Our Baked Penne with Vegetables was adapted from a Baked Ziti dish by Random Vegan Recipes. It includes a tofu "ricotta", and is simple enough to make after a day at work. If you're in the mood for comfort food, this pasta satisfies. I plan to increase the ancho chile next time, or perhaps use ground chipotle instead for more heat. Don't be deterred by the Newman's Own Marinara sauce. While I usually make my own sauce, I like to have some shortcuts available after a busy day and this sauce is actually very good.
Baked Penne with Vegetables
16 ounces whole wheat penne
1 Tablespoon olive oil for sauteing, plus 2 teaspoons olive oil for "ricotta"
1 cup diced onion
2 medium zucchini, halved lengthwise, then each half cut lengthwise in thirds, then diced
1 carrot, diced
1 cup sliced mushrooms
2 large cloves garlic, minced
24 ounces Newman's Own Marinara sauce
1 package silken firm tofu
2 teaspoons Italian Seasoning
1/2 teaspoon ground ancho chile
freshly squeezed juice from 1 lemon
salt and pepper to taste
vegan parm, optional
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Cook penne according to package, but reduce cooking time by a couple of minutes because you will bake it later. Drain penne.
Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium heat and saute onion, zucchini, carrot, and mushrooms until veggies soften. Add garlic and saute a minute or two. Add marinara sauce and simmer about 10 minutes.
In a food processor, puree tofu, Italian Seasoning, ground ancho chile, lemon juice, 2 tsp olive oil, salt and pepper until consistency is similar to ricotta.
Spread some of the tomato sauce mixture to coat the bottom of a 13x9 inch casserole dish.
Combine the drained penne, tofu mixture, and remaining tomato veggie sauce in a large bowl. Add to casserole dish and bake for 15 minutes. Sprinkle with vegan parm if you like.