There are plenty of lasagna recipes in the world, but this lasagna without ricotta cheese is sure to become a staple in your dinner rotation. It’s budget-friendly, freezes perfectly, and, most importantly, tastes fantastic.
How to make this lasagna recipe
This is the best if you’re looking for a delicious and easy lasagna recipe that doesn’t include ricotta cheese. You’ll love how simple this recipe is to follow and how there’s no need to boil lasagna noodles. Once you’ve made the sauce, you’re done.
It’s a delicious lasagna that your whole family will love – without all the fuss.
This recipe is easy to make ahead and freezes beautifully for those nights when you need a quick and satisfying meal.
Why you’ll love this recipe
- It’s easy! No-bake noodles make everything simple
- Delicious. The sauce has tons of flavor, and plenty of cheese and meat.
- Freezer-friendly. You can make the sauce and freeze just that portion or freeze a fully assembled, unbaked lasagna.
What you’ll need
For the sauce:
- sweet Italian sausage
- olive oil
- Italian seasoning
- crushed red pepper
- crushed tomatoes
- diced tomatoes
To assemble the lasagna:
- no-bake lasagna noodles
- whole milk cottage cheese or sour cream
- whole milk mozzarella
- parmesan cheese
Making lasagna step by step
In a large skillet over medium heat, cook the Italian sausage, breaking it up with a fork as it cooks until it’s cooked through. Pour out any excess grease and put the sausage in a bowl.
Now that the skillet is empty add the olive oil and cook the onion until soft, about 4 minutes. Add the garlic and cook 2 minutes more. Add the crushed tomatoes, diced tomato, Italian seasoning, red pepper, salt, and pepper. Also, return the sausage to the sauce so it can all simmer together, and return the cooked meat to the sauce. Simmer it for 20-30 minutes until it’s thickened and the diced tomatoes have broken down slightly. (If you have fresh basil or any other fresh herbs, toss them in the sauce now, at the very end.)
We’re done with the meat sauce; now we do the rest. Mix the cottage cheese and one cup of mozzarella cheese in a medium bowl. Mix in the egg and 1/4 teaspoon of each salt and pepper.
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees, with a rack in the center. Brush a 13 x 9 baking dish with olive oil, and then start to layer.
- 1 cup of the tomato sauce on the bottom
- 1/4 of a cup of the cheese egg mixture
- 1 tablespoon of the parmesan
- 3 lasagna noodles.
Repeat layers 3 more times. Sprinkle the top with 1 cup of shredded mozzarella and the remaining tablespoon of parmesan cheese.
Cover tightly with aluminum foil and bake covered for 30 minutes, in the preheated oven, then remove the foil and bake 15 minutes more. The top should be bubbling and golden brown. Let stand 15 minutes before serving.
Tips for success
- Make sure to let the lasagna stand at room temperature. It’s very saucy and needs that time to set.
- If you want to use regular lasagna noodles, don’t cook them according to the package instructions. Boil them for five minutes, or they’ll be soggy. But honestly, just buy the no-boil kind.
- Use a good quality mozzarella cheese. It really makes a difference in taste, and you want your lasagna to be as delicious as possible
Can I just use store-bought marinara sauce?
Sure, but you’re just doing your own thing at that point.
Can I use cream cheese instead of cottage cheese?
Yes, this actually works well. Make sure it’s at room temperature so you can add it into the egg mixture easily. You might want to thin it out with a little heavy cream
- You can make the sauce and freeze it for up to 3 months.
- Assemble the lasagna, but don’t bake it. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and then aluminum foil, and freeze for up to 2 months. When you’re ready to eat it, let it thaw overnight in the refrigerator, then bake as directed. (Make sure you remove the plastic wrap first.)
- You can also bake the lasagna, then let it cool. Cover with aluminum foil and freeze for up to 2 months. To reheat, thaw overnight in the refrigerator, then remove the foil and heat in a 350-degree oven until heated through, about 30 minutes. (This is not as good, but still works.)
To complete the meal:
- A loaf of soft Italian bread with sesame seeds is perfect with any Italian dish.
- Add a salad and you’re done!
Recipe for lasagna without ricotta
Three Cheese and Sausage Lasagna without Ricotta
For the sauce:
- 1 pound sweet Italian sausage casings removed
- 1 large onion finely diced
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning or mix of dried basil and oregano
- 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
- 1 28 ounce can crushed tomatoes
- 1 15 oz can diced tomatoes
- 1½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon pepper
To make the lasagna:
- 12 no-bake lasagna noodles
- 1 15 ounce container whole milk cottage cheese OR sour cream
- 2 cup whole milk mozzarella shredded
- 1 egg
- 1/4 cup parmesan cheese
- Cook the sausage in a large skillet over medium heat. Transfer to a large bowl and pour out excess grease.
- In the same pan, heat the olive oil and cook the onion until soft, about 4 minutes. Add the garlic and cook 2 minutes more. Add the crushed tomatoes, oregano, crushed red pepper, salt, and pepper, and return the cooked meat to the sauce. Simmer 15 minutes until slightly thickened.
- Combine cottage cheese and 1 cup mozzarella in a medium bowl. Mix in the egg and 1/4 teaspoon of each salt and pepper.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Brush a 13 x 9 pan with olive oil. Layer 1 cup of the tomato sauce on the bottom, 1/4 of a cup of the cheese, 1 tablespoon of the parmesan, and 3 lasagna noodles. Repeat 3 more times. Sprinkle the top with 1 cup of shredded mozzarella and the remaining tablespoon of parmesan cheese.
- Cover tightly and bake covered for 30 minutes, then remove the foil and bake 15 minutes more. Let stand 15 minutes before serving.
This delicious recipe is one of our favorites, and I hope you enjoy it as well.