The best spaghetti pie is actually bucatini pie. Packed with cheese, eggs, and soppressata, it’s a fun and different way to make a great pasta casserole. It’s also a great way to use up leftover pasta of any shape. Think of it as sliceable mac and cheese.
It’s so delicious that it is worth cooking a pound of pasta just to make this fabulous Italian comfort food.
Based on a recipe I saw Martha Stewart make in an episode of her cooking show years ago, I have wanted to make this for forever, and I don’t know why I waited so long.
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Spaghetti Pie: Love at First Sight
I first encountered spaghetti pie on Martha Stewart’s cooking show years ago. It was a recipe ostensibly developed by Martha’s friend Eleanora.
Martha told us Eleanora came up with it as a way to use up leftovers, but I don’t know anyone who calls 12 oz of sopressata “leftovers.” Regardless, I dreamed about making this pie for years.
I have no idea what took me so long to finally get around to making it.
It’s not hard to make. In fact, it’s really easy, but for some reason I just never got around to it. Until I finally did. And it was so worth the wait.
Don’t be like me and wait forever before trying this stuff, friends.
Why Use Bucatini Instead of Spaghetti?
Aside from being my favorite long pasta shape, there are a few reasons to use bucatini rather than spaghetti:
- Using bucatini gives the dish a bit more substance than spaghetti,
- the cheesy, eggy “batter” sort of slides its way in between the noodles and into their hollow centers, so when the pie sets up, it slices beautifully.
I did make a few changes to the original recipe, which is linked in the recipe card. Make Eleanora’s pie or make my version of Eleanora’s spaghetti pie, a bucatini pie.
But do make this–it’s great for a crowd and is equally good hot or at room temperature. Enjoy!
Other Ingredients You’ll Need
- Bucatini Pasta
- Mozzarella Cheese
- Ricotta Cheese
- Parmesan Cheese
- Asiago Cheese
- Whole Milk
- salt and pepper
As you can tell, what we’re making is pretty much a 4-cheese macaroni and cheese. The only real difference is there is a lot more pasta than there is cheesy sauce.
Plus it has more eggs in it than a traditional mac and cheese would have. This allows it to set up well enough to be sliced cleanly.
Bucatini Pie Making Equipment
There’s not really any specialty equipment you need to make bucatini pie, so the good news is that if you purchase (or already own) any of these recommendations, you can use them for many purposes.
I think there is no better tool for grating hard cheese (and ginger and garlic and lemon zest and nutmeg and…) than a Microplane. I use mine all the time, and I consider it a pretty indispensable too.
I made my spaghetti/bucatini pie in a springform pan. They’re also great for cheesecakes and no bake desserts or even for baking traditional cake layers.
Spaghetti Pie Q & A
Yes you can. You can make it up to three days in advance and keep it in the fridge. Take it out of the fridge about two hours before you want to serve it and then reheat at 350F, covered with foil, until hot. You may want to add a touch more milk to the “pie filling” if you’re going to make it ahead, just to make sure the pie is nice and creamy.
You can freeze it either before or after baking. Wrap it well, and it should be just fine for 2-3 months. Either way, once you remove it from the freezer, you can bake it, covered with foil, at 350F until hot. To be safe if baking it after freezing, make sure the internal temperature is 165F, the temperature at which eggs set up.
You can. This is a great reason to cook more pasta than you need, because you can make a spaghetti pie with the leftovers! For every 4 ounces of leftover pasta, you’ll need 1 egg, 1/4 cup milk, and about 7 ounces of cheese (see recipe for specifics on cheeses).
Sure. Aside from choosing your pasta: spaghetti, bucatini, shells, or whatever you have, you can also substitute cottage cheese for the ricotta cheese. Use whatever type of milk you have–you can even use half and half. I just wouldn’t use skim milk.
Substitute in your favorite cheeses, or whatever cheese you happen to have. It might not be classically Italian, but if you have Cheddar, use cheddar. If you have some Swiss, use that. No reason to go broke buying a bunch of cheese when you probably have some perfectly good cheese in your fridge right this second.
If you don’t have sopressata, use crumbled bacon, or mini pepperoni. Or some diced ham. Or leave the meat out altogether.
I will say if you do make it as written, you’ll be very happy. But making some creative substitutions is perfectly fine.
If you have any other specific questions about this recipe, please feel free to email me. I’m happy to help!
