Homemade Lasagna is a well-loved comfort food that has layers of homemade meat sauce, soft noodles, and a ricotta cheese mixture! Bakes right in the oven in just 40 minutes!
Make it a complete meal by serving up those hearty slices of lasagna with a side salad and some Easy Garlic Parmesan Breadsticks!
The Best Homemade Lasagna Recipe
Treat your family to this savory, hearty Homemade Lasagna for a heaping portion of comfort and flavor! Layers of wide, tender noodles, seasoned meat sauce, and a cheese mixture all combine in a baking dish for a meal that really brings the family together!
If making Homemade Lasagna intimidates you as it even did me at one time then this recipe is for you! It has an easy-to-follow recipe, simple ingredients, and bakes up flawlessly every time!
Making it the best lasagna recipe for both flavor and ease!
Why this is the Best Lasagna
- Choose The Meat! Feel free to make this Lasagna Recipe with your meat of choice! Ground beef, Italian Sausage, a milder breakfast sausage, and even ground chicken or turkey are all options!
- Make It Ahead! If you have a super busy weeknight in the cards you can assemble this one night before baking it! Then just pop it in the oven for dinner!
- Leftovers! This recipe makes a big pan of Lasagna which means there’s a high chance of leftovers! I even find that the Lasagna is often better the next day!
- Homemade! Nothing says comfort food like a good, homemade dish packed with flavor!
Ingredients for the Best Lasagna Recipe with Ricotta
To bake up this Lasagna Recipe you’ll start by making the meat sauce! This layer is made up of ingredients such as:
- Ground beef
- Italian sausage
- Tomato sauce
- Crushed tomatoes
- Italian seasoning
- Italian dressing
The next layer to prepare is the lasagna noodles. I grab a box of noodles that require boiling before using. However, feel free to also try no-boil noodles if you’d like, but I think this recipe is better with traditional noodles!
Finishing up the layers is the classic cheesy one! This is made with ricotta cheese, parmesan cheese, egg, basil, parsley, salt, and pepper.
Full-fat cottage cheese is a great alternative to ricotta! Then if you’re worried about the texture you can simply use a hand blender to smooth it out.
I also make sure to have extra mozzarella cheese on hand when making this Lasagna. We just love a few extra sprinkles of cheese between layers!
How to make Lasagna with Ricotta Cheese
- Cook the Italian sausage and ground beef in a large skillet then drain the excess grease.
- Stir in the tomato sauce, crushed tomatoes, garlic, Italian seasoning, salt, and pepper.
- Boil this mixture and then reduce the heat to simmer. Stir in the Italian dressing and turn off the heat.
- Cook the lasagna noodles until al dente. Then drain and cool them so that they’re easier to handle.
- Prepare the cheese mixture by stirring together the ricotta cheese, parmesan cheese, egg, basil, parsley, salt, and pepper in a bowl.
- Spray your baking dish with non-stick spray. Next, spread a bit of the sauce on the bottom of the pan to lightly coat it.
- Assemble the lasagna by layering the noodles lengthwise over the sauce base. Then spread some of the ricotta mixture evenly over the pasta.
- Top the cheese mixture with the meat sauce and sprinkle with mozzarella. Repeat this process two more times.
- Sprinkle on the remaining mozzarella cheese.
- Bake the lasagna covered with aluminum foil in the oven and then remove the foil towards the end of baking.
- Cut and serve after the lasagna has had time to sit.
How to store leftover Lasagna with Ricotta
You can either cover the cooled pan with aluminum foil and place the whole thing in the refrigerator or you can place individual slices right into Tupperware containers.
The leftovers will then keep for 3 to 5 days. To reheat just place the foil-covered pan right in the oven for 30 minutes. Or microwave the slices until completely heated through.
Can I Freeze The Lasagna Or The Leftovers?
Yes, you can do both! I recommend freezing after prepping and prior to baking for the best results. Wrap the whole pan in plastic wrap and then again in aluminum foil.
When frozen the Lasagna will last for up to 3 months. When you’re ready to enjoy it just pop it in the fridge overnight to thaw.
Then slide it into the oven covered with tin foil. Bake it at 375 degrees F for about 1 hour.
Use a disposable pan for freezing so you don’t tie up one of your regular baking pans. This also makes it great for giving to friends or family so they don’t have to worry about returning a dish!
Best Lasagna FAQs
I don’t personally think that pre-shredded cheese works well in this recipe. It has a different texture that just doesn’t seem to melt as nicely.I’d encourage you to stick with grabbing a block of cheese to shred yourself!
You could fry them up in some olive oil but just be sure to drain off the excess grease. Most of the time I find the meat itself gives off enough grease that the added oil isn’t always necessary.
I find that this sauce comes out with the perfect consistency, not too runny and not too thick! However, if you do love a thick sauce try adding a bit of tomato paste to the sauce mixture!
The trick is to let the Homemade Lasagna set for a bit after coming out of the oven. I also like to use a mini spatula to help for easier and cleaner serving.
