This Meat Lovers Lasagna recipe makes a hearty meal with classic, comforting flavors. You'll love this savory dish that's loaded with cheese, veggies, and two kinds of meat.
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Hearty and filling, this meat lasagna will become a fast family favorite! Combine beef and sausage with multiple kinds of cheese for a classic take on cheesy lasagna with meat.
This layered pasta dish is bursting with flavors and makes for a great Sunday dinner. Serve with this Oven Roasted Asparagus for an easy and healthy veggie side dish.
Why this Recipe Works
Familiar and nostalgic flavors come together in this hot and comforting lasagna with meat. You'll love the melty cheeses and rich, savory ingredients like this Easy Beef Cannelloni. Pair with beef and sausage (or other kinds of ground meat) for a meat lasagna that the whole family will adore!
- Cheese: I used mozzarella, Parmesan, provolone, and ricotta cheese for this meat lasagna.
- Seasonings: Use salt and pepper to start, as well as garlic, basil, and parsley. You can also add other spices and herbs like bay leaves, garlic powder, fennel seeds, or red pepper flakes.
- Vegetables: I recommend celery, carrots, and onions. They soak up the sauce and add some nutrition.
- Ground Beef: You can use ground turkey or ground chicken as a substitute.
- Ground Sausage: Provides even more filling protein and savory flavor.
- Tomato: I used tomato sauce, tomato pasta, and crushed tomatoes for a rich and delicious sauce.
- Sugar: Helps cut through some of the savory and acidic flavors and enhances this lasagna.
- Uncooked Lasagna Noodles:
- Red wine: I use a cabernet or merlot.
How to Make this Lasagna with Meat
- Step 1: Mix ricotta cheese, egg, mozzarella, Parmesan, salt, pepper, parsley, and basil in a medium bowl.
- Step 2: Make the sauce by sauteing onions, carrots, and celery in olive oil. Then add ground beef and ground sausage, tomato sauce, crushed tomatoes, and tomato paste. Mix in red wine, Italian seasoning, salt, pepper, and sugar, then simmer.
- Step 3: Meanwhile, boil noodles for 2/3 time directed on the packaging for al dente. Add red meat sauce to the bottom of the baking dish, then a layer of lasagna noodles.
- Step 4: Add provolone cheese slices, then add a layer of the ricotta mixture, more red sauce, and another layer of noodles. Repeat until all of the components are used up, then cover and bake.
- Adjust the sugar to taste. It helps balance the tomato acidity.
- Pre shredded cheese won't melt as well as fresh grated. It's a little bit more work, but fresh grated cheese will result in a meltier and higher quality lasagna.
- Keep leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days.
- This meat lasagna can also be frozen before cooking. Assemble in a disposable aluminum baking dish and store in the freezer for up to 3 months.
- When baking from frozen, place it in the fridge before cooking. You may have to add some time in the oven even after thawing. Check the middle of the lasagna to see if it's heated all the way through.
Yes, it's important to keep the lasagna covered for a majority of the baking time. This will prevent the lasagna from drying out and becoming tough or hard.
A glass pan is optimal for lasagna, or something ceramic. Metal also works fine--stainless steel heats evenly and can result in nice crispy edges.
Most Italian sausage is a pork-based sausage that's flavored with garlic and fennel, and occasionally other seasonings like parsley, paprika, black pepper, or red pepper flakes. You may also like my Spicy Italian Sausage Baked Ziti.
More Pasta Recipes
Meat Lovers Lasagna
- parchment paper
- aluminum foil
- cooking spray
- 15 ounces ricotta cheese
- 16 ounces mozzarella cheese, freshly grated, divided
- 6 ounces parmesan cheese, freshly grated, divided
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 2 tablespoon fresh parsley, chopped
- 2 tablespoons fresh basil, chopped
For the sauce
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/2 cup carrots, diced
- 3/4 cup onion, diced
- 1/2 cup celery, diced
- 1 1/4 pounds lean ground beef
- 1/2 pound ground Italian sausage
- 1-29 ounce cans tomato sauce
- 1-29 ounce can crushed tomatoes in puree
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1/2 cup red wine
- 2 tablespoons Italian Herb seasoning
- 1-3 teaspoons granulated sugar (see notes)
- 1-16 ounce lasagna noodles
- 8 ounces provolone cheese slices
- More basil to garnish, optional
- In a medium bowl, combine the ricotta, 8 oz of freshly grated mozzarella, 2 oz of freshly grated parmesan, egg, salt, pepper, parsley, and basil. Cover and refrigerate until ready to assemble the lasagna.
For the sauce
- In a Dutch oven or very large saucepan over medium heat, add olive oil, garlic, onions, carrots, and celery. Saute for about 3 minutes.
- Add ground beef and Italian sausage and cook, breaking up into small pieces, for about 5-8 minutes.
- Add tomato sauce, crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, red wine, Italian herb seasoning, salt, pepper, and sugar, and stir to combine. Reduce heat to low and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, for 45 minutes to combine flavors and reduce sauce.
- While the sauce is simmering, bring a large stockpot full of water to boil and cook the lasagna noodles for ⅔ of the time directed on the package. Drain the noodles well and lay them out to cool separately by draping them around the perimeter of the colander, or on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, if necessary, to make sure the noodles don't stick together.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees
To assemble the lasagna
- Spray a 9x13 baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.
- Add 2 ladles of red meat sauce to the bottom of the dish. Place one layer of noodles lengthwise on top, overlapping slightly and making sure to fill the corners.
- Add ½ of the slices of provolone, about 1/2 of the cheese mixture, and 3 ladles of the red meat sauce on top.
- Place noodles width-wise on top, overlapping slightly and making sure to fill corners.
- Add the other ½ of the slices of provolone, the other 1/2 of the cheese mixture, and 3 ladles of the red meat sauce.
- Place noodles lengthwise on top, overlapping slightly and making sure to fill corners.
- Cover the noodles with the remainder of the red meat sauce and top with the remaining 8 oz freshly grated mozzarella and 4 oz freshly grated parmesan.
- Cover with parchment first, and then foil, and bake at 375 degrees for 45 minutes on the middle rack. Save your oven by lining a baking sheet with foil and placing it on the lower rack just in case it bubbles over.
- Carefully remove the parchment paper and foil and bake for another 15 minutes. Let cool for 15 minutes before slicing and serving.