Lasagna is a classic meal that people have loved for centuries. It seems rather intimidating, but it’s actually one of the easiest dishes to throw together, and you can make this meat lover's lasagna recipe on a weeknight, for an entire family, or even just yourself.
I’ve tinkered with this recipe to perfect it and know that you’ll love it as much as I do.
Table of Contents
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
You’ll love this recipe because it’s got nutritious, wholesome ingredients that taste divine together. It’s a simple recipe to follow and will leave you feeling like a gourmet chef despite minimal effort.
Equipment For Meat Lover's Lasagna
- Bowls - You’ll need a few different bowls to make this lasagna dish. I like to use standard mixing bowls, but you can use whatever type of bowl works best for you. Just make sure they are big enough to fit whatever you are putting in them. You will likely use a couple different size bowls.
- Skillet - You’ll need a skillet to brown your meat. Use whatever skillet you prefer.
- 9x13 Baking Dish - It’s important that you use the right size baking dish for your meat lover's lasagna because the ingredient portions and ratios are scaled to fit in a 9x13 baking dish. If you want to make it in a different size pan, you will have to adjust the recipe a bit.
Ingredients For Meat Lover's Lasagna
- Meat - To put the meat in meat lover’s lasagna, I use two kinds of meat: Italian sausage and ground beef. I use one pound of each of meat, making for a super delicious combo. You get spice from the Italian sausage and a classic lasagna feel from the ground beef. It makes an excellent mixture.
- Seasonings - I use a medley that includes garlic powder, rosemary, onion powder, pepper, salt, and parsley. All of the spices can be used from your spice cabinet, but I do like to use fresh parsley.
- Marinara Sauce - I use a jar of marinara sauce that I bought at the grocery store, but you can absolutely make your own if you like. Just make sure you are using a total of 48 ounces of marinara sauce. Pasta sauce works as well. It is obviously a lot easier to purchase a jar, but if you can make your own or have a homemade sauce that was given to you, do whatever is more cost effective.
- Cheese - I use four types of cheese in this lasagna: ricotta, parmesan, cheddar, and mozzarella. The parmesan, cheddar, and mozzarella are all shredded. You can use pre-shredded cheese or shred your own from a block.
- Lasagna Noodles - Again, I just use store bought lasagna noodles, but you can use homemade noodles if you have them.
How to Make Meat Lover's Lasagna Recipe:
- Start this recipe by seasoning your ground beef. You’ll use the entire medley of seasonings in the ingredient list and thoroughly combine them into your ground beef. Quick tip: You may want to use your hands to mix this as it is the best way to thoroughly combine the seasonings with the meat.
- Refrigerate the beef mixture for at least one hour so it can really take on the flavor of the seasonings. If you’d like you can make this the night before or earlier that morning if you are cooking this in the evening.
- Next you’re going to cook your meat in a skillet. Over high heat, cook the meat until it is brown. Then drain the grease and put the meat in a bowl.
- Preheat your oven to 375°F.
- Add marinara sauce to your meat and thoroughly combine.
- In another bowl, combine the ricotta, parmesan, salt, pepper, and a beaten egg.
- In a third bowl, combine the shredded cheddar and shredded mozzarella. This will ensure they are evenly distributed throughout the entire lasagna making for an uniform flavor throughout.
- Cook your lasagna noodles according to the package directions. You may want to start doing this while you are combining your cheeses depending on how long it takes for your noodles to cook.
- In your baking dish, layer the ingredients. First spread out the meat sauce mixture. Then put your pasta on top, spreading the noodles to cover the entire meat sauce mixture.
- Next spread the ricotta mixture over the noodles, then the shredded cheese. Repeat this layering process until you are at the top of the baking dish or have run out of ingredients. Make sure that your top layer is cheese.
- Top the cheese with chopped parsley and cover the baking dish with aluminum foil.
- Bake lasagna covered for 25 minutes then uncover and bake for an additional 25 minutes.
- Let the lasagna rest for 15 minutes then serve and enjoy!
What To Serve With Your Pasta:
- Garlic Bread - I love to make a fresh batch of garlic bread to go along with my meat lover's lasagna. I chop up a baguette, slather the slices in garlic butter, and broil them until they’re crispy. Then I top the slices with some freshly chopped parsley. It makes for the perfect side to my meat lover’s lasagna.
- Salad - I also love to have a side salad. I rotate between a Cesar, a chopped salad, and a simple side salad with romaine lettuce topped with salt, pepper, olive oil, and red wine vinegar. It makes for the perfect fresh side next to my hearty pasta dish.
- Cheesecake - I love to have a full-course meal when I’m serving pasta, and that includes a delicious cheesecake. It gives the perfect rich finish to the meal.
- Sorbet - If you want something a little lighter, I suggest having a sorbet. This is the best way to have a satisfyingly sweet dessert without it being too rich.
- Strawberry Blackberry Lemonade - Strawberry Blackberry Lemonade is the perfect drink to have with lasagna because it gives a refreshing fruity flavor that complements the lasagna.
- Wine - I also love to pair my lasagna with a glass of wine, especially if I am serving guests. A cabernet is delicious with this pasta dish.
