Part II: Peter’s Lasagna

Okay, now that it’s been established that I’m not in serious trouble for posting my slightly-nicer-than-average, Harry Potter-spoiling brother-in-law’s authentic lasagna recipe, I can go easy on the sucking up. I have made a few changes out of sheer convenience and I’m hoping if he can forgive his own wife for leaving out the Béchamel sauce altogether, he can forgive me for mixing stuff together. It’s all going to the same place, right? RIGHT?

Peter’s Genuine Italian Lasagna

1 recipe pasta and lasagna sauce
12 no-boil lasagna noodles
8 oz. shredded mozzarella, divided
4 oz. shredded fresh Parmesan
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 16-oz. tub Ricotta
Béchamel Sauce

1/4 c. (1/2 stick) real butter, NO SUBSTITUTES
1/4. c. white flour
2 1/2 c. milk
Preheat oven to 350.
To prepare Béchamel sauce, melt butter over medium-low heat in a medium saucepan. When melted, whisk in flour until combined. Slowly add milk, whisking constantly. Heat until bubbly and thickened to a medium consistency that that looks like this on a spoon:
Now…this is where I start tinkering with his recipe. And it was ONLY tinkering out of an attempt to make things easier and less messy, not that I thought I could make things better. Traditionally, when you make a lasagna with Béchamel sauce, you have a layer of red sauce and then a layer of Béchamel on top. But for me, I could never get the proportions of red sauce to white sauce right. So one day, I just mixed the two. Maybe I’m a blasphemer, but I do it all for the sake of lasagna-eaters everywhere who want to eat it more than once every five years. So if you feel like taking a walk on the wild side, mix the Béchamel in with the red sauce. What are you, chicken? Come on, you know you want to…

After you’ve made (and mixed) the Béchamel, combine 6 oz. mozzarella (about 1 3/4 c.), ricotta, Parmesan, and the beaten egg. At this point, I like to set up a little lasagna-making station:

Using a ladle that measures 1/2 c. (or a 1/2 c. measuring cup), spread 1 c. of sauce onto the bottom of a 9×13 pan. Add 3 noodles. Spread a layer of the cheese mixture. Spread 1 1/2 c. sauce and repeat so you have 4 layers of noodles. You should end with a layer of sauce on top. Sprinkle with remaining mozzarella (and some extra Parmesan if you have some left over).

Cover tightly with foil and bake about 50 minutes.

Remove from oven and remove foil. It will probably look a little runny. Don’t be scared–you still need to let it stand about 15-20 minutes. During that time, it will thicken up nicely and it won’t even be that oozy when you cut it.

This serves 12. And wanna know what’s awesome? If you use super lean ground beef, it has around 250 calories and 5 Weight Watcher points! Seriously, the TASTIEST, most filling 5 points you’ll ever have in your life.


  1. I made this yesterday and it was awesome! My entire family loved it. I am so thankful for oven ready lasagna noodles! Thank you for this post! This is my new lasagna recipe!!

  2. Hey Sara, I used to do the SAME thing with the red and white sauce at the Cougareat. It just isn’t the same there anymore.

    BUT anyway… that lasagne looks very yummy and beautiful too ;). You know what I like to do with my lasagnes? I like to make 2 in 8×8 pans instead of 1 9×13. Then we eat one and freeze one. We get really sick of eating leftover lasagne for days and days so it works out better.

  3. Mmmm, that looks SOOO good. I haven’t made that in at least a month! ;o) I think mixing the bechamel sounds normal because the sauces and cheese all kind of melt together and mix anyway. By the way, I’ve had so many people ask us for the recipe and I always try my best to explain how I make it, but I don’t have any exact measurements. Now I can just point them toward your site! So, thanks!

  4. Remember that little pasta place in the Cougar Eat? My favorite thing was going there and getting a plate of pasta with half marinara and half white sauce, and then I would mix them together and get a creamy-tomato-ish concoction that was so yummy! What I’m trying to say is combining the Béchamel and red sauce? Brilliant my dear.

    Love that first picture too, I just want to stab a fork in that sucker. Yum!

  5. Ok I have to admit, I am not usually a huge fan of tomato sauce based foods (spaghetti, pizza, etc) but this really does look delicious!

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