Classic Lasagna With A Lighter Twist: Cottage Cheese Delight

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Lasagna – a name synonymous with comfort food. Layers of pasta, sauce, cheese, and sometimes meat, baked to bubbling perfection. But what if you’re looking for a lighter version that still packs a flavor punch? Look no further than this fantastic lasagna recipe featuring cottage cheese! This recipe is perfect for those who want to enjoy the classic flavors of lasagna without the heaviness of traditional ricotta cheese.

Ingredients:

Cottage Cheese Lasagna Recipe  Bon Appétit
Cottage Cheese Lasagna Recipe Bon Appétit

1 box (9×13 inch) lasagna noodles (no pre-cooking required)

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 pound ground beef (or your preferred protein substitute)
  • 1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 15-ounce container whole-milk cottage cheese
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

  • Instructions:

    1. Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C). Grease a 9×13 inch baking dish.

    2. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Stir in garlic and cook for an additional minute, until fragrant.

    3. Add ground beef (or substitute) and cook until browned, breaking it up with a spoon as it cooks. Drain any excess grease.

    4. Stir in crushed tomatoes, diced tomatoes, tomato paste, oregano, basil, red pepper flakes (if using), salt, and pepper. Bring to a simmer and cook for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

    5. In a large bowl, combine cottage cheese, Parmesan cheese, and egg. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

    6. Now comes the layering fun! Spread a thin layer of meat sauce in the bottom of the prepared baking dish. Top with a single layer of lasagna noodles, breaking them to fit as needed. Spread half of the cottage cheese mixture over the noodles. Repeat with another layer of sauce, noodles, and the remaining cottage cheese mixture.

    7. Finally, top with the remaining meat sauce and sprinkle with mozzarella cheese.

    8. Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until the lasagna is bubbly and the cheese is golden brown. Let cool for 10 minutes before serving.

    Nutrition Facts (per serving):

    This recipe yields approximately 8 servings. Here’s a general estimate of the nutritional information per serving:

    Calories: 450-500

  • Fat: 20-25 grams
  • Saturated Fat: 8-10 grams
  • Cholesterol: 70mg
  • Sodium: 500mg (depending on the added sodium content of your ingredients)
  • Carbohydrates: 40-45 grams
  • Protein: 30-35 grams

  • Conclusion

    This lasagna recipe with cottage cheese is a delightful twist on a classic. It’s lighter than the traditional version but still delivers on flavor and satisfaction. It’s perfect for a weeknight dinner or a casual gathering with friends and family.

    Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs):

    1. Can I use a different type of cheese instead of cottage cheese?

    Absolutely! While cottage cheese provides a lighter texture, you can substitute ricotta cheese for a more traditional flavor. However, this will increase the calorie and fat content of the recipe.

    2. Do I have to pre-cook the lasagna noodles?

    No, the beauty of this recipe is that you don’t have to pre-cook the noodles! The sauce will provide enough moisture to cook them through in the oven.

    3. How can I make this recipe vegetarian?

    Simply omit the ground beef and use a vegetarian crumbles or lentil-based substitute. Additionally, you can use vegetable broth instead of water when simmering the sauce for an extra depth of flavor.

    4. Can I freeze lasagna?

    Yes, you can definitely freeze lasagna! Assemble the lasagna according to the recipe, but before baking, tightly cover the dish with foil and freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before baking as instructed.

    5. What can I serve with lasagna?