How to make lasagne?

How to make lasagne

Method

  1. For the sauce, heat a heavy-based saucepan or casserole over a medium-high heat. Once hot, add a glug of oil and then add the onion, carrot, celery and bay leaf and cook for 5-6 minutes, or until softened. Add the garlic and continue to cook for two minutes.

  2. Turn the heat up and add the mince to the pan and continue to fry, breaking up any large chunks, until the meat is brown all over. Season with salt and pepper. Once completely browned, add the tomato purée, mixing well. Cook for two minutes and then pour in the red wine and turn up the heat to bubble the wine. Cook for 3-4 minutes, scraping any bits stuck to the bottom of the pan.

  3. Add the tomatoes to the pan, mix well and bring to a simmer then pour in 400ml/14fl oz of the stock. Bring to a rapid simmer, reduce the heat to low and leave to cook gently for an hour, stirring every now and again until thickened and reduced, but still moist. If at any point the mixture looks too dry then add the remaining stock along with a little water, if needed, to top up. Taste and adjust the seasoning as necessary then set to one side while you make the béchamel sauce.

  4. Preheat the oven to 190C/375F/Gas 5. In a medium heavy-based saucepan melt the butter, stir in the flour and cook for 3-4 minutes, or until the mixture turns a light golden colour that resembles ground almonds. Gradually whisk the milk in batches until smooth. Taste and season as necessary with salt and pepper. Add the nutmeg and then cook over a gentle heat for 4-5 minutes until thickened, stirring now and again.

  5. Spread one-third of the meat sauce across the bottom of a medium lasagne dish (approx 2-2.5 litres/3½-4½ pints in volume) and top with a quarter of the béchamel, then cover with lasagne sheets, breaking any as necessary to fit so that everything is covered. (It doesn’t matter if the sheets overlap a little.) Sprinkle over a quarter of the parmesan.

  6. Repeat the process to create a further two layers. Finish with a final layer of lasagne sheets and the remaining béchamel, making sure that all the lasagne sheets are completely covered. Sprinkle over the remaining parmesan.

  7. Drizzle with a little extra virgin olive oil, put onto a baking tray and place in the preheated oven to bake for 30-40 minutes, or until golden-brown and bubbling. Serve in hearty wedges with a crisp green salad.

  1. Gently heat the oil in a large frying pan with a lid. Fry the onion with a pinch of salt, covered, for 10min, until softened, stirring halfway through. Increase heat slightly; add celery and carrot and cook, covered, for 10min until softened. Add garlic, tomato purée and oregano; cook for 1min.

  2. Season mince, break up and add to the pan, stirring until evenly browned.

  3. Add the wine, increase heat and reduce by half. Pour in chopped tomatoes. Rinse tin out with hot beef stock and add to the pan. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, for 1hr, stirring occasionally. Remove the lid for a final 30min to reduce the sauce.

  4. Heat oven to 180°C (160°C fan) mark 4. Lightly bruise garlic and bay leaf.

  5. For the béchamel, melt the butter in a large, non-stick pan, and then add flour, stirringwith a wooden spoon to make a smooth, thick paste. Cook, stirring, for 2min. Remove from heat and gradually whisk in milk until smooth. Add garlic and bay leaf. Return to heat, bring to boil and simmer,
    stirring, for about 5min until sauce has thickened and coats the back of the spoon. Off the heat, remove garlic and bay leaf and set aside.

  6. In a large pan of salted, boiling water, cook pasta for 1min in batches to avoid sticking. Set aside to dry on an oiled plate.

  7. Spread a third of the meat over the base of a 1.6 litre (2¾ pint) baking dish about 25.5 x 25.5cm (10 x 10in). Spoon over a quarter of the béchamel, sprinkle with 2tbsp Parmesan and place 3 sheets of pasta over in a single layer. Repeat twice. Top with the rest of the béchamel, then sprinkle over remaining cheese. Season with finely ground black pepper. Bake for 35min, until golden.

