4cupsfreshly shredded mozzarella cheesedivided use
fresh chopped basil for garnishoptional
Preheat the oven to 375°F. Spray a 9x13 casserole dish with nonstick cooking spray, set aside.
In a large skillet over medium heat brown the ground beef, breaking it up, until there is no pink left. While it’s browning, season with the Italian seasoning, garlic powder, onion powder, and black pepper. Drain off any excess grease
Take the skillet off the heat, add in ¼ cup of the parmesan cheese and all of the marinara sauce.
Mix together until combined, set aside.
In a large bowl, add together the ricotta cheese, egg, 2 cups of the shredded mozzarella, and the remaining parmesan cheese.
Mix this together until everything is smooth and combined.
Cook lasagna noodles per the directions on the back of the box. Layout the noodles separately on a sheet tray, spraying the sheets lightly with nonstick cooking spray so they don’t stick to each other while you're waiting to assemble the lasagna.
o assemble the lasagna, add 1 cup of the sauce to the bottom of the dish, spread it out so it covers the bottom.
Add a layer of 5 lasagna noodles on top - you may need to cut one along the shorter end to fit.
Top with ⅓ of the cheese mixture, smooth it out evenly.
Add another 1 cup of sauce. Repeat with the noodles and remaining steps two more times. Top with the remaining 5 lasagna noodles and the rest of the sauce.
Cover with foil and bake for 25 minutes until bubbly. Take off the foil and add the remaining 2 cups of mozzarella cheese. Place back in the oven for an additional 5 minutes until the cheese is completely melted.
Let cool slightly for about 15 minutes on the countertop to cool slightly, this will help the lasagna to set up. This will make it easier to slice and serve.
Serve with a garnish of fresh basil, optional.
I used regular lasagna noodles that need to be cooked for this recipe. You could use oven-ready lasagna noodles if you prefer. Just add about ½ cup of water to the sauce mixture before layering.
Ground beef is amazing in this recipe but you can also use Italian sausage or even a mixture of the two together.
Freshly shredded cheese works best as it melts easier when baking. However, you can still use prepackaged shredded cheese.
Some fresh basil is my favorite topping for Baked Lasagna but you can top with parsley if you'd like - or nothing at all!
Make sure that you take the foil off of the lasagna in the last 5 minutes to ensure the cheese gets completely melted.
Note: I do bake this without the cheese on top, this is specifically because I don't want the cheese to get to hard or overcooked. However, for simplicity sake, you can certainly bake with the cheese on top if you prefer.
You can never go wrong with using fresh garlic. Add in about two teaspoons of minced garlic instead of the garlic powder.