Ingredient Substitutions For Meat Lover's Lasagna:
- Meat - If you don’t like Italian sausage or ground beef but still want to have meat lover’s lasagna, you can use any ground meat you’d like. You can use turkey or venison. You could even use ground chicken. However, if you are going to substitute something for the Italian sausage, make sure that you season it properly so you still get that spice.
- Cheese - Like the meats, you can use any cheeses you’d like. Ricotta is often used in lasagna, but you can swap out for a bechamel sauce if you’d like. You can also use other shredded cheeses like havarti, gouda, or white cheddar. It is totally up to you.
Variations Of Meat Lover's Lasagna:
- Gluten Free - You can definitely make this recipe gluten-free. The only ingredient you would need to substitute is the noodles, and there are plenty of gluten-free noodle options available for purchase.
- Vegetarian - Though this is meat lover’s lasagna, you could always make it vegetarian if you need to by simply removing the meat. If you want to make it a little bit heartier, I would add some veggies to replace the meat. Ground mushrooms or finely chopped eggplant can mimic the texture of meat.
- Vegan - If you need to make this vegan, you can use dairy-free cheese. Like with the vegetarian option, I would add some vegetables just to give it a little bit more bulk.
- Extra Veggies - if you’d like to keep the meat but still add some vegetables, you can add some of the aforementioned vegetables into your meat mixture. You could also add some vegetables, like bell peppers or gourds, into your marinara sauce if you are making it from scratch.
Top Tips For Meat Lover's Lasagna:
For even more flavor, broil your meat lover's lasagna at the end. You’re already cooking it uncovered, but by changing the setting to broil for even five minutes, you’ll get some delicious texture and taste with your cheese.
FAQs About Meat Lover's Lasagna:
Can I Freeze this Recipe?
Yes, you can absolutely freeze this recipe. And the beauty of it is that you can freeze it cooked or uncooked. I like to freeze it uncooked because I like the taste of it a little bit better when it’s cooked fresh, but if you have only had a couple servings then it’s absolutely worth freezing after you’ve cooked it.
Most glass baking dishes are freezer safe, so you can easily freeze it in the same pan that you cooked it in. I like to use this pan because it comes with a lid. I suggest covering the top with plastic wrap or tin foil before putting the lid back on so it doesn’t retain quite as much moisture and it freezes better.
If you do freeze it after it’s been cooked, I suggest cutting it into smaller slices so that it is easier to grab from the freezer, or freezing the pasta dish in individual containers.
How do I Reheat It?
You can reheat this recipe by putting the entire lasagna back in the oven in the dish you baked it. You can also take out individual servings and reheat them in the microwave or on the stove top. The air fryer is another easy way to reheat your lasagna because it heats it thoroughly without sacrificing the texture.
Can this Recipe be Scaled?
It’s tough to make this recipe in larger amounts, however you may be able to make it smaller by using a smaller dish.
You could, however, make multiple batches if you have two or more 9x13 inch baking dishes. You should be able to bake two in the oven at the same time.
Other Pasta Recipes You'll Love:
- Do not cook with meat that has been sitting out for over two hours. After two hours the meat can become contaminated and grow harmful bacteria that is unsafe to eat.
- Make sure your meat has been cooked to an internal temperature of 165°F. To test this, you can cut a piece of your lasagna out and prick a clump of meat with a food thermometer.
Comment Your Thoughts!
After you’ve tried this recipe, let me know what you think in the comments! If you made any variations to the recipe, I’d love to hear.Print
World's Best Meat Lover's Lasagna
- Prep Time: 30
- Cook Time: 50
- Total Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
1 lb Italian sausage
1 lb ground beef
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon dried crushed rosemary
1 teaspoon onion powder
2 tsps black pepper
1 ½ teaspoon salt
2 tbs chopped flat leaf parsley
2-24oz jars of marinara
1 egg - beaten
6oz shredded parmesan
8oz shredded cheddar
8oz shredded mozzarella
1lb package lasagna noodles
- Season ground beef: 1 teaspoon salt, 1 teaspoon black pepper, 1 teaspoon salt, 1 teaspoon garlic powder, 1 teaspoon dried rosemary, 1 teaspoon onion powder. Combine. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour to allow flavors to marry.
- In a skillet over medium high heat, add ground beef and Italian sausage and brown. Instead of mincing the meat, I brown mine in larger chunks for a meatier lasagna.
- Drain grease and place browned meats into a bowl.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
- Add marinara to meat in bowl and combine.
- In a medium sized bowl, add ricotta, parmesan, ½ teaspoon salt, 1 teaspoon black pepper, beaten egg – combine.
- Mix cheddar and mozzarella in a bowl to evenly distribute.
- Cook lasagna pasta according to the package directions.
- In a 9x13 pan, layer ingredients. Spread some of the meat/sauce mixture. Add pasta side-by-side (likely 4 noodles). Spread some of the ricotta mixture over noodles. Add cheddar and mozzarella. Repeat layering. Be sure to cover noodles with sauce otherwise the uncovered portions will become hard once baked. End layering with cheese.
- Once layering is complete, sprinkle top with chopped parsley.
- Cover with aluminum foil. Tip: spray foil with non-stick cooking spray to prevent the cheese from sticking to the foil.
- Bake covered for 25 minutes and then uncovered for 25 minutes.
- Rest for 15 minutes before serving.