World’s Best Lasagna

I am not Italian.  At all.  No little, old Italian grandmas in the kitchen, cooking up vats of gravy, and brasciole, and manicotti, and whatever else it is that Italian and Italian-American grandmas are always stereotypically making.  But I love Italy, and Italian food,though I have to admit that after several trips to Italy, I am a bit spoiled, and Italian food here in America just doesn’t quite live up to my expectations anymore.

But for some reason, when I have to make a large amount of something, I often fall back on Baked Ziti, or Stuffed Shells, or this Lasagna.  This lasagna is amazing.  It is called the World’s Best Lasagna, and while I can’t verify that the research was actually done to make this claim, in is definitely the best lasagna I’ve ever made.  The sauce is so flavorful from having both beef and sausage, there is the perfect amount of cheese, and it all comes together into the perfect bite of hot, cheesy, meaty, saucy deliciousness.

World s Best Lasagna 2

Since it is so good, I have no intentions of changing it or making it my own.  I only make a few minor substations and changes – turkey sausage instead of pork sausage, a little less salt and sugar.  Oh, and I use no boil noodles (Barilla!!) because this recipe is enough work as it is.  And actually, I think the no boil noodles absorb some of the excess moisture so that you get nice slices, instead of a big pile of slop.

Like I said, this recipe is fairly time intensive.  I usually make the sauce the day before I plan to assemble the lasagna.  This time, it wasn’t even baked until the day after that, so this is definitely one you can make ahead of time.  I’ve even frozen it unbaked, and it still turn out fabulous.  And I usually make two, because it is only a small amount of additional work.  This time I was bringing one to a mom in my mom’s group who just had her third daughter.  The other one was for my dad, since he was babysitting The Bug ALL DAY, and I know they both love it.  The Bug and The Hubby even had it reheated a couple nights later for dinner.  Truthfully, that is when I took these pictures.  And it still looks yummy, right?!  And, since it makes so much (and sadly I cannot eat it – boo hoo!), we even have some individual portions still in our freezer.

World s Best Lasagna 1

Oh, and for a gluten-free option, I took a little of the filling components, I made a mini-lasagna using roasted eggplant slices as noodles.  It was a bit sloppy, but still tasted awesome.  Next time, though, I might just use the raw eggplant, and let it cook through during the baking process.

You can find the World’s Best Lasagna recipe HERE.  Try it!

What was/is your favorite dish of your grandmother’s?  Mine was either her chicken noodle soup, or when she made me meatballs out of the stuffed cabbage filling, since I wouldn’t eat cabbage.  Oh, and she made the best bowls of cream of wheat.

World's Best Lasagna
 
Just the World's Best Lasagna!
Author:
Recipe type: Dinner, Pasta
Serves: 12
Ingredients
  • 1 pound sweet Italian sausage (I use turkey sausage)
  • ¾ pound lean ground beef
  • ½ c onion, minced
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 (28 ounce) can crushed tomatoes
  • 2 (6 ounce) cans tomato paste
  • 2 (6.5 ounce) cans canned tomato sauce
  • ½ cup water
  • 2 T sugar
  • 1½ t dried basil leaves
  • ½ t fennel seeds (I usually omit this)
  • 1 t Italian seasoning
  • 1 T salt (I usually reduce to a couple teaspoons)
  • ¼ t ground black pepper
  • 4 T chopped fresh parsley
  • 12 lasagna noodles (regular or no cook. I usually use no cook noodles.)
  • 16 ounces ricotta cheese
  • 1 egg
  • ½ t salt
  • ¾ pound mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • ¾ c grated Parmesan cheese
Instructions
  1. In a large Dutch oven, cook sausage, ground beef, onion, and garlic over medium heat until cooked through and browned.
  2. Add the crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, tomato sauce, and water, and stir everything together.
  3. Add sugar, basil, fennel seeds, Italian seasoning, 1 T salt, pepper, and 2 T parsley, and stir to combine.
  4. Simmer, covered, for at least 1½ hours, stirring occasionally. I usually try to simmer for as long as possible.
  5. If using regular lasagna noodles, cook according to package instructions and drain.
  6. In a bowl, combine ricotta cheese, egg, remaining parsley, and ½ teaspoon salt.
  7. Preheat oven to 375°F.
  8. To assemble, spread 1½ cups of meat sauce in the bottom of a 9x13 inch baking dish. Arrange a single layer of noodles over meat sauce. Spread with one half of the ricotta cheese mixture. Top with a third of mozzarella cheese.
  9. Spoon 1½ cups meat sauce over mozzarella, and sprinkle with ¼ cup Parmesan cheese.
  10. Repeat layers, and top with remaining mozzarella and Parmesan cheese.
  11. Cover with foil and bake in preheated oven for 25 minutes.
  12. Remove foil, and bake an additional 25 minutes.
  13. Cool for 15 minutes before serving.
Notes
Sauce can be prepared the night before, or the lasagna can be assembled, and baked before serving.

