Dinner

Lasagna Recipe Without Ricotta Cheese

A homemade lasagna recipe without ricotta cheese is an Italian lasagna made easier by leaving out the ricotta filling. A hearty and flavorful lasagna comes together quickly with ground beef in a tomato sauce, layers of tender noodles, creamy white sauce and mozzarella cheese. This is a dish that everyone will love and will be asking for seconds.

A serving spoon with a slice of lasagna.
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❤️ Why You’ll Love It

  • Perfect make ahead meal and reheat as needed.
  • Easy to double the recipe.
  • So good you’ll want to make a second for a friend or your freezer.
  • Kids love this cheesy beefy pasta recipe.

No one will be able to resist this fresh-from-the-oven Italian classic dish. Meat lasagna without ricotta cheese is a delicious dish with layers of meat, cheese and noodles that everyone in your home will enjoy. Ground beef lasagna is also perfect for potlucks or family holidays.

📝 Ingredients

Ingredients for the recipe on a white surface.

🥄 Instructions

Note: This is an overview of the instructions. The detailed instructions are in the recipe card below.

An image showing cooked lasagna noodles on a tray.
  • Cook the pasta: start by boiling salted water and cook noodles until al dente. Drain the noodles and lay them flat on a baking sheet. Spray with oil spray and place parchment paper in between layers.
A collage of four images showing how to make meat sauce for the lasagna.
  • In a large pot saute onions until translucent, add garlic and cook for 30 seconds or more.
  • Add ground beef, breaking it apart, cook until no longer pink, drain the excess fat.
  • Add spices, tomato paste, sauce and mix everything well to combine.
  • Bring meat mixture to a boil then reduce heat to medium low and simmer uncovered for 30 minutes stirring occasionally.
A collage of four images showing how to make white sauce for the lasagna.
  • To make the white sauce, place milk in a microwave safe measuring cup or bowl and heat for 1-2 minutes. In a pot over medium heat pour oil, butter and wait until butter has melted. Whisk in flour and cook for a couple of minutes until it turns pale yellow.
  • Gradually pour in hot milk while whisking and stirring until mixture is smooth with no lumps.
  • Keep cooking until the mixture thickens, about 8 minutes.
  • Season with salt and pepper.
A collage of four images showing how to assemble lasagna.
  • Before assembling the lasagna, preheat oven to 375°F. In a 13×9 dish spread about 1 cup of the meat sauce at the bottom of the dish.
  • Top with 3 sheets of cooked lasagna.
  • Spread about 1 cup of the white sauce, then top with a 1/3rd of the remaining meat sauce.
  • Sprinkle 1/4 of the mozzarella cheese you are using. Repeat these steps for two more times in this order. 3 sheets of noodles, white sauce, meat sauce and mozzarella.
An assembled lasagna dish ready to be baked.
  • Lay the final 3 sheets of lasagna and top with the remaining béchamel sauce. Sprinkle the remaining mozzarella cheese on top. Bake in the oven for 25-30 minutes until bubbly and top has browned a bit.

💡 Expert Tips

  • Do not rinse the lasagna noodles as we need the starch layer forming on them for the sauce to cling to.
  • I do not usually drain excess fat when making seasoned ground beef but in this case, it will make the dish so greasy especially if yoy are using less than 85% lean ground beef.
  • Sugar is added to balance the acidity in the meat sauce. If you do not like adding sugar, you can also add a small grated carrot.
  • Some people like adding a diced green bell pepper to the meat mixture too.
  • I use only 2 cups of shredded mozzarella cheese as my family does not like it extra cheesy. You can use up to 3 cups or even more depending on your liking.
  • In traditional lasagna the meat sauce is simmered for at least 1 1/2 hours, this makes for a heavenly rich sauce but unfortunately I do not always have that kind of time. This is an everyday lasagna recipe.
  • Authentic Italian lasagna is also made with a mix of pork, beef and pancetta and usually tomato paste. I do not consume pork and I am making my life easier by using regular tomato sauce.
  • You can use oven ready lasagna if you wish to, just add a 1/2 cup of beef broth or water to the sauce. I am not a fan of oven ready lasagna though.

🧺 Storage

Place leftover lasagna in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 4-5 days, freeze for longer.

⌛ Make Ahead

  • You can assemble the dish, make sure it has cooled to room temperature then cover tightly with plastic wrap and foil. Freeze for up to 3 months. When ready to cook, remove plastic wrap, cover with foil and cook from frozen or let it thaw in the fridge overnight.
  • You can also refrigerate the assembled dish for up to 2 days before baking.
  • You can also make the sauce(s), refrigerate for up to 2 days then assemble the dish on the day you need to bake it.
A close up look at a lasagna dish with slices cut up to show layers.

🍽️ Serve With

This easy lasagna recipe is a hearty meal that can be served on its own but you can also add a fabulous antipasto or green salad. Breadsticks or garlic bread goes great as well. And if you love cheese, a sprinkle of Parmesan always goes well on top too.

