Vegetarian Million Dollar Baked Spaghetti is a vegetable filled marinara sauce with spaghetti noodles and a cottage cheese, cream cheese, and Italian cheese mixture, all baked until bubbling! This baked spaghetti casserole recipe is such a family pleaser, and shakes up spaghetti night!
Spaghetti night is always a favorite with our kids. Every time I make spaghetti I say “it’s spaghetti night – you know what that means!” and the boys say “we get to eat with our shirts off!” It cracks me up every time I see them, bare chested, gobbling up their spaghetti.
The only downside is that spaghetti can get a little boring sometimes. I love it but I like to shake things up a bit from time to time. Enter: Vegetarian Million Dollar Baked Spaghetti!
This vegetarian baked spaghetti recipe is seriously so, SO good! The recipe starts with a vegetable-filled marinara sauce. I used onion, red bell pepper, and zucchini but you can get creative with this. I think mushrooms, spinach, summer squash, carrots, and kale would all be great additions.
The spaghetti noodles get layered with a cream cheese and cottage cheese mixture, some butter, and then topped with the marinara. It might sound a little strange but trust – it’s amazing!
Ingredients in Vegetarian Million Dollar Baked Spaghetti
Marinara Sauce – I use Rao’s jarred marinara sauce – it’s my favorite!
Red Bell Pepper
Shredded Italian Cheese
How to Make Million Dollar Baked Spaghetti
To start, you’ll want to cook the spaghetti noodles. Since they are also baked, you can cook them to al dente.
While you are waiting for the water to boil and the pasta to cook, you can prepare the rest of the components of the baked spaghetti. First, add the vegetables to a large pan and saute in olive oil until they’re softened. This usually takes about 7-10 minutes. Next, add the garlic and Italian seasoning, and cook another minute. Lastly, add the marinara and stir well to combine.
After the marinara sauce is finished, make the cottage cheese mixture. Simply add the cottage cheese, cream cheese, Italian cheese, and Italian seasoning to a bowl and mix well to combine. I used a fork to do this but you could use an electric beater if you want to speed things up a bit.
Finally, you get to assemble everything! First, add half of the spaghetti noodles to the bottom of a greased 9×13″ baking dish. Top the spaghetti noodles with the cottage cheese mixture, spreading it out evenly. Top the cottage cheese mixture with the remaining spaghetti noodles and then evenly lay out slices of butter on top of the noodles.
Lastly, pour the vegetable marinara sauce on top of the buttered noodles and top with cheese. Bake the whole dish in the oven for about 35-40 minutes, until the cheese is golden and the casserole is bubbling.
I let the casserole sit for 5-10 minutes before cutting into it, to let it set up a bit. Serve the dish topped with fresh parsley, and enjoy!
Like this recipe? Check these out, too!
Vegetarian Million Dollar Baked Spaghetti
- 1 lb spaghetti cooked according to package directions
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 red onion, diced
- 1 red bell pepper, stem and seeds removed, diced
- 1 large zucchini, cut the lengthwise and then sliced thinly
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tsp Italian seasoning
- 32 ounces marinara (about 4 cups)
- 16 ounces cottage cheese
- 8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
- 3 cups shredded Italian cheese, divided use
- 4 tbsp butter very thinly sliced
- fresh parsley, chopped, for topping
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
- Cook the spaghetti according to package directions.
- While you are waiting for the water to boil and spaghetti to boil, cook the vegetables.
- In a large skillet, add the olive oil over medium-high heat.
- Add the onion, red bell pepper, and zucchini. Season with
- Cook until the vegetables are softened, about 7-10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Add the garlic and 1 tsp Italian seasoning, and cook another minute.
- Add the pasta sauce, stirring to combine. Remove from heat.
- In a medium bowl, combine the cottage cheese, cream cheese, 1 cup of Italian cheese, and remaining 1 tsp Italian seasoning. Mix well to combine.
- Spray a 9x13" baking dish with cooking spray.
- Add 1/2 of the spaghetti to the bottom of the dish.
- Top with the cottage cheese mixture, spreading it out evenly on top of the spaghetti noodles.
- Top with remaining noodles.
- Top the noodles with the thin slices of butter, spacing them out evenly.
- Pour the vegetable marinara on top of the butter and noodles evenly.
- Finally, top with the remaining 2 cups of cheese.
- Bake in the preheated oven for 35-40 minutes, until the top is golden brown.
- Let cool for about 5 minutes.
- Serve topped with fresh parsley, and enjoy!