Of course! Feel free to make the sauce specifically to your taste! If you like veggies I think chopped onions and peppers would be a wonderful addition to the sauce!
This Lasagna Recipe proves that using up ground beef doesn’t have to be boring and tasteless! Use up more ground meat in another mouthwatering recipe that the whole family will eat up!
- American Chop Suey – Pure comfort food that’s made right on the stovetop in only 30 minutes!
- Burger Bowls – Dive into this keto-friendly dish that tastes like a hearty burger minus some carbs!
- Easy Garbage Bread – Prep this fun and tasty pizza bread in just 30 minutes!
- Best Ever Meatloaf – A gluten-free recipe that doesn’t sacrifice delicious flavor!
- Homemade Hamburger Helper – Skip the store-bought stuff and treat your family to this easy homemade version!
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Homemade Lasagna Recipe with Ricotta
- 9×13-inch baking pan
- Garlic press
- Cheese grater
- Can opener
- Medium saucepan
- 1 pound ground beef
- 1 pound Italian sausage
- 28 ounces tomato sauce
- 28 ounces crushed tomatoes
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 3 Tablespoons Italian dressing
- 12 lasagna noodles
- 3 cups ricotta cheese
- 1 cup parmesan cheese
- 2 large eggs slightly beaten
- 1 teaspoon fresh basil
- 1 teaspoon fresh parsley
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 3 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
- Parsley for garnish
- Preheat the oven to 350°F and prepare a 9×13-inch pan by spraying it with nonstick spray. Set aside.
- In a medium saucepan, cook ground beef and Italian sausage until brown. Drain the grease.1 pound ground beef, 1 pound Italian sausage
- Stir in the tomato sauce, crushed tomatoes, garlic, sugar, Italian seasoning, salt, and pepper. Bring this to a boil, reduce heat, and allow this to simmer for 5 minutes. Stir in the Italian dressing and turn off the heat.28 ounces tomato sauce, 28 ounces crushed tomatoes, 3 cloves garlic, 1 tablespoon granulated sugar, 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning, 1 teaspoon salt, ½ teaspoon ground black pepper, 3 Tablespoons Italian dressing
- While the sauce is simmering, boil the lasagna noodles (according to package directions) to al dente. Drain and cool a bit so they are easier to handle during assembly. Make sure not to over boil or you will end up with mushy, over baked noodles.12 lasagna noodles
- Make the cheese mixture by stirring together the ricotta cheese, parmesan cheese, egg, basil, parsley, salt, and pepper.3 cups ricotta cheese, 1 cup parmesan cheese, 2 large eggs, 1 teaspoon fresh basil, 1 teaspoon fresh parsley, ½ teaspoon salt, ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- Spread a bit of the meat sauce in the bottom of the baking dish to lightly coat. Place 3 lasagna noodles lengthwise over the sauce (it is okay if the edges overlap). Spread about ⅓ of the ricotta cheese mixture evenly over the noodles, then spread on about ¼ of the meat sauce and sprinkle with ¼ of mozzarella. Repeat these layers (noodles, ricotta mixture, meat, mozzarella) twice more.
- Place the 4th layer of lasagna noodles then spread the remaining sauce over top. Make sure that there are no noodles visible.
- Sprinkle on the remaining mozzarella cheese.3 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
- Bake for 40 minutes covered with foil (spray foil with non-stick spray to avoid cheese sticking), and 10 minutes without foil.
- Allow the lasagna to sit for 5 minutes before cutting.
- How To Store: Lasagna keeps really well in the fridge for 3-5 days. In fact, it is often better the next day. To reheat, cover the pan with tin foil and bake for approximately 30 minutes, or until heated through. It is also good reheated in the microwave.
- How To Freeze: It’s best to freeze it after preparing but before baking. Make sure the lasagne is completely cool before placing it in the freezer, otherwise ice crystals could form. I find it’s best to use a disposable pan when freezing. Wrap the pan completely with plastic wrap and then again with aluminum foil. It will keep for up to 3 months in the freezer. When you want to serve it, either thaw it in the fridge the night before or defrost it in the microwave before baking it at 375 degrees F (covered with tin foil) for approximately 1 hour or until heated through to 165 degrees F.
- Can this be made ahead? Yes! You may assemble the lasagna and keep it in the fridge for 1 night before baking it. Bake it just as directed above.
- I don’t have Italian seasoning – what could I substitute? In this recipe, I would suggest using 1 teaspoon of oregano.
- I don’t care for Italian sausage – could I make it all beef? Yes, you can make this recipe with all beef or you can substitute the Italian beef for milder breakfast sausage.
- I can’t seem to find ricotta – what could I use instead? You could use cottage cheese instead. Just make sure to go for the full-fat kind. And if you think you won’t like the texture, you could just use a hand blender to smooth it out.
- Can I use pre-shredded mozzarella cheese? I find that pre-shredded cheese is not a good option for this recipe. It has a different texture that just does not melt as nicely. It’s definitely worth buying a block of cheese and shredding yourself.