The Classic Meat Lasagna Recipe is the perfect Italian comfort food. Rich and hearty Bolognese layered with gooey cheeses, and tender noodles make for thick layers and piles of heart-warming deliciousness.
Make a Big Meat Lasagna! No, make Three!!!!!
I love Lasagna! I like to make a great big tray, and eat leftovers all week-long. In fact, I usually double or triple this recipe and make a few lasagna at a time. It is very easy to make, but it is a little time-consuming so if I’m in for a penny I’m in for a pound. The extra time it takes to make a three of these is still far less than doing it over and over. You will want to eat this over and over. I highly recommend making a few of these and putting them in the freezer for nights you can’t cook or sharing with a friend.
Layering is Key to the Perfect Lasagna!
Timing is everything.
Making a dish like lasagna is all about efficiency. When there are a lot of steps, it is important to consolidate tasks and get organized ahead of time. Before I do anything else, I start a pot of water boiling so that is it ready as soon as I am ready for my noodles. Then I’m just a few short minutes away from having cooked lasagna noodles, ready for layering.
Sauce is key!
I always start with the sauce. In this Classic Meat Lasagna, the sauce is a serious layer. The red sauce adds tremendous flavor and richness. It will also have all of the meat. This is essentially the main ingredient.
I start by browning the ground beef and sausage with a bit of water over medium heat. Use a sturdy spoon to break up the ground meat into small pieces.
Then add the onion, garlic, and dry spices. Continue to cook the sauce base until the onions have softened. Then add red wine and cook until slightly reduced.
Next, add the canned tomatoes. I always use canned tomatoes for this sauce both for convenience and consistency. Then add water, butter, and sugar. Bring the sauce up to a simmer and then turn off.
The sauce does not need to be cooked on the stove for long. It will finish coming together in the oven as it cooks with the whole lasagna.
A Little Sauce will prevent a lot of Sticking.
First put down a layer of sauce then lay lasagna noodles long ways across the pan. Overlapping a little makes a nice stable base.
Next a layer of shredded cheese. Then a heavy layer of meat sauce, and noodles again.
The next layer will be the soft ricotta cheese. Dollop even spoonfuls over the noodles and spread evenly. This should be a nice thick layer. Then cover with another layer of meat sauce and noodles.
On top of the last noodles, spread the final layer of meat sauce then cover with shredded mozzarella and parmesan cheese.
Bake, covered, in a 350° oven for 50 minutes. Remove the cover and cook for 10 more minutes. Remove from the oven and let sit 10 minutes before cutting and serving.
“The trouble with eating Italian food is that five or six days later you’re hungry again.” – George Miller brainyquotes.com
Classic Meat Lasagna Recipe
- 1 Lb Ground Beef
- 1/4 Lb Italian Sausage or 2 Links Removed From Cassing
- 1 Yellow Onion
- 4 Cloves Garlic
- 2 14 oz Can Crushed Tomatoes
- 1 14 oz Can Tomato Sauce
- 2 Tbsp Salt
- 1 Tbsp Black Pepper
- 1 Tsp Oregano
- 1 Tbsp Dry Parsley
- 1 Tbsp Granulated Onion
- 1 Tbsp Granulated Onion
- 1 Tsp Sugar
- 1 Tbsp Butter
- 1 Cup Water
- 1 Lb Lasagna Noodles
- 1 Cup Grated Parmesan Cheese
- 2 Lbs Shredded Mozzarella
- 16 oz Ricotta Cheese
- The first step whenever you are making any kind of pasta dish is put a large pot of water on the stove and add a tsp of salt. This will give you time to bring the water to a boil so you are not waiting for pasta to cook long after everything else is ready.
- Preheat the oven to 350°.
- Get a second large sauce pot, and place it on the stove on medium/high heat. Add the ground beef and sausage to the pot with 1/2 Cup of water. Using a large metal spoon, break up the meat as it cooks.
- Dice a yellow onion and mince 4 cloves of garlic. Once the meat is mostly browned, add the yellow onion. Stir in and let the onion cook until it is just translucent. Then add the minced garlic and stir it in.
- Add all of the dry seasonings to pot. Stir everything in evenly and let the spices warm up a bit.
- Add the canned crushed tomatoes and tomato sauce. Add the remaining 1/2 Cup of water. Add sugar and butter to the tomatoes. Stir everything together and let heat until it comes to a low simmer. Simmer for 10 Minutes.
- While the Sauce is simmering, boil the Lasagna noodles in the large pot. These noodles need to be cooked just short of fully cooked. Check the box of pasta for boiling instructions. The instructions will be for a fully cooked soft noodle. When the noodles are done, drain, and rinse with cool water to stop the cooking.
- Line up all of the lasagna assembly ingredients including your sauce at your work station. In a 13x9 pan begin making the lasagna layers.
- First lay down a ladle full of sauce on the bottom of the pan and spread it evenly from corner to corner.
- Next lay out lasagna noodles long ways with a slight overlap to cover the bottom. Next sprinkle a layer of mozzarella cheese, and then cover it with more sauce. Make each layer as neat and even as possible.
- Add another layer of noodles longways, again overlapping just slightly. Then spread a layer of Ricotta cheese over the noodles. Use the whole 16oz container. Layer sauce evenly over the ricotta.
- Add another layer of noodles, and since this is the top spread the meat sauce over the noodles. Then add a heavy layer of Mozzarella Cheese and Paremesan Cheese.
- Bake in a 350° over for 50 Minutes covered with foil. Bake uncovered for the final 10 minutes.