We took a couple shortcuts for this recipe by using store-bought marinara and boxed pasta sheets. It saves a ton of time without sacrificing any flavor. We think it’s absolutely perfect as-is, but also understand some people are looking to make sauce from scratch. Use our best homemade spaghetti sauce—it’ll NEVER let you down. Regardless of the route you go, make sure to follow these tips.

DON’T OVERCOOK YOUR NOODLES

Lasagna noodles need structure—they have a lot of ingredients layered between them!—so they can’t be too mushy. Make sure to cook them until they’re very al dente; they’re ready typically two minutes before the amount of time on the box.

OIL ‘EM UP

While you’re making your beef and ricotta mixtures, your lasagna noodles will typically be hanging out in a colander, getting stuck together (worst nightmare). To prevent this, after you drain the noodles from the pasta pot, slick them with olive oil and lay them flat on a baking sheet to cool.

DRAIN BEEF

Sometimes we’re a little lasagna and skip this step when making a meat sauce and we always regret it—the sauce tastes so greasy! Draining the fat from the skillet is a must for your lasagna layers, which will already have a lot of fat from cheese.

SEASON YOUR RICOTTA MIXTURE

My Italian grandmother always added a secret ingredient to her lasagna: cinnamon. The ricotta mixture always gets overlooked and, therefore, tastes kinda bland. Make sure to season it generously with salt and pepper—Parm, too!

DON’T OVER BAKE

Lasagna is one of those dishes that firms up a lot as it sets. Even though it might look like a cheesy, bubbly mess in the oven, if it’s warmed all the way through it will be perfect once you let it sit for like 15 minutes. When you over bake the pasta you run the risk of the noodles drying out and getting too crispy.

The BEST Lasagna!

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The absolute best lasagna recipe — easy to make, layered up with the most delicious flavors, and so incredibly cozy and comforting.

I’m officially declaring this Italian Week here on the blog!

Yep. Get ready to do some seriously delicious recipe bookmarking this week, because I’m going to be sharing some of my all-time favorite recipes for a few of the classics, beginning today with…

…this life-changing lasagna recipe. ♡

So here’s the thing. For years and years, I always admittedly tended to avoid making homemade lasagna in favor of other quicker and easier pasta recipes because — well, frankly — none of the homemade lasagna recipes that I tried seemed to be worth all of the effort! As Barclay would say, they were always just kind of “whelming” — not overwhelming, not underwhelming, not particularly memorable, and definitely not worth all of the prep time. And you know me, if I’m going to invest more than 30 minutes in a recipe, it had better knock my freaking socks off.

Well, our trip to Italy this spring convinced me that seriously good lasagna could indeed be worth the extra effort. So once we arrived home from Amalfi, I set to work on a mega lasagna recipe testing spree. And today — many many batches later — I’m happy to report that I have finally landed on a classic lasagna recipe that I legit love.

You guys, this lasagna recipe is simply THE BEST.

Mainly, I’m convinced it is the best because it is so dang flavorful. It’s made with a rich, complex and deeply delicious meat marinara sauce, which is slow simmered with zesty Italian sausage (way more flavor than ground beef), easy canned tomatoes, a few special veggies, dry red wine, and lots of herbs. It also includes three different cheeses (because lasagna), easy no-boil lasagna noodles (to save us all from having to mess with boiling them), and lots and lots of fresh basil (baked into and sprinkled on top of the lasagna). The ingredient list isn’t complicated, but I’m telling you, all of these delicious layers are magic when baked together into a bubbly, melty, hot pan of lasagna. And 100% worth the effort.

Speaking of effort, I also want to note that this recipe isn’t difficult at all to make technique-wise. It just requires a solid hour or so of prep time. So find an evening when you’re not in a rush, turn on some music, maybe pour yourself a glass of wine or some good fizzy water, and let’s make a pan of the most delicious lasagna together. I’m certain you’re going to love it.

