Baked
Lasagna Recipe with Cottage Cheese

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This is quick and easy Lasagna Recipe With Ricotta it's the perfect comfort food for a hearty meal! Make it ahead of time so you can heat it up whenever you feel like a hot homemade meal!

Lasagna Recipe With RicottaLasagna Recipe With Ricotta

Homemade lasagna is one of my all-time favorite recipes, but I don't make it often because it takes a while to prepare. A light went on in my head when my friend told me that she makes two at a time and freezes one to reheat and serve later! What a great way to save time when all you need is a cheese lasagna!

Lasagna Recipe With RicottaLasagna Recipe With Ricotta

Cottage cheese versus ricotta

Cottage cheese is made from milk curd, while whey is used to make ricotta. Both are creamy, rich cheeses, but ricotta has a dense, fine, grainy texture, while ricotta is lumpier. I much prefer the small ricotta variety.

Most classic lasagna recipes are made with ricotta. While the flavor is very similar in the final product, using ricotta results in a somewhat lighter lasagna, while ricotta has a thicker consistency.

Because ricotta has a little curd, it stays moist while cooking the lasagna, ensuring the lasagna stays done. Ricotta tends to dry out and become chalky with prolonged cooking.

If you prefer to use ricotta, you can substitute an equal amount for the ricotta in this recipe or follow the directions for my mom's classic lasagna here.

Ingredients for the meat sauce.Ingredients for the meat sauce.

Ingredients for fresh cheese lasagna

The list is long, but it's worth spending time shopping to make a homemade lasagna recipe! Here's what you need to make this simple lasagna recipe:

  • Olive oil– to brown the meat
  • Lean ground meat– you can also use ground turkey or Italian sausage.
  • Yellow onion– enough for a cup
  • Chopped garlic– measure with your heart!
  • Tomato puree
  • Tomato sauce
  • Diced tomatoes
  • Tomato paste
  • Sugar
  • Worcestershire sauce– adds a hint of flavor
  • Condiments: basil, bay leaf, oregano, salt and black pepper
  • Raw lasagna noodles
Ingredients for a lasagna recipe with ricottaIngredients for a lasagna recipe with ricotta
Ricotta mixture
  • Big egg
  • Whole ricotta– use a full-fat variety to avoid watery lasagna!
  • Grated Parmesan cheese
  • Dried parsley
  • Grated mozzarella

The exact quantities are shown in the recipe below!

Process shots for mom's homemade lasagna recipeProcess shots for mom's homemade lasagna recipe

How to make lasagna with ricotta

First let's prepare the ragù and cook the tagliatelle!

  1. Heat a large skillet or Dutch oven over medium heat and add the olive oil. Stir and cook the onion and garlic and sauté until soft, about 3 minutes.
  2. Next, add the minced meat and cook until golden brown.
  3. Add the puree, sauce, diced tomatoes, pasta, sugar, basil, salt, oregano, pepper and bay leaves. Mix until well combined.
  4. Reduce to low heat. Cover and cook for at least 45 minutes, stirring often.
  5. While this simmers, preheat oven to 350°F.
  6. In a large pot, cook the lasagna al dente, following the manufacturer's instructions.
  7. Place several long sheets of wax paper on a clean work surface and spray with cooking spray.
  8. Drain and place the tagliatelle on the baking paper while the sauce continues to cook.

Ricotta mixture

  1. Beat the egg in a large bowl.
  2. Add the ricotta, 3/4 cup Parmesan, and the parsley. Mix until well combined.
Ricotta lasagnaRicotta lasagna

Lasagna Assembly

Now it's time to put the lasagna together and prepare it for cooking!

  1. Generously coat a deep 9 x 13-inch baking pan with cooking spray and line a rimmed baking sheet with foil.
  2. Remove the bay leaves from the meat sauce. Place a thin layer of sauce on the bottom of the pan.
  3. Place 4 lasagna noodles on top of the meat sauce.
  4. Spread 1/3 of the ricotta mixture over the tagliatelle.
  5. Cover the noodles completely with about 2 cups of the sauce, taking care to spread the sauce into the corners and along the edges.
  6. Sprinkle 1/2 cup mozzarella over sauce.
  7. Place 4 lasagna noodles on top of the mozzarella and repeat the layering order.
  8. Arrange the lasagna noodles on the final layer of ricotta/mozzarella and cover the top of the lasagna with the sauce.
  9. Sprinkle the remaining mozzarella and parmesan over the sauce.
  10. Place the pan of lasagna on the foil-lined baking sheet. This allows for easier cleanup in case bubbles form in the oven or you spill while cutting at the table.
  11. Bake for 50 minutes or until bubbling. If you notice the cheese starting to brown too quickly, cover it loosely with aluminum foil.
A lasagna with meat sauce filled with ricotta.A lasagna with meat sauce filled with ricotta.

