Best Lasagna Recipe
Best Lasagna Recipe photo by Taste of Home
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Publisher Photo
For a casual holiday meal, you can't go wrong with this rich and meaty lasagna. My grown sons and daughter-in-law request it for their birthdays, too. —Pam Thompson, Girard, Illinois
MAKES:
12 servings
TOTAL TIME:
Prep: 1 hour Bake: 50 min. + standing
MAKES:
12 servings
TOTAL TIME:
Prep: 1 hour Bake: 50 min. + standing

Ingredients

  • 9 lasagna noodles
  • 1-1/4 pounds bulk Italian sausage
  • 3/4 pound ground beef
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 cans (one 28 ounces, one 15 ounces) crushed tomatoes
  • 2 cans (6 ounces each) tomato paste
  • 2/3 cup water
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 3 tablespoons plus 1/4 cup minced fresh parsley, divided
  • 2 teaspoons dried basil
  • 3/4 teaspoon fennel seed
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon coarsely ground pepper
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 carton (15 ounces) ricotta cheese
  • 4 cups shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
  • 3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Directions

Cook noodles according to package directions; drain. Meanwhile, in a Dutch oven, cook sausage, beef and onion over medium heat 8-10 minutes or until meat is no longer pink, breaking up meat into crumbles. Add garlic; cook 1 minute. Drain.
Stir in tomatoes, tomato paste, water, sugar, 3 tablespoons parsley, basil, fennel, 1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
In a small bowl, mix egg, ricotta cheese, and remaining parsley and salt.
Preheat oven to 375°. Spread 2 cups meat sauce into an ungreased 13x9-in. baking dish. Layer with three noodles and a third of the ricotta mixture. Sprinkle with 1 cup mozzarella cheese and 2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese. Repeat layers twice. Top with remaining meat sauce and cheeses (dish will be full).
Bake, covered, 25 minutes. Bake, uncovered, 25 minutes longer or until bubbly. Let stand 15 minutes before serving. Yield: 12 servings.
Originally published as Traditional Lasagna in Country Woman Christmas Annual 2007, p46

Nutritional Facts

1 piece: 519 calories, 27g fat (13g saturated fat), 109mg cholesterol, 1013mg sodium, 35g carbohydrate (10g sugars, 4g fiber), 35g protein.

  • 9 lasagna noodles
  • 1-1/4 pounds bulk Italian sausage
  • 3/4 pound ground beef
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 cans (one 28 ounces, one 15 ounces) crushed tomatoes
  • 2 cans (6 ounces each) tomato paste
  • 2/3 cup water
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 3 tablespoons plus 1/4 cup minced fresh parsley, divided
  • 2 teaspoons dried basil
  • 3/4 teaspoon fennel seed
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon coarsely ground pepper
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 carton (15 ounces) ricotta cheese
  • 4 cups shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
  • 3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  1. Cook noodles according to package directions; drain. Meanwhile, in a Dutch oven, cook sausage, beef and onion over medium heat 8-10 minutes or until meat is no longer pink, breaking up meat into crumbles. Add garlic; cook 1 minute. Drain.
  2. Stir in tomatoes, tomato paste, water, sugar, 3 tablespoons parsley, basil, fennel, 1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  3. In a small bowl, mix egg, ricotta cheese, and remaining parsley and salt.
  4. Preheat oven to 375°. Spread 2 cups meat sauce into an ungreased 13x9-in. baking dish. Layer with three noodles and a third of the ricotta mixture. Sprinkle with 1 cup mozzarella cheese and 2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese. Repeat layers twice. Top with remaining meat sauce and cheeses (dish will be full).
  5. Bake, covered, 25 minutes. Bake, uncovered, 25 minutes longer or until bubbly. Let stand 15 minutes before serving. Yield: 12 servings.
Originally published as Traditional Lasagna in Country Woman Christmas Annual 2007, p46

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Shosho54 User ID: 8893817 277772
Reviewed Nov. 14, 2017

"Made this Sunday night for Monday nights dinner. I did not deviate from the recipe and it was delicious. Served this with a large salad and garlic bread. My husband loved it and so do I. Can't wait for the leftovers tonight."

MY REVIEW
Bill User ID: 9247001 272872
Reviewed Sep. 10, 2017

"Best. A few substitutions/variations: fresh basil, about 6 tbsp rough chopped (a generous fistful); reduce sugar to 1.5 tbsp; sliced fresh mozzarella instead of shredded bagged stuff;

turkey hot Italian sausage (cooking for some who don't eat pork); cook the noodles the day before and layout on plastic wrap-lined trays to dry in the fridge; simmer for 45 minutes and correct. Best basil/meat sauce ever. Make it all the day before, refrigeate and reheat using the original cooking instructions. Keep a little meat sauce back to top the reheat for the last uncovered 25 minutes."

MY REVIEW
papadge User ID: 8103123 269133
Reviewed Jul. 8, 2017

"5 star, worth sharing"

MY REVIEW
KARENA User ID: 5641352 268743
Reviewed Jun. 30, 2017

"I prepared this for guests the day before they arrived. Covered it and refrigerated it overnight. The changes I made: fresh chopped basil leaves 3/4 cup (in the sauce and 3/4 cup chopped, in the cheese mixture. Added 1 cup red wine to the sauce while simmering. I used one package of Johnsonville sweet Italian sausage & removed the link membrane. I used sliced motzerella cheese (I thinkl it covers more evenly) I used Oven-ready lasagna noodles. Everyone raved about it! My nephew wanted the leftovers! We lived in Napoli for three years and this is as close to our landlady's recipe as I've ever seen!!"

MY REVIEW
Briadona User ID: 5500759 264973
Reviewed Apr. 21, 2017

"Surprised at all the 5* ratings. The very reason I tried this recipe as make a lot of lasagna and like to try different recipes. Didn't care for this at all very bland to start. No Italian flavor whatsoever.And very wet too much sauce! The 9 noodles got lost in the sauce. So less sauce and definitely needed more ricotta. Plenty of mozzarella though. Sorry will not make again."

MY REVIEW
mommayor User ID: 6425768 258806
Reviewed Dec. 29, 2016

"Delicious. Very similar to lasagna deliziosa. Same ingredients slightly different amounts. Taste the same."

MY REVIEW
Loiscooks User ID: 3656565 257114
Reviewed Nov. 22, 2016

"Served this for dinner, and everyone thought it was great. I had to use non-gluten lasagna due to one person's diet. I also used all beef. I didn't have fennel, so I skipped that. This was a great dish."

MY REVIEW
LeslieH User ID: 191346 255820
Reviewed Oct. 23, 2016

"Delicious. A definite make again, but did add extra basil for a bit more spiciness."

MY REVIEW
LeslieH User ID: 191346 255817
Reviewed Oct. 23, 2016

"Nice flavour. Added a bit more basil to sauce to make it a bit more spicy. Would make again."

MY REVIEW
sussexspaniel User ID: 8307679 253790
Reviewed Sep. 7, 2016

"This recipe is better than anything you'll get in good Italian restaurants. I've made this recipe for years. It is the same as my Mom's recipe, except she used cottage cheese in place of ricotta. I believe that they couldn't get ricotta cheese in Kentucky 40 years ago at our local little supermarkets. Now that I can get ricotta, I use 1/2 cottage cheese and 1/2 ricotta which is really delicious. Just be sure to beat your cottage cheese and egg mixture really well with a mixer to make it less lumpy."

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