The BEST Lasagna Recipe | 1-Minute Video

Lasagna Ingredients:

Alright, let’s load up your shopping cart! To make this homemade lasagna recipe, you will need to the following easy lasagna ingredients:

  • Italian sausage: I’m a big believer that good-quality Italian sausage — with all of its rich, herby, zesty flavors — is the key to a stellar pan of classic lasagna. So buy a good one! That said, if you really prefer to add in some ground beef, you are welcome to do a 50/50 split.
  • Veggies: We will chop up an onion and lots of garlic for our sauce. Plus you will also need 1/2 cup (about half a regular-sized jar) of diced roasted red peppers, which will add some nice smoky and sweet hints to the sauce.
  • Tomatoes + tomato paste: Three cans of good-quality whole tomatoes — I especially recommend the fire-roasted variety if you can find them — plus a few tablespoons of tomato paste. The quality of your tomatoes will really make a difference here, so it’s worth the extra few dollars to splurge on some go
  • Dry red wine: Which will add the yummiest depth of flavor to our sauce. Or if you prefer not to cook with wine, you are welcome to sub in beef, chicken or vegetable stock instead.
  • Dried herbs + spices: Crushed red pepper flakes, dried oregano, bay leaf, sea salt and lots of freshly-cracked black pepper.
  • Fresh basil: When it comes to fresh basil, I vote the more the merrier with this lasagna recipe. We will chop and stir a good amount of basil into the cheese mixture. But then I also recommend adding extra on top as a garnish.
  • Cheeses: Lots of ricotta (you can use either whole milk or part-skim ricotta), Parmesan (freshly-grated for maximum flavor!), and shredded mozzarella.
  • Egg: This will help to bind the cheese mixture to the noodles.
  • Lasagna noodles: Finally, noodles! I much prefer the ease and texture of the no-boil noodles for this lasagna recipe. But if you purchase the classic noodles, just let them soak in hot water for about 30 minutes while you prepare the rest of the ingredients, before layering them into the lasagna.

How To Make Lasagna:

As I mentioned above, homemade lasagna is not at all difficult to make. It just requires about a solid hour or prep time. So gather your ingredients, settle in, and I promise it will be worth the extra effort. To make lasagna, simply…

  1. Make the sauce: Follow the sauce instructions and then let it simmer until the liquid has reduced about by half. You want the sauce to still be a bit juicy (so that it will cook the noodles), but not super liquidy. Meanwhile…
  2. Make the cheese mixture: Stir together the ricotta, Parmesan, basil and egg until combined.
  3. Prep oven and baking dish: Heat the oven to 375°F and mist a 9 x 13-inch baking dish with cooking spray.
  4. Assemble the lasagna: In this order:
    • First layer: Sauce + noodles + ricotta + mozzarella
    • Second layer: Sauce + noodles + ricotta + mozzarella
    • Third layer: Sauce + noodles + ricotta
    • Fourth layer: Sauce + mozzarella
  5. Bake: Loosely tent aluminum foil to cover the pan (try to avoid touching the cheese). Bake for 45 minutes covered, followed by another 15-20 minutes uncovered, until the cheese is melty and golden. Transfer pan to a wire baking rack to cool for 5 minutes.
  6. Serve: Sprinkle on your desired toppings, slice, serve warm, and dig in!

Possible Lasagna Recipe Variations:

Guys, the options for how to customize this lasagna recipe are practically limitless. So feel free to get creative and experiment with whatever sounds best to you. For example, feel free to:

