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Vegan Baked Rigatoni is an easy weeknight meal the whole family will love! No precooking the pasta or the lentils! This comforting pasta is made in one pan with rigatoni, lentil bolognese, and cheesy tofu mozzarella topping. Gluten-free & soy-free &  Nut-free options.Jump to Recipe

overhead shot of a white casserole dish with vegan baked rigatoni

You’re going to love this recipe for Vegan Baked Rigatoni! It’s basically a lazy lasagna! Absolutely perfect for when company comes over and you want to please everyone, vegans and carnivores alike. super easy to make this as a busy weeknight dinner because it’s so quick.

It can be made gluten-free if needed or whole grain. For that cheesy topping I went with non-dairy tofu mozzarella cheese which is just blended up tofu and is quick and easy and creamy! You make it in the blender and it takes just seconds to make.

For the “ragu” I went with a simple vegan lentil bolognese that is basically just marinara, lentils, Italian herbs! DONE. How easy is this?

side view of a casserole dish with baked vegan rigatoni with tofu mozzarella

Vegan Baked Rigatoni with Vegan Lentil Meat Sauce

4.98 from 41 votes
By: Vegan Richa
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 54 minutes
Total: 59 minutes
Servings: 6 servings
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Italian
Vegan Baked Rigatoni is an easy weeknight meal ! No pre-cooking the pasta, no precooking the lentils needed for This comforting one-dish pasta made with rigatoni, lentil bolognese and cheesy tofu mozzarella topping. Gluten free option, Nutfree option . 
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Ingredients 
 

For the pasta

  • 1 lb Uncooked rigatoni, or penne or ziti
  • 28 oz jar of pasta sauce, or marinara sauce or tomato basil sauce
  • 1/3 cup dried split red lentils , or 1/4 cup of red lentils + 1/4 cup of coarsely chopped walnut for best texture
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp italian seasoning, Or mix of basil, oregano or thyme
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 2 cups water

For the tofu mozzarella topping

  • 7 oz firm tofu or silken tofu
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp miso , or 1 tbsp of nutritional yeast
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 tsp flour

Instructions 

  • In 9 X 13 inch pan, add the pasta and distribute evenly. Add the pasta sauce, lentils, balsamic vinegar, Italian seasoning and water. And mix well. If the pasta sauce does not have enough salt, add some salt and mix really well and even it out with a spatula. Cover with foil and bake at 350F (180c ) for 50 minutes
  • For the tofu mozzarella, blend all the ingredients until smooth, taste and adjust salt and flavor and set aside. (For Soyfree, use my liquid cashew mozzarella)
  • Remove the pan from the oven and carefully remove the foil. Now pour the tofu mozzarella over the Pasta and put it back into the oven and broil it for 3-4 mins until browning, Add a drizzle of olive oil and pepper flakes and serve.

Video

Notes

  • You can add sautéed mushroom or veggies or spinach etc along with the pasta sauce for variation.
  • if you don't have Italian seasoning, use a mix of basil, oregano and thyme
  • Yes, the cheese mixture will be thin and runny. That’s ok. It will thicken in the oven.
  • add 1 cup more pasta sauce for saucier result. Different pasta brands and lentils can absorb moisture differently. 
  • You can use nutritional yeast instead of miso paste.
  • For gluten-dree, substitute sturdy gluten-free pasta 
  • to make soyfree mozzarella use my cashew mozzarella

Nutrition

Calories: 384kcal, Carbohydrates: 72g, Protein: 16g, Fat: 5g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Sodium: 466mg, Potassium: 730mg, Fiber: 7g, Sugar: 8g, Vitamin A: 532IU, Vitamin C: 10mg, Calcium: 57mg, Iron: 3mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Did you make this recipe? Rate and comment below!

Baked Rigatoni Ingredients:

  •  rigatoni – you could use penne pasta or ziti any other tube-shaped pasta you like.
  • pasta sauce, or marinara sauce or tomato basil sauce are the base for our vegan ragu. No shame in using store-bought here but you can of course make your own using my recipe for Chunky Tomato Sauce.
  • red lentils or 1/4 cup of lentils + 1/4 cup of coarse chopped walnut stand in for the meat and add that bolognese feel to this baked rigatoni recipe.
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar adds some sweetness and acidity.
  • I use garlic and Italian seasoning to spruce up the tomato sauce even more!
  • For the tofu mozzarella topping, we blend silken or firm tofu and olive oil with some secret cheesy ingredients  (garlic +onion powder, miso paste) until super smooth and creamy.
  • lemon juice adds some freshness
  • We also add some flour to the cheese that will activate once the sauce hits the heat and thicken it up.
  • to make a soyfree mozzarella use my cashew mozzarella.

