Traditional Lasagna Recipe
Traditional Lasagna Recipe photo by Taste of Home
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Traditional Lasagna Recipe

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My family first tasted this rich, classic lasagna at a friend's home on Christmas Eve. We were so impressed that it became our own holiday tradition as well. I also prepare it other times of the year. It's requested often by my sister's Italian in-laws—I consider that the highest compliment! —Lorri Foockle, Granville, Illinois
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 30 min. + simmering Bake: 70 min. + standing
MAKES:12 servings
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 30 min. + simmering Bake: 70 min. + standing
MAKES: 12 servings


  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 3/4 pound bulk pork sausage
  • 3 cans (8 ounces each) tomato sauce
  • 2 cans (6 ounces each) tomato paste
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 3 large eggs
  • 3 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
  • 3 cups (24 ounces) 4% small-curd cottage cheese
  • 1 carton (8 ounces) ricotta cheese
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 9 lasagna noodles, cooked and drained
  • 6 slices provolone cheese (about 6 ounces)
  • 3 cups shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese, divided

Nutritional Facts

1 piece: 503 calories, 27g fat (13g saturated fat), 136mg cholesterol, 1208mg sodium, 30g carbohydrate (9g sugars, 2g fiber), 36g protein.


  1. In a large skillet over medium heat, cook and crumble beef and sausage until no longer pink; drain. Add next seven ingredients. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, 1 hour, stirring occasionally. Adjust seasoning with additional salt and pepper, if desired.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, lightly beat eggs. Add parsley; stir in cottage cheese, ricotta and Parmesan cheese.
  3. Preheat oven to 375°. Spread 1 cup meat sauce in an ungreased 13x9-in. baking dish. Layer with three noodles, provolone cheese, 2 cups cottage cheese mixture, 1 cup mozzarella, three noodles, 2 cups meat sauce, remaining cottage cheese mixture and 1 cup mozzarella. Top with remaining noodles, meat sauce and mozzarella (dish will be full).
  4. Cover; bake 50 minutes. Uncover; bake until heated through, 20 minutes. Let stand 15 minutes before cutting. Yield: 12 servings.
Originally published as Traditional Lasagna in Taste of Home April/May 2000, p25

Medium-Bodied Red Wine

Enjoy this recipe with a medium-bodied red wine such as Chianti, Sangiovese, Malbec or Zinfandel.

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kjh34 User ID: 7299128 255669
Reviewed Oct. 20, 2016

"Really great traditional recipe! Exactly what you need when you want a true down home Lasagna recipe!"

tohmtncook User ID: 1885338 253884
Reviewed Sep. 9, 2016

"This is my go-to lasagna. I really like the sauce. I use mild Italian sausage instead of bulk pork sausage and usually make a double recipe. I save the extra to use on spaghetti. It's a great recipe for entertaining. I make all the components ahead and just assemble and bake."

KatrinaBurks User ID: 8394757 253481
Reviewed Aug. 31, 2016

"I make mine the same way you do only I don't use any ricotta cheese, it makes it to dry for my taste."

jpcoltersf User ID: 8905049 252950
Reviewed Aug. 20, 2016

"This is a very good recipe but I've now made it several times with and without the sausage and we think it's better without the sausage since it's less greasy. I just add a little of the traditional, sausage spices to the grind beef and increase the ground beef (lean) proportionately. We make it about nice a month these day, sometimes more often in winter."

Summy User ID: 1386846 251889
Reviewed Jul. 26, 2016

"I was using a different lasagna recipe on this site, but having tried this one, there's no going back. I made it exactly as stated, but I used mild Italian sausages (out of their casings) and a full package of SMOKED provolone. This was one decadent, cheesy, saucy, meaty lasagna. Best ever."

ch29920138 User ID: 8422125 251704
Reviewed Jul. 21, 2016

"My first time making lasagna. I followed the recipe except I used store bought spaghetti sauce. My family really enjoyed this dish."

tsrman User ID: 8866452 248521
Reviewed May. 23, 2016

"How do you freeze this, cooked or uncooked.????"

iamnotagolem User ID: 3147791 247512
Reviewed Apr. 26, 2016

"Always a hit with this recipe. It also freezes well."

Katydidd76 User ID: 6995720 245137
Reviewed Mar. 8, 2016

"I've made this lasagna several times now. Love it! Last night I served it to my dinner guests, and even the person who said he HATED lasagna ate a great big helping. This really does make a lot, so I suggest that you use a nice deep lasagna pan. I made some simple additions to suit our tastes: a half cup of diced onions sauteed with the meat, a 10 ounce jar of sliced mushrooms (drained), and I increased the sausage to one pound. I also increased the tomato sauce to 30 ounces. Extra mozzarella on every layer. Perfecto! Helpful hints: Add the top layer of cheese after you uncover the lasagna so it doesn't stick to the foil. And in response to several questions about the sausage, recommendations are to use ground Italian sausage, NOT pork breakfast sausage or sausage links. I made the mistake of using pork breakfast sausage the first time I made this and the taste totally overwhelmed it. Yikes"

YesICook52 User ID: 8793555 244941
Reviewed Mar. 5, 2016

"I absolutely Love it!!!! Ive made this the first time with beef and mild italian sausage, this time i used ground turkey and mild italian sausage i actuallu think i liked it better this time(and i normally Hate ground turkey) I did tweek it though. Instead of mozzarella and provolone I use a 5 or 6 cheese Italian blend. I also use sharp, Jack and Colby. I use 15 ounces of ricotta and two eggs instead of three. Today I added a little chicken broth to loosen it up a bit. It wasn't soupy!!!! The seasonings I changed up a bit too, in addition to Italian I used a complete sazon seasoning, and adobo. CLassico traditional sause and diced tomatoes with oregano and Basil. I Sauteed garlic and shallots. I love love love the cottage cheese, it gives the ricotta a little kick. I must now use that cheese mixture in some homemade ravioli!!!!!! Yummmm"

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