Enjoy!

World s Best Lasagna 3

Signature
Want to see lots more yummy food from me and my friends, and cute pictures of my kids? 

Facebook | Twitter | Google+ | Pinterest | Bloglovin | Instagram | StumbleUpon

Or subscribe via email to get Cupcakes & Kale Chips in your Inbox.

This post may be linked to any of these parties.

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. I earn a small percentage from any purchases you may make if you click on them.  These companies have not contacted me.  I use the stuff because I love it.

Comments

    • says

      Mmmm, another thing I have not yet perfected. I still need my ultimate meatball recipe! Well, this is a little bit of “food styling magic”. I cut it cold, then reheated in to microwave to make it gooey again. Shh, don’t tell! :-)

  1. Nathan says

    My grandmas Soft and fluffy sugar cookies with icing are hands down the most memorable food I will keep in my life

  2. says

    I’d have to say it was my Grandmother’s Lasagna with the vats of gravy and meat (sausage, pork, meatballs and brasciole!) I’m 1/2 Italian! lol This looks fabulous and eggplant is a great alternative. I also recently tried it with zucchini and it was amazing!
    CarriesExpKtchn recently posted…Cinco de Mayo Recipe IdeasMy Profile

  3. Amy says

    I do love lasagne! I think the eggplant is a great idea! I have been working on gluten free pasta (from rice) and will let you know how it progresses!

  4. Charlie says

    Morning Brianne!

    I also have a to die for recipe, but I will definitely give yours a try :~D

    I have an eggplant lasagne that I make all the time, and here is what I do.

    I slice my eggplant into sheets, and then egg and flour them, do them up in the frying pan until crisp on either side. They are used for my layers in place of pasta.
    Wonderful! The lasagne does not get sloppy, and it is so good!

    Thank you for sharing
    Have a Joyful Day
    Charlie

  5. Charlie says

    Brianne:

    You should do a search online for gluten free lasagne noodles. They are out there.

    Charlie

  6. Debbie says

    The secret to most “casseroles”, is just like meat… they need to “rest” before cutting into them. They will reabsorb some of the moisture and firm up a bit.

  7. Hillary says

    Your lasagna looks amazing! I think I’ll try it out today.

    My Omi (dad’s mom) used to make the BEST turkey soup – it was the best treat. That, and these german buns with bacon and onion inside (called schpekuchen – and I know that’s not how it’s spelled!). I really miss those!

  8. Becky says

    This recipe looks great!! Have you ever prepared it the night before and refrigerated it until the next day? If so, how has this affected your cooking time?

  9. says

    I made your “World’s Best Lasagna” for my brother-in-law’s birthday last night and he as well as everyone else there, and they couldn’t stop telling me how delicious it was. Kudos to you for sharing this excellent recipe. Thank you.

  10. Teri says

    I have tried to make lasagna many times with many recipes and while each came out good, none compared to this one! It is now my favorite, it was excellent! Thanks for sharing !

  11. Lisa says

    I just have to say – I made this today for dinner (and to freeze the remainder since I’m 38+ weeks pregnant!) and man was it good. My husband LOVED it. I made the changes you suggested… and it was perfect. Thanks for sharing!!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

Rate this recipe:  

Current ye@r *

CommentLuv badge