Staying on Budget

For people who love money.

Italian Hot Dish

I love baked pasta. This dish is so easy and filling. Try serving this dish with homemade garlic parmesan bread.

I originally found this recipe in my taste of home cookbook but you can also find it online. I altered it a little to add more tomatoes and less spice. 

Stove Top and Oven

If you have ZERO ingredients then this recipe will cost about $19.82 as of July 2022.

I am assuming you have salt and pepper and do not add it into the recipe total cost.

Recipe serves: 4

Serving size: 1/4 of dish

Equipment needed: large pot, skillet, 8″ baking dish

Total time: 1 hour 15 minutes


Let's grocery shop!

I am assuming you have salt and pepper. It is not included in pantry and spices.

Pantry & Spices

Total: $3.96 as of July 2022

  • garlic powder $0.98
  • onion powder $0.98
  • dried oregano $1.00
  • dried basil $1.00


Total: $15.86 as of July 2022

  • 1 - box small shell pasta $0.92
  • 1 - green pepper $0.78
  • 1 - pound ground beef $5.88
  • 1 - onion $0.40
  • 1 - sliced mushrooms $1.98
  • 1 - can tomato sauce 15 oz $0.72
  • 1 - block mozzarella cheese $2.00
  • 1 - parmesan cheese $3.18

Let's prep!

Let's cook!

  1. Cook 1.5 cups of pasta to package directions
  2. Brown beef and vegetables until the beef is brown; drain if needed.
  3. Add the tomato sauce and spices then bring to a boil; reduce heat to medium low; cover and simmer for about 15 minutes.
  4. Preheat oven to 350° F
  5. Spray the 8×8 baking dish with cooking spray or use oil with a napkin. Then add in this order:
    • Drain and add the pasta.
    • Meat sauce.
    • 1/2 cup sliced mushrooms
    • 1/4 cup mozzarella cheese
    • 2 teaspoons grated parmesan cheese
  6. Cover and bake for 35 minutes then uncover and add 1/4 cup mozzarella cheese and 2 teaspoons grated parmesan cheese. 
  7. Continue to bake uncovered for 5 – 10 minutes. Enjoy!

This recipe can also be found in Extreme Menu 1 – Family of 2

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