Million Dollar Spaghetti Casserole

Million Dollar Spaghetti Casserole is a rich, indulgent dish that combines the comforting elements of spaghetti with the heartiness of a baked casserole. The dish starts with a layer of cooked spaghetti noodles, which serves as the base. These noodles are typically mixed with a combination of melted butter, cream cheese, and sour cream, creating a creamy and luxurious texture. The creaminess of the cheese and sour cream adds a tangy depth to the dish, perfectly complementing the pasta.

Over the spaghetti layer, a savory meat sauce is added. This sauce is usually made by sautéing onions and garlic, to which ground beef or Italian sausage is added and browned. The meat is then simmered in a rich tomato sauce, seasoned with herbs like basil, oregano, and sometimes a hint of red pepper flakes for a bit of heat. This creates a robust and flavorful sauce that infuses the dish with a classic Italian aroma.

Once the meat sauce layer is in place, the casserole is typically topped with a generous amount of shredded cheese. Mozzarella and parmesan are popular choices, offering a gooey melt and a sharp, salty bite that contrasts nicely with the creamy spaghetti and the savory meat sauce.

The casserole is then baked in the oven until it’s hot and bubbly, and the cheese on top turns golden and crispy. The heat of the oven melds the flavors together, allowing the creamy, cheesy pasta to absorb the rich, meaty sauce, resulting in a cohesive and flavor-packed dish.

Upon serving, Million Dollar Spaghetti Casserole presents a beautiful layering of textures and flavors. The top cheese layer is slightly crusty and golden, giving way to the succulent meat sauce, and finally, the creamy, buttery spaghetti. It’s often garnished with fresh parsley or basil to add a fresh, herby brightness that cuts through the richness.

Overall, Million Dollar Spaghetti Casserole is a beloved dish for its comforting, hearty nature, and its ability to bring together the best elements of spaghetti and baked pasta casseroles into one decadent meal. It’s a crowd-pleaser, perfect for family dinners, potlucks, or any occasion where a satisfying, indulgent dish is desired.


  • 1 (8 ounce) package spaghetti
  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 1 (16 ounce) jar spaghetti sauce
  • ½ cup butter, sliced – divided
  • 1 (8 ounce) container cottage cheese
  • 1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
  • ¼ cup sour cream
  • 1 (8 ounce) package shredded sharp Cheddar cheese


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  2. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Cook spaghetti in boiling water until cooked through but firm to the bite, about 12 minutes. Drain.
  3. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Cook and stir beef in the hot skillet until browned and crumbly, 5 to 7 minutes; drain and discard grease. Transfer to a bowl and mix in spaghetti sauce.
  4. Place 1/2 of the butter slices into the bottom of a 9×13-inch casserole dish. Spread 1/2 of the spaghetti into the dish.
  5. Mix cottage cheese, cream cheese, and sour cream together in a bowl; spread mixture over spaghetti. Cover with remaining spaghetti and top with remaining slices of butter.
  6. Pour ground beef mixture over spaghetti and spread in an even layer.
  7. Bake in the preheated oven for 30 minutes. Spread Cheddar cheese on top and continue baking until cheese has melted and is lightly browned, about 15 minutes more.


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