This is the easiest recipe in the world and it's delicious! If you don't want to make the marinara sauce for this recipe, it's as easy as going to to the store and buying your favorite jar of sauce. Not difficult at all. If you want a homemade meal that is so good and soooo easy, this is definitely my pick! This recipe feeds 6-8.
1 box No-Bake Lasagna by Barilla (or you can cook your own, I'm just writing the Simplest Recipe)
1 Large Carton Cottage Cheese
2 C Mozzarella Cheese
1 Cup Fresh Parmesan Cheese
1 lb. Ground Italian Sausage Cooked
1 Jar or make my marinara sauce recipe (remember, if you want it easy and are on your way home from work, grab a jar of sauce. No big deal. This is a FAST and EASY dinner.)
Pre-Heat oven to 350F
Brown Sausage in Pan and drain grease
Mix the marinara sauce into the sausage and let heat on stove top, but save 1/4 cup marinara sauce for bottom of pan
Spray a 9x13 casserole pan with cooking spray or olive oil.
On the bottom of the pan dump the 1/4 cup of marinara sauce so your first layer of lasagna will stick. On top of the sauce cover with the no bake lasagna. On top of the lasagna spoon your marinara and sausage over the noodles, then spread a layer of cottage cheese. Sprinkle a 1/2 of the mozzarella, and parmesan on top of the cottage cheese. Do this one more time, but make sure to reserve a little of your sauce and cheese for the very top.
When you are done layering it should look like this:
After you have 3 different layers of noodles take the little bit of your remaining sauce and spread over the top layer of noodles. If you have any cottage cheese left spread the remaining on top (if you don't have any cottage cheese left it's fine). On top of the sauce sprinkle a little parmesan and mozzarella on the top. So, final lasagna back should be layered accordingly:
1. Plain Marinara
Place in oven uncovered for 35-45 minutes. When it is finished let it sit for 10 minutes before cutting into it.
Best Marinara Sauce
1 T. Butter
3 T. Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1/2 large onion diced
2 minced garlic cloves
1 t. dried basil
4 T. fresh chopped parsley
2 (14.5 oz) cans stewed tomatoes
6 oz Tomato Paste
In a saute pan melt butter. Combine onions and garlic and saute until onions are clear. Let cool. After they have cooled, combine onions/garlic, olive oil, dried basil, parsley, stewed tomatoes and tomato paste in a food processor or strong blender. Mix/pulse the ingredients until smooth but still has a little bit of chunkiness to it.
You can use it immediately, freeze it for up to 4 months, or refrigerate for up to 5 days.
I like the stewed tomatoes the best because of their flavor, but you can also use just plain canned or whole tomatoes. All in all it doesn't matter because you are blending it. If you want a little edge to the sauce you can add 1/4 cup FRESHLY grated parmesan cheese. It adds a little stronger flavor to the sauce. You can also add salt and pepper if you want a stronger flavor. Mix and match with this recipe. Make it to your liking and what you want it to taste like. These are just the basic ingredients and what I normally use. In the summer months I use fresh tomatoes instead of stewed.