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I got the basis for this recipe (proportions) off a Barilla box years ago. I've tweaked it, adding elements of other lasagne I've liked, until my husband told me it was perfect. Then I started taking it to pitch-ins, and was told by many that it was the best they'd ever had, too! I think it melds elements of good, American-style lasagne: spicy meat, good cheeses, a rich blend of spices, and spinach. The key is the sauces and cheese blend. Get as many different Italian cheese in this as you can! I've used a mozzarella/sun-dried tomato/basil blend for the mozzarella, and that was excellent, too.
- 1 (9 ounce) box no-boil lasagna noodles
- 2 eggs
- 1 (15 ounce) container ricotta cheese
- 1 (16 ounce) package frozen spinach
- 2 cups pre-shredded mozzarella cheese
- 2 cups shredded Italian cheese blend (parmesan cheese, asiago, provalone, mozzarella and romano blend)
- 1⁄2 cup parmesan cheese (optional)
- 1 lb Italian sausage, browned or 1 lb ground beef, browned with
- 2 minced garlic cloves, and
- 1 tablespoon fennel seed
- 1 (27 ounce) jar spaghetti sauce (tomato or basil flavor)
- 12 ounces spaghetti sauce (a second jar of tomato or basil flavor)
- 1 (27 ounce) jar spaghetti sauce (3 cheese blend, (or more)
- Thaw and drain spinach, pressing in a colander lined with paper towels. Get it as dry as you can.
- Preheat oven to 375.
- In bowl, combine beaten eggs, ricotta cheese, one cup of mozarella and one cup of Italian cheese blend, and drained spinach. Set aside.
- In a 13X9X3 pan, spread 1 cup of tomato/basil sauce on bottom of pan.
- Layer in the order, 4 uncooked lasagna noodles (do not overlap), then 1/3 part of the ricotta cheese mixture, half the browned meat, 1/2 cup each mozzarella and italian cheese blend, and 1 cup of 3-cheese spaghetti sauce.
- Second layer, 4 uncooked lasagna noodles, 1/3 part of the ricotta cheese mixture, and 1 1/2 cup tomato/basil sauce.
- Third layer, 4 uncooked lasagna noodles, remaining ricotta mixture and remained meat, 1 cup of 3-cheese sauce.
- For top layer, 4 uncooked lasagna noodles, remaining tomato/basil sauce, and remaining 1 cup total of cheeses.
- Bake covered with foil for 50-60 minutes.
- Uncover and continue cooking until all the cheese is melted on the top (about 5 minutes).
- Let stand 15 minutes before serving.
- If you are using a 13X9X2 pan---just make 3 layers to avoid boiling over.
This turned out really well and wasn't time consuming to put together. I used the sausage and couldn't find shredded italian cheese mix, so it was all mozzerella and parmessan cheeses. I think the flavor would just improve with getting more cheese mix in there. I did the 4 layers in my pan and it would probably be a 12 servings not 16. This is actually a good base recipe to start personalizing with more vegies which is what I'll try next time. Definitely a keeper.