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This lasagna recipe I got from an old “McCall’s Cooking School”  cookbook.  I have tried other recipes but I keep going back to this one.  It seem to be a favorite every time I serve it.


I will give you the recipe as it is in the book and put in (parentheses) the changes I have made to the recipe.

You can make the sauce ahead of time.


To make the sauce you will need:

  • 1 lb sweet or hot Italian sausage (5 links)
  • ½ lb ground beef
  • ½ cup finely chopped onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 2 Tablespoons sugar
  • 1 Tablespoons salt
  • 1 ½ teaspoons dried basil leaves
  • ½ teaspoon fennel seed
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper
  • 2 Tablespoons chopped parsley
  • 4 cups canned tomatoes, undrained; or 1 can (2lbs, 3oz.) Italian-style tomatoes (Since they do not make this size can I use a 28 oz. can and a 15.5 oz. can – this gives me a little more sauce which I like)
  • 2 cans (6 oz. size) tomato paste

Remove sausage meat from outer casings; chop the meat.  In 5 quart Dutch oven, over medium heat, sauté sausage, beef (break up with wooden spoon), and onion and garlic, stirring frequently, until well browned – 20 minutes.

Add sugar, salt, the basil, fennel, pepper, and half of the parsley. Mix well.  Add tomatoes, tomato  paste and ½ cup of water, mashing tomatoes with wooden spoon.  Bring to boiling; reduce heat; simmer, covered and stirring occasionally, until thick – 1 ½ hours.

  • 1 Tablespoon salt
  • 12 curly lasagna noodles (¾ of a 1 lb box) (I use the whole box and add an extra layer of noodles)


In 8 quart kettle, bring 3 quarts of water and 1 tablespoon of salt to boiling.  Add lasagna, 2 to 3 at a time.  Return to boiling; boil, uncovered and stirring occasionally, 10 minutes, or until just tender. Drain in colander; rinse under cold water.  Dry lasagna on paper towels.

  • 1 container 15oz ricotta or cottage cheese, drained
  • 1 egg
  • 2 T parsley
  •  ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¾ lb. mozzarella cheese, thinly sliced (I use 1 lb.)
  • 1 jar (3oz) grated Parmesan cheese (3/4 cup)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In medium bowl combine ricotta, egg, remaining parsley, and salt. Mix well.

In bottom of  13”x9”x2” baking dish begin layering as follows:


Layer 1

  • 1 1/2 cups of sauce
  • 6 lasagna (1/3 of box) lengthwise and overlapping to cover
  • spread with 1/2 of ricotta mixture
  • top with 1/3 of mozzarella
  • spoon 1 1/2 cups of sauce over cheese
  • sprinkle with 1/4 cup Parmesan

Layer 2

  • 6 lasagna (1/3 of box)
  • spread with 1/2 of ricotta mixture
  • top with 1/3 of mozzarella
  • spoon 1 1/2 cups of sauce over cheese
  • sprinkle with 1/4 cup Parmesan

Layer 3

  • 6 lasagna (1/3 of box this is where I add the extra lasagna) 
  • Remaining Sauce
  • top with 1/3 of mozzarella
  • sprinkle with 1/4 cup Parmesan

At this point you could refrigerate and bake later or freeze.

 Cover with foil, tucking around edge.  Bake 25 minutes; remove foil; bake 25 minutes longer, or until bubbly.  ( I find it takes about 1/2 hour longer. If it has been refrigerated or frozen it could take even longer.  I usually set out for 30 minutes to an hour before baking if refrigerated). Cool 15 minutes before serving.  To serve: With sharp knife, cut in squares.  Use wide spatula to serve.  Serves 8


You notice that it says it serves 8, but that would be 8 hardy servings.  The last party I had 10 guests.  I did not want to risk not having enough… so instead of making two lasagnas and having lots of leftovers I made meatballs and served them with the lasagna.  We actually had leftovers of both and everyone went home full.


If you look at the meatball recipe it takes 2 1/2 pounds of hamburger and 1/2 lb of sausage.   The lasagna recipe takes 1/2 lb. of hamburger and 1 lb. sausage.  My store sells 3 lb. packs of hamburger and 1 1/2 lbs. of sausage so it works out perfectly for me.  I just use a jar of bought sauce for my meatballs.

I like that this can be made ahead so that you can enjoy your time with your guests and not be spending all of your time cooking.

I hope you and your family will enjoy it.  

Happy Entertaining,


Printable version of recipe –  Lasagna(PDF)

This dish goes well with the following recipes:




8 thoughts on “Lasagna

  1. Looks delicious Jane! Hoping to make lasagna for Christmas Eve. Thanks for sharing!

    1. You are very welcome, I am sure you have a good recipe too

  2. Looks yummy! One of my favorite meals.

    1. Thank you Charlotte, wish we could share the meal together!

  3. Thanks for sharing Jane! Looks yum, love the idea of adding sausage to the sauce 🙂

    1. Thank you Effie, it gives a little extra kick of flavor

  4. sauce looks yummy! Hope to make this recipe soon! thank you!

    1. Thanks Amy, I hope you enjoy it

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