  • Use a different meat: Ground beef, turkey or chicken would also be delicious in this recipe. (I just recommend adding in a tablespoon of Italian seasoning if you use any of these, to replace some of the seasonings that are usually mixed into Italian sausage.)
  • Make it vegetarian: Nix the meat entirely to make vegetarian lasagna. And in its place, feel free to sauté some finely chopped veggies (such as mushrooms, carrots, zucchini, etc) instead. Just be sure to cook off any of the extra juices from the vegetables, otherwise your veggie lasagna may be too watery.
  • Add veggies: Even if you are still using meat in your lasagna recipe, feel free to add some extra veggies too. I’m especially partial to chopping up a handful of baby bella mushrooms to the sauce.
  • Add spinach: Just thaw a 10-ounce package of frozen chopped spinach, squeeze as much of the moisture out of the spinach as possible, then stir it into the ricotta mixture to make spinach lasagna.
  • Add more fresh herbs: Feel free to add in any other fresh Italian herbs that you happen to have on hand too! Chopped fresh rosemary, thyme, or sage would all be delicious in addition to the basil in this homemade lasagna.
  • Add more cheese: If you like an extra cheesy topping, feel free to double the amount of mozzarella on top. Also, feel free to add in any other cheeses that you love too. (I’m especially partial to smoked mozzarella, or a touch of crumbled goat cheese added in.)
  • Make it spicy: Feel free to double or triple the amount of crushed red pepper flakes to make your lasagna recipe a bit spicy.
  • Use veggie noodles: In lieu of traditional pasta lasagna noodles, feel free to very thinly slice zucchini (lengthwise) and layer them in to make zucchini lasagna. Or do the same with eggplant to make eggplant lasagna. For either recipe, you will need to drain the veggie noodles first. Just sprinkle them with salt and lay the veggie noodles out on paper towels to drain for 30 minutes. Then rinse off with water, pat dry, and add to the lasagna.

Freezer Instructions:

How To Freeze Lasagna (Before Baking): If you would like to prep the lasagna ahead of time and freeze it for later, just prepare the lasagna as instructed below. But instead of baking it, cover the pan tightly with a layer of plastic wrap, so that it is actually sticking to the cheese on the top layer. Then cover the entire top of the pan with aluminum foil, and freeze the whole pan for up to 3 months. Remove the pan from the freezer and let it thaw in the refrigerator for 24 hours. Then bake according to the instructions below, adding an extra 10-15 minutes to the covered cook time if needed for the lasagna to completely cook through, and enjoy!

How To Freeze Lasagna (After Baking): You can also freeze an entire pan of lasagna (or individual servings that you might have as leftovers) after the lasagna has been baked. Just let the lasagna cool to room temperature. Then wrap the entire pan as directed above, or store individual servings in food storage containers, and freeze for up to 3 months.

How To Reheat Frozen (Cooked) Lasagna: To reheat a pan of frozen lasagna that has already been baked, remove any plastic wrap and cover the entire pan with aluminum foil. Bake at 350°F until the lasagna is heated through (the internal temperature should be around 165°F). Remove the foil and bake for an extra 5-10 minutes to crisp up the top layer, then serve.

What To Serve With Lasagna:

Looking for sides to serve with this homemade lasagna recipe? I would recommend:

  • My Everyday Salad (or Everyday Italian Salad)
  • Everything Roasted Asparagus or Roasted Brussels Sprouts

Description

The absolute best lasagna recipe — easy to make, layered up with the most delicious flavors, and so incredibly cozy and comforting. See notes above for potential ingredient variations.

Scale 1x2x3x

Ingredients

Meat Sauce:

  • 1 ½ pounds ground Italian sausage (or you can do half sausage + half ground beef)
  • 1 medium white or yellow onion, peeled and diced
  • 6 large garlic cloves, peeled and minced
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 cup dry red wine (or beef stock)
  • 3 (15-ounce) cans whole tomatoes*, drained
  • 1/2 cup diced roasted red peppers
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly-cracked black pepper

Cheese Mixture:

  • 2 (15-ounce) containers ricotta cheese (part-skim or whole milk)
  • 1 cup freshly-grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 cup tightly-packed fresh basil leaves, roughly chopped
  • 1 egg

Remaining Layers:

  • 4 cups (1 pound) shredded mozzarella
  • 15 no-boil lasagna noodles (or however many needed to make three layers in your pan*)
  • optional toppings: extra basil, Parmesan cheese and/or crushed red pepper flakes

