Loaded with a hearty meat sauce and three kinds of ooey-gooey cheese this quick and easy lasagna with cottage cheese is so delicious. Lasagna is classic home cooked comfort food at its best.
Rich and creamy, full of savory meat and flavorful cheese this dish is perfect for serving to a crowd. Simple to make it isn't the fanciest version but it's yummy, quick and simple. Taking very little time to throw together it is a kid and crowd pleaser.
Don’t worry about using cottage cheese if you are normally not a fan. I promise you won’t notice at all. Cottage cheese makes for a less mushy and more creamy texture than other recipes that might call for ricotta.
And if you are on the hunt for more Italian dishes, this simple Spaghetti Meat Sauce and Zuppa Toscana Soup are worth giving a try. Or give our alternative to a classic lasagna, Zucchini and Pesto Lasagna a chance.
With an ingredient list like this it's never been so easy to get classic Italian flavors in just minutes. The only real prep work needed is to prepare the sauce. Then that lasagna is ready to assemble and get in the oven!
All you need is:
- Lasagna Noodles - Using no boil noodles saves so much time!
- Tomato Sauce - I use canned tomato sauce to keep things quick and easy but you can definitely make your own if you'd like.
- Cottage Cheese - Using a 4% milk fat or whole milk cottage cheese will result in the best flavor and texture. But if looking for a healthier dish low fat or 2% will do.
- Ground Beef - We like to use a lean ground beef but you can choose a beef with a higher fat content if preferred. More fat means added flavor and enhanced richness.
- Shredded Cheese - We like to use sharp cheddar and mozzarella for our lasagna but you can definitely play around with this.
- Worcestershire Sauce
- Salt and Pepper
- Garlic Powder
- Dried Basil
🍳 Step-by-Step Instructions
Prepare the Sauce
To start off begin by cooking your ground beef and onion in a pan. When done add your tomato sauce, cottage cheese, oregano, salt, pepper, basil, garlic and Worcestershire sauce to the pan. To finish off the sauce go ahead and stir everything together until it is well combined.
Liquid from the sauce is going to help cook the pasta to a perfect al dente. If the sauce seems to be a tad too hearty or thick, add a little water to the edges of the pan to give the pasta the moisture it needs to cook.
Prepare the Pan
Now we need to prepare our casserole dish for layering the easy lasagna with cottage cheese. For easy cleanup later go ahead and spray the sides of your pan. Then let's get to layering your lasagna.
Layering the Dish
First start off with adding a scoop of your sauce, about a cup to a cup and a half, and spreading it across the bottom of the pan. Second, layer in your lasagna noodles. Add another layer of sauce across the noodles, about 2 cups, and then sprinkle with both shredded cheeses.
Now repeat the layers, first by adding a layer of noodles, then sauce and cheese. Continue repeating those layers until you have used all the noodles.
Don’t be stingy with the cheese and the sauce when layering. Because noodles are uncooked you will add a good amount of sauce mixture to each layer, about two cups or so. This will help you get a good melty, cheesy flavor and texture. You want to ideally shoot for 3 to 4 layers in your pan.
Bake in the Oven
Once you have your easy lasagna with cottage cheese layered, go ahead and cover your dish with tinfoil and place in the oven to bake. In the last 10 minutes of bake time you will want to go ahead and remove the foil so the top of your lasagna can get golden and bubbly.
After pulling your lasagna from the oven let it sit and rest for 15 minutes before cutting into and serving it up.
👩🏻🍳 Make it Your Own
- Make it Meaty - Swap half of the ground beef for sausage. You can also switch out your protein for a leaner ground turkey if preferred.
- Eat Your Veggies - Add fresh spinach and mushrooms for a vitamin and nutrient boost.
- Add Fresh Flavors - Top of your lasagna with fresh chopped basil or add 2 tablespoons of crushed garlic to the sauce.
- Bring the Heat - Add a little spice to your lasagna with a tablespoon or two of red chili pepper flakes to the sauce or try swapping half of the ground beef for hot sausage.
💭 Top Tips
Use a Deep Pan
Using a deep 13x9 baking dish makes it super simple to assemble, bake and serve your tasty lasagna all from one dish. Having a pan with tall sides helps keep your lasagna from bubbling up over the edges and making a mess of your oven.
And if you don't have one on hand just slide a baking sheet under the casserole pan for easy clean up later.
Spray the Pan
Another easy trick for quick cleanup later is spraying your baking dish before you begin layering. While not necessary, it does definitely make for an easier cleanup when it comes time to do the dishes.
