An Uncomplicated Life Blog: October 2021

Tuesday, October 19, 2021

10 Minute Homemade Lasagna

 Use this super easy, throw together in 10 minutes lasagna recipe for weeknight meals

Well hey, it's been a damn hot minute since I've created a blog post! As in, I haven't done a non-sponsored, purely creative post in ummmmm a year and a half? I'm not self-centered enough to think you even noticed my absence; instead, I'll simply tell you that it's been a HELL of a year, that this blog was used in court to try to "prove" insults against me, so I was too scared to post regularly. And frankly, too drained to be creative. It was all I could do to get out of bed and care for my kids. Actually, that's a lie, I became gainfully employed teaching yoga, found and bought a house in the most competitive housing market in decades, fully furnished it from scratch (also no easy task with this nonsense supply chain shortage) and basically rebuilt my life from the ground up, but hey. Those are small details. You're here for the 10 minute homemade lasagna recipe, right? Well then, enough about me. Let's talk food.

As I mentioned, I started working again outside of the home. Yeah, this blog was my job when I was married - and it earned a decent income! - but I had to have a certain amount of consistent income, and depending on freelance writing and marketing was too volatile and scary with four kids. Back to work I went, this time teaching yoga, which is hands down the BEST JOB on the planet. Why I didn't do it sooner... Well, I'll never know. Anyway, that means I'm out of my home quite a bit. I used to make meals from scratch every night, but now I get home at 4pm with four hungry kids and there just isn't the time to cook like there used to be. So if you need a meal stat, this 10 minute homemade lasagna is for you.

Here's the key to how it's ready to bake in 10 minutes: I make my homemade bolognaise sauce in the CROCKPOT. Same exact recipe as the blog post, but instead of doing it on the stovetop for several hours (which requires stirring occasionally and adding water as needed - not a working parent friendly recipe) I add all the ingredients in RAW, except for the ground beef, which I brown on the stove, then cover it and turn it on. If it's cooking for 4-5 hours, cook it on high. If you're going to be gone/have the time to cook it for 8-10 hours, cook it on low. You'll come home to amazing pasta sauce! The good news is one batch of that is at LEAST two meals (this is serving the five of us, so if you're only feeding  two or three, it's going to be a ton of food).

You can throw all that in the crockpot and cook it the morning of, you can make it the weekend before, or you can do what I did and pull a batch from the freezer and defrost your sauce for the homemade lasagna. You can make this lasagna the morning of and throw it in the oven when you get home from work, you can make it and freeze it, and throw it in the oven when you need it (allow for extra baking time if you go that route) or you can throw it together after work and bake it immediately. I love a good, work-schedule-flexible recipe.

10 minute homemade lasagna recipe:
- Cheese mixture
  • 1 16oz container whole milk ricotta cheese
  • 1/2 a 8oz package mozzarella cheese, finely shredded
  • 1 egg
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • salt and pepper
- Bolognaise sauce recipe (half of the recipe will work for one medium sized lasagna)
- Ready to bake (no boil) lasagna noodles
- Remaining package of mozzarella cheese to top the lasagna

- Mix the cheese mixture together with a spoon or spatula
- Have your bolognaise sauce fully ready, either defrosted or cooled to room temperature (slightly warm is ok, you just don't want it hot to cook/melt the cheese mixture) 

- In a large glass casserole pan, put a little of the tomato sauce down. Then layer a set of noodles to cover the pan

- Over the noodles, spread half the cheese mixture, trying to cover the edges well and ensuring an even distribution of cheese

- Over the cheese mixture, drop in spoonful's of  tomato sauce and spread with the back of the soon or a spatula 
- Add another layer of noodles, this time putting any "seams" on the other side of the pan (this helps hold the lasagna together after you cut it)

- Repeat these steps one more time. Add one more layer of noodles and top with sauce, then top that with the remaining mozzarella cheese. 

- Cover and put in the fridge if baking within 24 hours; cover with an airtight lid if freezing. 
- To bake, leave covered and bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes. Then uncover and bake for another 10-15 minutes, or until your cheese is slightly brown on the edges. I recommend baking it thawed, but if baking right out of the freezer, leave covered and bake for 55 minutes, then uncover and bake another 10-15 or until your cheesy edges are browned. 

*Depending on climate and elevation, if may take longer or less time. A convection oven will take less time; a traditional oven will take longer. More humid climates will take longer; higher elevation will take longer. Isn't the world bizarre?!*

Enjoy! An amazing homemade, from scratch meal is completely at your fingertips even if you work full time outside of the home, even on a weeknight. A little prep work goes a long way! I made my crockpot bolognaise sauce before work (took me about 15 minutes to brown the beef and chop the veggies and dump it all in there) and then I made the lasagna in less than 10 minutes and set it in my fridge for after work. I get home around 4pm with my kids after school pick up, which is just the right amount of time to turn on the oven, give them a small snack, bake this, and have it ready and cooled to eat before 5:30. I know, early dinner, huh? Yeah, if my kids eat later than 5:30, they turn into monsters... But, we're also in bed by 7:30 and up by 6:30, so we living our best early lives over here. 

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Fast food and take out doesn't have to be your way of life! You can prepare delicious, nutritious and organic (or not... your call) meals during the week. You just have to take a little time to think it out before you grocery shop and prep in the morning. Add this 10 minute homemade lasagna to your recipe rotation for super easy, affordable, and yummy home cooked weeknight meals.