Vegan pasta casserole combines all of your favorite pizza flavors in a casserole dish! Made with vegan pepperoni, onion, bell pepper, marinara, melted cheese, and your choice of pasta. It's cheesy, satisfying, a little spicy, and always a hit!
If you're craving pizza but not in the mood to make pizza dough, this vegan pasta casserole is the answer!
It's loaded with flavor and very customizable. Add different meats, cheeses, and veggies, and use different types of pasta. This dish is pretty much impossible to mess up so don't be afraid to experiment!
My easy homemade vegan pepperoni was the inspiration for today's recipe. We just love it so much!
The savory, spicy flavors of the seitan pepperoni really add to the overall pizza vibes. So if you have time to prepare the pepperoni in advance, I think you'll love it!
Otherwise, store-bought vegan pepperoni or sausage is great, too. Prep involves just a few steps, but thankfully none of them are difficult. Let me show you how it's done!
- pepperoni - either homemade seitan pepperoni or store-bought is fine; or use a different vegan meat (see ideas below).
- marinara - homemade or store-bought; any sauce you enjoy will work great here! Check labels for allergens as needed.
- pasta - I prefer rotini or fusilli in this dish, but ziti was all I could get my hands on thanks to a recent snow storm. Honestly, any shape you like will work in this dish, even spaghetti or angel hair.
- veggies - we went with the classics - onion, mushrooms, and bell pepper (any color). Spinach or zucchini would also be tasty and nutritious.
- cheese - for store-bought, Violife is our favorite; either pre-shredded or select a block of cheese and grate it yourself. If you prefer homemade, my meltable vegan mozzarella is perfect for this dish! The recipe has two versions - use the pourable cheese for this casserole.
See recipe card below for quantities and full recipe.
How to Make Pepperoni Pizza Casserole
- Since seitan pepperoni doesn't contain much fat, I like to toss the sliced pepperoni with a tablespoon of oil for a richer flavor, but this step is optional. Keep in mind that any pieces of pepperoni on top of the dish that are exposed in the oven will dry out. So if you're avoiding oil, make sure the pepperoni is buried underneath the pasta and sauce.
- Saute the onion, mushrooms, and bell pepper. Add the herbs and seasonings, and set aside. Boil the pasta 2 minutes less than indicated in the package instructions. Drain in a colander.
- Return the pasta to the pot and combine with marinara, sauteed veggies, pepperoni slices, and olives. Cook over medium heat just until hot, about 2 minutes.
- Spoon half of the mixture into an oiled casserole dish. Add a generous layer of shredded cheese (or dollops of homemade vegan mozz), followed by the rest of the pasta mixture. Drizzle about ½ cup boiling water over the pasta - this helps the cheese melt.
- Top with more shredded cheese, and cover the dish tightly with foil. Bake in a preheated 375 degree oven for about 25 minutes or until the cheese is melted and the pasta is piping hot.
- Gluten-free - replace the seitan pepperoni with a gluten-free option like tofu pepperoni, and use your favorite GF pasta.
- Oil-Free - use this meltable mozzarella recipe instead of store-bought cheese, and follow the "All Veggie" variation mentioned below. Simply dollop the cheese throughout the dish and on top. Cover and bake as directed.
- Pepperoni - vegan Italian sausage or beefy crumbles are great substitutes if you're not into seitan pepperoni.
- Veggies - any vegetables you enjoy on pizza are right at home in this dish! Try artichoke hearts, broccoli florets, zucchini, and spinach.
- Vegan Meat Lovers - why stop at just one vegan meat? Go crazy with a combination of your favorites. The only thing you have to worry about is fitting it all in the casserole dish!
- All Veggie - not into vegan meats? No problem, bump up the veggies to your heart's content, and add extra Italian seasoning, black pepper, and red pepper flakes to the saute pan.
If you're into pizza, don't miss our popular Vegan Stuffed Crust Pizza!
For a delightfully simple weeknight meal, try this Tuscan White Bean Skillet Bake.
If you plan to make the homemade pepperoni, no special equipment is needed for that recipe. You can use a food processor to make the dough, or simply mix it in a bowl. It's seriously easy!
For the pasta casserole you'll need a pasta pot, a saute pan, and a casserole dish, either 13x9 or a 10-inch gratin dish.
Leftover pasta casserole keeps in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
This dish can also be frozen. Make sure the food is well-protected from air, and freeze for up to 1 month.
The pasta finishes cooking in the oven so boil it for about 2 minutes less than indicated on the package.
Covering the dish with foil holds in steam and helps the cheese melt.
More Vegan Casseroles
Vegan Pizza Pasta Casserole
- ½ batch vegan pepperoni (tap for recipe) or use store-bought - see Notes; about 7 ounces
- 1 tablespoon olive oil - omit if using store-bought pepperoni
- 12 ounces dry pasta such as rotini or ziti
- 1 (25 oz) jar marinara sauce
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 6 ounces button mushrooms, sliced
- 1 bell pepper, any color, chopped
- ½ teaspoon dried oregano
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
- approx. ⅓ cup sliced black olives
- 2 cups shredded vegan mozzarella - about 6 ounces
- salt and pepper
- ½ cup boiling water
- If using homemade seitan pepperoni, slice it thinly, place in a bowl and drizzle with olive oil. Toss to coat, and set aside.
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F, and lightly oil a 13x9 casserole dish.
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil, and cook pasta for 2 minutes less than indicated on the package. Drain in a colander. While the pasta is cooking, move on to step 4.
- Preheat a saute pan over medium heat. Cook the onion, mushrooms, and bell pepper for 5 to 7 minutes or until the moisture from the mushrooms has evaporated. Add the oregano, garlic powder, pepper flakes, and a generous pinch of salt and pepper. Cook for another minute and remove from heat.
- Return the pasta to the pot and combine with marinara, sauteed veggies, olives, and a pinch of salt and pepper. Fold in the pepperoni slices, reserving a handful to decorate the top of the dish if desired. Cook the pasta mixture over medium heat just until hot, about 2 minutes.
- Spoon half of the pasta mixture into the prepared dish. Add a generous layer of shredded cheese, about 1 cup, followed by the rest of the pasta. Drizzle the boiling water into the dish (this helps the cheese melt).
- Top with reserved pepperoni and remaining cheese, and cover the dish tightly with foil. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until the cheese is melted. Serve hot.
Estimated Nutrition (per serving)
Nutrition information is an estimate and will vary depending on the exact amounts and specific products and ingredients used. We calculate this information using the online calculator cronometer.com.