Easy Cheesy Two Meat Lasagna
Sunday Dinners Part 2...
I have talked in another post about Sunday dinners... They can be some of my favorite meals to make. I usually have a lot more time to make them and so to me Sunday dinners are those that usually can take hours to make and just something I wouldn't do during the week for a "quick meal" after working all day. Lasagna is one of those meals. Although this recipe is fairly easy to prep, it's the hour in the oven that makes it one of our Sunday meals. With the prep and baking it takes about an hour and half or so.
As the recipe implies, I use two meats in this one. The original recipe I found and based this one on called for two pounds of hamburger. But I have made other lasagna in the past that included sausage and have found that it can add another layer of flavors, especially if you do like I usually do, and use the hot/spicy sausage. The other twist on why this one is my own is that I don't usually use hamburger. Over the last few years, I have found that hamburger and my stomach just aren't the best of friends, which my husband so sweetly reminds me that it must be my old age. Ha ha. Anyway, depending on what I make, and especially depending on the fat ratio of the meat, I can end up feeling bloated and miserable after a meal with hamburger. Because of that, ground turkey has started to become my new "go to" ground meat. The good news is, in some meals you can't even tell the difference and for those more obvious ones that you can tell (like for instance a good ole cheeseburger or taco meat) my two picky eaters at home do enjoy ground turkey as well so it's been a fairly easy transition. I still have hamburger in the freezer and do still use it occasionally, but more and more I have shifted to ground turkey.
Well, that all said, I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as we do! Oh and of course it makes a lot as well. So for the three of us, we eat this over two meals (one on Sunday and then again reheated either Monday or Tuesday night. - Its so good no one complains eating it two days in a row and still have some lunch leftovers as well!)
Easy Cheesy Two Meat Lasagna
8 oz. Lasagna noodles (9 noodles)
1 pound sausage (I like to use spicy/hot)
1 pound ground turkey (or hamburger)
Onion Powder to taste (or whole white onion)
32 ounces of your favorite spaghetti sauce
15 ounces ricotta cheese
2-3 cups Mozzarella cheese (depends on how cheesy you like it!)
1 cup shredded parmesan cheese
Preheat oven to 350 degrees and get the noodles soaking in hot, hot water. I use the same 13x9 baking dish that I'm going to bake the lasagna in and get the faucet water as hot as it will go and fill the dish with the dry noodles and water and let it soak while I get the meat sauce ready.
To make the meat sauce, brown the sausage and ground turkey in a large frying pan on high until browned and cooked through. While browning the meat, season with onion powder to taste (I usually am pretty generous with it or you could also use a whole chopped onion). When the meat is done, drain grease as needed and then add the spaghetti sauce and ricotta cheese to the meat and stir together over low heat until the cheese has melted and combined throughout.
In a greased 13x9 pan/baking dish, spoon in and spread meat sauce (about a cup or so) to thinly cover the bottom of the dish. Layer with 3 noodles, then about 2 cups of the meat sauce, mozzarella cheese and parmesan cheese (dividing the cheese and meat sauce amounts to be able to use for three layers total). Repeat twice by adding another layer of noodles, then meat sauce, then shredded cheeses.
Cover dish and bake at 350 degrees for 50-55 minutes. Remove from oven, uncover and let stand for at least 5 minutes or so to let it cool and start to set.
Regarding the noodles, they do not need to be cooked through. The soaking in hot water will make them softer to touch and start to be flexible, but are still stiff. They will cook through during the baking time. You can use boiling water as well, but don't cook through as they will become mushy and over done while baking in the oven.
Although 32 oz. is an odd amount for buying spaghetti sauce, I would not recommend using more or less than this. I usually buy a 45 oz. jar and measure out about four cups. Then I save the rest in the fridge (who doesn't like having sauce available for pizza night for dipping your pizza crust... anyone? just me? 😏). But seriously, too much sauce can make for soupy lasagna and makes it harder to serve.
For the onion/onion powder, you can chop up a whole white onion and cook it in the meat while you are browning the meat. I just opt for onion powder due to the picky eaters in my house. 😉