No Boil Lasagna for 12

No Boil Lasagna for 12
half size pan of a baked no boil lasagna
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This No-Boil Lasagna for 12 is made in an aluminum steam table half-pan. After all the fuss of making the lasagna, just toss the pan! The portion is a medium to large size. One portion can be cut in half to feed a child. Cuts are going to be 4 rows across, 3 rows down.

Cooking for Exactly 12?

Just to note: if you’re cooking for 12, based on who you’re feeding, you want to have an extra pan of lasagna made. When people know there is more, they tend to come back for seconds and you don’t want your guests to leave hungry.

These are a pretty good size and when I serve it at church, at least 5 come back for seconds, and some seniors are known to come back for a half piece.

If lasagna is left over, you can let it cool down, cut it in pieces, wrap the pieces individually in plastic wrap (not foil) and freeze or freeze the entire pan. There is a link below for freezing in a disposable pan.

Preparing Time

No-Boil Lasagna is pretty easy, it just requires a lot of dishes. Depending on how you do it, how you prep it, or if you’re making it in advance. This will all depend on how long it will take YOU to prepare it.

Having everything ready and prepped to put together, this pan could be done and ready to pop in the oven in 45 minutes to an hour, but always add an additional 20 minutes to starting time, just in case something comes up.

Shopping List for No-Boil Lasagna

Shopping List:
2 lbs ground beef
Garlic – minced, squeezed or whole
Bell Pepper – 1 medium to large
Onion – 1 medium to large onion
Crushed tomatoes – 1/28 oz can
Stewed tomatoes – 1/28 oz can
Oven Ready Lasagna Noodles – 1/12 oz box
Garlic salt or regular Iodized salt
Dried Basil
Oregano
30 oz Ricotta cheese
16 oz bag Shredded Mozzarella (4 cups)
6 oz bag Shredded Parmesan (1 1/2 cups)
4 eggs
half -size aluminum steam pan
Cooking spray

Abbreviations

lbs – pounds
oz – ounce
tbsp – tablespoon
tsp – teaspoon

Ingredients


Ground Beef – I use 80/20 ground beef.

Sausage – If you want to add sausage then add sausage, you could do 1 lb beef and 1 lb sausage or just sub all sausage.

Garlic – I use what I have on hand, (fresh, minced in oil, chopped) if you’re using fresh garlic and chopping it up, use 2-3 cloves.

Bell Pepper and Onion: medium to large on both is fine. Don’t worry about the actual size, and no need to waste it. Use it all, both will cook down and after you peel that onion it’s going to get smaller anyways. You can check out this site with directions on how to peel and chop an onion.

Crushed and Stewed Tomatoes: I buy plain crushed and stewed tomatoes. If you buy the Italian flavor, omit the basil and oregano. Also, if you can’t find a 28 oz can buy 2/14 oz cans.

Oven Ready Lasagna Noodles: also called No-Boil Lasagna Pasta, use Mueller’s, Barilla’s, Great Value, Publix, or Kroger brand. I have used all these but usually, I buy the Great Value or Kroger brand and they work just fine.

Garlic Salt or Regular Iodized Salt: I love to use Lawry’s garlic salt with parsley, for everything. But if I don’t have it on hand, I’ll use regular salt or plain garlic salt. Choose just one, not both, it will come out salty if you add both.

Dried Basil and Oregano: I get my spices for $1.00, so nothing fancy.

Ricotta, Mozzarella, and Parmesan: Use skim or whole, I use store brands and they work just fine. In fact, when I buy small quantities of ingredients or buy for my house, I buy the store brand.

Prep

You will need to gather together:

  • a skillet
  • large bowl for the meat and sauce
  • meduim to large bowl for the cheese mixture
  • small bowl for the cheese topping
  • colander
  • spatula
  • cutting board
  • knife
  • measuring cup
  • measuring spoons
  • 2 sheets of foil (longer than the aluminum pan)
  • all lasagna ingredients
  • cooking spray

In Advance

Dice/chop green bell pepper, onion, garlic.

