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The Best Mostaccioli Recipe Yet Written

My mother was renowned for her delectable baked goods, but not so much for her cooking of every day meals.

Personally, I truly loved almost all the casseroles and such that she used to make in order to keep a large family fed. There were a few from time to time (containing unidentifiable green things) which were less to my liking, of course. The one undeniable exception to that rule and all the love I hold dear for my mother's food creations is the Sloppy Joes she used to put together. I do not blame her though--she just opened up a can of Manwich sauce and threw it on top of browned ground beef. I do blame her for buying the stuff though, but that is an entirely different story...

So anyways.

To break up the spaghetti/tortilla casserole/hamburgers/Hawaiian haystack/macaroni casserole/taco salad/steak dinner dinner routine, my mom would make a dish called Mostaccioli. It isn't fancy, but it's quick, easy, and something any child will eat who loves cheese and pasta. And truth be told, my brothers and I love it still. For her 60th Birthday Anniversary party, I made her famous bread and Mostaccioli. The triple-batch was gone in no time.

Ok. and one more thing. If you want to be uber authentic about how you do my mom's Mostaccioli, you cannot say it properly like an Italian would say it.

There are a few different ways to say it:


The second link is the closest to how my mom would say it, except she put high emphasis on different syllables making it sound fabulous to me.

I will write out precisely how my mom said mostaccioli
using the IPA (International Phonetic Alphabet):  mo stɑ t͡ʃi o li

as well as in messed-up-let-me-try-to-write-it-how-she-said-it-English, for those of you who are unfamiliar with IPA: moh - stah - chee - oh - lee

I am not certain how well that will translate with font issues, etc.  but I promise you she pronounced each syllable and would even add in a hint of dramatic Italian accent when she would let us know what was for dinner (when asked for the tenth time Mom, what's for dinner?)

And so you know, I cannot force myself to say it any other way than how my mom would say it. I don't care what Shakespeare wrote, it just wouldn't be the same dish if called by any other name.

And now for the Recipe of All Recipes for Mohstahcheeolee:

1 lb. browned ground beef
1 jar of Prego spaghetti sauce*
1 lb. box of mostaccioli** pasta, cooked al dente. Drained and rinsed.
1/2 Velveeta loaf, cut into thick slices (approximately 1/4 - 1/2 inch)

13X9 glass baking dish

Preheat oven to 350F

Mix sauce into ground beef once beef is finished browning.
Once pasta is cooked-- drain, rinse, and pour back into pot.
Then, pour beef/sauce mixture onto pasta and stir well.
Next, scoop pasta mixture in three separate layers, placing Velveeta slices on top of each layer of pasta. 

Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 30-40 minutes at 350F

* I make my own sauce, but if you want to be uber authentic, remember Prego is the brand to trust.

** Penne may be substituted if necessary.

*** At the height of my mother's food production days, she would double the recipe, bake it in a large roasting pan (like you use for roasting a turkey), and leave it in the oven for 45 minutes to an hour. If you like the pasta a bit on the over-baked side, leave it in for an hour. I think that only happened when she got distracted by our shenanigans and forgot about it. The over-baked edges grew on me and I like it best that way now.


Related Links:

The Best White Bread Recipe Yet Written

The Best Pumpkin Cookie Recipe Yet Written


  1. What an incredibly easy recipe and definitely one my kids would like! Thanks for sharing!

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  3. Authentic Italian..... REALLY! Velveeta, Prego LOL


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