Perfect Lasagna Recipe
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This Perfect Lasagna Recipe is a classic and such a delicious meal for serving a crowd. It’s also an easy main dish to make ahead and easily bake to warm before serving.
Over the years we’ve enjoyed entertaining friends and family. It’s always a treat to open our home to guests to have it filled with laughter, love, and always, always good food. We don’t do many fancy shindigs around here. Usually our get-togethers are pot luck and come as you are. That’s how we like it: laid back, no-fuss, and easy going. We’ve found when it comes to entertaining, everyone enjoys the time together much better when we don’t have to worry about what we’ll wear or what we’ll make as far as food goes. Not that we don’t enjoy delicious food (and look good at the same time). There’s just no need for sequins and steak every time we get together.
When it comes to no-fuss food for get-togethers being able to make it ahead of time is important for me. Prepping ahead certainly makes for a more relaxed time together. I think being able to avoid that mad dash the hour before guest arrive is crucial.
We have a few go-to dishes that are easily prepped ahead with little attention needed just before serving. This Perfect Lasagna Recipe would be one of those. Lasagna is great for being able to totally make it days ahead of time (or longer than that and freeze it!) and easily bake until it’s warm and all melty. Serve it with a big salad, maybe some bread, and you’re good to go!
Lasagna is such a delicious crowd-pleaser, and this lasagna recipe is no exception. Enjoy!
Check out these delicious dinner recipes:
Perfect Lasagna Recipe
- 1 pound ground sausage (like Neese’s Country Sausage)
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 4 ounces red wine
- 56 ounces canned crushed tomatoes
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon basil
- 3-4 bay leaves
- 3/4 teaspoon garlic powder, divided
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 12 lasagna noodles
- 1 egg
- 16 ounces ricotta cheese
- 1 teaspoon dried parsley
- 1 1/2 pound shredded mozzarella cheese (about 6 cups)
- 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- Brown sausage in large dutch oven or stock pot over medium heat.
- Push browned sausage to the side of pot; add chopped onion and sauté for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Stir in red wine and cook for 1 minute.
- Add crushed tomatoes, oregano, basil, bay leaves, 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and pepper; stir to combine and bring to a simmer. Continue to simmer over medium for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Taste and adjust seasonings. Reduce heat to low-medium low, cover and continue to cook for at least 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Preheat oven to 375-degrees F. Cook lasagna noodles according to package instructions; drain, set aside.
- Whisk together egg, ricotta cheese, parsley, remaining 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Set aside.
- Assemble lasagna: Spread about 2 1/2 cups of meat sauce (remember to remove the bay leaves) in the bottom of a 9x13 inch deep baking pan. Arrange 4 noodles lengthwise over meat sauce. Evenly spread 1/3 (about 2/3 cup) of the egg/ricotta cheese mixture over top. Evenly spread 1 1/2 cup of shredded mozzarella cheese. Spoon 1 1/2 cups meat sauce evenly over mozzarella. Sprinkle with 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese. Repeat layers. Spread remaining meat sauce on top, and finish by topping with remaining mozzarella and Parmesan cheese.
- Cover with foil being careful to leave room above cheese to avoid cheese sticking to foil. Bake in 375-degree F oven for 30 minutes. Remove foil, lower temperature to 350-degrees F and bake for another 15-20 minutes, or until cheese is melted and slightly browned. Cool for about 15-20 minutes before serving.
The base tomato meat sauce is slightly adapted from my favorite Spaghetti Sauce recipe. It uses ground sausage, what we call country sausage around here (like Neese’s), instead of ground beef. Of course, if pork is a dietary restriction you can certainly substitute ground beef. I’d recommend ground chuck if you do choose to substitute.
A few ounces of red wine is called for in the recipe. During cooking the alcohol is cooked out if that is a concern, but if you need to substitute for the wine anyway, use a good balsamic or red wine vinegar.
For tips on freezing homemade lasagna, pop over to Fine Cooking to read all about it.
Originally published October 24, 2014.