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Easy Lasagna Recipe

This Lasagna Recipe is easy to make with a creamy ricotta cheese mixture, savory meat sauce, and mozzarella cheese. BONUS: it’s make-ahead and freezer-friendly!

A white plate with Lasagna on it with a fork in the background.

 

Easy Lasagna Recipe

I suppose since I have recipes for Skillet Lasagna, Lasagna Soup, Lasagna Roll Ups, and Taco Lasagna, we are long overdue for me to share my easy, classic lasagna recipe.

This recipe has simple ingredients but tons of flavor with a creamy ricotta mixture, savory meat sauce, and lots of mozzarella cheese. 

This is a great freezer meal, make-ahead recipe, and leftovers freeze and reheat super well. 

How to Make It

See recipe card below this post for ingredient quantities and full instructions.

Spoon meat sauce on the bottom of a lightly greased casserole dish. Add 4 boiled lasagna noodles (or use no-boil or fresh noodles). Spread 1/3 of the ricotta cheese mixture on top. Add 1.5 cups of meat sauce.

Repeat the same layers two more times.

Adding layers of noodles, ricotta cheese, and meat sauce to make Lasagna.

Top with mozzarella cheese. Cover and bake at 375° for 30 minutes. Remove cover and bake for 15 more minutes. Broil at the end if desired. Let it rest for 15 minutes prior to serving with Garlic Bread With Cheese.

Lasagna in a casserole dish before and after baking.

How Many Layers Does Lasagna Have

  • Lasagna needs to have at least 3 layers in order to constitute a true lasagna. Most recipes have 3 or 4 layers.
  • I opted for 3 layers of 4 lasagna noodles as that is what will fit in a 9 x 13 inch casserole dish. Additional layers would require a deeper baking dish

Make Ahead Method

  • Assemble as outlined but do not bake. Cover and refrigerate for up to 2 days or freeze for up to 3 months.
  • Thaw frozen lasagna completely before baking.
  • Let chilled lasagna sit out at room temperature for 30 minutes prior to baking. Add an additional 10 minutes to covered baking time.

Reheating Lasagna

  • To reheat leftover lasagna: Place it in a lightly greased, covered casserole dish. Bake at 350° for 25-30 minutes.

Pro Tips

  • Flavor Enhancers: The hot sauce and Worcestershire sauce are flavor enhancers and can’t be tasted outright. The hot sauce won’t make it hot/spicy. I use Frank’s Hot Sauce.
  • Marinara Sauce: I recommend using Rao’s marinara sauce for this recipe, it’s very high quality, lasagna is a labor of love that deserves quality ingredients.
  • Cheese: Shred and grate the cheese from a block, avoid using packaged shredded/grated cheese for this recipe. Low moisture, whole milk mozzarella cheese melts the best. I use Dragone mozzarella, Belgioioso Parmesan, and Galbani Whole Milk Ricotta.
  • Lasagna Noodles: No-boil lasagna noodles or fresh lasagna noodles can also be used for this recipe, neither of which need to be cooked first. Fresh lasagna noodles can be found in the deli section of the grocery store.
  • Casserole Dish: If your lasagna is very close to the top of your casserole dish, place a baking sheet underneath the casserole dish to catch any splatters of sauce, as it gets hot and bubbly toward the end. This is the Staub casserole dish that I use for this recipe and it fits this lasagna perfectly.

Storage

  • Store in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months. Leftovers do freeze well. 

A casserole dish with Lasagna being pulled up with a spatula.

Tools For This Recipe

(Amazon affiliate links)- Check out all of my kitchen essentials here.

  • 8 Quart Pasta Pot: Make sure to use a large pot for boiling the lasagna noodles to ensure that they can all fit and are less likely to stick together. You also want to ensure that you don’t need to reduce the heat from overflowing boiling water, as this can cause the noodles to be mushy.
  • Deep Casserole Dish: This is the one that I use for this recipe and it fits this lasagna perfectly.

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Easy Lasagna Recipe

5 from 9 ratings
This Lasagna Recipe is easy to make with a creamy ricotta cheese mixture, savory meat sauce, and mozzarella cheese. BONUS: it's make-ahead and freezer-friendly!

Ingredients

Cheese Filling

  • 15 oz. ricotta cheese, 2 cups
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 cups mozzarella cheese
  • ¾ cup Parmesan cheese, freshly grated
  • 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ tsp pepper

Meat Sauce

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion, finely diced
  • ¾ lb. ground beef
  • ¾ lb. ground Italian sausage
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • ½ cup chicken broth
  • 40 oz. marinara sauce, see notes
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon hot sauce
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

Lasagna

  • 12 lasagna noodles, plus extra in case of breakage
  • 2.5 cups mozzarella cheese

Instructions

Pre Work

  • Combine the ricotta cheese mixture in a medium bowl and set aside. Measure out remaining ingredients.

Make the Meat Sauce

  • Heat olive oil over medium heat and add the diced onions. Let them soften for 10 minutes. (This allows them to release a little sugar which is a nice offset to the acidity of the tomatoes.)
  • Add the ground beef and sausage and increase heat to medium-high. Use a spatula to break up the meat so that it’s very fine and crumbled. Cook for 8-10 minutes, or until cooked through. Add garlic during the last minute. Drain excess grease.
  • Add the chicken broth and use a silicone spatula to “clean” the bottom and sides of the pot. Add the marinara sauce, tomato paste, hot sauce, and Worcestershire sauce. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Cover partially and let the sauce simmer gently.

