Pasta Bake

Delicious and nutritious meal the whole family can enjoy (serves 4-6 depending on hunger levels)

I love the creamy texture that pumpkin gives this this pasta bake and the tomatoes help with iron absorption. All-in-all a great family dish!

Any dark green leafy vegetable works here but I usually use silver-beet, an often overlooked vegetables. It is like spinach but has a stronger flavour. It is a rich source of vitamin A, which helps our immune system, and vitamin K and folate, both of which are important for growth and development. Silver-beet can be used in a stir-fry, quiches, soups and most pasta dishes. 


The pumpkin in this recipe gives it a creamy texture and a bit of sweetness. The tomatoes help with iron absorption which is essential for growing children, teenage girls and pre-menopausal women.


We have used this recipe for more than 15 years in our house. When the kids were young this was a sure way of getting them to eat vegetables as they were hidden. I change the vegetables depending on the season and what I have in the house. Best of all, it is a good recipe for the kids to help with and will help them develop an interest in healthy food.


  • 300 gms penne pasta (or spirals or any pasta you have)
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic – finely chopped
  • 1 onion – finely chopped
  • 1 red chilli – deseeded and chopped
  • 1 x 400 gm tin tomatoes (or pasta sauce)
  • 400 gms premium mince
  • 150 gms cooked pumpkin
  • 5 leaves and stalks silverbeet – shredded and chopped
  • 2 eggs
  • 80 gms grated cheese
  • 1 fresh tomato


  1. Cook pasta following instruction on the packet. Drain when cooked.


  1. In a large fry pan heat oil over a medium heat, add onion, garlic and chilli (if using) and cook until onions are soft. Add mince and cook until browned.
  2. Transfer mixture to a large bowl containing cooked pasta, pumpkin, shredded silver-beet (no need to pre-cook this) and tinned tomatoes. Add eggs and half the cheese and mix well.
  3. Spoon mixture into an ovenproof casserole dish (or similar). Sprinkle remaining cheese on top and add sliced tomatoes (if you have them). Bake at 190deg for 30-40 minutes. 

Let it stand for 10 minutes before eating – it’s very hot.


NOTE: this recipe is excellent cold so can be taken for lunch the next day if you’re lucky enough to have left-overs.