- Pasta bakes
- Vegetable lasagne
- Spinach lasagne
My family tell me that this is the best spinach lasagne in the world so I thought I would share it!
1 person made this
- 75g butter
- 2 shallots, minced
- 1 small onion, minced
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 35g plain flour
- 850ml warm milk
- 2 bay leaves
- 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- salt and pepper to taste
- 75g grated Parmesan cheese
- 600g fresh spinach
- 225g cotage cheese
- 1 egg
- 12 lasagne sheets
- 225g grated mozzarella cheese
MethodPrep:1hr ›Cook:45min ›Ready in:1hr45min
- In a small saucepan melt butter. Add shallots, onion and garlic; cook gently for 3 to 4 minutes, until softened and golden in colour.
- Stir in flour. Slowly add milk, stirring constantly. Season with salt, pepper, nutmeg and bay leaves. Allow the sauce to slowly come to the boil. Simmer over very low heat for 10 minutes until thick and creamy. Remove bay leaves and stir in 1/3 of the Parmesan cheese.
- Meanwhile bring a large saucepan with salted water to the boil; blanch spinach for 30 seconds. Take out with a slotted spoon and set into a bowl with iced water. Drain well and set on kitchen paper to drain.
- Preheat oven to 220 C / Gas 7.
- In a blender or food processor, mix cottage cheese and 1 egg until smooth. Set aside - you will add this as to the middle layer of the lasagne.
- Lightly grease a casserole dish with butter. Spread a thin layer of white sauce on the bottom of the dish; arrange 3 lasagne sheets on top of the sauce. Mix spinach with the rest of the white sauce and spread 1/3 on top of the first layer of lasagne sheets. Sprinkle with the remaining Parmesan cheese.
- Arrange 3 more lasagne sheets on top of the cheese. Add a layer of the spinach mixture and top with half of the grated mozzarella.
- Layer with 3 more lasagne sheets, remaining spinach mixture. Spread the cottage cheese on top.
- Finally, add 3 lasagne sheets and layer on remaining spinach mixture and grated mozzarella.
- Cover with foil and bake in preheated oven for 20 minutes. Turn oven to broil, uncover and broil until the cheese on top is browned. Take out of the oven, let rest for 10 minutes and serve.
- Remove foil. Preheat oven grill and cook until the cheese on top melts and turns golden brown. Set aside for 10 minutes before serving.
Reviews & ratingsAverage global rating:(4)
- For bolognese sauce:
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 3 ounces sliced pancetta, finely chopped
- 1 medium onion, finely chopped
- 1 large carrot, finely chopped
- 1 celery rib, finely chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, chopped
- 2 pounds ground beef chuck (not lean)
- 1 1/2 cups dry white wine
- 1 1/2 cups whole milk
- 1/4 cup tomato paste
- 1 1/2 teaspoon thyme leaves
- For Ricotta filling:
- 2 (10-ounce) packages frozen chopped spinach,thawed
- 2 (15-ounce) containers whole-milk ricotta
- 4 large eggs, lightly beaten
- 1/2 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
- 1/2 teaspoon grated nutmeg
- 3/4 cup whole milk, divided
- For assembling lasagne:
- 12 Barilla no-boil dried lasagne noodles (from 1 box)
- 1/2 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
- Equipment: a 13- by 9-inch baking pan (3 inches deep)
What’s in This Cheesy Spinach Lasagna?
One trick to lessening the lasagna-making load is to use no-boil lasagna noodles and a really good quality jarred sauce, which I’ve found in both Kroger’s Private Selection marinara sauces and DeLallo’s brand of jarred marinara. Feel free to use the flat or the ribboned style of lasagna noodles, you’ll need one box for this recipe of either/or.
I’m really picky about my ricotta cheese, which can too often taste chalky and plastic like. So I am THRILLED to have discovered that the Kroger brand of ricotta is totally not that. It’s creamy, rich and doesn’t get watery when cooked. It’s not only great in Italian food, it’s also so good on toast with a little jam. Just sayin’.
While I was at it, I loaded up on Kroger’s mozzarella, sliced provolone from the deli counter, grated Parmesan cheese and the Private Selection 3 cheese blend of Asiago, Parmesan and Romano. The provolone cheese is what creates the coveted, stringy cheese pull so if you’re thinking of skipping one of the cheeses in this dish, don’t skip the provolone!
And since this is a spinach lasagna recipe, I added a bag of frozen spinach to my cart, plus eggs to bind everything together and fresh basil to add a pop of flavor.