Instructions

  1. In a large sauté pan or stockpot, cook the sausage and onion over medium-high heat until the sausage is completely browned, crumbling it with a wooden spoon as it cooks. Add the garlic, tomato paste and crushed red pepper flakes and sauté for 2 more minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in the wine, using a wooden spoon to scrape up any of the browned bits that have stuck to the bottom of the pan.
  2. Add the tomatoes, roasted red peppers, oregano, bay leaf, salt and pepper, and stir to combine. Use the wooden spoon to break up the tomatoes into small pieces as the sauce continues to cook. Once the sauce reaches a simmer, reduce heat to medium to maintain the simmer. Then let the sauce continue to simmer and reduce down for about 10-15 minutes, or until about half of the juices have evaporated. (You still want the sauce to be fairly juicy, just not overly so.) Discard bay leaf. Remove pan from heat and set aside until ready to use.
  3. Meanwhile, in a separate mixing bowl, stir together the ricotta, Parmesan, basil and egg until combined.
  4. Heat the oven to 375°F and mist a 9 x 13-inch baking dish with cooking spray.
  5. Next, it’s assembly time!
  6. First layer: Spread 1.5 cups of the sauce mixture evenly along the bottom of the pan. Then add on a layer of lasagna noodles (so that the surface of the pan is covered, more or less), followed by 1/3 of the ricotta mixture (which I recommend adding in small spoonfuls, which you can then spread out into an even layer), followed by 1 cup of the shredded mozzarella.
  7. Second layer: Evenly layer 1/3 of the remaining sauce, 1 more round of lasagna noodles, 1/2 of the remaining ricotta mixture, and 1 cup shredded mozzarella.
  8. Third layer: Evenly layer 1/2 of the remaining sauce, 1 more round of lasagna noodles, all of the remaining ricotta mixture.
  9. Fourth layer: Evenly layer all of the remaining sauce, 1 cup shredded mozzarella.
  10. Loosely tent aluminum foil to cover the pan (try to avoid touching the cheese). Transfer pan to the oven and bake for 45 minutes. Remove the aluminum foil and bake for 15-20 more minutes, until the sauce is bubbly around the edges and the top of the cheese starts to bubble and turn golden.
  11. Transfer the pan to a wire baking rack and cool for 5 minutes. Sprinkle with your desired toppings, slice, serve warm and enjoy!

Notes

Italian Sausage: Feel free to use whatever kind of sausage you prefer — hot, mild or sweet.

Tomatoes: If available, I recommend buying the cans of fire-roasted tomatoes for extra flavor.

Lasagna Noodles: Just use however many lasagna noodles are needed to fully cover your pan in three layers. Different brands vary in size/shape, so the number 15 is just an estimate. If using classic (not no-boil) noodles, you will need to submerge and soak the noodles in hot (not boiling) water for 30 minutes before adding them to the lasagna.

Recipe adapted from Epicurious.

posted on May 13, 2019 in Entrees / Main Dishes, Italian, Pastas

Lasagne al forno

  1. Preheat the oven to160C/325F/Gas 3.

  2. For the ragu, heat a large frying pan until hot and add the oil. Cook the mince until browned all over. Remove from the heat and transfer to a plate. Add the onion, celery (if using) and garlic to the pan and cook until softened. Return the meat to the pan and stir in the flour. Add the stock and bring to the boil. Add the redcurrant jelly (or sugar), tomato purée and thyme, then stir well.

  3. Stir in the canned tomatoes. Bring to the boil again, cover and simmer in the oven for 1-½ hours, or until the beef is tender.

  4. For the white sauce, melt the butter in a saucepan. Add the flour and cook over the heat for one minute. Gradually whisk in the hot milk, whisking until thickened. Add the Dijon mustard and parmesan cheese and season well with salt and pepper.

  5. For the lasagne, put one third of the meat sauce in the base of a 2.3 litre/4 pint shallow ovenproof dish. Spoon one third of the white sauce on top. Arrange one layer of lasagne sheets on top. Season. Spoon half of the remaining meat sauce on top and then half of the white sauce. Put another layer of lasagne sheets on top, then the remaining meat sauce and remaining white sauce. Sprinkle over the cheddar cheese.

