it is. Enjoy!!

  88. Have you tried this with meatballs? I have turkey meatballs on hand and was wondering if this would work?

    Thank you 

  89. Ohh my. Great recipe, family truly enjoyed this! Even the pickiest oven baked spaghetti eater enjoyed. Thanks for sharing.

  90. Can you tell me what does the cream cheese do to this dish? and is it ok if I just use regular pasta sauce instead of making from scratch

    1. It just gives it pockets of creaminess. You could also use ricotta cheese if you’d like. Store bought pasta sauce can be used for this too. Definitely a time saver! Enjoy!!

  91. Ugh! New job requires me to cook either the night before or 5 am so fam can can a nice dinner before I get home. Here is my question:
    Should i bake this dish in its entirety? Or prepare it to the point of not baking it and have one of the kiddos (both teenager) pop it in the oven the following evening?

    1. First off, congrats on the new job! You could honestly do it either way but personally, I would put it all together the night before and have one of your teens put it in the oven to finish. It’s going to need to bake in the oven a little bit longer from being in the refrigerator overnight (maybe an additional 10 min). Enjoy!!

  92. This was absolutely delicious!! Substituted cream cheese with cottage cheese 🙂 and added 2 eggs and parmesan to spaghetti.

  93. I add two beaten eggs and do white and yellow cheddar with parmesan. Sometimes I add some buttered bread crumbs for a little crunch! So amazing! Best left overs!!!

  94. I made 5 trays for our high school varsity football dinner and it was a hit! Delicious and filling,I served it with garlic bread and salad (sadly untouched!). Thanks for the amazing recipe!

    1. How awesome…about them loving the dish not the untouched salad part!! I’m so glad everyone enjoyed it! Thank you so much for the 5 star rating!

  95. Made this last night and it was delicious! Like most I was hesitant about the cream cheese and mozzarella, but it was awesome! Thanks for the recipe! Next time I will make two and freeze the other! I’m a busy mom of three and constantly going and everyone loved this recipe!

  96. I’m not quick to award 5 stars but this recipe was so deserving! And for the sheer fact that my finished product looked EXACTLY like the original picture. And, it was nothing short of delicious. I made half the recipe but used 3/4 lbs of ground beef. It fit perfectly into a 7×11 pan. I also used a jar of high quality marinara. When I do make a full batch, I’ll use 2 lbs of beef and bake in the next size up from a 9×13 pan. Otherwise, no substitutions are needed, as it’s divine in flavor and texture. I agree that allowing it to stand for 10 minutes prior to serving (which I did, much to my impatient husband’s chagrin) is a must. Thank you for such a lovely, simple recipe. This is truly so easy, which is what busy cooks are seeking! 🙂

    1. Yes, waiting is the hardest part but I’m glad you were able to convince your husband it’s worth the wait, haha! I’m so glad you loved it and thank you for the 5 stars 🙂

  97. Have you tried a smaller pan? Perhaps 2 8x8s instead of 1 9×13? I’m making this as we prep some freezer meals before baby. And I think 9×13 is too big for just my husband and I, without having dayssss of leftovers. 

    1. So glad I read your suggestion for the two 8×8’s pan. How long did you cook them? I’d like to cook one and freeze one. Can’t wait.

  98. This looks great! If I freeze it after I make it, how long and at what temperature do I cook it in the oven? Same as in the recipe?

  99. Love this recipe. It just makes A LOT for our family of 3. I often half it and we still have leftovers!

  100. Just wondering if this can be put together a day in advance and wait till next day to bake? I would like to make it to take to a friend whose father passed away. But I want to put it together tonight and take it to them refrigerated tomorrow so they can put it in the oven.

    1. So sorry this got caught in my spam folder. Yes, you can either put it together ahead of time to bake the next day or even bake it and refrigerate it to reheat.

  101. Serious success in my house tonight! One bite & my daughter said “OMG!” And I’m no cook! I used our favorite store bought sauce & it worked perfectly. I use onion powder because I hate onions. Tasted fine. I have a problem with cream cheese. Just not my thing. But it was still yummy! Could I try this with ricotta & mozzarella mixed instead? Not sure if you’re still checking comments?!

  102. Hi! I’m planning on making this for a group of about 40, but I wanted to make this, a white and chicken based version, and a veggie version. Did you change anything else when you tried this with chicken and alfredo sauce? Or the spinach and lemon juice/zest and alfredo sauce? If so, what did you change? Thanks so much for the help!!