Preheat Oven and Cook the Lasagna Noodles

  • Preheat oven to 375°.
  • Begin boiling a large pot of salted pasta water for the lasagna noodles. Once a rapid boil is reached, cook the noodles to al dente according to package instructions. (Set a timer to ensure you don’t overcook them.) Gently stir with a wooden spoon throughout cooking to prevent the noodles from sticking. Drain and rinse with cold water until noodles are completely cool.
  • Lay the cooled noodles flat on wax or parchment paper while you begin assembling the lasagna.

Assemble

  • Spread 1 heaping cup of meat sauce on the bottom of a 9 x 13-inch casserole dish. Next, add 4 lasagna noodles, overlapping them if needed.
  • Spread 1/3 of the ricotta cheese mixture over the noodles, followed by about 1 ½ cups of meat sauce.
  • Top with 4 more lasagna noodles, 1/3 of the ricotta cheese mixture, 1 ½ cups meat sauce.
  • Finish with 4 more lasagna noodles, the rest of the ricotta mixture, and the rest of the meat sauce.
  • Top with 2 ½ cups of Mozzarella cheese.
  • Spray foil with nonstick cooking spray and place it spray-side-down on top of the baking dish to prevent the cheese from sticking to it.

Bake

  • Bake for 30 minutes. Remove cover and bake for 15 more minutes. If desired, broil at 450° to brown the top more, watch it carefully during this time.
  • Remove and garnish with fresh parsley. Let it sit for 15 minutes prior to serving to allow the layers to set. Serve with garlic bread with cheese.

Notes

Pro Tips:
  • Flavor Enhancers: The hot sauce and Worcestershire sauce are flavor enhancers and can’t be tasted outright. The hot sauce won’t make it hot/spicy. I use Frank's Hot Sauce.
  • Marinara Sauce: I recommend using Rao’s marinara sauce for this recipe, it’s very high quality, lasagna is a labor of love that deserves quality ingredients.
  • Cheese: Shred and grate the cheese from a block, avoid using packaged shredded/grated cheese for this recipe. Low moisture, whole milk mozzarella cheese melts the best. I use Dragone mozzarella, Belgioioso Parmesan, and Galbani Whole Milk Ricotta.
  • Lasagna Noodles: No-boil lasagna noodles or fresh lasagna noodles can also be used for this recipe, neither of which need to be cooked first. Fresh lasagna noodles can be found in the deli section of the grocery store.
  • Casserole Dish: If your lasagna is very close to the top of your casserole dish, place a baking sheet underneath the casserole dish to catch any splatters of sauce, as it gets hot and bubbly toward the end. This is the Staub casserole dish that I use for this recipe and it fits this lasagna perfectly.

Storage:
  • Store in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months. Leftovers do freeze well. 

Make-Ahead Method:
  • Assemble as outlined but do not bake. Cover and refrigerate for up to 2 days or freeze for up to 3 months.
  • Thaw frozen lasagna completely before baking.
  • Let chilled lasagna sit out at room temperature for 30 minutes prior to baking. Add an additional 10 minutes to covered baking time.

Reheating Leftovers:
  • To reheat leftover lasagna, place it in a lightly greased, covered casserole dish. Bake at 350° for 25-30 minutes.

  • The Nutritional Info shared is an estimate and is per serving. There are 12 servings in this recipe.

Nutrition

Calories: 487kcal, Carbohydrates: 30g, Protein: 31g, Fat: 27g, Saturated Fat: 13g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g, Monounsaturated Fat: 10g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 107mg, Sodium: 1207mg, Potassium: 632mg, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 5g, Vitamin A: 968IU, Vitamin C: 8mg, Calcium: 396mg, Iron: 3mg
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32 comments on “Easy Lasagna Recipe”

  1. This was hands down one of the best lasagna recipes I have ever made. Even my picky 19 year old daughter loved it! Thank you!

    • I am sooo happy to hear that Ellin! Today is my sister’s birthday and she enjoyed a batch of this lasagna- it’s her absolute favorite! I’m so happy to hear that your picky eater loved it as well, that’s a big compliment! 🙂 Thank you so much for taking the time to leave a review, I really appreciate it! -Stephanie

  2. Just made this for the second time but this time I divided it into two 8 by 8 pans and took some to my brother and mom it’s a really good lasagna recipe❤️

  3. Hello! First of all, this recipe looks so good. I went out to the market and accidentally bought fresh mozarella, though. Everywhere on this internet, I see that fresh mozarella will make it too soggy and wet. Do you think the same thing would happen if I used fresh mozarella in your recipe? Trying to figure routes if it’s necessary for me to go out and buy a block of part-skim low moisture mozarella or if the fresh mozarella ball cut into slices would work okay. :/

    • Hi Katie, unfortunately, I agree and give the same pro tip on this blog post regarding the mozzarella, although I don’t use part skim. I recommend whole milk, low moisture mozzarella to get the results you’re looking for. You will be disappointed if you use fresh, it’s super moist. I wish I could give a different answer 🙁

  4. This is the second recipe I’ve tried..I Love the lasagna, it’s so, so tasty!  (I love Rao products.) thanks so much for sharing your recipes! Maria 

  5. Firstly, I love how she includes the pictures to show to properly layer it. My boyfriend’s favorite dish is lasagna and is currently recovering from a fractured clavicle, so I decided to use this as my guide to make it for him as a surprise. IT CAME OUT SO GOOD. He couldn’t stop raving about it and kept saying “why have you been keeping your hidden talent of cooking from me??” I ended up making a 5 layer lasagna because I cooked way too much meat and didn’t want it to go to waste ahahah. SO glad I came across Stephanie’s website and this recipe!! I can’t wait to try making other dishes.

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