  6. Leave for six hours before cooking so that the pasta can start to soften.

  7. Preheat the oven temperature to 200C/400F/Gas 6.

  8. Cook in the middle of the oven for about 45 minutes- or until golden brown on top, bubbling around the edges and the pasta is soft.

Homemade Lasagna is a classic, delicious dinner that every family should have in their recipe rotation. Tender sheets of pasta, a cheese filling, and a rich meaty tomato sauce make this the perfect meal!

We love serving a classic lasagna dinner, complete with a caesar salad or Italian salad and dinner rolls slathered in Homemade Garlic Butter. It’s the world’s best meal!

How to Make Lasagna

Homemade lasagna may seem daunting, and while there are a few steps, this is such an easy recipe – it’s worth the time! Homemade lasagna recipe is the perfect Italian meal to warm you from the inside out!

The lasagna ingredients in this recipe are easy to prep and while it does take some time, it’s not difficult at all! All you’ll need for this easy lasagna recipe is one pan, one bowl, and a 9×13 baking dish!

Here’s what to do to prepare for layering lasagna:

  1. In the BOWL: Mix the ricotta and divided cheeses with an egg in a bowl, and set aside.
  2. In the PAN: Brown the onion garlic and meat in a pot on the stove top. Add the pasta sauce and tomato paste.
  3. In the 9×13: Layer the meat sauce and cheese mixture with noodles and bake until bubbling

To make this into a spinach lasagna, squeeze out most of the moisture of defrosted frozen spinach and add it along with the cheese layer. Lasagna ingredients don’t have to be limited to the ones you see here. Substitute meats or different cheeses, or try different meat sauce variations. Any way you slice lasagna, it’s always delicious!

How to Layer Lasagna

Once you have prepared the meat sauce and cheeses, you’re ready to for the layering. This is the fun part! To layer lasagna:

  1. Spread about a cup of meat sauce into a 9×13 pan. Add a layer of noodles.
  2. Top the noodles with some of the cheese mixture.
  3. Repeat the layers, ending with a layer of noodles
  4. Cover with foil and bake.
  5. Remove foil, top with mozzarella and parmesan and bake another 15 minutes.

How Long to Bake Lasagna

Baking time lasagna for this recipe is about one hour total. To get that perfect browned cheese topping, you’ll need to bake it in two stages. After it’s layered, cover it tightly in foil to retain the moisture.

Once cooked, remove the foil, top with cheese, and return to the oven for another 15 minutes, or until the top is browned and your easy lasagna is bubbling.

It’s very important to let the lasagna sit for at least 15 minutes once removed from the oven (even 30 minutes is fine). This is what keeps it from becoming runny and helps it to keep its shape when cut (you don’t need to do this when you’re reheating it though).

Serve this easy lasagna with a chunk of Homemade Garlic Bread.

Make Ahead

Lasagna can be prepared ahead of time and refrigerated up to 2 days before baking. It can also be frozen before or after baking.

How to Freeze Lasagna

Lasagna is one of the best meals to make ahead and freeze. I love to make two pans of this easy lasagna recipe and save one for another day. You can either divide the already baked lasagna into several portions and pack it in freezer safe containers, or freeze the whole pan.

You can also layer the ingredients then freeze before baking. Defrost in the refrigerator overnight and bake as directed.

How To Reheat Lasagna

If you’re baking frozen prepped lasagna, it’s best to pull it out the day before you’re going to cook it so that it has a chance to defrost before it goes in the oven. This prevents it from burning on the edges and undercooking in the center.

If you’ve frozen leftovers, pop them in the oven at 350°F covered, until reheated. This should take about 30 minutes! Of course, leftovers are perfectly heated in the microwave too!

More Italian Favorites

  • Spaghetti Carbonara – Easy and delicious!
  • Chicken Lasagna – creamy, dreamy and comforting.
  • Baked Rigatoni Pasta – great family meal
  • Baked Ziti – Reader favorite recipe
  • Easy Chicken Parmesan – personal favorite, great over spaghetti!