    1. If you’re doing the alfredo sauce version and you find your alfredo sauce is sort of thick I’d add a bit of milk to make it thinner. Remember as it bakes it is going to thicken so start with a much looser consistency. With the veggie version depending on the vegetable I wouldn’t add more time. If you add things like carrots or potatoes then yes but if it is things like peas, or bell peppers or squash I wouldn’t bother altering the time. Just keep the pieces small, maybe 3/4 inch or smaller.

  103. Im a little disappointed but it’s totally my fault. I got lazy & bought just any cheese & cream cheese that I found at my local Hispanic market. Turns out, neither of them melted. AT ALL!!!!!! It looked nothing like it did on the picture above. It’s ok though, this won’t be my last try. Will be making sometime in the near future. ?

    1. Yes, you can make that substitution. The flavor may change a bit due to extra seasoning that might be in the sauce but nothing drastic. Enjoy!

  104. Love!
    Next time instead of cream cheese-which WAS very good- I am thinking of trying a ricotta/marscapone mix. My son loved this and he eats NOTHING! thank you for a wonderful stress free dinner, finally!

      1. Sorry a little confused @ step4. Are you saying mix the oils and juices from ground beef with 1 cup marinara??? If so too late, I already poored juiced off w/o using.

  105. Looks delicious! I don’t have cream cheese on hand now and I need to make a pasta dish in the am. Do you think I could substitute ricotta? Sorry I wouldn’t try to change this amazing recipe if I had cream cheese in the fridge. Can’t wait to try it!

    1. Sorry the message got snagged in the spam filter. I would use ricotta in a pinch too, it may not melt as well but I am 100% sure it would be delicious!

  106. I made this for dinner last night and it was a hit. We have 4 picky eaters and they ate it up and even asked for seconds. My husband who has never ate baked spaghetti before even went back for more and had a total of 3 plates.

    1. I find if I have issues with that a quick zap in the microwave and a bit of water mixed in make it easy to spread, but I usually have no trouble with it when it is totally softened.

  107. Made this for dinner last night and it was delicious! Definitely adding this recope to the frequent flyer list. Thanks for sharing!

    1. If you’re talking about the “save” button inside the recipe card, I’m currently using a service called BigOven – you need to have an account with them to save it there. I think most people prefer to save my recipes using Yummly or Pinterest though! 🙂

  108. i have to say i was a little bit skeptical when i first saw this recipe with cream cheese in it, then i tried it well i experimented on my aunt first everyone loved it. definitely making it again taste like lasagna with half the effort.

  109. This looks incredible! Do you know if zucchini noodles would hold up in the oven for someone aiming to save a few carbs?

    1. I think if you cook for less time, don’t try and get the browning on the top for the zoodles and it would probably turn out great.

  110. Mine didn’t look as pretty as yours but oh my goodness did it taste good! My (very) picky 4 and 7 yr olds ate it without complaint! Yay! Thanks for sharing such a great recipe!

  111. This was amazing! I was leery about the cream cheese, but I gotta say that totally completed this. It made it so rich and creamy. Definitely a 5 star keeper!!!

  112. It’s in the oven as I write this. It’s pretty much over flowing the pan, so next time I’ll probably use a bigger pan. I’ll post later with results. I know it looks Devine. And I did add mushrooms to my sauce. Can’t wait to eat now!

  113. I love this idea! It seriously looks like a million bucks with all that amazing cheese!

  114. Holy cow, does this look good! Love the idea of adding some roasted veggies too. Yum!

  115. Soooooo… THIS is going on my meal plan for next week! 🙂 Holy cow, this looks absolutely amazing.

  116. This is perhaps the perfect family dinner. I love your strategy to make one and freeze one. That’s winning.

    1. If you’re doing all the effort, why not just add a little bit extra to have a meal later on, right?

  117. That looks amazing! I love any kind of baked pasta – especially one as cheesy as this! Definitely have to try this next time I’m craving some cheesy baked pasta!

  118. I’ve always wanted to try making a sort of baked spaghetti but they always look so dry. Yours looks absolutely perfect and gooey. Making two to have one to freeze is a great idea.

    1. You won’t believe this, but I am here looking for tips to achieve a very dry, baked spaghetti! I frequent a good, local cafeteria and always look for their baked spaghetti that has set on the line too long and probably looks unappetizing to most people. When rather dry, the flavors are concentrated and really delicious, to me. When the same stuff is “wet,” it has zero appeal to my palate. Am I all alone on this?

      1. Nope, not at all. If you add 75% of the sauce, add a couple extra tablespoons of tomato paste and bake uncovered you’re going to find what you’re looking for 🙂 The tomato paste will help concentrate those flavors for you even more!

  119. I can totally see why this is loved by all! I would love this and I know that my hubby would too!