Pizza Casserole

Skip pizza delivery tonight! Revamp your beloved pepperoni pizza into this crowd-pleasing casserole with pasta, marinara, pepperoni, and lots of cheese.

Pasta and pepperoni pizza casserole.

Simply Recipes / Hannah Zimmerman

Pizza Casserole is the perfect comfort meal. It’s a warm and cheesy baked pasta with marinara sauce and your favorite pepperoni pizza toppings: melty mozzarella cheese and pepperoni slices. I add bell peppers, onions, mushrooms, and black olives for a boost of flavors and textures.

My favorite thing about Pizza Casserole is that it satisfies my pizza craving and pasta craving at the same time. It’s the perfect weeknight dinner: Gather the whole family together because it’s a meal everyone will love! 

Easy Tips for the Best Pizza Casserole

This casserole is easy to make, but here are a few tips I’d like to share:

  • Cook the pasta al dente. That means it should still have a little bit of a bite. It should not be soft or mushy. Otherwise, it will overcook in the oven. 
  • Drain your sausage after cooking it to get rid of excess grease you won’t want in your casserole.
  • The sauce brings most of the flavor, so use a marinara sauce you love, buy a high-quality one, or make your own
Scoop of pizza casserole.

Simply Recipes / Hannah Zimmerman

Delicious Variations

Customize Pizza Casserole based on your preferences and what you have on hand. Here are some ways you can change up the recipe:

  • Sneak in some extra vegetables by adding artichoke hearts, broccoli, or spinach.
  • Use another short pasta like rotini, rigatoni, and cavatappi.
  • Make it a vegetarian dish by leaving out the sausage and pepperoni or use a vegetarian sausage alternative.

Add a Light Side + Wine 

Pizza Casserole is a substantial dish, so it is best served with a light side, like roasted broccoli. It would pair well with a fruity Merlot or Cabernet Sauvignon.

Penne and pepperoni casserole in three small bowls.

Simply Recipes / Hannah Zimmerman

Make it Ahead

Pizza Casserole is a great make-ahead dinner. You have two choices:

Bake it ahead: Assemble and bake the casserole and let it cool to room temperature. Cover it tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate it for up to five days. When you’re ready to serve it, remove the plastic wrap and cover it with foil. Reheat it in a 350°F oven for 30 minutes, until warmed through.

Assemble now, bake later: This casserole can be assembled, refrigerated, and baked right before serving. Simply assemble the casserole, cover it with plastic wrap, and store it in the fridge for up to two days or in the freezer for up to three months. Since the casserole will be cold, you will need to bake it for about 10 minutes longer. If frozen, thaw it in the fridge overnight before baking.

How to Store Leftovers

Spoon leftovers into an airtight container and place it in the refrigerator or freezer. It will keep in the refrigerator for up to five days and in the freezer for up to three months.

Reheat refrigerated leftovers in the microwave for 2 to 3 minutes. To reheat frozen leftovers, place it in an oven-safe baking dish and cover it tightly with foil. Bake it in a 350°F oven for 45 minutes to 1 hour, until warmed through.

Penne and pepperoni casserole side view.

Simply Recipes / Hannah Zimmerman

More Casseroles with Pasta

Pizza Casserole

Prep Time 25 mins
Cook Time 50 mins
Total Time 75 mins
Servings 6 to 8 servings


  • Salt, for pasta cooking water

  • Cooking spray, for greasing the casserole dish

  • 16 ounces dry penne pasta

  • 8 ounces Italian sausage links (raw or pre-cooked)

  • 1/2 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped

  • 1/2 green bell pepper, seeded and chopped

  • 1/2 small red onion, chopped

  • 4 ounces baby bella mushrooms, trimmed and sliced

  • 1/4 cup black olives, sliced

  • 24 ounces (2 1/2 cups) store-bought or homemade marinara sauce

  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder

  • 1 teaspoon dried basil

  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano

  • 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

  • 4 ounces pepperoni slices


  1. Preheat the oven and prepare the casserole dish: 

    Preheat the oven to 375°F. Grease a 9x13-inch casserole dish with cooking spray. Set it aside. 

  2. Cook the pasta:

    Fill a large pot with water, season the water generously with salt, and bring it up to a boil over high heat. Cook the pasta in the boiling water according to the package instructions, until al dente. Strain the pasta into a colander placed in the sink and set it aside.

  3. In the meantime, cook the sausage:

    Set the sausage links on a cutting board and use a sharp knife to cut them in half lengthwise. Then, cut them into 1/2-inch thick half moons. If using raw sausages, they may fall apart a little and that's okay.

    Heat a medium skillet over medium heat. Add the sausages and cook for 6 to 8 minutes, stirring them every 1 to 2 minutes, until evenly browned. You won’t need any oil since the sausages will release enough to keep them from sticking to the skillet. Turn the heat off. Tilt the skillet and use a spoon to scoop out and discard as much grease as possible.

    Sausage cooked in skillet.

    Simply Recipes / Hannah Zimmerman

  4. Prepare the sauce:

    In a large bowl, add the marinara sauce, Parmesan, garlic powder, dried basil, and dried oregano. Mix with a spoon to combine. You can also do this in the same pot used to cook the pasta!

    Seasoned marinara sauce.

    Simply Recipes / Hannah Zimmerman

  5. Combine the filling:

    Add the cooked pasta and sausages, bell peppers, onions, mushrooms, and olives. Stir to combine. I like to use two large spoons to toss the mixture together until everything is coated in the sauce.

    Combine pasta, vegetables, and marinara sauce.

    Simply Recipes / Hannah Zimmerman

  6. Assemble the casserole: 

    Pour the pasta mixture into the prepared casserole dish. Sprinkle shredded mozzarella evenly over it and top with pepperoni slices. 

    Assembled Pizza Casserole ready to bake.

    Simply Recipes / Hannah Zimmerman

  7. Bake and serve:

    Tightly cover the casserole with foil and bake for 30 minutes. Remove the foil and turn the oven to broil on high for 2 to 3 minutes, until the cheese is fully melted and lightly browned. Keep a close eye on it so that it doesn’t burn! Let it cool for 10 to 15 minutes before serving.

    Penne and pepperoni casserole side view.

    Simply Recipes / Hannah Zimmerman

Nutrition Facts (per serving)
421 Calories
23g Fat
33g Carbs
20g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 6 to 8
Amount per serving
Calories 421
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 23g 29%
Saturated Fat 9g 46%
Cholesterol 51mg 17%
Sodium 1231mg 54%
Total Carbohydrate 33g 12%
Dietary Fiber 4g 14%
Total Sugars 8g
Protein 20g
Vitamin C 38mg 189%
Calcium 261mg 20%
Iron 3mg 16%
Potassium 625mg 13%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate. In cases where multiple ingredient alternatives are given, the first listed is calculated for nutrition. Garnishes and optional ingredients are not included.