Absolute Best Ever Lasagna Recipe - Food.com (2024)


Community Pick

Submitted by ratherbeswimmin

"My family's favorite. This is a very meaty lasagna. We prefer it with cottage cheese, but you can easily substitute ricotta."


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Ready In:
2hrs 30mins





  • 1 12 lbs lean ground beef
  • 12 lb Italian sausage or 1/2 lb ground veal
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 -3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon fresh coarse ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon dried parsley flakes
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon dried basil
  • 2 (14 1/2 ounce) cans whole tomatoes, undrained and chopped (or canned chopped tomatoes)
  • 12 ounces tomato paste
  • 24 ounces ricotta cheese
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 12 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 tablespoons parsley
  • 12 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 1 lb mozzarella cheese, divided
  • 12 -15 lasagna noodles



  • Brown ground meat, onion and garlic.
  • Add salt, pepper, parsley, oregano, basil, chopped tomatoes with juice, tomato paste; stirring until well mixed.
  • Cover and simmer 1 hour (or longer,but watch for getting too dry).
  • Cook lasagna noodles according to package directions; drain and set aside.
  • Spray a 13 x 9" baking pan with cooking spray.
  • Combine riccota cheese, eggs, pepper, 2 tablespoons parsley, Parmesan cheese and 1/2 1lb of mozzarella cheese; In a lasagna pan, layer noodles, meat sauce, and cheese mixture; repeat.
  • Top off with layer of noodles; sprinkle evenly with remaining mozzarella cheese; make sure to cover noodles completely.
  • Bake at 375F for 40-60 minutes, or until cheese mixture is thoroughly melted. (I cover w/ foil for about 40 minutes, then uncover for 15-20 minutes.
  • Let sit for 15-20 minutes before cutting and serving.

Questions & Replies

Absolute Best Ever Lasagna Recipe - Food.com (13)

  1. What happened to the original recipe that called for tomato paste? I made this the other night and it came out dry because I made it without the paste.


  2. What can I substitute for the ricotta? Both my husband and I can't stand ricotta! Ugh.

    Christina A.

  3. I notice the recipe calls for a 9x13 pan. Later mention is made of a lasagna pan, which I consider the size to be around 10x14. Some of those 9x13 photos look like there might have been some overflow of ingredients while baking. Did the author use 9x13 that is deeper than the usual 2"?

    Ross From Mason City

  4. Your ingredient list shows 1/2 lb mozz , divided BUT your instructions say 1/2 lb in cheese mixture and then 1/2 lb is layered with the noodles, meat, cheese mix and mozz. Should there be 1 lb in the ingredient list and not 1/2 lb??


  5. I’d like to add thawed spinach. When should I add it?

    Amrita P.

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  1. WOW!!! This was absolutely the BEST!!! I made this tonight for dinner and it was delicious. My DH had 2 BIG helpings and he LOVED it!! Definately something I will make again and again. I followed the recipie exactly and added just a bit of sugar to the sauce. I always do to tomato sauces. BRAVO.

    mom of 4

  2. Made this last weekend for a special family get together. It was so outstanding. My guests thought it deserved more than 5 stars. Really, the best lasagna I have ever eaten. The preparation involves a little time but it was worth it. This is the best!!


  3. I added a 16 oz. package of frozen spinach (thawed) to the cheese mixture (trying to sneak in vegies where I can). My family loved it. Will definitely make it again.

    Teresa Wang

  4. Oh my goodness sakes alive!!! This is without a doubt the best lasagna I have ever tasted. I can't rave about it enough. I love the mixture of ground beef and Italian sausage in the sauce. Rich, and cheesy as well. Thanks


  5. Excellent! Really enjoyed the meaty gravy and compiled a "best of" from the other comments on this board. I used half cottage and half ricotta cheese and found it to be a great combination. I used uncooked pasta (not oven ready) and it turned out perfectly. I added 1 can of tomato paste full of water to the gravy and baked it for 35 minutes covered with tin foil and 25 minutes uncovered. Let stand for 20 minutes and it was not messy at all. The pasta soaked up all the extra liquids. Wow.


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  1. Great recipe as is, and I think these tweaks made it even better: 1.) Dice one poblano pepper and saute with the onions & garlic; 2.) Use regular Italian Sausage (the Hot works but so does a little crushed red pepper for the eaters that want a little kick) 3.) For the tomatoes use a 28 ounce can of San Marzano plum tomatoes (peeled is fine) and crush with your hands; 4.) Add a layer of fresh spinach just before the final cheese topping; 5.) layer with Meat Sauce then Noodles then Cheese mixture to avoid drying out the bottom-most layer of lasagna noodles; 6.) use a tall-sided pan if you have one (I used an aluminum lasagna pan coated with cooking spray, cleanup was a breeze).

    • Absolute Best Ever Lasagna Recipe - Food.com (25)


  2. The filling was very good but end product was a bit "watery" for my tastes. One thing I would recommend is to NOT cook the noodles! I've been doing this for years and haven't yet been disappointed. Start with a bit of sauce on the bottom, place Uncooked noodles over sauce and continue to layer as suggested. The noodles will be perfect texture and will soak up the liquid from the sauce/filling.