 

overhead shot of ingredients needed for making vegan baked rigatoni

Tips & Substitutions:

  • If you don’t have Italian seasoning, use a mix of basil, oregano or thyme
  • Yes, the cheese mixture will be thin and runny. That’s ok. It will thicken in the oven.
  • You can use nutritional yeast instead of miso paste.
  • For gluten-free, substitute sturdy gluten-free pasta (such as a corn and quinoa blend).
  • For nut-free, skip the walnuts and add more lentils.
  • You can add some cooked veggies or sautéed greens to the lentil and pasta mixture if you’d like!

overhead shot of casserole dish with raw pasta, marinara and red lentils

In 9 X 13 inch pan, add the raw pasta, and distribute evenly. Add the pasta sauce, lentils, balsamic vinegar, Italian seasoning, and water.

ingredients for making baked vegan rigatoni tossed in a casserole dish

And mix well. If the pasta sauce does not have enough salt, add some more and mix really well, and even it all out with a spatula. Cover the casserole dish with foil and bake at 350F for 50 minutes

overhead shot of vegan baked rigatoni before vegan tofu cheese sauce is added

For the tofu mozzarella, blend all the ingredients until smooth and set aside.

Vegan Tofu Mozzarella Cheese sauce poured on top of baked rigatoni

Remove the pan from the oven and carefully remove the foil. Now pour the tofu mozzarella over the baked rigatoni pasta and put it back into the oven and broil it for 3-4 mins until browning, Add a drizzle of olive oil and pepper flakes and serve

overhead shot of a casserole dish with vegan baked rigatoni with tofu mozzarella

How to store this Baked Rigatoni :

This pasta bake can be frozen. Once cooked, let it cool completely, then cover tightly with foil and freeze. When ready to serve, bake at 350 degrees for 20 mins or until warm. Leftovers will keep in the refrigerator for about 4 days, making it a great meal prep for lunches.

MORE VEGAN PASTA RECIPES FROM THE BLOG:

 

 

 

About Richa

Hi, I'm Richa! I create flavorful plant based recipes that are inspired by my Indian upbringing, including many gluten-free, soy-free, and oil-free options.

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4.98 from 41 votes (5 ratings without comment)

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97 Comments

  1. Pamela says:

    5 stars
    Outrageously delicious! It’s fast and easy, another winner. Next time I will add more sauce, and maybe some mushrooms. Love your recipes!

    1. Vegan Richa Support says:

      Awesome!

  2. Louis says:

    5 stars
    I love this recipe! It’s so easy and so delicious! It’s incredible fresh and the leftovers are top-tier! Thank you!!

    1. Vegan Richa Support says:

      So glad you liked it!

  3. Stacey says:

    5 stars
    Absolutely delicious as always 💗

    1. Richa says:

      Yay

  4. Jennifer Kaitschuk says:

    5 stars
    This was absolutely fantastic. Everyone in the house loved it and asked for seconds!! I added more Italian seasoning and crushed red pepper along with sautéed zucchini – truly excellent!!

    1. Vegan Richa Support says:

      yay, thank you!

  5. Caitlin says:

    This didn’t work for me, after 50 minutes, the top layer of rigatoni still wasn’t cooked. :/

    1. Richa says:

      Add a bit more broth and cover the pan. And bake longer. Ovens and pans vary and can add time

  6. Mitzi says:

    5 stars
    A HUGE WIN with our kids (hideously picky)!! My husband (for whom I originally made it) loved it beyond words… Then the kids tasted it and he (begrudgingly) had to share :):) It was truly amazing. It can be put together in no time. I followed the recipe to a tee: and everything worked out perfectly well. I highly recommend this simple, easy, tasty, SUPER FAST pasta dish to all.

    1. Richa says:

      Yay!!

  7. Winnie says:

    Hi! Have you tried doubling it in the same size baking dish? Would it work or be too much in the pan? Thank you!

    1. Vegan Richa Support says:

      depending on the size of your dish, it might spill over. if it’s big enough, it should be okay!

  8. Ange says:

    5 stars
    My new favourite recipe. I used chickpea spiral pasta with the cashew mozzarella topping and was perfect. Thank you

    1. Vegan Richa Support says:

      Yum!

  9. Terri says:

    5 stars
    This was so delicious!! Four of us pretty much polished off the entire 9×13 dish!! I would definitely recommend adding the mushrooms and spinach. I sauted them together, added to pasta and think it was a great add.

    1. Vegan Richa Support says:

      nice job