Lazy 5-Ingredient No-Boil Spinach Lasagna Recipe
This easy spinach lasagna recipe is a lazy cook&rsquos dream, as it takes less than five minutes to assemble the lasagna and stick it in the oven! The secret is no-boil lasagna noodles, plus a clever combination of only 5 simple ingredients!
If you are used to lasagna being a labor-intensive recipe, your totally need to re-think your strategy. Come on, who wants to fumble with a pot of boiling water to cook the noddles just to have them shamelessly stick to each other? Who wants to measure, peel, chop and pre-cook a mile-long list of fancy ingredients? Who wants to wash a pot, a pan, a cutting board, a stove and a counter that are all dirty before the lasagna is even in the oven? No worries &ndash with this breakthrough recipe you are going to have a mouthwatering lasagna made with delicious fresh ingredients without any of this painful and unnecessary prep work!
No-boil lasagna noodles come to the rescue &ndash there is no need to pre-cook them and you can use them for layering straight out of the box! If you never used no-boil lasagna noodles before, be assured that they taste exactly the same as regular ones &ndash there is no difference in taste whatsoever! And once you go with the no-boil, you&rsquoll never go back :)
I&rsquom using the following common and easy-to-find ingredients to layer with the no-boil noodles in this tasty easy lasagna: ricotta cheese, mozzarella cheese, pasta sauce and FRESH spinach! That&rsquos all &ndash it&rsquos as simple as that!
Another huge bonus of this lasagna is the fact that it is fairly healthy! You can use part-skim ricotta cheese and mozzarella cheese to cut down on calories, use whole-wheat no-boil lasagna noodles for added fiber, and not to mention you are getting in a huge amount of healthy nutritious spinach that&rsquos so good for you! Yes, this lasagna is a great way to get more healthy greens into your diet :) How&rsquos that for an excuse to make it?
Why am I using fresh spinach? Isn&rsquot the spinach lasagna typically made with frozen spinach? Wouldn&rsquot frozen spinach be easier? This lazy cook says &ldquoNo&rdquo to frozen :) Seriously, there are 4 reasons why I&rsquom using fresh spinach instead of frozen in this lasagna:
- It&rsquos easier to open a package of pre-washed fresh spinach than to thaw that old frozen green block of ice!
- It&rsquos more pleasant to handle the fresh crispy green spinach leaves than the mushy wilted mess of thawed frozen spinach!
- You can optionally decorate the top of the lasagna with fresh spinach leaves like I did :) Can&rsquot do it with frozen!
- Fresh simply tastes best!
This lasagna is moist, juicy, cheesy and delicious &ndash exactly how it should be! Would you like a slice?
Put spinach in a medium saucepan of salted boiling water. Drain and refresh in iced water, then squeeze out as much water as possible. Finely chop and combine in a large bowl with ricotta, garlic, egg and 1/2 of the parmesan to form a smooth, spreadable paste. Season with salt, if necessary, pepper and nutmeg.
To make bechamel sauce, melt butter in a small saucepan over a medium-high heat. Stir in flour and cook, stirring, for 1-2 minutes. Remove from heat and slowly add milk, whisking until combined. Return to heat and cook, stirring, for 4 minutes or until mixture thickens. Season with salt and pepper.
To make tomato sauce, heat oil in a large frying pan over a medium-high heat. Add eschalot and cook for 1-2 minutes. Add tomato and dried herbs, then reduce heat and simmer for 4-5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
Preheat oven to 200C. To assemble dish, spread a little of the tomato sauce over base of a 30 x 25cm baking dish. Lay 1/3 of the lasagne sheets over sauce, top with . of the spinach mixture and drizzle with 1/3 of the bechamel sauce. Repeat with 1/3 of the lasagne sheets, remaining spinach mixture and 1/3 of the bechamel. Top with remaining lasagne sheets, remaining tomato sauce and remaining bechamel. Sprinkle over remaining parmesan and bake for 45 minutes or until golden brown. Sprinkle over basil leaves and serve.
To make your lasagne, preheat the oven to 200°C (fan 180°C /gas mark 6). Heat 1tbsp of the oil in a large frying pan, add half the garlic and spinach leaves and stir fry for 1-2 mins until the leaves have wilted. Remove from the heat, season well and set aside.
Add remaining oil to the pan, add the mushrooms and cook over a high heat for 6-8 mins, stirring occasionally until the mushrooms are nicely browned.
Stir in the remaining garlic and sizzle for 30 secs. Stir in the tomatoes, bring to the boil and simmer over high heat for 2 mins or until reduced. Remove from the heat and season to taste.
Season the crème fraiche with the nutmeg, salt and ground black pepper, then mix well. Lightly oil a 1.4ltr/ 2½ pint ovenproof dish.
