Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Four Cheese Lasagna



This lasagna is a staple dinner in our house. And to say it's a staple means that the entire family loves it, and it's quick, easy, and healthy! This lasagna stores well stored in the pan in the refrigerator for a couple days, or you can freeze it for a quick, heat up meal, next month. Another great thing about this wonderful lasagna is that it's healthy! Cut up some spinach and throw some shredded carrot in there to make it an even more nutritious and delicious main course. 



The key to this lasagna is the sauce. Don't skimp out on your sauce quality! If you want an amazing lasagna you're going to need a dang good pasta sauce. We love Trader Joe's sauces. Like their Organic Pasta Sauce, or their Vodka Sauce or Creamy Tomato Basil Sauce (they are all seriously to die for).




Thinking about lasagna reminds me of just a year ago when I was in Italy. Flashback to when I was walking those beautiful streets in Florence and eating pasta goodness every meal (good thing I don't live there, I'd be 400 pounds). I walked into the cutest, quaintest Italian restaurant and ordered lasagna. I was not expecting the amazing taste that followed after I popped a bite into my mouth. It was amazingggggg. Now that I'm back in the US, this lasagna recipe is the homemade version of what I ate in Florence. And because of the extra veggies, I'm sure this recipe is a lot healthier than the pasta I ate in Italy. So, tie on your apron and get cookin', you won't be disappointed in the end.



Four Cheese Lasagna
INGREDIENTS
2 cups cottage cheese1 cup ricotta
1 egg
1 teaspoon basil
1 teaspoon oregano
2 jars of high quality pasta sauce
1 box of oven ready noodles
1 pound of hamburger or Italian sausage (or half and half), cooked and drained
2 cups mozzarella, grated
1 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
1 cup chopped spinach
3/4 cup shredded carrots

DIRECTIONS
1. Mix together cottage cheese, ricotta, egg, basil, and oregano.
2. Layer your lasagna in a 9 by 13 pan with a thin layer of each of the following ingredients in this pattern:
-Pasta sauce
-Noodles (3 or 4 across)
-Cottage cheese mixture
-Mozzarella
-Parmesan
-Cooked Meat
-Spinach
-Carrots
-Pasta Sauce
-Noodles (3 or 4 across)
Repeat around 3 times. Top with remaining sauce and then mozzarella and Parmesan cheese. Sprinkle parsley flakes on top, and press down slightly to set in layers. Cover with tin foil. Bake at 350 Fahrenheit for 35 minutes and then take off tin foil and bake for another 15 minutes. Let cool for around 10 minutes and enjoy! 


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