Million Dollar Spaghetti Casserole is an easy hearty casserole that is both budget-friendly and easy to make. This casserole is simple and a delicious way to feed a family or a crowd!

Million Dollar Spaghetti on a plate with parsley

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When I have a hungry family to feed, I break out an old fashioned casserole. Hearty casseroles are designed for that kind of work! Potlucks, large family gatherings… whatever your need, a casserole will be there for you. This recipe for Million Dollar Spaghetti is one of my all time favorite casseroles. It’s basically an easy combination of baked spaghetti and lasagna. (I know, it sounds delicious doesn’t it?)

As only the best family recipes are, this million dollar spaghetti is budget-friendly. It yields a ton of food, and the ingredients aren’t complicated or expensive. In that way, this casserole is a fantastic part of your weeknight meal routine.

Steps for making Million Dollar Spaghetti

I like using Italian sausage for the extra flavor, but in a pinch you can substitute regular ground beef.

The leftovers for this dish are tremendous. The pasta softens up a little bit when reheating, but the flavor is just as good as when it was fresh out of the oven.

Million Dollar Spaghetti in a pan and being served with a spoon

Million dollar spaghetti casserole is an ooey-gooey, hearty, rich comfort food. You’ll enjoy every bite, and—if you’re like me—you’ll start looking for the next time you can make it. Enjoy.

Recipe Notes:

Cheese: You can use either cottage cheese or ricotta cheese for this recipe. Whichever sounds better to you! I’m partial to the cottage cheese because I think it lends the final recipe a great creaminess.

Pasta: Spaghetti noodles are just one of the many different kinds of pasta that will work in this dish. I love using ziti or rigatoni noodles on occasion.

Serving: My advice is to serve this recipe with garlic bread and salad. They make an awesome first course while the casserole is cooling.

Million Dollar Spaghetti in a pan with cheese and parsley

Baking: Million Dollar Spaghetti Casserole can be made up to 24 hours ahead of time.  Ensure you cover & refrigerate the pan.  Once baked, allow the casserole sit out and cool for a good 10-15 minutes before serving.

Freezing: To freeze the casserole, wrap it in plastic wrap first, and then aluminum foil. Let it thaw overnight in the fridge before baking.

Million Dollar Spaghetti on a plate with parsley
4.95 from 398 votes↑ Click stars to rate now!
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Million Dollar Spaghetti Casserole

Million Dollar Spaghetti Casserole is an easy hearty casserole that is both budget-friendly and easy to make. This casserole is simple and a delicious way to feed a family or a crowd!
Prep Time 40 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 25 minutes
Servings 12 servings
Author Kathleen

Ingredients  

  • 16 ounces dried spaghetti noodles
  • 1 large yellow onion chopped
  • 4-6 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 ½ pounds sweet Italian sausage casing removed
  • 3 teaspoons dried Italian seasoning divided
  • 48 ounces spaghetti sauce 2 jars, divided
  • 8 ounces cottage cheese or ricotta cheese
  • 8 ounces cream cheese at room temperature
  • ¼ cup sour cream
  • 3 cups mozzarella shredded, divided
  • ½ cup butter cut into slices, divided

Instructions 

  • Preheat oven to 350°F.
  • Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook pasta according to package, drain well and return pasta to original pot. Add 1 jar of prepared spaghetti sauce and combine. Set aside.
  • In a large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat. Add onion and garlic and cook until they begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Add sausage and 2 teaspoons Italian Seasoning to skillet, and cook until no pink remains. Drain well. Add 1 jar of spaghetti sauce to skillet. Set aside.
  • In a medium mixing bowl, combine Cottage cheese or ricotta cheese, cream cheese, sour cream, 1 cup mozzarella, and 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning. Set aside.
  • Place half the slices of butter in a 9x13 baking dish. Spread half the spaghetti in dish, then spread cheese mixture evenly over spaghetti. Spread remaining spaghetti over cheese mixture. Top with the remaining butter slices.Pour tomato meat sauce evenly over top layer of spaghetti.
  • Top with remaining mozzarella and bake in preheated oven until casserole is heated through, about 35-45 minutes.
4.95 from 398 votes↑ Click stars to rate now!
Or to leave a comment, click here!