👩‍🍳 Variations

  • Add flavor by adding a diced green bell pepper to the meat mixture.
  • You can add a mix of ground beef with ground sausage or even ground turkey.
  • You can use cheddar or a mild gouda in place of the mozzarella if you wish.
A slice of lasagna on a white plate.

💬 FAQs

Does traditional lasagna have ricotta?

Traditional lasagna recipe usually has layers of ricotta and egg mixture, but this lasagna recipe makes making lasagna even easier and still delicious by leaving those ingredients out.

How many layers should lasagna have?

Traditionally, lasagna should have 3 -4 layers, but really you can have as many layers as you desire.

What is the white sauce in lasagna?

The white sauce in this beef lasagna recipe is called Béchamel. Béchamel is a simple sauce made from a mix of butter, flour, milk and seasonings.

I hope you’ll like this recipe and please if you make this recipe, snap a pic and hashtag it #amiraspantry — I love to see your creations on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter!
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Lasagna Recipe without Ricotta Cheese

An easier, quicker version of the the classic Italian lasagna recipe made with ground beef. A rich decadent lasagna with no ricotta.

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Course: dinner, Main Course

Cuisine: Mediterranean

Diet: Halal

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour 30 minutes

Total Time: 2 hours

Servings: 12 servings

Calories: 475kcal

Instructions

Cook the pasta

  • In a large pot, boil salted water and cook noodles until al dente.

  • Drain noodles, lay them flat on a baking sheet, spray with oil spray and place parchment paper in between layers.

Make the meat sauce

  • In a large pot pour oil and heat on medium high.

  • Add onions and sauté until translucent, add garlic and cook for 30 seconds more.

  • Add ground beef, breaking it apart, cook until no longer pink, drain the excess fat.

  • Add spices, tomato paste, sauce and dmix everything well to combine.

  • Bring meat mixture to a boil then reduce heat to medium low and simmer uncovered for 30 minutes stirring occasionally.

Make the white sauce

  • Place milk in a microwave safe measuring cup or bowl and heat for 1-2 minutes.

  • In a pot over medium heat pour oil, butter and wait until butter has melted.

  • Whisk in flour and cook for a couple of minutes until it turns pale yellow.

  • Gradually pour in hot milk while whisking and stirring until mixture is smooth with no lumps.

  • Keep cooking until the mixture thickens, about 8 minutes.

  • Season with salt and pepper.

Assemble the lasagna

  • Preheat oven to 375° F.

  • In a 13×9 lasagna dish spread about 1 cup of the meat sauce at the bottom of the dish.

  • Top that with 3 sheets of cooked lasagna.

  • Spread about 1 cup of the white sauce, then top with a 1/3rd of the remaining meat sauce.

  • Sprinkle 1/4 of the mozzarella cheese.

  • Repeat these steps for two more times in this order 3 sheets of lasagna noodles, white sauce, meat sauce and mozzarella.

  • Lay the final 3 sheets of lasagna and top with the remaining béchamel sauce.

  • Sprinkle the remaining mozzarella cheese on top.

  • Bake in the oven for 25-30 minutes until bubbly and the top has browned a bit.

  • Let it cool down for 30 minutes before cutting and serving.

Notes

  • Do not rinse the lasagna noodles as we need the starch layer forming on them for the sauce to cling to.
  • I do not usually drain excess fat when making seasoned ground beef but in this case, it will make the dish so greasy especially if you are using less than 85% lean ground beef.
  • Sugar is added to balance the acidity in the meat sauce, if you do no like adding sugar you can add a small grated carrot.
  • Some people like adding a diced green bell pepper to the meat mixture too.
  • I usually use only 2 cups of shredded mozzarella cheese as my family does not like it extra cheesy. You can use up to 3 cups or even more depending on your liking.
  • In traditional lasagna the meat sauce is simmered for at least 1 1/2 hours, this makes for a heavenly rich sauce but unfortunately I do not always have that kind of time. This is an everyday lasagna recipe.
  • Authentic Italian lasagna is also made with a mix of pork, beef and pancetta and usually tomato paste. I do not consume pork, and I am making my life easier by using regular tomato sauce.
  • You can use oven ready lasagna if you wish to, just add a 1/2 cup of beef broth or water to the sauce. I am not a fan of oven ready lasagna though.

Storage

  • Place leftover lasagna in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 4-5 days, freeze for longer.

Make ahead

  • You can assemble the dish, make sure it has cooled to room temperature then cover tightly with plastic wrap and foil. Freeze for up to 3 months. When ready to cook, remove plastic wrap, cover with foil and cook from frozen or let it thaw in the fridge overnight.
  • You can also refrigerate the assembled dish for up to 2 days before baking.
  • You can also make the sauce(s), refrigerate for up to 2 days then assemble the dish on the day you need to bake it.

Please check the nutrition disclaimer policy.

Nutrition

Calories: 475kcal | Carbohydrates: 32g | Protein: 25g | Fat: 27g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 11g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 81mg | Sodium: 624mg | Potassium: 494mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 347IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 256mg | Iron: 2mg

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