This is something I hadn’t made in about a year, homemade lasagna. The other day while grocery shopping I thought about buying a frozen lasagna to throw in the oven but decided against it in favor of making one myself.
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This is not a quick meal by any means, not the cooking, not the prep. This is hours long, mainly just the cooking, with occasional stirring. But the amazing flavor is in how long it takes to make.
Dice up an onion and mince some garlic, tenderize in a little oil, in a large pot. Choose your tomato base. I use a cheap jar of spaghetti sauce, something that has added seasoning in it already, but you can also use a large can of tomato sauce. Add to your onions and garlic.
Add in a can of diced tomatoes, your sugar, and most of the spices. Also now add in already cooked, and fat drained off ground beef. Bring to a boil over medium high heat, once it comes to a boil reduce heat, cover and let simmer for a couple hours over low heat.
While you are waiting on your sauce to simmer, you can get the Ricotta cheese made up: add an egg and remaining parsley.
Also grate your cheese, a lot of it.
Once you have simmered your meat sauce for a couple hours you are ready to make your homemade lasagna.
Start with a layer of meat sauce on the bottom on your pan, I used a 9×13. Add a layer of noodles. Add half your ricotta cheese on top of those noodles, add a third of your mozzarella cheese on top of the ricotta.
Add a layer of meat sauce, and continue the layers. Top the remaining mozzarella cheese over the top. Sprinkle Parmesan cheese over all of it.
Bake at 375. You want to start with it covered in a tin foil tent, you’re not going to want to have your cheese stuck to the tin foil. Bake for 25 minutes. Then remove the tin foil and bake for another 25 minutes.
Let it cool for 15 minutes before you cut into it.
- 1 pound lean ground beef
- ½ cup minced onion
- 2 cloves garli
- 1 (28 ounce) can crushed tomatoes
- 2 (6 ounce) cans tomato paste
- (6.5 ounce) cans canned tomato sauce
- ½ cup water
- 2 tablespoons white sugar
- 1½ teaspoons dried basil leaves
- 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
- 1 tablespoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- 4 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- 12 lasagna noodles
- 16 ounces ricotta cheese
- 1 egg
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 3 cups mozzarella cheese
- ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
- In a large pot cook onion, and garlic over medium heat until well browned. Stir in diced tomatoes, tomato sauce/spaghetti sauce and cooked ground beef.
- Season with sugar, basil, Italian seasoning, salt, pepper, and 2 tablespoons parsley. Simmer, covered, for about 2 hours, stirring occasionally.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).
- To assemble, spread 1½ cups of meat sauce in the bottom of a 9x13 inch baking dish. Arrange 6 noodles lengthwise over meat sauce. Spread with one half of the ricotta cheese mixture. Top with a third of mozzarella cheese slices. Spoon 1½ cups meat sauce over mozzarella. Repeat layers, and top with remaining mozzarella and Parmesan cheese. Cover with foil: to prevent sticking, either spray foil with cooking spray, or make sure the foil does not touch the cheese.
- Bake in preheated oven for 25 minutes. Remove foil, and bake an additional 25 minutes. Cool for 15 minutes before serving.