Let it Rest in the Pan
Wait an extra 15 minutes and allow your easy lasagna with cottage cheese to rest after it comes out of the oven. This helps your pasta absorb all the liquids and gives your layers time to set.
Don’t worry, I promise your dish will be just as hot when you cut into it exposing it's beautiful layers.
Lasagna makes the tastiest leftovers! It might be hard to believe but this dish is even better the second day! Store any leftovers in the fridge for 3-5 days in an airtight covered dish.
Lasagna leftovers also freeze well if looking to keep them a little longer. We like to freeze our lasagna leftovers in individual sized portions for lunches or quick dinners.
To do this cut your easy lasagna with cottage cheese into individual sized servings. Then wrap each serving in plastic wrap first and then aluminum foil, before putting in the freezer.
This makes it so easy to pull out just one or two slices to reheat when ready to enjoy.
Preparing Ahead or Doubling the Recipe
Try preparing or making your easy lasagna with cottage cheese ahead of time to have a hot meal ready to cook at any time. Store covered in the fridge for up to 2 days before baking. Or double the recipe and freeze it for later.
This is a really easy meal to double. Just cook up two pounds of hamburger instead of one and double all the sauce ingredients. I always make one for dinner and one for the freezer to pull out for Sunday dinners later.
Try making your lasagna you intend to freeze in a disposable aluminum pan to make it easy to cover and freeze. These disposable aluminum pans make for easy storing and cleanup later. I love to have a stash of these pans on hand when I am doubling and freezing a recipe.
Can you freeze lasagna?
Lasagna is a great dish for doubling or preparing ahead of time and then freezing. Prepare your dish as normal. When your lasagna is assembled instead of putting in the oven to bake, cover with dish with foil and then wrap in plastic wrap.
Place the pan in the freezer for up to 3 months. Then when ready to eat, remove your easy lasagna with cottage cheese the night before you want to enjoy it. Allow it to thaw in the fridge overnight for a more even cook. Then bake and enjoy as normal!
Should you cover lasagna when cooking?
Covering the pan with aluminum foil before baking helps to keep all that heat inside so that the noodles will get perfectly soft. Just spray a sheet of foil with non-stick spray to keep the top layer of cheese from sticking to the foil.
Press the edges of the foil down around the edges of your pan and pop it in the oven. During the last 10 minutes of baking remove your foil so that the top can finish browning.
Should you let lasagna rest?
Yes, lasagna absolutely needs time to rest after coming out of the oven. I know how tempting it is to dig right in, but wait for just an extra 15 minutes and allow your lasagna to rest.
This helps your pasta absorb all the yummy juices from the sauce, meat, and cheeses so that everything sticks together better. Don’t worry, I promise your dish will be just as hot when you cut into it to expose it's beautiful layers.
- 3 - 15 ounce cans tomato sauce
- 1½ teaspoons oregano
- 2 cups cottage cheese
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon pepper
- 1 tablespoon dried basil
- 2 teaspoons garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 pound ground beef
- medium onion, diced
- 1 pound of uncooked lasagna noodles
- 3 cups sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
- 3 cups mozzarella cheese, shredded
- Pre-heat oven to 375° and spray a 9x13 baking dish with deep sides with non-stick cooking spray and set aside.
- In a large pan brown hamburger with onions on the stove until the onions are translucent and hamburger cooked through.
- Add tomato sauce, cottage cheese, oregano, salt, pepper, basil, garlic powder and Worcestershire sauce to the cooked meat and onion. Stir together to create sauce mixture for layering.
- Add roughly a cup to a cup and a half of the sauce mixture to the bottom of the greased baking dish and spread until the bottom is entirely covered.
- Now begin layering your lasagna in the dish starting with the noodles, followed by a layer of sauce (roughly two cups) and then mixture of the shredded cheeses.
- Continue this pattern of layering until all the pasta is used, aiming for 3 to 4 layers total. Finish off the layering with any remaining sauce mixture and shredded cheese.
- Spray a sheet of aluminum foil with non stick cooking spray and cover the lasagna.
- Place pan in the oven and allow to bake at 375° for 50 minutes. Remove the foil in the last ten minutes for a golden and bubbly finish to your lasagna.
- Let the lasagna rest for 15 minutes before cutting to serve. Serve and enjoy!
- Place a cookie sheet under the pan if baking dish does not have deep sides. This way any bubbling over of the sauce can be caught for an easier cleanup later.
- Great recipe for doubling and freezing. Find more information on best tips for freezing above in the post.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 10 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 517Total Fat: 29gSaturated Fat: 15gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 11gCholesterol: 108mgSodium: 1715mgCarbohydrates: 27gFiber: 3gSugar: 7gProtein: 37g