I don’t know about you, but all I want on Sunday evenings is comfort food and a home-cooked meal. However, I’m always at a crossroad of whether I make a small delicious meal that I can quickly gobble up, or whether I should make something substantial that I can take to work for lunch the next day.
Thankfully, I’ve got a hell of a lasagna recipe for you that requires minimal work and can even be tossed together for a weeknight dinner. Plus, it will provide you with oodles of leftovers for upcoming lunches (or dinners) – and we all know that is the most important consideration. Gotta save those dollar bills!
A 9×13 pan makes about 12 servings – depending on how hungry you’re feeling.
A list of what you’ll need to make this hearty dish. There are obviously “healthier” ingredients to add, but when I order a lasagna, all I’m looking for is loads of meat, squishy noodles, and layer upon layer of gooey melted cheese.
– 500g lean ground beef
– 1 cup onions (chopped)
– 2 teaspoons minced garlic
– 1 teaspoon oregano
– ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
– approx. 700mL tomato pasta sauce (I used Primo herb and garlic sauce – 1.5 large cans)
– 500mL diced tomatoes in Italian herbs (pour the water and the tomatoes in – 1 full can)
– 1 teaspoon Italian herb spice
– 1 Tablespoon red wine vinegar or balsamic vinegar
– ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
– 12 lasagna noodles (instant are the easiest and fastest)
– 2 cups partly skimmed ricotta
– approx. 1.5 cups chopped spinach leaves
– 1/3 cup parmesan cheese
– 1 egg
– 1 ½ cups shredded mozzarella cheese
Step One: In a large pot, add the ground beef, onions, and minced garlic. Cook on medium-high heat until your meat is browned. At this point, your kitchen will start to smell incredible and you might find that your pups begin to hang around the stove…
Step Two: Stir oregano and crushed red pepper flakes into the meat and cook for 1 minute. Then, pour in your tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, Italian herbs, vinegar, and black pepper. Bring to a boil, then cover and reduce heat to low. Simmer for 20 minutes – DO NOT FORGET to stir it every once in a while to prevent the meat from burning.
Step Three: This is where you would cook and drain your lasagna noodles if they are not instant ones.
Step Four: In a bowl, mix the ricotta, spinach, parmesan cheese, and egg. Refrigerate. I was a little skeptical about adding spinach, but you honestly can’t even taste it!
Step Five: Spread 1 cup of your sauce into the bottom of a 9×13 inch baking dish. Place a layer of noodles over top. Then slather 1/3 of your remaining sauce over the noodle layer, followed by 1/3 of the mozzarella cheese. Top again with a layer of noodles, 1/3 of your remaining sauce, all of your ricotta mixture, and 1/3 of the mozzarella. Once again, top with a layer of noodles, 1/3 of the sauce, and 1/3 of the mozzarella. Now that’s a tower.
Step Six: Cover your dish with aluminum foil and bake at 375F for 35 minutes. Uncover, and bake for 15 more minutes.
Let stand for approx. 10 minutes (if you can wait that long!). Slice. Enjoy.
Just look at those hunks of meat. Hiding underneath a thick layer of cheese and immersed in a bed of tomato sauce.
Best paired with garlic bread and a Caesar salad!
Bon Appetite friends. PS – This meal is sure to impress any significant others or in laws!