This EASY Lasagna Recipe is beefy, saucy and supremely flavorful. Homemade lasagna is better than any restaurant version and it feeds a crowd for way less than going out to eat.
We love lasagna around here and have gotten creative over the years with slow cooker lasagna and even a lasagna pasta casserole, but THIS classic lasagna is our all-time favorite.
Lasagna is the perfect meal – it keeps, reheats and freezes really well and it is so nice to have something in the fridge to enjoy throughout the week. Also, think: Meal Planning! It also works well for kids lunches – I pack a serving in my son’s thermos to keep it hot and that thermos comes home empty :).
Ingredients for Lasagna with Meat Sauce:
- I used 80/20 beef (20% fat content) for a juicier lasagna
- You will need 9 lasagna noodles for a 9×13 casserole dish (You can use gluten free noodles).
- Use store-bought marinara, or homemade marinara
- Any good red wine (not cooking wine) will work
Substitute for Red Wine?
If you don’t have red wine on hand, or prefer not to use it, you can substitute with beef broth or beef stock. The red wine adds great flavor but the lasagna will still be delicious with beef broth.
What is “Al Dente”?
Cooking Al Dente pasta means it should be “firm to the bite.” The package instructions will provide the cook time for pasta to reach the “al-dente” state. Keep in mind, the lasagna will be bake for 45 minutes so do not overcook your lasagna noodles.
How to Keep Cheese from Sticking to Foil:
There’s nothing worse than having your entire top portion of cheese stuck to your aluminum foil cover. Poke 8-10 toothpicks evenly around the top of your lasagna, pushing them in halfway to keep the aluminum foil from touching and sticking to your lasagna.
Just be sure to count and remove every toothpick prior to serving.
Ingredients for Lasagna
1 lb ground beef (15-20% fat content)
1 small onion finely diced
2 large garlic cloves minced
1/4 cup red wine (any kind), or beef broth
1 Tbsp olive oil
24 oz Marinara Sauce (3 cups)
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/4 tsp black pepper ground
1/4 tsp dried thyme
1/2 tsp granulated sugar
2 Tbsp parsley finely chopped
9 lasagna noodles cooked al dente
Ingredients for Cheese Sauce:
16 oz low-fat cottage cheese
15 oz reduced fat ricotta cheese
1 large egg
2 Tbsp parsley finely chopped, plus more to garnish
4 cups mozzarella cheese shredded, divided
How to Make Meat Sauce:
Place a deep pan or dutch oven over medium/high heat and add 1 Tbsp olive oil, 1 lb ground beef and diced onion. Saute, breaking up the meat, for 5 minutes or until beef is no longer pink. Add pressed garlic and sauté another minute until fragrant.
Add 1/4 cup wine and stir for 2 minutes or until wine is nearly evaporated. Add 3 cups marinara, 1/2 tsp salt, 1/4 tsp pepper, 1/4 tsp thyme, 1/2 tsp sugar and 2 Tbsp parsley. Bring to a simmer then cover and cook 5 minutes.
How to Make Cheese Sauce:
In a large mixing bowl, combine 16 oz Cottage Cheese, 15 oz Ricotta, 1 cup mozzarella, 1 egg and 2 Tbsp parsley. Mix well.
How to Make Lasagna:
Preheat oven to 375˚F. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add salt and 9 lasagna noodles. Cook until al dente according to package instructions.
Spread 1/2 cup meat sauce in the bottom of a deep 9x13 casserole dish.
Add 3 noodles, spread on 1/3 of the meat sauce and sprinkle with 1 cup mozarella cheese. Spoon on and spread the top with 1/2 of your cheese sauce.
Repeat until you have 3 layers of noodles:
Add 3 noodles, 1/3 meat sauce, 1 cup mozarella cheese, 1/2 cheese sauce
Add 3 noodles, remaining 1/3 meat sauce, remaining 1 cup mozarella.
Poke 9-12 toothpicks over the surface of your lasagna (to keep the foil from sticking to the cheese). Cover with foil and bake at 375˚F for 45 minutes.
Remove foil and broil for 3 to 5 minutes, or until cheese turns golden. Let lasagna rest 30 min before slicing.