One skillet is all you need to make this insanely flavorful lasagna recipe. The process is extremely easy: add the ground beef with a mixture of Italian spices and brown in a skillet. Then, toss in the remaining ingredients and finish with ricotta and shredded mozzarella cheese. This is a quick family favorite 35-minute dinner recipe that you'll want to make all year long!
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Most have their favorite classic lasagna recipe – whether it's a family recipe written on a food stained piece of paper passed down, from your neighbor or found online. What most have in common is many steps and the lengthy time.
Enter this SUPER EASY LASAGNA RECIPE.
This is my favorite way to cook lasagna because (1) incredibly easy, (2) it tastes just as good as the "regular way", (3) minimal effort, and (4) minimal dishes. You see, in the winter months we crave heavier meals and lasagna is typically at the top of that list – along with soup, of course! With 2 hungry kids, I need dinner QUICK most nights.
I've been making some variation of this lasagna recipe for years, using what I had leftover in the refrigerator, but this recipe you see below is my favorite and a family favorite (kids included!) for a classic version.
Here's Why You'll Love This Easy Lasagna Recipe
- Quick and easy one pan meal
- Wholesome and satisfying
- Classic lasagna goodness in a fraction of the time
- Incredibly flavorful
- Minimal steps = low effort!
- Customize it with your favorite add-ins
One Pan Lasagna, Tell Me More!
- Texture: Insanely creamy from cooking the lasagna noodles in the chicken broth and sauce.
- Flavor: There's so many levels of flavor in this lasagna thanks to it being a one pan recipe. Each step layers on more flavor.
- Ease: Overall this recipe is pretty easy with minimal hands on work. A life savor when you have hungry kids at your feet or a busy night. Plus, it's an excellent make-ahead freezer make— prepare everything in advance and freeze it. When you're ready to serve, thaw overnight and bake!
- Time: There's minimal prep time, about 5 minutes, for this recipe. Set aside another 30 minutes for the cook time. Music to my ears!
Best Ingredients To Use & Why
- Ground Beef: This recipe works with either ground beef or ground turkey. I recommend using 85-93% lean. If using less than 85% I recommend draining some of the rendered fat prior to adding in the other ingredients. You can also omit the meat completely for a vegetarian option.
- Onion: A little diced onion makes for a great flavor base.
- Garlic: Measure with your heart, garlic adds so much flavor!
- Spices: Grab dried oregano, dried parsley, dried basil, salt and pepper. All add tons of flavor.
- Tomato Paste: Tomato paste adds a deep tomato flavor without being too overpowering just like in vegetable soup and sloppy joes.
- Chicken Broth: Chicken broth is multi-purpose, it not only helps de-glaze the pan getting up the bits of flavor, it also adds additional flavor.
- Marinara: Whether it's homemade or store-bought marinara, make sure it's high quality as these noodles will absorb the flavor from it.
- Lasagna Noodles: We're using the regular lasagna noodles, not the cook as they bake noodles. Grab the old fashioned boil lasagna noodles.
- Ricotta Cheese: You want the creamiest ricotta you can find, I typically grab a full-fat ricotta.
- Mozzarella Cheese: Mozzarella cheese comes in many shapes and sizes, all equally loved. Buy pre-shredded, shred it yourself, use fresh sliced – any you choose, it will be delicious!
4 Steps Simple Steps
- In a dutch oven or large pot, brown the ground beef and onion together over medium-high heat breaking up the beef with a wooden spatula or meat masher until cooked through. Stir in the garlic, spices and tomato paste. Letting it cook for a minute.
- Then, stir in the chicken broth and marinara sauce, while gently rubbing the bottom of the pan with the wooden spatula to lift up the flavor bits. Bring to a high simmer – almost as you would for pasta.
- Add the broken lasagna noodles to the pot, giving them a stir, making sure the noodles are submerged. Cook until the noodles are just tender, giving them a stir a few times.
- Turn off the burner and dollop the ricotta cheese on top and sprinkle with shredded mozzarella cheese. Cover with a lid until the cheese is melted. You can also place it under the broiler for 2-3 minutes until the cheese is golden brown (keep an eye on it so it doesn't burn.)
What to Serve With This Recipe
- On its own, it can be a standalone meal
- Lighten it up with this kale salad or a simple mixed green salad
- Alongside this no-knead bread
- Alongside oven roasted asparagus, brown butter garlic mushrooms or your favorite vegetable
Can lasagna be made ahead?
Yes, you can make a classic lasagna recipe or this one pan recipe in advance. You can find more details in the recipe notes.