Nutrition Information

Calories: 583 | Carbohydrates: 32g | Protein: 23g | Fat: 39g | Saturated Fat: 19g | Cholesterol: 109mg | Sodium: 826mg | Potassium: 337mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 745IU | Vitamin C: 2.5mg | Calcium: 209mg | Iron: 1.7mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.

Course Dinner
Cuisine American

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Million Dollar Spaghetti in a pan and being served shown with a title

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About the author

Kathleen is a recipe developer, passionate home cook and the author of the blog Gonna Want Seconds. She has been married to her best friend for 32 years and has two great kids, two Bernese Mountain Dogs, a Quarter Horse and a little green parrot. She is obsessed with cookbooks, cowboy boots, red wine and vintage costume jewelry. Kathleen’s recipes are all tried and true, tested and tweaked and, most importantly, family and friend approved!
See more posts by Kathleen

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Comments

  1. Love love love this! I didn’t have the mozzarella cheese on hand and it was still fabulous.
    Thank you Kathleen for sharing this!5 stars

  2. This turned out wonderful!! I added more shredded cheese for the top layer. It looked beautiful when I took it out of the oven and taste amazing. Thanks for sharing!5 stars

    1. Hi Julia, this recipe should have similar results without the meat without tweaking anything. We would love to hear how it turns out for you!

  3. Absolutely delicious! Since I was making for 2 people I halved the recipe and still have plenty of leftovers! My mom who is picky eater said this is a keeper. Have enjoyed all your recipes so far.5 stars

  4. If I make it ahead of time, do I have to bake it or can I assemble all ingredients, refrigerate then bake the next day?

    1. Hi Stacia, you can assemble and then refrigerate. When ready to bake, remove the casserole from the fridge to warm up while the oven is preheating.

  5. I want to be sure if I m correct about two jars of spaghetti sauce …. 48 ounces each or two together 48 or 24 ounces each jar?

  6. Million Dollar Spaghetti recipe is Very Good! This is a great recipe and very easy to tweak to additional veggies, parmesan, mushrooms, or what ever you like! I loved the butter on the bottom and on top of the pasta layer. It provided richness and additional flavor. I too layered my sauce up just a tad to prevent dryness. Baked covered at 350 for 30 min. Most excellent! Thanks for another great recipe! Well done!5 stars

  7. Yum! Live in the Middle East so of course had many substitutions, including feta for the cottage cheese, yogurt for the sour cream. And it still turned out delicious. Thanks for sharing.5 stars

  8. This recipe was very good! I sprayed the bottom of the pan instead of using the butter. No issues with the noodles sticking. I will definitely make this again!5 stars

  9. Good flavor but the proportions are off. There was way too much of the cream cheese mixture and it kind of ruined the dish for my family.

    Reduce the cream cheese mixture by at least a third and the recipe would improve drastically.2 stars

  10. Is all of the butter really needed? What is the reason for it? I’m worried about the additional fat on top of what comes from the sausage.

  11. We’ve had this recipe printed and it’s a go-to for our family! I first made it for my pregnant daughter in law who wanted nothing but cheese. She absolutely loved it and requested I make it every time she visited. I do have to make it every once in awhile with Alfredo sauce as my Husband has horrible acid reflux and can’t handle many pasta sauces but he does put up with the reflux more often then not because he says it’s perfect the way it was written!5 stars

  12. The spaghetti in the pictures already looks sauced in the 9×13” dish, (the pictures clearly shows the noodles having been doused in some sort of tomato sauce) but the instructions say to not pour on meat / pasta sauce until the end.
    Do the noodles go into the dish naked?
    (If yes, then I suggest better pictures). If no, then the instructions are unclear.

    1. Yes Lulu, in step 2, after cooking the pasta, the instructions say to drain well and return pasta to original pot. Add 1 jar of prepared spaghetti sauce and combine. Then the 2nd jar of sauce is used with the meat.

  13. I made this a few weeks ago while staying at my kids house after their second child was born. Everyone went back for at least seconds and some went back for thirds! I just got a request to make it again, which makes me very happy. Thank you!5 stars

  14. Everyone loved it! Was kinda sketchy about the butter and cottage cheese, but made as stated and it was soo good! Served with a nice green salad and garlic bread. Great comfort food5 stars

  15. Was good, made a ton. Gave some to my mom and she gobbled it up. Husband liked it too. Left overs tomorrow. Yum!5 stars