Ahhh, ooey gooey lasagna. This was a staple growing up for big family get-togethers and birthdays. My job was always to grate the cheese, so I know firsthand how cheesy this lasagna is. I think because I grated so much cheese as a kid, it is my least favorite task in the kitchen today. However, it is worth it when the end result is this beautifully layered Italian masterpiece!
This lasagna recipe is simple and satisfying. Of course it is indulgent with all the cheese, which is why a salad should go on the side to make you feel better about yourself. I love the creaminess of ricotta so I have added that into my family’s lasagna recipe. The cheddar cheese that goes on the very top adds a nice sharpness and beautiful color. Happy layering.
12 lasagna noodles
1 lb ground beef or ground turkey
1 29oz can tomato puree
1 bay leaf
1 tsp Italian seasoning
1 tsp salt
½ tsp black pepper
1 15 oz container ricotta cheese
4 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
½ cup shredded cheddar cheese
- Boil noodles for 9 minutes, then drain.
- Set out ricotta to soften.
- In medium sauce pan, brown ground meat on medium heat, breaking it up with spatula.
- Add tomato puree, bay leaf, Italian seasoning, salt, and pepper. Stir thoroughly and turn heat down to simmer. Cover and simmer for at least 30 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 350°.
- Assemble lasagna: put small amount of sauce on bottom of 9X13 greased casserole dish. Then add 3 noodles, making sure they overlap a little. Then add ricotta, spreading into thin layer on noodles (the heat of the noodles will help it spread easily), then add some mozzarella.
- Layer sauce, then noodles, then ricotta, then mozzarella 3 more times.
- Sprinkle mozzarella cheese then cheddar cheese on top.
- Cover with foil.
- Bake for 30 minutes covered, then 30 minutes uncovered.
- Let sit for 10 minutes before cutting so layers stay together.
Serve with garlic bread and fresh salad.