I really hope you love this bucatini pie, you guys! If you make it, please share a photo with me, either in the PCO Facebook Group or on instagram by tagging @onlinepastrychef and using hashtag #pcorecipe. Thanks, and enjoy!
For the Bucatini Pie
- 1 pound dried Bucatini, (or your favorite long pasta shape)
- 1 pound mozzarella cheese, , shredded plus another 2-3 oz for topping after baking (you can use pre-shredded--I did--but the pie will be gooier in a good way if you shred it yourself)
- 8 oz ricotta cheese, (either part skim or whole milk)
- 2 oz each finely shredded Parmesan Reggiano, (or Grana) and Asiago (or you can use 4 oz of either)
- 4 large eggs, , beaten
- 4 oz (1/2 cup) milk (I used whole milk. Use what you have)
- about 1 teaspoon of kosher salt, , to taste
- about 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, , to taste
- about 1 teaspoon dried Italian herb mix/seasoning, , to taste
- 6 oz sopressata, , small dice (regular or hot, or sub in cooked and crumbled hot Italian sausage or even pepperoni)
For the Marinara
- 3 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 Tablespoons butter
- 4 cloves garlic, , lightly bruised/sort of crushed
- 1 28- oz can whole tomatoes including the juices, (San Marzano preferred)
- about 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, , to taste
- about 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, , to taste
- pepper flake, (optional, depending if you want the sauce to have a bit of kick or not)
For the Bucatini Pie
- Preheat the oven to 350F.
- Spray a 9" or 10" springform pan (or deep cake pan) with pan spray. Put a circle of parchment in the bottom of the pan. Set aside.
- Bring a large pot of water to a rolling boil. Salt it well and cook the pasta to al dente. While the pasta is cooking, mix up the cheesy goodness.
- In a large bowl, evenly and thoroughly combine the 1 pound of mozzarella, ricotta, Parm, Asiago, beaten eggs, milk and seasonings.
- Fold in the sopressata very well so it is evenly distributed. Set aside
- When the pasta is al dente, drain and run some cold water over it. You don't want to chill it, but you do want to take the edge off the heat so your eggs don't cook too soon. Drain the pasta very well after rinsing.
- Gently but thoroughly stir the bucatini into the cheesy goodness. It will take some doing because the cheese mixture is pretty stodgy. That's okay. Keep at it until everything is nicely combined.
- Scoop the cheesy pasta into the prepared pan, trying to spread it as evenly as possible. Press it down a bit so there are no big gaps or air pockets. Cover the pan with foil.
- Bake in the center of the oven for 40 minutes. Remove the foil and bake an additional 20 minutes.
- Evenly sprinkle on the remaining mozzarella and broil for 2-4 minutes, watching carefully, until you have a lovely, bubbly top with lots of dark golden brown crispy spots.
- Remove from oven and run a knife around the outside of the pan. Allow to cool about 10-15 minutes and then remove the sides of the pan.
- Serve hot or warm, or even at room temperature, with a side of the marinara sauce, which you either made ahead or made while the bucatini pie was in the oven, right?
For the Marinara
- Over medium heat, melt the butter and oil together. When the butter is sputtering, add the garlic.
- Swirl the pan and watch carefully. You want the garlic to turn a medium golden-to dark-ish brown but not burn, so be careful. When it starts to go, it goes fast.
- When the garlic has some lovely color on it, pour in the tomatoes all at once. Add the salt, pepper and optional pepper flake. Chances are it will taste a little flat at this point, but you'll be reducing this for a long time so under-seasoning is preferred. You can correct at the end if necessary.
- Cook the tomatoes, stirring occasionally and breaking them up into smaller and smaller chunks, until the sauce is very thick and is starting to stick to the bottom of the pan a bit. It will also darken in color to a deep, intense reddish-orange. This whole process could take 45 minutes or so, so don't rush things.
- Once the sauce is thick and perfect, taste and adjust the seasonings if necessary.
- Serve hot or warm with the bucatini pie, or use it for pretty much whatever you want.
Original Recipe for Eleanora's Spaghetti Pie.
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Nutrition InformationYield 8 Serving Size 1 slice
Amount Per ServingCalories 816 Total Fat 46g Saturated Fat 20g Trans Fat 0g Unsaturated Fat 23g Cholesterol 213mg Sodium 1833mg Carbohydrates 56g Fiber 3g Sugar 16g Protein 44g
Thanks for joining me today for a hearty slice of bucatini pie (or spaghetti pie, if you must) with a side of intense marinara sauce. I know you will love it.
Take care, and have a lovely day.