Place a layer of lasagne over the base, trimming it to fit. Top with half the mushroom mix, then more lasagne. Spoon a third of the crème fraiche over, scatter over half the spinach and a third of the cheese. Repeat these layers once more. Now place a final layer of lasagne on top, spread over the remaining crème fraiche and cheese.
Place on a baking tray, then bake for 25-30 mins or until the lasagne is tender and the top golden. Leave to stand for 5 mins before serving in wedges with a nice green salad.
Mushroom, Spinach and Walnut Lasagne
If you can't get fresh porcini mushrooms, you can soak the dried variety in water (following pack instructions) drain well and use as above. Alternatively, use 300g chestnut mushrooms in total, or substitute your choice of alternative fungi.
- Preheat the oven to 200C/400F/Gas 6. Heat the olive oil in a frying pan until it reaches near smoking point, then turn the heat down a little and add in the mushrooms along with the thyme. After two minutes add in the garlic and cook for a further two minutes.
- Now make a white sauce: melt the butter in a small pan, then stir in the flour to form a roux. Cook for a further 30 seconds before gradually incorporating the milk, whisking continuously to avoid any lumps. Grate in the nutmeg and season to taste.
- Add a thin layer of the white sauce to the bottom of a baking dish, followed by a layer of lasagne sheets. Top with another layer of white sauce followed by 1/3 of the mushrooms, walnuts and spinach, scattered with 1/3 of the cottage cheese. Repeat for a further two layers, finishing with a layer of white sauce. Scatter the top with the Cheddar and Parmesan-style cheese to finish.
- Bake the lasagne in the oven for 25-30 minutes until golden brown and bubbling on top.
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Serves: 12 Ready in: 60 mins +
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Lasagna is such a comfort food. But making it can seem like a long, complicated process to the uninitiated. Take the first step to homemade lasagna glory with this simple recipe. Remember, these are the basics. Feel free to improvise after you’ve made this recipe once as-is.
This easy lasagna recipe is made with layers of creamy ricotta and spinach filling, tomato sauce, Parmesan cheese and mozzarella cheese. Making a proper lasagne is all about a harmonious ratio of filling, cheese, sauce, and noodles. For this spinach and cheese version, we’ve skipped the béchamel sauce found in traditional lasagna recipes to make the dish fast and easy to assemble. Bake until browned and bubbly, and serve with a simple salad or vegetable side for a cozy vegetarian meal.
For dessert, we recommend following up with another easy comfort food classic like our Rice Pudding recipe.
What to buy
Emile Henry 13-by-9-Inch Baking Dish, $49.99 on Amazon (25% off)
This handsome casserole dish can go straight from the fridge or freezer to the oven, and then to the tabletop to serve. It’s dishwasher safe too.
Tips for Christmas and Eggs
Eggs should keep a consistent and low temperature. This is best achieved by placing their carton in the center of your fridge. The eggs should also remain in their original packaging to avoid the absorption of strong odors.
It is wise to follow the “best by” date to determine overall freshness, but eggs can be tested by simply dropping them into a bowl of water. Older eggs will float while fresh eggs will sink. This is due to the size of their air cells, which gradually increase over time.
Cooked eggs have a refrigerator shelf life of no more than four days, while hard-boiled eggs, peeled or unpeeled, are safe to consume up to one week after they’re prepared.
The beauty of an egg is its versatility. Eggs can be cooked in a variety of ways. Here are some tips in accomplishing the four most common preparations.
Scrambled: Whip your eggs in a bowl. The consistency of your scrambled eggs is a personal preference, though it seems like the majority of breakfast connoisseurs enjoy a more runny and fluffy option. In this case, add about ¼ cup of milk for every four eggs. This will help to thin the mix. Feel free to also season with salt and pepper (or stir in cream cheese for added decadence). Grease a skillet with butter over medium heat and pour in the egg mixture. As the eggs begin to cook, begin to pull and fold the eggs with a spatula until it forms curds. Do not stir constantly. Once the egg is cooked to your liking, remove from heat and serve.
Hard-boiled: Fill a pot that covers your eggs by about two inches. Remove the eggs and bring the water to a boil. Once the water begins to boil, carefully drop in the eggs and leave them for 10-12 minutes. For easy peeling, give the eggs an immediate ice bath after the cooking time is completed. For soft-boiled eggs, follow the same process, but cut the cooking time in half.
Poached: Add a dash of vinegar to a pan filled with steadily simmering water. Crack eggs individually into a dish or small cup. With a spatula, create a gentle whirlpool in the pan. Slowly add the egg, whites first, into the water and allow to cook for three minutes. Remove the egg with a slotted spoon and immediately transfer to kitchen paper to drain the water.