How to Prepare the Meat

Pre-heat the over to 350 degrees for later.

In a skillet, add the meat, diced green bell pepper, chopped onion, minced garlic, and salt.

Over medium to high heat start mixing it all together.

Cook till browned and done.

Drain and set to side.

Preparing the Sauce

If you’re able, while the meat is cooking start the sauce mixture. If not, you can prepare the sauce while the meat is draining.

Pour the stewed tomatoes, juice and all in a large bowl. I wear gloves and I break up the stewed tomatoes into small pieces. Basically crushing and breaking apart or pull out the food processor and use that. You do not heat this sauce, just add it to a bowl and mix it up.

Add the rest of the ingredients, (crushed tomatoes plus juice, basil, oregano, salt) to the stewed tomatoes bowl and mix well.

Then add the drained meat to the bowl and mix well again. Put to the side.

Prepare the Cheese Mixture

In a large bowl mix 2 cups of Mozzarella and 1 cup of Parmesan cheese with the Ricotta and eggs.

In another bowl, mix 2 cups Mozzarella and a half cup of parmesan, mix it up and set to the side.

Now, you should have your empty half pan, meat sauce, ricotta cheese mixture and no-boil pasta set up in front of you. Also, some cooking spray.

Prepare the Pan

Spray your pan with cooking spray. If you do not have cooking spray, pour a little cooking oil in the pan and spread it around the pan evenly, (bottom, corner, sides) pour out any excess oil.

Assemble the Lasagna

First layer; starting from the bottom: Add meat sauce to the bottom of your pan and spread it out, to cover the pan. About 3 and a half cups of meat sauce.

Second layer; on top of the meat sauce, layer 4 No-Boil Pasta Noodles on top of the meat.

Third layer; on top of the pasta, add half of the Ricotta Cheese mixture on top of the No Boil pasta noodles and spread it out. I use the back of a spoon. You will only use the cheese mixture twice, so halving it will make sure both layers have an even amount.

Repeat the layering; add another layer of meat sauce on top of the Ricotta cheese mixture and spread it out (about 3 and a half cups)

Place 4 pieces of No-Boil pasta noodles on top of the meat sauce. Overlapping to fit the pasta noodles is fine. Also, you can use one of the remaining noodles and break it into pieces to fill in spots. The pan gets smaller towards the top, that’s why the pasta will fit differently.

Add the rest of the Ricotta cheese mixture.

Then add the remaining meat sauce.

Topping

Now is the time to add parsley flakes (if you like, 2 tablespoons) to the cheese that you put to the side and mix it up or you can top the lasagna with cheese and sprinkle on the parsley flakes or not add it at all.

Cut 2 pieces of foil the same size, longer than the length of the pan and overlap them to make them a wider piece and spray with cooking spray.

Cover your lasagna with the foil, sprayed side down and as loose over the top as you can this way the cheese won’t stick.

Secure the foil as tightly around the edges.

Preparing for the Oven

Place the aluminum pan of lasagna on a lined sheet pan (with foil or parchment paper).

If you aren’t using a sheet pan, place two pieces of foil over the oven rack overlapping each other to cover more area of the rack and place the lasagna in the middle, the lasagna will bubble over.

The pan will be heavy, so if you have an extra pan you can double up.

Cook at 350 degrees for 45 mins. Then remove the foil very carefully from the top of the pan, there will be steam and liquid, be very careful, then place back in the oven uncovered and cook another 20-30mins.

If you have a food thermometer, the internal temp in the center of the lasagna should reach 160 degrees.

Remove from oven, let sit for at least 30 mins, then cut and serve, add a side salad and/or a vegetable and garlic bread for a full meal.

This half pan will feed 12 people, good-sized portions.

