The ultimate makeover: Lasagne

The ultimate makeover: Lasagne

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(20 ratings)

Prep: 35 mins - 40 mins Cook: 1 hr, 50 mins


Serves 6
A lighter version of the family classic that retains its full flavour

Nutrition and extra info

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal447
  • fat19g
  • saturates9g
  • carbs31g
  • sugars9g
  • fibre0g
  • protein38g
  • salt0.96g


    For the meat sauce

    • 1 tbsp olive oil
      olive oil

      Olive oil

      ol-iv oyl

      Probably the most widely-used oil in cooking, olive oil is pressed from fresh olives. It's…

    • 1 onion, chopped



      Onions are endlessly versatile and an essential ingredient in countless recipes. Native to Asia…

    • 2 medium carrots, diced



      The carrot, with its distinctive bright orange colour, is one of the most versatile root…

    • 3 plump garlic cloves, finely chopped
    • 250g lean rump steak, trimmed of fat, thinly sliced, then very finely chopped
    • 250g lean minced pork



      One of the most versatile types of meat, pork is economical, tender if cooked correctly, and…

    • 100ml red wine
    • 2 tbsp tomato purée
    • 400g can plum tomato
    • tsp ground nutmeg, plus a pinch
    • handful basil leaves, torn

    For the layers

    • 300g fresh spinach



      Used in almost every cuisine across the world, spinach is an enormously popular green vegetable…

    • 1 egg



      The ultimate convenience food, eggs are powerhouses of nutrition packed with protein and a…

    • 250g tub ricotta



      Ricotta is an Italian cheese made from whey and traditionally a by-product of…

    • handful flat-leaf parsley, chopped
    • 6 wide sheets (about 175g/6oz) no pre-cook lasagne
    • 125g ball mozzarella, preferably buffalo, roughly chopped
    • 50g parmesan, coarsely grated



      Parmesan is a straw-coloured hard cheese with a natural yellow rind and rich, fruity flavour. It…

    • 200g cherry tomato on the vine
    • basil leaves and green salad leaves, to serve


    1. Make the meat sauce: heat oil in a large sauté pan, then tip in onion and fry for 5 mins until golden. Add carrots and garlic, then fry for 2 mins more. Stir in both meats, breaking up the pork with a wooden spoon. Cook over a high heat until the meat is no longer pink and the juices are released. Pour in wine, scrape the bottom of the pan as you stir, then cook for 1-2 mins until the liquid is reduced. Tip in tomato purée, tomatoes and 2 tbsp water, then stir to break up tomatoes. Add ½ tsp nutmeg and some pepper, cover, then simmer for 1 hr, stirring occasionally. Taste and add salt if you like. Mix in torn basil. Sauce can be chilled for up to 1 day.

    2. While the sauce is simmering, prepare the other layers. Tip the spinach into a large bowl and pour over boiling water. After 30 secs, tip spinach into a colander and put under cold running water briefly to cool. Squeeze to remove excess water. Beat the egg in a bowl, then mix with ricotta, parsley, a pinch of nutmeg and pepper. Soak the lasagne sheets in a single layer in boiling water for 5 mins. (Although the packet says no pre-cook, I find soaking improves the texture.) Drain well. Heat oven to 200C/fan 180C/gas 6.

    3. Start layering. Spread a few big spoonfuls of sauce to barely cover the base of an ovenproof dish (20 x 29 x 6cm deep). Cover with 2 sheets of lasagne, then spread over half the remaining sauce. Cover with 2 more lasagne sheets, then scatter spinach evenly over. Spread the ricotta mixture on top and cover with 2 more lasagne sheets. Spread with remaining sauce, then scatter over mozzarella and Parmesan to almost cover meat. Top with cherry tomatoes and some pepper, then cover loosely with foil.

    4. Bake for 35 mins, then remove foil and bake 5-10 mins more. Leave for a few mins, then scatter with basil and serve with salad.

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    Comments, questions and tips

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    16th Jan, 2012
    Delicious! My boyfriend was apprehensive about the spinach, but it went down really well!
    13th Jan, 2012
    Perfect and much lighter recipe, especially if you go an extra step and put a whole wheat lasagne sheets... :) more tomatoes as well, that somehow kept it really moist and melting!
    20th Nov, 2010
    I thought this was great! I'm not that fond of lasagne with Bechamel, so I thought I'd try this one without. I (accidentally) made a slight modification and put the sauce directly ontop of the ricotta mix but it worked fine! I'm sure it would be nice the way it says in the recipe though.
    jburton's picture
    11th Oct, 2010
    I was wondering, could this be preprepared up to the putting it in the oven stage earlier in the day, and just popping it in the oven when ready.
    9th Jul, 2010
    I have been forbidden to make this again. The ricotta cheese layer was disgusting and the meat sauce whilst ok was nothing special. Back to Delia I think.
    4th May, 2010
    To be honest, yes, it's not as moist/rich as a normal lasagne. But a normal lasagne is full of cheese and milk, so you have to be ready to compromise! For what's in it, it's pretty damn delicious. If you make sure the meat sauce retains lots of juice (I put extra red wine in, and also some sun dried tomatoes) it stays moist and has loads of flavour. I must admit I used just lean steak mince, no pork. All in all though, it's tasty, very filling, and would definitely make again.
    30th Aug, 2009
    This was good! I used 500g beef but did add some chopped bacon and mushrooms. Did it for a dinner party and everyone enjoyed it. Will make again - it is lighter than my other lasagne so this one will now be my lasagne of choice!
    27th Aug, 2009
    all of the above comments were interesting and have made me want to try this recipe for myself.
    14th Apr, 2009
    My family have always said that my mum makes the best lasagne in the world! That was until they tasted mine! I now have to make it at least once a week! They had no idea that this was a lower fat alternative. I add oregano and mixed herbs and plenty of pepper! This is a very tasty dish and the tomatoes on top finish the dish off nicely!
    17th Feb, 2009
    it didnt work for me and my tastes thats all,


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