This new-and-improved version of the trendy, viral pasta dish known as “rigatoni pie” will wow your guests when you bring it to the table just like the original—but tastes so much better.

"This was a baked ziti that finally met my very high expectations," says Jeanette.

As seen on our YouTube series "Does This Work!?" (watch the full episode above).

"Does This Work!?"— hosted by senior culinary producer Jeanette Donnarumma — delves into the great big world of trendy, viral recipes that may or may not work. Don't miss a minute of her delicious hits and messy misses by subscribing here.


  • ¼ cup olive oil, divided
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1/2 pound ground beef
  • 1/2 pound ground pork
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 cup red wine
  • One 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
  • 4 large basil leaves
  • 1 1/2 pounds rigatoni pasta
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
  • One 16-ounce container ricotta
  • 1 egg
  • 2 cups shredded mozzarella


Serves: 6


Heat a heavy bottomed pot with 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium-high heat. Add onion and cook until translucent, about 5 minutes. Stir in garlic and cook for 2 minutes more. Add ground beef and pork, and season with salt and pepper. Use a wooden spoon or potato masher to break up the meat, and cook until no longer pink and the meat begins to caramelize, 6 to 7 minutes. Deglaze with wine and cook until reduced by half, 4 to 5 minutes. Stir in the crushed tomatoes and basil leaves, then bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Cook for at least 45 minutes; the longer the sauce cooks, the better it will taste. Let cool.

Preheat oven to 400˚F. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook rigatoni 3 minutes shy of suggested cooking time, then drain and transfer to a large mixing bowl to cool. Toss with remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil and the Parmigiano-Reggiano. Ladle 2 spoonfuls meat sauce over the pasta and stir to coat the rigatoni.

Combine the ricotta and egg, and season with salt and pepper. Stand a piping bag in a quart container and fill with the ricotta mixture.

In a 9- to 10-inch springform pan, spread about ¼ cup meat sauce in the bottom. Hold the pan on a slight angle and arrange the rigatoni in the pan so they stand upright. Fill the pan, sliding the rigatoni in to fit without packing the pasta too tight. Pipe the ricotta mixture into each rigatoni, then pipe the remaining ricotta mixture on top. Fill with the remaining meat sauce.

Bake for 15 minutes. Remove from oven and sprinkle with mozzarella. Bake for 15 more minutes and remove from oven. Let the rigatoni pie rest 15 to 20 minutes. Release from the springform pan and serve.