You Have a Very Busy Week Ahead of You and Only Have One Night to Cook

September 29, 2009 by

It's going to be one BUSY week!

You want to have a nice dinner every night, but really only have one night to cook.

And that night is tonight!

It's weeks like this when I love to make something in a baking dish or a crock pot, that can be enjoyed all week.

That way I can just pair it with a nice salad or fresh vegetables, and have an easy home cooked meal each night.

One of my absolute favorite "single dish meals" is a three-cheese lasagna.  I actually keep all of the ingredients on hand except for the meat and cheese, and love that it doesn't require a lot of brain power to make.

And while the recipe appears to take a long time, it really doesn't.  Consider this ...

Even though the sauce takes a couple of hours to cook, you really only have to spend about 20 minutes preparing it ... tops!

And then it takes another maybe 15 minutes to assemble.  Remember, oven-ready lasagna noodles are the only way to go.

So 35 minutes of actual cooking ... in exchange for an amazing dish that you can enjoy all week.


So the next time you have a busy week ahead of you, that won't allow you to spend much time cooking during the week, leave the frozen dinners where they belong (in the grocer's freezer!). You have the perfect recipe for a three-cheese lasagna that will keep you and your family well fed the entire week.

Until our next meal,


P.S. To make sure your lasagna top comes out looking good, watch my new video on how to keep the cheese from sticking to tin foil.

Three Cheese Lasagna

Three Cheese Homemade Lasagna

Three Cheese Homemade Lasagna


  • 1 Pound Sweet Italian Sausage Links
  • 3/4 Pound Lean Ground Beef
  • 4 Garlic Cloves, Crushed
  • 1/2 Cup Minced Onion
  • 28 oz Crushed Tomatoes
  • 13 oz Canned Tomato Sauce
  • 12 Oz Canned Tomato Paste
  • 1/2 Cup Water
  • 1 Tbs Sugar
  • 1/2 Tsp Pepper
  • 1 1/2 Tsp Dried Basil
  • 1 Tsp Italian Seasoning
  • 4 Tbs Parsley, Divided
  • 16 Oz Ricotta Cheese
  • 1 Egg
  • Oven-Ready Lasagna Noodles
  • 3/4 Pound Mozzarella Cheese (Slices if Available)
  • 3/4 Cup Parmesan Cheese
  • Salt


  • Remove the sausage from its casing.
  • Combine the sausage, beef, onion and garlic in a Dutch oven, and cook until brown.
  • Add the crushed tomatoes, tomato sauce, tomato paste and water.
  • Stir in sugar, pepper, basil, Italian seasoning, 1/2 tsp pepper, and 2 tbs parsley.
  • Cover and simmer for 1 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally.
  • In a mixing bowl, combine ricotta cheese, egg, 1/2 tsp salt, and 2 tbs parsley.
  • Lightly coat a 9X13 inch baking dish with cooking spray.
  • Spread 1 1/2 cups of sauce in bottom of dish.
  • Arrange 6 noodles over sauce.
  • Spread 1/2 of the ricotta mixture over the noodles.
  • Cover the ricotta with a single layer of mozzarella cheese slices. (1/4 pound If using shredded cheese.)
  • Spoon 1 1/2 cups meat sauce, and then sprinkle with ¼ cup parmesan cheese.
  • Repeat layers finishing with remaining sauce, then parmesan and then mozzarella.
  • Cover with aluminum foil.
  • Bake 30 minutes @ 375. Remove foil and bake 25 minutes, or until the top layer of mozzarella starts to brown.
  • Cool 15 minutes before serving.

Cooking Tip: When baking something with cheese on top, and covering it with aluminum foil, spray the foil with cooking spray before placing on the baking dish. It will keep the cheese from sticking to the foil, so you end up with a perfect top.

  • Prep time: 30 Minutes
  • Cook time: 3.5 hours including sauce