I originally shared this recipe over 3 years ago in Feb. 2012 and since then it’s been one of my go to recipes, so I decided to update the photos and I added some light tweaks to the recipe to add just a little more flavor. This is one of my favorite recipes! It’s one that I love enough that I’ll serve it to company. I love that both young and old alike always enjoy them and I also love that they reheat so well. There aren’t many foods that I like just as much when they are rewarmed the second or third day around. Another great thing about these is that you can prepare the full recipe then freeze half and bake them later on. The first time you make these they may seem pretty labor intensive, like just about any lasagna, but once you’ve made them a few times it will start to go pretty quick. These roll ups are just total delicious comfort food, so good you may likely add them to your dinner rotation! One great thing about making these roll-up style instead of like a layered lasagna is that they don’t seem like too much of a splurge because they can help with portion control. But who am I kidding, I always find myself plating a second one because they are totally irresistible! But if you are better with self-restraint then I the portion control thing might mean something to you here :). I love that they are little rolled up individual lasagnas, things are always more fun when they come in individual servings, right?
And just because here’s what I original wrote about this recipe way back when…
Lasagna in a single serving form, no more messy sloppy layered squares! I love these. Not only do they look incredible they taste incredible! I doubt I will ever make regular layered lasagna again. These are the perfect serving size, and they are so much fancier. If you ask me I think they are even easier than layered lasagna.
You will notice in the ingredients list I stated freshly grated cheese for all the cheeses, you are not allowed to use the pre-grated stuff, it’s junk especially for lasagna =). You will also noticed in the recipe that I stated to grind the cooked beef/onion mixture in the food processor for a few seconds, I do this because every really good Italian restaurant I’ve been to seems to have finely ground beef in their pasta sauces and I love it. You don’t get any large chunks of beef in your sauce, it just gives it a better consistency. If you have a small family this is a perfect dish to make the whole batch, then freeze half (unbaked) and thaw overnight the day before you want to eat it and bake the next day for dinner. I love getting two meals from one.
I would recommend serving this along with your favorite fresh Italian bread and a simple salad topped with The Old Spaghetti Factory’s Creamy Pesto Salad Dressing. Yum!
Lasagna Roll Ups
- 4 Tbsp olive oil , divided
- 8 oz lean ground beef
- 1/4 cup finely chopped yellow onion
- 1 (28 oz) can crushed tomatoes
- 3 cloves garlic , minced
- 3 Tbsp chopped fresh basil or 2 tsp dried basil* , plus more for serving
- 1/2 tsp dried oregano
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper , to taste
- 1 (15 oz) container ricotta cheese
- 1 large egg
- 3 Tbsp fresh flat leaf parsley , chopped, plus more for serving
- 2 1/2 cups freshly grated mozzarella cheese , divided
- 3/4 cup freshly , finely grated Parmesan cheese, divided
- 1/3 cup freshly , finely grated Romano cheese
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 12 uncooked lasagna noodles
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Drizzle one tablespoon olive oil into a large non-stick fry pan. Heat over medium high heat, crumble ground beef over oil, add chopped onions and cook mixture stirring occasionally and breaking up meat, until browned. Drain fat from beef. Pour beef mixture into a food processor and pulse for about 5 seconds until it is ground into fine pieces. Pour beef mixture back into fry pan and add crushed tomatoes, minced garlic, basil, oregano and 1 tablespoon olive oil and stir. Season sauce with salt and pepper to taste then cover with a lid and simmer over low heat while preparing pasta and cheese mixture.
Cook lasagna noodles in a large pot of boiling water along with 1 tsp salt and 2 tablespoon olive oil to al dente according to directions listed on package. Once noodles are cooked, drain and line noodles in a single layer on waxed paper or cookie sheets sprayed lightly with non-stick cooking spray.
Prepare cheese mixture (I do this while pasta is cooking) by stirring together ricotta cheese, egg, 1/4 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp pepper with a fork in a large mixing bowl until well combine. Stir in chopped fresh parsley. Add in 2 cups grated mozzarella cheese, 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese and 1/3 cup Romano cheese, stir mixture until well combine.
Stir meat sauce and spread 1/3 cup evenly into a 13x9 inch baking dish. Spread 1/4 cup cheese mixture evenly onto each cooked lasagna noodle (it will be a thin layer), then spread 1 heaping tablespoon meat sauce along the top of cheese covered noodle. Roll noodles up jellyroll style and arrange seam side down in baking dish. Cover rolled noodles with remaining meat sauce then sprinkle remaining 1/2 cup Mozzarella cheese and 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese evenly over roll-ups. Tent baking dish with foil (don't allow foil to rest on cheese or it will stick you just want to loosely tent to prevent the cheese from browning) and bake for 35 minutes in preheated oven. Serve warm garnished with chopped fresh basil and parsley.
*Along with the basil and oregano, you can also add in a little bit of rosemary, thyme and crushed fennel seeds if desired.
Recipe Source: Cooking Classy