  3. Didn't this recipe originally have tomato paste? If not, I guess I just put it in automatically. My special "secret" is to add about a tablespoon of pomegranate molasses. I use it for most recipes that have meat because it gives a nice subtle richness.

    Ouch, burned my finger!

  4. Spicy Italian sausage (we like things spicy here) Gluten Free noodles (jovial brand - no precooking necessary) Italian herb mix instead of parsley/oregano/basil Aleppo pepper added to ricotta mixture for a little extra kick


  5. is good or not?

    Salma P.

see 52 more tweaks



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Absolute Best Ever Lasagna Recipe  - Food.com (2024)


How many layers of lasagna is best? ›

Let me break it to you: If you want to make a lasagna, three layers just won't cut it! For the perfect lasagna, you need at least 4-5 layers to really enjoy all those mouth-watering flavors. And, here's a pro-tip: make sure to season each layer generously, but not too much. The average lasagna has 8 layers!

What can I add to my lasagna to make it taste better? ›

Onion and garlic: An onion and two cloves of garlic are cooked with the meat to add tons of flavor. Tomato products: You'll need a can of crushed tomatoes, two cans of tomato sauce, and two cans of tomato paste. Sugar: Two tablespoons of white sugar add subtle sweetness and enhance the flavor of the sauce.

What not to do when making lasagna? ›

Too much between one layer and another will keep you from ever getting a perfect slice. Too little and all you'll taste is pasta. Do not put large pieces of vegetables or meat in lasagna for the same reason as above. To get a perfect lasagna, the filling should be finely sliced or even creamy.

What is the correct order to layer lasagna? ›

Begin Layering

After the initial sauce layer, add a layer of pasta sheets, ricotta mixture (or bechamel), sauce, and cheese. Then repeat the layers. Top the last layer of your lasagna with sauce and cheese. You can also alternate layers of sauce and ricotta cheese.

Should you criss cross lasagna noodles? ›

(Do notice that I put the noodles criss cross – perpendicular from the layer below – it helps it to hold together when you serve it). So, the noodles directly on the cheese means there won't be enough for a top layer of noodles.

How many layers does authentic lasagna have? ›

Generally, lasagna has about 3 or 4 layers of pasta, with sauce, ricotta cheese, mozzarella, béchamel, and sometimes meat or even meatballs or sausage between those layers. Our many layer lasagna has around 12 layers of pasta, or even more depending on how thin you end up rolling the dough.

Why do you put milk in lasagna? ›

Milk. It tenderises the meat, to leave you with the most tender ragù.

Why add tomato paste to lasagna? ›

A good tomato paste helps to thicken but also adds a sweet and savory umami flavor. Lean Ground Beef: Lean beef adds a robust and hearty meatiness that's essential in a classic lasagna recipe.

Should you bake lasagna covered or uncovered? ›

In an oven preheated to 375 degrees F, this homemade lasagna should be perfectly baked in about 50 minutes (30-40 minutes covered, 5-10 minutes uncovered).

Why is my lasagna so runny? ›

The sauce could be too watery. The noodles can be holding on to water. The vegetables are releasing excess moisture. If you are using ricotta be careful of the moisture it can add.

Does lasagna cook better in glass or metal? ›

Some acidic bakes (like fruit cobblers) and lasagna or casserole (containing tomatoes, citrus, or other acidic fruit) may bake best in a glass dish, to prevent the metal from reacting to the acidic ingredients.

Should I bake lasagna in glass or metal? ›

Acidic ingredients like tomatoes and citrus can react with aluminum (the most common metal used in bakeware), creating a metallic taste in your food. This is why lasagna and other casseroles with acidic ingredients are often baked in glass.

How long should lasagna sit out before baking? ›

If using glass or Pyrex, I'd let it sit out for a good 30 minutes, assuming the room is cool and not hot. And then I'd start it in an un-preheated oven, just to be safe.

Does it matter how you layer lasagna? ›

It is best to start and finish with wider layers, so if you have less than 16 noodles, put your extra noodles in the bottom or top layers. (For the purposes of this recipe, I'll assume you have 15 noodles.) Line the bottom of the prepared baking dish with 4 cooked lasagna noodles, overlapping them.

How many pieces of lasagna per person? ›

As a general rule of thumb, one 13x9 pan will yield 8 medium-sized portions. You can adjust the serving sizes to your family's appetite: if they have larger appetites, you cut the pan into 6 large portions, and if they have smaller appetites, you can cut the pan into 10 smaller portions.

What should the last layer of lasagna be? ›

Finish off your lasagne either with a layer of tomato-based sauce or with your white sauce – whichever you have left – and then grate over plenty of Parmigiano-Reggiano. A common extra topping is torn mozzarella, which makes a lovely, melted cheesy layer on top.

Is it better to cover lasagna while baking? ›

If uncovered, the prolonged exposure to heat will quickly dry out your lasagna, no matter how much sauce you've added. Make sure to always add a layer of tin foil over your baking dish, which will trap the moisture inside while still allowing the dish to cook properly.

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