Lots of folks don't like making lasagna because its expensive and it's a time-suck making it. However, if you make it in large batches to freeze, it doesn't take any more time then it takes to make 1... Well maybe a little more time, but certainly not more then 5 extra minutes.
If you make your own spaghetti sauce, this recipe will even be cheaper. But we make it pretty cheap and it sure is yummo-licious. All the plates are licked clean... almost literally.
Now, my children hate onions, so I don't use onions in my recipe... but it would be amazing if you did. So this recipe is WITH the onions but I leave them out for the kids sake. I pick my battles.
What you will need:
2 - 9x13 dishes (or 4 8x8 dishes)
Foil or pans with airtight lids
1 large onion (and some olive oil to caramelize)
2-3 pounds of sausage (or a meat you want in your lasagna)
3-4 cans of hunts spaghetti sauce (any flavor. The reason I use hunts is for price)
2 boxes of traditional cooked noodles (I tried the no-cook with all the trick, texture NEVER comes out right. I always get complaints)
Lots of Mozzarella cheese (like 8 cups ish?)
4 cups of Ricotta
Boil the noodles according to package directions.
Caramelize onions in olive oil... make sure they turn nice and brown... they are yummy that way.
Add sausage and brown. Don't break the sausage up too much, I love finding the big chunks in my lasagna. When sausage is almost all brown, just a bit pink left, drain off as much of the grease as you can and add the 3 cans of hunts to the pan.
Now you can do two things. If you are strapped for time, just blend it well and you are ready to go. If you have an hour or more that you can check your email, facebook, and twitter, then go on to this step. Turn the heat on low and let it simmer for a good hour so the flavors can all combine and be excellent. Hunts sauce on it's own is fine, but the flavors of the sausage and onions will mix brilliantly and make the sauce even better!
Mix ricotta and the two eggs together in a separate bowl. Add a tablespoon or two of parsley and half the cheese.
With the noodles done, the sauce simmer and brilliant, the ricotta mixture, the cheese ready... you are ready to assemble.
Put a little meat sauce in the bottom of the pan and line pans with noodles. Spread ricotta mixture over the top and top with noodles. Spread meat sauce over top and top with noodles. Continue doing this until all the mixtures are gone. Last layer being the meat sauce. Top with the remaining cheese (and more cheese if you have cheesy lovers).
To freeze I suggest you cover with foil a few times. This will keep in the freezer for at least 6 months. But I suggest 2 months to retain the best flavors. When you are ready to cook it, you can either cook from frozen for 2+ hours... or defrost and cook covered for 45 minutes at 375. Remove cover the last 10-15 minutes to melt cheese on top ;)
This meal makes 24 large servings or tons more if you have a small belly. ;)