4.7 from 20 votes Review Recipe

Easy Homemade Lasagna

Prep Time 30 minutes Cook Time 45 minutes Resting Time 15 minutes Total Time 1 hour 30 minutes Servings 12 servings Author Holly Nilsson Course Casserole, Main Course, Pasta Cuisine Italian Homemade lasagna is a classic, delicious dinner that every family should have in their recipe rotation.

  • 12 lasagna noodles uncooked
  • 4 cups shredded mozzarella cheese divided
  • 1/2 cup shredded parmesan cheese divided
Tomato Sauce
  • 1/2 pound lean ground beef
  • 1/2 pound Italian sausage
  • 1 onion diced
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 24 oz pasta sauce
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
Cheese Layer
  • 2 cups ricotta cheese
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 egg beaten

Follow Spend with Pennies on Pinterest

  1. Heat oven to 350°F. Cook pasta al dente according to package directions. Rinse under cold water and set aside.

  2. Brown beef, sausage, onion and garlic over medium high heat until no pink remains. Drain any fat.

  3. Stir in pasta sauce, tomato paste, Italian seasoning. Simmer 5 minutes.
  4. Combine 1-1/2 cups mozzarella, ricotta, 1/4 cup parmesan cheese, parsley and egg.
  5. Add 1 cup meat sauce to a 9×13 pan. Top with 3 lasagna noodles. Layer with 1/3 of the cheese mixture and 1 cup of meat sauce. Repeat finishing with noodles topped with sauce.

  6. Cover with foil and bake 45 minutes. Uncover, add cheese and bake an additional 15 minutes or until browned and bubbly. Broil 2-3 minutes if desired.

  7. Rest 10-15 minutes before cutting.

Recipe Notes

Time Saving Tip: Use fresh lasagna sheets found in the deli area and skip the boiling step! Fresh lasagna doesn’t need to be boiled first. Nutrition Information Calories: 377, Fat: 16g, Saturated Fat: 7g, Cholesterol: 71mg, Sodium: 857mg, Potassium: 492mg, Carbohydrates: 28g, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 4g, Protein: 29g, Vitamin A: 805%, Vitamin C: 7.4%, Calcium: 526%, Iron: 2.2%

(Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.)

Keyword lasagna © SpendWithPennies.com. Content and photographs are copyright protected. Sharing of this recipe is both encouraged and appreciated. Copying and/or pasting full recipes to any social media is strictly prohibited. Please view my photo use policy here.

REPIN this Classic Recipe

Jamie’s classic family lasagne

  1. Strip and finely chop the rosemary leaves and finely chop the bacon.
  2. Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a large casserole pan on a high heat. Once hot, add the rosemary and bacon and fry for 2 minutes, or until the bacon starts to crisp up, stirring regularly.
  3. Add all the minced meat, using a wooden spoon to break it up as you go. Reduce the heat to medium and cook for at least 10 minutes, or until all the liquid has evaporated, stirring occasionally.
  4. Place the coarse grater attachment in your food processor (or you could use a box grater instead) and grate the Cheddar, then tip into a bowl.
  5. Replace the grater with the regular blade. Trim and halve the carrots, then add to the processor and blitz to roughly the same size as the mince. Peel and halve the onions, add them to the carrot and blitz again.
  6. Tip into the pan with the mince while you get on with blitzing and adding the celery. Cook for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the vegetables start to soften, stirring regularly.
  7. Next, add the tomato purée and plum tomatoes, breaking them up with a spoon. Fill each of the tins with water and tip into the pan.
    Give everything a good stir and reduce the heat to low. Leave to simmer around 2 hours, or until thickened and reduced, stirring occasionally.
  8. While that ticks away, make your white sauce. Trim, wash and finely slice the leeks, then add to a pan along with 2 tablespoons of oil and the bay leaves. Stir well and season with a tiny pinch of sea salt and black pepper.
  9. Reduce the heat to low and cook for 30 minutes, or until sweet and softened, adding splashes of water, if needed.
  10. Add the flour and stir well to coat, then gradually add the milk, stirring continuously. Turn the heat up to medium, bring to the boil, then reduce to low and cook for 5 to 10 minutes, or until thickened, stirring regularly.
  11. Carefully transfer the sauce to the food processor and blitz until smooth and silky. Add half the grated cheese and finely grate over half the nutmeg and mix well. Season to taste.
  12. Once the ragù is ready, preheat the oven to 190ºC/375ºF/gas 5.
  13. Season the ragù to taste, then transfer half into freezer bags, portioning up as appropriate for your family. Allow to cool to room temperature, then pop in the freezer for another day. It’s a good idea to freeze them flat so that you can reheat them quickly and easily. It’s also a good idea to label and date them to avoid a game of freezer roulette in a few weeks’ time!
  14. To build your lasagne, spoon a quarter of the ragù into a large deep ovenproof dish (roughly 25cm by 30cm) and spread it out evenly.
  15. Spoon over a quarter of the white sauce, then snap over some lasagne sheets, making sure they completely cover the sauce in one layer. Repeat this 3 times, finishing with a layer of white sauce.
  16. Sprinkle over the remaining cheese and bake the lasagne in the oven for 45 minutes or until golden and bubbling.
  17. Remove the lasagne from the oven and leave to sit for 5 to 10 minutes before serving. Delicious served with a fresh green salad.