Q & A

Do you need to cook or soak the No Boil Oven Ready Lasagna Noodles ahead of time? No, do not, that’s why they’re called no-boil, oven-ready. Just place them in your dish and be done.
Can you prepare the lasagna in advance? the day before and keep it in the fridge uncooked? yes, you can and make sure to cover it with foil before putting it in the fridge and you can also make this lasagna the day before.
Then how do you cook it? you can cook it cold but you will need to cook it for 1 hour and 20 mins. Remove foil after 1 hour.
Can you freeze the lasagna? Yes, after you have cooked it and it has cooled down completely. Do not put a hot or warm dish in the freezer.
How do you freeze it? Place the foil over the top and wrap it entirely in plastic wrap. See this post on how to wrap an aluminum disposable pan for the freezer.
How long can you keep lasagna in the freezer? up to 6 months
How do you defrost it? Take it out of the freezer and place it in the fridge for 24 hours, remove the plastic wrap after it has defrosted, make sure the foil is secure around the edges or you can ever change the foil out. Cook 1 hour and 20 mins, remove the foil after 1 hour.
How long is lasagna good for? keep in the fridge, 5 days from the day you cook it, if it lasts that long!

No Boil Lasagna for 12

This half pan will feed 12 people, good sized dinner portions
Prep Time20 minutes
Active Time1 hour 10 minutes
Total Time1 hour 30 minutes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Italian
Yield: 12 people
Cost: $2.33 per serving

Materials

  • 2 lbs uncooked ground beef
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic or 2-3 cloves finely chopped
  • tbsp garlic salt or sub 1 tbsp regular salt
  • 1 diced medium to large bell pepper
  • 1 diced medium to large white onion

Sauce Mix

  • 1 28 oz. can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 28 oz. can stewed tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp dried basil
  • ½ tsp oregano
  • ½ tbsp salt

Cheese Mixture

  • 30 oz ricotta cheese
  • 4 cups shredded mozzarella cheese (16 oz bag) (put 2 cups of cheese to the side)
  • cup shredded parmesan cheese (put half cup of cheese to the side)
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 tbsp Parsley Flakes optional

Pasta

  • 1 12 oz box of NO BOIL Lasagna pasta

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350°
  • Dice the bell pepper and onion
  • If using whole garlic, peel and finely chop or press in a garlic press
  • In a large skillet, add the meat and start on meduim heat
  • Add the bell pepper, onion and garlic to the meat
  • Add the garlic salt OR the regular salt (one or the other, not both)
  • Mix it up and cook till browned and done
  • Drain

Sauce Mix (while the meat is cooking)

  • In a large bowl: add the stewed tomatoes plus juice, break up into smaller pieces
  • Add the crushed tomatoes plus juice, dried basil, oregano and salt, to the stewed tomatoes and set to side

Cheese Mixture

  • In another bowl: add ricotta cheese, 2 cups shredded mozzarella, 1 cup shredded parmesan, 4 eggs, mix well

Meat and Sauce

  • After the beef has been drained, add the meat to the tomato sauce mixture and mix well

Pan

  • Spray the half pan with cooking spray

Layering the Pan

  • Place meat sauce mixture on the bottom of the pan and spread around to cover the bottom
  • Add a layer of 4 lasagna noodles on top of the meat
  • Add half of the cheese mixture on top of the lasagna noddles and spread over the noodles
  • Add more meat sauce on top of the cheese mixture
  • Add another layer of 4 lasagna noddles, plus break a lasagna noodle up to fill in the cracks
  • Add the rest of the cheese mixture and spread it completely over noodles
  • Top with the remaining meat mixture, spread it out
  • Mix 2 cups mozzarella and 1/2 cup parmesan and sprinkle it over the meat

Covering

  • Cut 2 sheets of aluminum foil the same size and overlap them, spray with cooking spray and lightly cover the lasagna, spray side down over the cheese

Bake

  • Place the half pan of lasagna on a lined baking sheet and bake at 350° for 45 minutes, remove foil carefully and bake another 20 minutes uncovered
  • remove from oven and let sit 30 mins before cutting



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