Can lasagna be frozen?
Of course! You can freeze after it baked or partially baked. You can find more details in the recipe notes.
Which lasagna noodles are the best?
This recipe has a specific set of ingredients for the ideal flavor combination. With that, let the sauce simmer and reduce to let the flavors further develop.
Is lasagna better with ricotta or cottage cheese?
Either! This recipe calls for ricotta cheese but I've used both – whether I've mixed them together or used one or the other. If you plan on using cottage cheese or a combination, I recommend blending it or together for a smoother texture.
Do you have to mix egg with ricotta for lasagna?
Adding the egg to the ricotta cheese helps bind the cheese so that it doesn't ooze out of the lasagna, it has nothing to do with taste. For this recipe, there's no need for an egg due to how it's made. Perfect for those that need an egg free option!
Super Easy Lasagna Recipe
One skillet is all you need to make this insanely flavorful lasagna recipe. The process is extremely easy: add the ground beef with a mixture of Italian spices and brown in a skillet. Then, toss in the remaining ingredients and finish with ricotta and shredded mozzarella cheese. This is a quick, family favorite 30-minute dinner recipe that you'll want to make all year long!
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 25 minutes
- Total Time: 35 minutes
- Yield: 5-6 servings
- Category: Dinner
- Method: One Pan
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- 1 pound 85-93% lean ground beef, turkey or sausage
- ½ cup diced sweet onion
- 2 teaspoons garlic, minced
- 2 teaspoons salt
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon dried parsley
- 1 teaspoon dried basil
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 2 Tablespoons tomato paste
- 1 and ¼ cups low-sodium chicken broth
- 5 cups marinara sauce
- 12 ounces (11-13) whole lasagna noodles, broken into pieces (roughly quarters or thirds)
- ¾ cup whole milk ricotta cheese
- 1 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
- optional for serving: parmesan cheese, fresh basil and fresh parsley
- In a dutch oven or large pot, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Then, brown the ground beef and onion together breaking apart the beef with a wooden spatula or meat masher until cooked through – about 5-7 minutes. Stir in the garlic, spices and tomato paste. Let it cook for 1 minute.
- Stir in the chicken broth and marinara, gently scraping the bottom of the pan with the spatula to release the flavor. Cover and bring the sauce to a high simmer – just under a boil for pasta. The sauce is ready when there are many bubbles popping (the lid will prevent the sauce from making a mess.)
- Add the broken lasagna noodles to the pot, giving them a stir, making sure the noodles are submerged as best you can. Cook until the noodles are just tender, about 15-20 minutes, giving them a stir a few times.
- Once the lasagna noodles are cooked, turn off the burner. Dollop the ricotta cheese and sprinkle with shredded mozzarella cheese. To melt the cheese you have 2 options:
- Leaving the pot on the turned off burner, cover with a lid until the cheese is fully melted, about 5-10 minutes.
- Place under the broiler for 2-3 minutes until the cheese is golden brown, keeping an eye on it so it doesn't burn. This option requires you to use an oven-safe large pot.
- Serve warm with a sprinkle of parmesan cheese, a sprinkle of herbs and a side of crusty bread.
- Make Ahead & Freezing Instructions: While this is a quick one pan recipe, this recipe can still be made ahead and optionally frozen for a later time. You have a few options:
- Follow the recipe through step 3, transfer to a baking dish and allow the lasagna come to room temperature. Cover with foil and store in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. The day off, bake in the oven at 350°F for 30 minutes covered. Remove the cover and continue with step 4.
- Follow the recipe through step 3, transfer to a baking dish and allow the lasagna come to room temperature. Dollop the ricotta cheese and sprinkle with shredded mozzarella cheese. Cover with foil and store in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. The day off, bake in the oven at 350°F for 30 minutes covered. Remove the cover and continue with step 4.
- Follow the recipe through step 3, transfer to a baking dish and allow the lasagna come to room temperature. Cover tightly and store in the freezer – it will freeze well for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator and bake for 1 hour at 350°F until it's warmed through. Then, continue with step 4.
- Meat: You can use ground beef, ground turkey or ground sausage for this recipe. If you're using a higher fat content, scoop out some of the fat prior to cooking the pasta.
- Lasagna Noodles: Look for the regular lasagna noodles that require boiling, not the "cook as it bakes" lasagna noodles.
- Vegetarian Option: To make this recipe vegetarian, omit the ground meat or substitute with a vegetarian meat and use vegetable broth.