I really, really love lasagna, but I really don’t love dealing with boiling noodles and then trying to separate them before layering them and so on and so forth. So if I’m making lasagna, it’s always no-boil. Now, sure, the box usually has a recipe for you, but this particular recipe is a classic version that I keep coming back to. It’s a never-fail crowd-pleasing recipe that combines both beef and Italian sausage and three kinds of cheese for maximum flavor. But best of all? It’s incredibly easy to make.
You want to look for no-boil lasagna noodles on your grocery store shelves; they’re sometimes labeled as “oven ready.” They can be flat or have curly edges, but they just need to be a variety that’s made for this kind of dish. The other key is to use enough liquid (i.e. marinara sauce) so that the lasagna gets tender in the oven. You’re looking at forty-eight ounces of marinara, which is usually two jars worth.
You just brown up your ground beef and Italian sausage, add the marinara, and let it simmer for a bit. That’s all the actual cooking you have to do – the oven does the rest. While the meat browns, you can stir together the cheese mixture which is a combination of mozzarella, parmesan, ricotta, a couple of eggs, and some Italian seasoning.
Lasagna is all about the layers and this one is no different. You layer the meat sauce, the noodles, and the cheese sauce until you’ve used up all your ingredients and then you’re ready to bake. There’s no futzing with sticky noodles, just easy simple layering. It helps to take some care in covering the edges of the noodles with the sauce but the main thing is to cover your dish tightly with foil so that all of that liquid (and steam) is trapped for baking.
No-boil lasagna takes a little longer to bake – about an hour all said and done – but that’s an easy trade-off as far as I’m concerned. You can also opt to make this ahead when you need to! Just simmer your sauce, layer everything up, cover the dish in foil, and pop it in the fridge until you’re ready to bake. Such a time-saver, and such a delicious one at that.
15m prep time
1h cook time
- 1 lb ground beef
- 1/2 lb sweet Italian sausage
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 48 oz marinara sauce
- 15 oz ricotta cheese
- 3 cups mozzarella cheese, shredded
- 2 large eggs
- 1 cup parmesan cheese, shredded
- 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 1 box no-boil (oven ready) lasagna noodles
- Preheat oven to 350°F and grease a 9x13-inch baking pan with nonstick spray.
- In a large skillet over medium heat, brown ground beef and sausage. Drain off any fat, then add garlic and cook 1 minute more.
- Add marinara sauce and bring to a simmer. Let cook five minutes. Remove from heat.
- To a large bowl, add the ricotta, 2 cups of the mozzarella, eggs, 1/2 cup of the Parmesan cheese, Italian seasoning, and salt and pepper. Mix together thoroughly.
- Spread a scant cup of sauce in the bottom of the prepared pan. Top with a single layer of lasagna noodles.
- Top noodles with 1/3 of the cheese mixture and 1/4 of the remaining sauce. Repeat layers twice (noodles, cheese, sauce, noodles, cheese, sauce), then top with a final layer of noodles, remaining sauce, and the remaining mozzarella and parmesan.
- Coat a piece of aluminum foil with nonstick spray and cover baking pan with greased side down.
- Bake 50 minutes. Uncover and bake until cheese is bubbly and lightly golden, about 10 more minutes.
- Let rest 10 minutes before serving. Enjoy!
Recipe adapted from Tastes of Lizzy T.