This moist and creamy Spinach Lasagna recipe has 3 layers of lasagna noodles filled between layers with juicy meat sauce, fresh spinach, creamy parmesan bechamel sauce (white sauce) and gooey mozzarella cheese.
Course How to, Main Course
Cuisine American, Italian
Prep Time 15 minutesminutes
Cook Time 2 hourshours
Total Time 2 hourshours15 minutesminutes
1 (24 oz) Italian Tomato sauce(Prego Traditional Italian Sauce)
14ouncesfire roasted diced tomatoes
3ouncestomato paste½ of small can
1 ½tablespoonsfresh oreganochopped or 1 ½ teaspoons dry oregano
2tablespoonsfresh basilchopped or 2 teaspoons dry basil
½teaspoonbrown sugar(if desired)
Salt and pepperseason to your tastes
Parmesan Bechamel Sauce
1cupfresh shredded parmesan parmigiano
9 to 12pieceslasagna noodlesboiled al dente
water to boil noodles
olive oilsprayed on noodles not to stick
1bag10 oz baby spinach
1bag16 oz shredded Mozzarella cheese
2tablespoonsfresh parsleygarnish or 2 teaspoons dry parsley
In a large pot, heat oil over medium heat and brown beef. Remove excess oil. Remove from pot.
Saute onion until soft, then add garlic. Cook until golden.
Add Italian sausage, cook and break it up until browned.
Pour in the Italian tomato sauce, crushed fire roasted tomatoes and tomato paste. Blend well.
Stir-in oregano and basil.
Bring to a boil, lower heat to low. Simmer for 30 minutes.
Salt and pepper to taste.
Note: Taste meat sauce and add brown sugar, if needed.
Parmesan Bechamel Sauce
In a dutch oven or large sauce pan over medium to low heat, melt butter.
Add flour stirring constantly so that it does not turn lumpy.
Turn heat to lowest setting.
Add ⅓ of milk whisking constantly, then add all the milk and continue whisking until well blended and not lumpy.
Raise heat to medium and continue stirring until slightly thick.
Add nutmeg, salt and ground pepper. Continue stirring.
Note: You might need to adjust heat to medium high and after a few minutes the sauce will start to thicken. Once sauce is thick remove from heat.
Slowly add beaten egg while stirring constantly.
Add Parmesan cheese stirring briskly.
Note: If you want a thicker layer of béchamel sauce, make 1 ½ of recipe. I did since we love this sauce but to some it might be too rich.
Also, I don’t wait for sauce to cool down. Once meat mixture and pasta are ready, I put them all together.
Prepare Lasagna Noodles
Fill a large pot with ⅔rd water and bring to a boil. When in a full rolling boil add noodles in 2 batches with generous amount of salt. Stir once in a while to prevent from sticking. Drain water and place noodles in a tray that was lightly sprayed or greased with olive oil.
Lay cooked lasagna noodles on tray, then spray top with olive oil before adding another layer. This will prevent noodles from sticking together.
Assemble Lasagna Layers
Note: You will have 3 layers of lasagna noodles.Divide the following into portions: Meat Sauce into 4 portions, Fresh Spinach into 3 portions, Parmesan Bechamel Sauce into 3 portions and Mozzarella Cheese into 3 portions.
Preheat oven to 350°F.
Add meat sauce, then fresh spinach on the base of a 9x13-inch baking dish. Don’t do noodles directly so it doesn’t stick to baking dish.
Lay out 3 to 4 lasagna noodles. Cover pasta with meat sauce, spinach, bechamel sauce and mozzarella cheese.
Add another layer of noodles, repeat the same procedure for the 2nd layer.
Lay out the 3rd layer of lasagna noodles. Pour meat sauce, bechamel sauce and mozzarella cheese.
Bake for 20 - 25 minutes or until golden and bubbly.
Don't add too much salt in meat sauce since cheese can get salty.
After simmering lasagna meat sauce for 45 minutes, TASTE to see if you need to add the brown sugar. Some tomato sauce are quite sweet already, so it might not need it. Sugar is added to compensate for tomato sauce acidity.
I made the lasagna meat sauce a day earlier so all the flavors can mend well and to get it out of the way.
You can use regular canned diced tomatoes but I love using Fire roasted diced tomatoes as it adds more savory flavor to this lasagna recipe.
I prefer to use fresh herbs but you can always use dry herbs.
Lasagna top will be bubbly and some oil coming out.
Garnish with parsley.
Set baked lasagna aside for 20 minutes before slicing.