This recipe was adapted from Peace Love and Low Carb’s “Just like the Real Thing Lasagna” recipe. I used the concept of the ‘cheese noodles’ and combined it with the way I have always made my lasagna.. and it tastes pretty darn close, considering pasta noodles don’t bring much to the table in terms of flavour, they are merely a building block. All the meaty, cheesy goodness is the same, and it’s the best part!
The original recipe is meant to be made in a loaf pan, so you would be cutting your ‘noodle’ strips pretty narrow. This would last about 5 minutes in my house, so I basically doubled the recipe to lay out on a 13×18 baking pan. Cut in half, this fits 2 layers of noodles perfectly in my lasagna casserole dish. The cheese noodles are quite a bit thicker than a regular lasagna noodle, so 2 layers is ample for my dish.. any more and it would be flowing over the top. If you want to go for the smaller, non-gluttonous loaf pan, cut this recipe in half.
This is one of those recipes you can add whatever you like to the meat sauce. I always like spicy Italian sausage mixed with ground beef for things like this, and bacon adds flavour.. because, bacon! Sometimes I’ll throw some pepperoni into the mix, and if I had my druthers I would add mushrooms, but my husband isn’t a big fan so I leave them out.
My photography skills leave little to be desired. I have the fancy camera, fixed lens for food photography, all the props, special lighting, etc, and as evident by this sad photo, I have no idea how to use any of it. Once I get my head around it all I will try to get some better photos up!
If you want a better idea of how this looks all put together, check out the original recipe on Peace Love and Low Carb that I linked above.
- 4 large eggs
- 8 oz cream cheese, softened
- 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
- 2 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
- 1/2 tsp Italian seasoning1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp onion powder
- 2 lb ground beef
- 1 lb spicy Italian sausage
- 1/2 lb bacon, chopped
- 1 cup of onions, diced
- 1 cup of bell peppers, diced
- 1 tsp minced garlic
- 1-2 tsp fennel seeds
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 680ml jar of Rao's (or other low carb) pasta sauce
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- 1 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
- 500g tub of full fat cottage (or ricotta) cheese
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1 tsp dried basil
- 1 tsp Italian seasoning
- Preheat oven to 375° Line a 13x18 baking pan with parchment paper
- In a large mixing bowl, using a hand or stand mixer, cream together cream cheese and eggs.
- Add Parmesan cheese and seasonings. Mix until all ingredients are well combined.
- Using a rubber spatula, fold in mozzarella cheese and mix until well incorporated.
- Spread the mixture into the baking pan, pushing out to all corners and forming a nice even layer.
- Bake on the middle rack for 20-25 minutes.
- When the "noodles" are done baking, cool for 20-30 minutes and then cut into two or three smaller sheets, depending on the size of casserole dish you're using. I went with 2 noodle layers as they fit perfectly into my dish.
- The noodle layers should be sturdy enough to handle, but do so gently to avoid breaking.
- In a large skillet over medium-high heat, combine ground beef, sausage and bacon, and cook until meat is almost browned through.
- Add in onions, peppers and seasonings, and cook until vegetables are soft and meat is cooked through. Drain excess fat.
- Add the jar of pasta sauce and simmer over medium low for 30 minutes until you have a thick meat sauce.
- Beat egg lightly in a medium bowl
- Add in mozzarella and cottage (or ricotta) cheese, stir to combine
- Stir in spices, and set mixture aside
- Spoon a thin layer of meat sauce into bottom of casserole pan. Top with the first noodle layer
- Layer a third (or half depending on how many layers) of the ground beef mixture.
- Spread a third (or half depending on how many layers) of the cheese mixture over the meat layer.
- Place another noodle sheet on top, and repeat these steps until finished.
- Top all with a layer of mozzarella cheese, and sprinkle with parsley flakes.
- Bake for about 30 minutes until lightly browned and bubbling.
- Let rest for 10 minutes before cutting