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    Ground Turkey Pasta Bake

    We are giving you an amazing stove to oven to table pasta bake recipe today. When ground turkey is cooked in a deliciously seasoned tomato sauce with lots of veggies and becomes gooey, cheesy and meaty, all enveloped in your favorite pasta… This Ground Turkey Pasta Bake happens!!

    Try this delicious ground turkey recipe for your every day weeknight dinner and see how everyone digs in. Make this easy dinner and feed the crowd, or re-purpose it for several meals.

    They will all ask for it again and again…

    This easy Ground Turkey Pasta Bake is total comfort food that will be loved by the whole family.

    Lately, we have been discovering that when ground turkey is cooked right with ample seasonings and flavor enhancers, all the meals turn out absolutely finger licking delicious. Our Ground Turkey Tacos and Ground Turkey Stir Fry prove that.

    This lean meat doesn’t need to be all dried out and flavorless. You can create some wonderful healthy meals for your family with it.

    Check out our Ground Turkey Recipes collection and get inspired for lots of great dinner ideas.

    Why this Recipe Works

    • This ground turkey pasta dish is made with lean turkey, which is a much healthier option than other ground meats. It has great hidden veggie power from mushrooms and spinach.
    • It’s a very filling, wholesome, one pot casserole meal that feeds a large crowd. In one skillet, you have carbs, proteins and veggies cooked together. Well balanced meal out of common pantry staple ingredients.
    • It’s kid friendly comfort food loved by whole family.
    • Quick hands on cook time and the rest of the work is done by your trusty oven. Easy ground turkey recipe for busy weeknights.
    • It can be prepared ahead of time, and freezes wonderfully for future meals.
    • It’s customizable to whatever other substitutions you have on hand, which we are discussing later in the post.
    This easy Ground Turkey Pasta Bake is total comfort food that will be loved by the whole family.

    Ingredients Needed

    • Ground Turkey – We used 93% lean ground turkey meat. Feel free to use any available.
    • Pasta – Today we went with penne pasta. But you can use any pasta that holds the meaty sauce well. Think rigatoni, shells, rotini, fusilli or even large macaroni.
    • Veggies – Yellow onion, mushrooms, spinach.
    • Cheese – Mozzarella to get the gooeyness going.
    • Tomato sauce – We like tomato sauce for speedier meat sauce, compared to diced tomatoes.
    • Seasonings – Italian seasoning (you can add separate seasonings like oregano, thyme and basil instead), red pepper flakes, salt and black pepper, fresh parsley.
    • Garlic – Such a great flavor booster for any meat sauce.
    • Olive oil

    How to Make Baked Ground Turkey Pasta

    1. Boil pasta: Over high heat, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add in pasta and cook it al dente according to the package instructions, about 9-10 minutes. Drain the pasta, reserving 1 cup of pasta water for later use.

    meat sauce in a skillet

    2. Make ground turkey meat sauce: While the pasta is cooking, heat oil in a skillet over medium high heat (we used oven proofed cast iron). Sauté onion and mushrooms for 5-6 minutes. Add in garlic, Italian seasoning, red chili flakes, salt and pepper and cook for a minute. Add in ground turkey and cook for 6-7 minutes, until its no longer raw. Add in tomato sauce along with fresh parsley and cook for 7-8 minutes. Add spinach and cook till wilted. Add reserved pasta water and stir well.

    cheese added to the casserole

    3. Assemble and bake: Add in cooked pasta and one cup of mozzarella cheese, combine well. Spread the rest of the mozzarella cheese all over the pasta and bake in preheated oven at 350 degrees for 20 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and starts bubbling.

    the casserole removed from the oven

    Recipe Tips and Tricks

    This is a very straightforward easy recipe, but a few tips can help you make it perfect every time:

    • Cooking pasta al dente (meaning firm and not fully cooked) is important, as it will continue cooking in the oven. This is to avoid mushy, overcooked pasta in the end. At the same time, DO NOT forget to reserve the pasta water to add later to the meat sauce. This will keep your meat sauce saucier and will not dry out the pasta bake.
    • Use a cast iron skillet for this recipe, so it can go from stovetop to oven. Less pots means less clean up later.
    • Use a pasta shape that holds the meaty ground turkey sauce beautifully in every bite. Think larger pastas with crevices and holes.
    • Add ample seasonings and cook the ground turkey meat sauce for a little longer to develop all the good flavors.
    This easy Ground Turkey Pasta Bake is total comfort food that will be loved by the whole family.