Sunny Side Up/Over Easy/Medium/Hard: For each of these preparations, you are cracking an egg directly into a greased frying pan. For sunny side up, no flipping is involved. Simply allow the edges to fry until they’re golden brown. To achieve an over easy egg, flip a sunny side up egg and cook until a thin film appears over the yolk. The yolk should still be runny upon serving. An over medium egg is flipped, fried, and cooked longer until the yolk is still slightly runny. An over hard is cooked until the yolk is hard.
Eggs can easily be frozen, but instructions vary based on the egg’s physical state. As a general rule, uncooked eggs in their shells should not be frozen. They must be cracked first and have their contents frozen.
Uncooked whole eggs: The eggs must be removed from their shells, blended, and poured into containers that can seal tightly.
Uncooked egg whites: The same process as whole eggs, but you can freeze whites in ice cube trays before transferring them to an airtight container. This speeds up the thawing process and can help with measuring.
Uncooked yolks: Egg yolks alone can turn extremely gelatinous if frozen. For use in savory dishes, add ⅛ teaspoon of salt per four egg yolks. Substitute the salt for sugar for use in sweet dishes and/or desserts.
Cooked eggs: Scrambled eggs are fine to freeze, but it is advised to not freeze cooked egg whites. They become too watery and rubbery if not mixed with the yolk.
Hard-boiled eggs: As mentioned above, it is best to not freeze hard-boiled eggs because cooked whites become watery and rubbery when frozen.
Make the filling:
- Drain the ricotta in a fine sieve set over a bowl for 1 hour, or longer if the ricotta is very wet.
- If using fresh spinach, stem and rinse it well don’t dry the leaves. In a 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat, cook the spinach until wilted, 3 to 5 minutes. Drain well, squeeze out the excess moisture, and chop finely. If using thawed frozen spinach, squeeze it dry.
- Melt the butter in a 10- or 12-inch skillet over medium-low heat and add the onion. Cook until the onion is soft and translucent, 5 to 8 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for about 1 minute. Add the spinach and toss it for 1 or 2 minutes to coat it with the butter. Transfer the spinach mixture to a bowl and let it cool to room temperature. Add the ricotta, Parmigiano, eggs, salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Mix well. You should have about 4-1/2 cups.
Cook the noodles:
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Prepare a large bowl of ice water. Slip the noodles, two or three at a time, into the boiling water and cook them until they’re tender and pale, 3 to 5 minutes (thinner noodles will cook more quickly). To make sure they’re done, taste a small piece. If it’s still tough, it needs a little more cooking (fresh pasta should not be cooked al dente like dried pasta).
- Carefully scoop the noodles out of the pot with a large wire skimmer and slide them into the ice water to stop the cooking. When they’re cool, layer them between clean dish towels until you’re ready to assemble the lasagne (The noodles will keep this way for up to 2 hours).
Assemble the lasagne:
- Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 350°F. Choose a baking dish that’s about 9合 inches and 3 inches deep, or about 10吊 inches and 2 inches deep. Spread 1/2 cup of the tomato sauce in a sparse layer on the bottom of the baking dish. Cover the sauce with a slightly overlapping layer of cooked noodles, cutting them as needed to fill the gaps. With a spatula, spread one-third of the spinach and ricotta filling (about 1-1/2 cups) over the first layer of noodles. Then spread one-third of the remaining tomato sauce (about 1-1/3 cups) and one-third (1/2 cup) of the cream sauce over the filling. Sprinkle 1/3 cup of the Parmigiano on top. Add a new layer of noodles, overlapping them slightly, and repeat the layers as instructed above, using all of the filling and ending with the Parmigiano, to make a total of three layers (you may not need all the pasta). Dot the top with the butter cubes.
- Put the baking dish on a baking sheet and bake until heated through and bubbling at the edges, 45 to 50 minutes. Remove from the oven and let rest for 10 to 15 minutes before serving.
Make Ahead Tips
You can make the spinach and ricotta filling up to 4 hours ahead and store it in the refrigerator in an airtight container.
The assembled, unbaked lasagne will keep for at least a day in the refrigerator. Alternatively, you can freeze it for up to four months (make sure you wrap the dish tightly with plastic). Thaw the lasagne in the fridge and bring it to room temperature before baking.
If time is short and you can’t find fresh pasta sheets in your local stores, substitute 1 lb. of good-quality dried lasagne noodles for the fresh noodles. Skip the cooking instructions below and cook them according to the package directions.