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A slice of million dollar spaghetti topped with melted cheese.

Million Dollar Spaghetti Casserole

This million dollar spaghetti casserole is tender pasta tossed in a hearty meat sauce, then layered with four types of cheese and baked to golden brown perfection. A comfort food classic that's perfect for feeding a crowd!
Course Main
Cuisine Italian
Keyword baked pasta, baked spaghetti
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 35 minutes
Servings 8
Calories 601kcal
Author Sara Welch


For the sauce

  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 pound ground beef I use 90% lean
  • 1/2 pound mild Italian sausage casings removed
  • 1/2 cup onion finely chopped
  • 2 teaspoons garlic minced
  • 24 ounce jar marinara sauce such as Newman's Own
  • 8 ounce can tomato sauce
  • salt and pepper to taste

For the cheese layer

  • 15 ounces ricotta cheese or cottage cheese
  • 8 ounces cream cheese softened
  • 1/3 cup parmesan cheese grated
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning

For assembly

  • 16 ounces spaghetti cooked according to package directions
  • 1/4 cup butter cut into thin slices
  • 2 cups mozzarella cheese shredded
  • 2 tablespoons chopped parsley
  • cooking spray


  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Coat a 9"x13" pan with cooking spray.

For the sauce

  • Warm the olive oil in a large pan over medium high heat. Add the ground beef and Italian sausage to the pan. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  • Cook the meat for 3 minutes, breaking it up into small pieces with a spoon or spatula. Add the diced onion to the pan. Cook for an additional 5 minutes or until meat is browned and cooked through and the onions are tender.
  • Add the garlic to the pan and cook for 30 seconds. Add the marinara sauce and tomato sauce and bring the sauce to a simmer.
  • Let the sauce simmer for 5 minutes or until slightly thickened.

For the cheese layer

  • Place the ricotta, cream cheese, parmesan, salt, pepper and Italian seasoning in a bowl. Stir until well combined.

For assembly

  • Toss the cooked spaghetti with the sauce.
  • Arrange half of the butter on the bottom of the dish, then place half the spaghetti on top.
  • Spread the cheese layer on top of the pasta, then place the remaining half of the pasta on top.
  • Arrange the remaining half of of the butter on top of the dish.
  • Sprinkle the shredded cheese over the top.
  • Bake covered for 20 minutes, then uncover and bake for another 15-20 minutes or until pasta is bubbly and cheese is melted and browned.
  • Sprinkle with parsley. Let stand for 5-7 minutes, then serve.



Calories: 601kcal | Carbohydrates: 51g | Protein: 35g | Fat: 27g | Saturated Fat: 13g | Cholesterol: 102mg | Sodium: 726mg | Potassium: 863mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 680IU | Vitamin C: 10mg | Calcium: 189mg | Iron: 4mg