Nalbone Family Recipes

This recipe collection began as a way to back up my mother's recipe collection that she has collected in a black binder since the 1950's. Maggie and I are also adding recipes that we want to keep track of, so this will become our family go to location for storing and finding our recipes

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Main Courses, Main Dish, Pasta

Simple Cheese Lasagna

Recipe PictureSource: America's Test Kitchen Family Cookbook 3rd Edition (pp 239-240)

Servings: 8

Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Start to Finish Time: 1 hour

Note: Our Chunky Tomato Sauce for Lasagna tastes better than jarred sauce, but if using jarred sauce (tomato only) is more convenient, you will need about two 24- to 26-ounce jars.


  • 15 ounces ricotta cheese
  • 2 1/2 ounces Parmesan cheese, grated
  • 1/2 cup minced fresh basil
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 6 cups Chunky Tomato Sauce for Lasagna
  • 8 ounces lasagna noodles (12 count)
  • 1 pound whole milk mozzarella cheese, shredded


  1. Adjust an oven rack to the middle position and heat the oven to 375 degrees. Mix the ricotta, 1 cup of the Parmesan, the basil, egg, salt, and pepper until well combined.
    Spread 1/4 cup of the tomato sauce over the bottom of a 9 by 13-inch baking dish. Place 3 of the noodles on top of the sauce and drop 3 tablespoons of the ricotta mixture down the center of each noodle, then spread it to an even thickness. Sprinkle evenly with 1 cup of the mozzarella. Spoon 1 1/2 cups of the sauce evenly over the cheese. Repeat this layering two more times.
  2. For the final layer, place the 3 remaining noodles on top. Spread the remaining 1 1/4 cups sauce over the noodles.
  3. Sprinkle with the remaining 1 cup mozzarella and then the remaining 1/4 cup Parmesan. Spray a large sheet of foil lightly with vegetable oil spray and cover the lasagna. Bake for 15 minutes.
  4. Remove the foil and continue to bake until the cheese is browned and the sauce is bubbling, about 25 minutes longer. Let cool for 10 minutes before serving.

Make Ahead

The assembled, unbaked lasagna can be held in the refrigerator, wrapped tightly in plastic wrap, for up to 24 hours. Allow the lasagna to sit at room temperature for 1 hour before baking. It can also be frozen, wrapped in an additional layer of foil, for up to 2 months.

To bake, defrost it in the refrigerator for 24 hours, then allow it to sit at room temperature for 1 hour before baking.



Reduce the amount of sauce to 5 cups. (If making our Chunky Tomato Sauce for Lasagna, simply drain the diced tomatoes and discard the juice.) Before assembling the lasagna, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a 12-inch skillet until shimmering. Add 1 pound assorted mushrooms, trimmed and sliced thin, and cook until the mushrooms are browned, about 10 minutes. Stir in 2 minced garlic cloves and cook until fragrant, about 15 seconds. Off the heat, stir in 10 ounces frozen spinach, thawed, thoroughly squeezed dry, and chopped. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle a third of the mushroom and spinach mixture over each layer of ricotta when assembling the lasagna.


Before assembling the lasagna, heat 2 teaspoons olive oil in a large saucepan until shimmering. Add 8 ounces (85 percent lean) ground beef and 8 ounces ground pork and cook, stirring to break up the clumps, until no longer pink, about 5 minutes. Stir in the tomato sauce and bring to a simmer. Cook until the flavors have melded, about 5 minutes. (If you want to turn Chunky Tomato Sauce for Lasagna into a meat sauce, simply add the meat after adding the garlic and continue with the recipe.)

Yield: 1 9X13 in baking pan

Cuisine: Italian

Copyright: (c) 2010 by The Editors at America's Test Kitchen

Per Serving (excluding unknown items): 637 Calories; 37g Fat (51.7% calories from fat); 39g Protein; 39g Carbohydrate; 5g Dietary Fiber; 147mg Cholesterol; 1072mg Sodium. Exchanges: 1 1/2 Grain(Starch); 4 1/2 Lean Meat; 2 Vegetable; 4 1/2 Fat.

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