This Vegan Baked Pasta with Tofu Ricotta is perfect if you are looking for an easy, budget-friendly meal that is also delicious!
Back when I was going to college in Chicago, I was on a strict budget. Between living in Chicago and going to private art school, I didn’t have lot of extra money to spend on groceries. One of my favorite recipes to make was this Vegan Baked Pasta with Tofu Ricotta.
This baked pasta recipe doesn’t require any expensive ingredients to make it. When I first started making this recipe years ago, the vegan cheese options are the market weren’t the greatest. Plus, a little on the expensive side if you have a limited budget.
I think that this baked pasta doesn’t need the extra vegan cheese on top. If you love vegan shredded cheese and have some on hand, you can always add some halfway through the cooking time.
How to Make the vegan baked pasta
The recipe for this Vegan Baked Pasta with Tofu Ricotta starts by boiling the pasta. Whenever you are making a baked pasta recipe, you want to undercook your pasta by a minute or two according to the package directions. This prevents the pasta from overcooking and getting mushy.
For a gluten-free option, I really love using Banza chickpea penne pasta. It holds up really well when baked too!
After the pasta is cooked, it gets tossed with marinara sauce. You can use your favorite store-bought marinara sauce or homemade sauce.
I always stock up on my favorite brands of marinara sauce when they go on sale at my local grocery store. For this recipe, you’ll need two bottles of jared marinara sauce.
The pasta gets layered with tofu ricotta. I love the combination of the ricotta and pasta. The tofu ricotta is very easy to make. The lemon juice and nutritional yeast give the tofu a cheesy-like flavor.
Another layer of pasta goes on top of the tofu ricotta. The pasta gets topped with the remaining marinara sauce and bakes in the oven.
I like to let the pasta sit for a few minutes before serving. This just makes it easier to scoop out of the pan.
This Vegan Baked Pasta with Tofu Ricotta also reheats beautifully. Perfect for meal prepping too! I always think that the leftovers taste better the next day too.
I hope that you enjoy this Vegan Baked Pasta with Tofu Ricotta recipe as much as I do! If you make this recipe, be sure to tag us @thymeandlove and #thymeandlove on Instagram!
- 12 Ounces Penne Pasta
- 3 1/2 Cups Marinara Sauce, homemade or store-bought
- 1 Pound Extra Firm Tofu, pressed and drained
- 3 Tablespoons Nutritional Yeast
- Juice of 1 Lemon
- 1/4 Cup Fresh Parsley, minced
- 1 1/2 Tsp Dried Basil
- 1 Tsp Dried Oregano
- 1 Tsp Salt
- 1/4 Tsp Black Pepper
- Preheat the oven to 350 F. Lightly oil an 8 by 8 baking dish or casserole dish.
- Bring a lot pot of water to a rolling boil, add the penne pasta, and cook 1-2 minutes less than the package directions call for. You want the pasta to be al dente. Drain the pasta and return to the pot.
- Add 2 cups of the marinara sauce to the pasta; stir to combine.
- Meanwhile, make the tofu ricotta. In a large bowl, crumble the tofu. Add the nutritional yeast, juice of 1 lemon, parsley, basil, oregano, salt, and pepper. Stir to evenly combine.
- Taste and see if it needs more lemon juice for tang or salt.
- Spread a thin layer of marinara sauce to the bottom of the pan. Add half of the pasta. Top with tofu ricotta. Add the remaining pasta on top.
- Pour the remaining marinara sauce on top, spreading evenly, making sure all of the pasta is covered in sauce.
- Cover the pan with foil. Bake for 45 minutes, until the pasta is cooked and the sauce is bubbling.
- Serve and enjoy!