Try These Recipes

  • Classic Lasagna
  • Seafood Lasagna Roll-ups
  • Savory Skillet Lasagna

For many Italian-Americans, lasagna is the centerpiece of the Christmas meal. Its stacked layers of long noodles, sauce, cheese, and meat makes every bite come alive with flavor.Most classically prepared with meat, modern Italian chefs have started spicing up lasagna by substituting everything from spaghetti to a host of vegetables.

The key to a successful lasagna is to make sure your pan is big enough to fit all of your layers.

  1. For meat sauce, crumble ground beef into large skillet over medium-high heat. Brown until meat loses its pink color. Spoon off and discard fat.
  2. Stir in spices. Cook until soft.
  3. Press tomatoes and juice through sieve into meat mixture; discard seeds.


    Press the tomatoes through a sieve
    and discard the seeds.
    See more international tomato
    dishes pictures.

  4. Reduce heat to low. Cover and simmer 40 minutes, stirring occasionally. Uncover and continue to simmer unitl sauce thickens. Set aside.
  5. Add lasagna noodles to boiling salted water, allowing noodles to soften and fit in the pot. Cook until al dente.


    Add the lasagna noodles to boiling
    water and cook until al dente.

  6. Drain noodles and rinse with cold water. Drain a second time and stack individually over pot rim to prevent sticking. Set aside.
  7. Grease 12 X 8-inch baking dish with butter. Spread noodles in a single layer on clean kitchen (not paper) towel. Pat noodles dry.


    Grease the baking dish with
    butter to avoid sticking.

  8. Arrange three lasagna noodles in single layer, overlapping slightly, in bottom of baking dish.
  9. Spread half of meat sauce evenly over noodles. Spread half of cheese over meat sauce in an even layer.


    Begin to layer the meat,
    cheese, and noodles.

  10. Repeat layers once.
  11. Arrange three lasagna noodles on top. Sprinkle grated cheese evenly on top of lasagna to completely cover lasagna noodles.


    Sprinkle grated cheese evenly on top of the lasagna.

  12. Bake in preheated oven as directed. Let stand before serving.


    Let the lasagna cool before serving.

Want more information? Try these:

  • Italian Recipes: You’re sure to work up an appetite when you take a look at the Italian recipes featured here.
  • Cooking: Learn the ins and outs of some basic cooking techniques in this helpful article.
  • How to Make Pasta: The possible combinations of pasta and sauce are limitless and may even be a little intimidating. Learn how to make pasta at HowStuffWorks.
  • Italian Cooking: Italian cuisine is not just spaghetti and meatballs. Learn all about Italian cooking in this article.

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