    A Few Variations

    1. You can substitute ground turkey with ground beef, ground chicken, ground pork or even ground sausage. With this pasta bake recipe, every time it would turn into one awesome easy meal.
    2. You can also add precooked meatballs or shredded rotisserie chicken for a quicker bake.
    3. Use kale or Swiss chard instead of spinach. Add other extra veggies like broccoli, zucchini, bell pepper or carrots.
    4. Play with cheeses. Use cheddar cheese, parmesan cheese or a mix of both instead of mozzarella.
    5. Don’t want to heat up the oven? No problem. Simply mix in the cheese, cover the skillet and cook until cheese is melted.
    6. Looking for a lighter option? Use whole wheat pasta and half the amount of cheese.
    7. Want to make it creamier? Add a dash of heavy cream to the sauce before adding the pasta.
    8. For lazy days, use jarred marinara sauce to make the ground meat sauce.
    This easy Ground Turkey Pasta Bake is total comfort food that will be loved by the whole family.

    Storing and Re-heating

    Allow the ground turkey pasta to cool to room temperature. You can store it in the refrigerator in an airtight container up to 3-4 days.

    This ground turkey casserole also freezes well, so makes a great meal prep option. I like to break leftovers into individual portions, wrap in cling wrap, put the wrapped portions into zip top bags, and freeze. Thaw overnight in the fridge before reheating.

    Simply reheat it in the microwave, covered, until warmed throughout. You can also reheat it on stove top, covered, over medium heat along with a splash of water.

    This easy Ground Turkey Pasta Bake is total comfort food that will be loved by the whole family.

    There you go, now you know what to cook with ground turkey. Buy plenty of this lean ground meat and start cooking one delicious meal after another.

    Make this super cozy, comfort foodie pasta bake with your ground turkey, and fall in love with this great lean meat, like us.

    Be sure to check our other great recipes on GypsyPlate, and come back again for all the new flavors coming to you…

    Ground Turkey Pasta Bake, on our Gypsy Plate… enjoy!

    bowl of this ground turkey pasta on the Gypsy Plate

    Try these other great pasta dishes!
    Spaghetti with Meat Sauce
    Johnny Marzetti
    Salmon Pasta
    Pasta e Piselli
    American Goulash
    Gigi Hadid Pasta
    Rasta Pasta
    Lamb Ragu

    featured image for ground turkey pasta bake post

    Ground Turkey Pasta Bake

    Yield: 6-8 servings
    Prep Time: 10 minutes
    Cook Time: 35 minutes
    Total Time: 45 minutes

    This easy Ground Turkey Pasta Bake is total comfort food that will be loved by the whole family.


    • 8oz penne pasta
    • 2 Tbsp oil
    • 1 small onion, diced
    • 8oz mushrooms, sliced
    • 5 garlic cloves, finely chopped
    • 2 Tbsp Italian seasoning
    • 1 tsp red chili flakes
    • 1½ lbs ground turkey
    • ¼ cup fresh parsley
    • 28oz tomato sauce
    • 5oz spinach
    • 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
    • salt to taste
    • pepper to taste


    1. Pre heat oven to 350°F.
    2. Cook pasta al dente in salted water according to the instructions on the packet. Drain the pasta, reserving about 1 cup of pasta water.
    3. While pasta is cooking, heat oil in an oven safe skillet and sauté onion and mushrooms for 5-6 minutes. Add in garlic, Italian. seasoning, red chili flakes, salt and pepper, cook for a minute.
    4. Add in ground turkey and cook for 6-7 minutes, until it is no longer raw.
    5. Add tomato sauce along with fresh parsley, cook for 7-8 minutes.
    6. Add spinach and cook till wilted, then stir in reserved pasta water. Add pasta and one cup of mozzarella cheese, combine well. Spread remaining mozzarella cheese on top. Bake in preheated oven for 20 minutes, or until the cheese has melted.
    7. Let it rest for 10 minutes, then serve.


    1. The same recipe can be used for ground beef, pork or chicken.
    2. You can use different short pasta shapes like rotini or bowtie.
    3. Refrigerate leftovers in an airtight container up to 3-4 days. Reheat in the microwave or on stovetop, covered, over medium heat with a little water.
    4. To freeze, allow to cool completely. Wrap individual servings in cling wrap, put the wrapped portions into ziploc bags, and freeze for up to 2-3 months.

    Nutrition Information
    Yield 8 Serving Size 1
    Amount Per Serving Calories 410Total Fat 24gSaturated Fat 7gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 14gCholesterol 104mgSodium 815mgCarbohydrates 21gFiber 4gSugar 6gProtein 31g

    Nutrition information calculated by Nutritionix.

    Did you make this recipe?

    Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Pinterest

    Picture of Alpana, blogger and recipe developer at GypsyPlate

    Welcome to GypsyPlate! I'm Alpana, former wordwide tour manager and professional caterer, now full time blogger. I love exploring cuisines from around the world, and my recipes have been featured on sites such as MSN, Parade, Brit + Co, CNET and AOL. You can explore my entire collection of sortable recipes in my Recipe Index or learn more about me here.

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