Ingredients2lbs ground beef
1 small container ricotta cheese
4 cups mozzarella cheese
1 cup Parmesan cheese (1/2 for cheese mixture and 1/2 for top)
3 cans of hunts spaghetti sauce (I use this as a base only, once everything is added, it tastes fully homemade)
1 can diced tomato or 3 fresh plum tomatoes
1 box regular lasagna noodles
2 or 3 zucchini squash cleaned and sliced
1 onion diced
2 or 3 carrots cleaned and sliced
2 Tbsp brown sugar
2 Tbsp splenda
3 cups water 2 will be used to cook the beef, and the other cup will be used to swish out the cans of sauce.
seasonings to taste
salt 1/4 tsp
pepper 1/3 tsp
garlic or garlic powder 1 Tb
ginger 1/4 tsp
cinnamon 1/4 tsp
oregano 1/4 tsp
basil 1/4 tsp
Italian seasonings 1/4 tsp
InstructionsPREP THE BEEF
Place ground beef in large pot and 2 cups water.
Break up beef and bring to a boil for 2 minutes.
After meat looks almost done, drain and return pot of meat to stove.
PREPARE THE SAUCE.
To the beef, add 3 cans spaghetti sauce using about 1/2 cup of water to swish out each can and pour that into pot. Don't want to waste any precious sauce.
Add all cut up veggies. Onion, zucchini, tomatoes and carrots.
Add brown sugar, splenda, salt, pepper, garlic, ginger, cinnamon, oregano, basil, italian seasonings. Start with at least 1/4 teaspoon and then add more of any and all as needed to taste. In reality, I never measure anything so be prepared to add alot more seasonings as needed.
Stir everything that you have added and bring to a boil and then drop down to simmer for 2 hours covered.
After 2 or 3 hours everything should be tender. At this point I use a submersion blender and stick it right into the pot of sauce and begin to blend my sauce. Don't worry, this is the secret to an amazing thick meat sauce that is even in consistency and not lumpy. Your kids will thank you. If you however prefer your sauce chunky, then please skip the blender process. I think it makes for a prettier lasagna. And though I love veggies, I prefer them hidden in my sauce.
After sauce is done, turn off heat and let rest. (NOTE) I usually allow to cool completely and place whole pot of sauce in fridge over night. I will have less work to do the next day or when ever I'm ready to assemble the lasagna. The next day, I usually place back on stove and reheat while I'm preparing the cheese mixture and getting the pan ready. Make sure you turn the sauce off right before you use it. Sauce doesn't need to be boiling, just gently reheated till warm.
PREPARE THE CHEESE MIXTURE
In a mixing bowl, break two full eggs into bowl and whisk with fork.
Add ricotta, 2 cups of mozzarella cheese and 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
pinch of salt and pepper
1 packet of equal
MIx well and set aside.
PREPARE THE LASAGNA PAN
I used a large glass lasagna pan which fit 1 box noodles perfectly
Spray the pan with non-stick cooking spray.
Place lasagna pan next to sauce pot for convenience.
ASSEMBLE THE LASAGNA
Ladle sauce into pan just until coats the bottom to keep lasagna from sticking. NOW you can begin.
Lay uncooked regular lasagna noodles into bottom of pan. Break to fit.
Smear cheese mixture on top of noodles.
Ladle sauce on top of cheese mixture.
Repeat until pan is full.
Noodles, cheese, sauce.
Top layer should be sauce.
Cover with aluminum foil and bake 1 hour on 375.
After 1 hour of baking, remove from oven, place on stove, and remove foil.
Add remaining 2 cups of mozzarella cheese and Parmesan cheese and generously sprinkle on top.
Bake 15 more minutes UNCOVERED.
Remove promptly and let rest for 20 minutes. DO NOT SKIP THIS STEP. Otherwise your lasagna will be a messy mess.
This is actually alot easier than it sounds. And pretty much fail proof if you just follow the steps.
ENJOY! BON APPETITE!
Note, freeze left over sauce.