Frequent questions

Can I use no-cook lasagna instead?

No-cook noodles save a lot of time! To use them, assemble the lasagna according to the recipe, but cook the lasagna covered with aluminum foil for at least the first 45 minutes to allow the tagliatelle to absorb the liquid from the sauce.

Can I use a jarred sauce instead of homemade?

Jarred marinara sauce is another great lasagna shortcut! Yes, you can instead use 2-3 jars (depending on size) of your favorite pasta sauce and substitute it for the meat sauce in the recipe directions.

Ricotta lasagna.Ricotta lasagna.

How do I make this ricotta lasagna recipe to freeze for later?

Assemble and cook the lasagna as directed, then let it cool completely to room temperature.

Cover it tightly with a layer of cling film, then a layer of aluminum foil. Place it in the freezer, where it will keep for up to 3 months!

To defrost it, place it in the refrigerator overnight. Remove plastic wrap and replace foil, then heat a 375-degree oven for about 30 to 45 minutes or until heated through.

Can I prepare it in advance and then cook it later?

Yes, you can store raw lasagna in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days!

Lasagna Recipe With RicottaLasagna Recipe With Ricotta

And what about leftover lasagna?

Store leftover lasagna in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

You can also cut and individually wrap the cooled lasagna portions and place them in a freezer bag. Then reheat as desired in the microwave or a 375 degree oven until heated through!

What to pair with lasagna with ricotta?

This ricotta lasagna recipe is perfect with a light side dish like a salad. Don't forget some homemade bread! I also love this easy to make air fryer garlic bread!

Layers of lasagna, ragù, cheese and ricotta filling.Layers of lasagna, ragù, cheese and ricotta filling.

Other pasta recipes

Make one of these delicious pasta dishes the next time you need an easy weeknight meal:

Lasagna Recipe With RicottaLasagna Recipe With Ricotta
Lasagna Recipe With RicottaLasagna Recipe With Ricotta

Created by: Lynne Feifer

Lasagna Recipe With Ricotta

Preparation time 1 Now 30 minutes
Time to cook 50 minutes
Total time 2 hours 20 minutes

This meat and cheese lasagna recipe with ricotta is the perfect comfort food for a hearty meal with more protein! Make it ahead of time to reheat whenever you want a hot, homemade meal!

Prevents the screen from going dark

Instructions

Meat sauce

  • Heat a large pot or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the olive oil.

  • Add the onion and garlic and saute until soft, about 3 minutes.

  • Add the minced meat and cook until browned.

  • Add the puree, sauce, diced tomatoes, pasta, sugar, basil, salt, oregano, pepper and bay leaves. Mix until well combined.

  • Reduce the flame. Cover and simmer for at least 45 minutes, stirring frequently.

  • Preheat oven to 350°F.

  • Place several long sheets of wax paper on a clean work surface and spray with cooking spray. In a large pot, cook the lasagna according to the manufacturer's directions.
    Drain and place the tagliatelle on the baking paper while the sauce continues to cook.

Ricotta mixture

  • In a large bowl, whisk the egg.

  • Add the ricotta, 3/4 cup Parmesan, and the parsley. Mix until well combined.

Lasagna assembly

  • Generously coat a deep 9 x 13-inch baking pan with cooking spray and line a rimmed baking sheet with foil.
    Remove the bay leaves from the meat sauce.

  • Place a thin layer of sauce on the bottom of the pan.

  • Place 4 lasagna noodles on top of the meat sauce.

  • Spread 1/3 of the ricotta mixture over the tagliatelle.

  • Cover completely with about 2 cups of the sauce, making sure to spread it into the corners and along the edges as well.

  • Sprinkle 1/2 cup mozzarella over sauce.

  • Arrange 4 lasagnas on top of the mozzarella and repeat the order of the layers.
  • Arrange the lasagna on the final layer of ricotta/mozzarella and cover with the sauce.

  • Sprinkle the remaining mozzarella and parmesan over the sauce.

  • Place the pan of lasagna on the foil-lined baking sheet. This allows for easier cleanup in case it spills in the oven or overflows when cutting at the table.

  • Bake for 50 minutes or until bubbly. If you notice the cheese starting to darken, cover it lightly with a sheet of foil.

Notes

To avoid a watery lasagna, be sure to use full-fat ricotta.

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 619kcal | Carbohydrates: 58G | Protein: 41G | Fat: 25G | Saturated fats: 11G | Polyunsaturated fats: 2G | Monounsaturated fat: 9G | Trans fats: 0.3G | Cholesterol: 107mg | Sodium: 1499mg | Potassium: 1166mg | Fiber: 5G | Sugar: 16G | Vitamin A: 1443UI | C vitamin: 21mg | Soccer: 455mg | Iron: 5mg

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