You’d think that, growing up in an Italian family, I’d have eaten my fair share of lasagna. That couldn’t be further from the truth, though. Lasagna was reserved for special occasions (oftentimes Christmas dinner), mostly because, if we’re being honest, it’s a complete pain in the you-know-what to make.
There are a few steps (like a layer of hard-boiled eggs) my family would take in making our version of lasagna that were kind of unnecessary but that added to the complexity or just to the overall time it took to make the dish. But even without these steps, from the precooking of the noodles to their careful extraction from the pot without breaking them to the layering upon layering, it’s a dish that’s quite the process.
This skillet lasagna takes everything you love about the dish (noodles, meat, creamy ricotta, sauce, basil — it’s got it all) and makes it all in one skillet in just about 30 minutes.
Why my family never thought to do something like this when we begged and begged for the dish as kids blows my mind, because it really couldn’t be simpler. Perhaps this is one of those times when Mom really doesn’t know best.
One-skillet lasagna recipe
This is a one-skillet version of the traditional Italian comfort food — lasagna — you can make in way less time.
Prep time: 10 minutes | Cook time: 25 minutes | Total time: 35 minutes
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 shallots, minced
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- Dash red pepper flakes
- 1/2 pound ground beef
- Salt and pepper
- 6 uncooked lasagna noodles, broken into 2 or 3 pieces each
- 28 ounces crushed tomatoes
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1/2 cup ricotta
- 1/2 cup shredded mozzarella
- Chopped basil, for garnish
- In a 10-inch skillet over medium heat, heat the olive oil.
- Add the shallots, garlic and red pepper flakes, and sauté for about 2 to 3 minutes, until softened.
- Add the beef, breaking it up into small pieces with a spatula or wooden spoon, and cook until browned.
- Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
- Place the broken noodles on top of the meat in an even layer so that they’re completely covering the beef.
- In a small bowl, mix together the tomatoes and paste, and then pour them on top of the noodles in the skillet so that the noodles are completely covered by the sauce.
- Cook for about 10 to 12 minutes at a simmer so that the sauce liquid cooks the noodles.
- Dollop the ricotta on top of the sauce, and sprinkle the mozzarella on top. Cover the skillet, and cook for an additional 5 minutes, until the cheese has melted.
- Remove from the heat, garnish with basil, and serve.