Lasagna Supreme

Lasagna Supreme

Lasagna Supreme 2560 1920 Daryl Duarte

Preparing homemade lasagna is a bit of work that involves shopping for the ingredients, prep work, and then the assembly and baking. A game-changer is the advent of lasagna noodles that do not require any boiling and are oven-ready. In the olden days, we boiled boxed noodles in huge pots of salted boiling water.  Talk about a big, messy job! I was also temporarily insane (for 20 years), during which time I made my lasagna noodles from eggs and flour.  I won’t even go into how much effort that was, but after an intervention, I gave that up and tried the no-boil options available at the market (Trader Joe’s has a lovely 1 lb box).

Because lasagna takes a bit of effort, I make a large pan and then freeze individually wrapped portions, so they are ready when I need a delicious, and ready-to-go meal.  This also makes you a nimble host. Just defrost as many pieces as you have guests!  Viola – a midweek impromptu dinner party, made easy!  I love this type of entertaining economy. Allow enough time to defrost and reheat thoroughly. You can microwave, but I prefer to cook in a covered casserole, with a bit of tomato sauce underneath and on top – for about ½ hour.

Lasagna Supreme

This recipe is called “supreme” because it has roast vegetables, beef, and even the luxury of a bechamel sauce.  If this is an eye-rolling moment for you - I encourage you to simplify the recipe by replacing the bechamel with another 1-pound container of ricotta.  If you are vegetarian - skip the meat.  If you don’t like vegetables, omit them.  If you don’t like some of the vegetables, I included in the recipe, use different vegetables.  I recommend you pre-cook whatever vegetables you select, eliminating some of their water and deepening their flavor. I once had a vegetarian lasagna with thickly sliced undercooked carrots.  They were too crunchy, hard to serve and eat, and added too much sweetness.  The carrots would have been much better pre-cooked and lightly caramelized. If you buy frozen lasagna at a grocery store or fresh from an excellent take-out, marvelous for you - but I think this is a “master recipe” - and fun when you have the time.


  • 2 I lb. packages of no-boil oven-ready lasagna noodles

For the Bechamel Sauce

  • 2 ½ cups milk
  • 4 tbs flour
  • 4 tbs butter
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 lb. ricotta

Roasted vegetables - chef's choice - in this recipe I used:

  • Butternut squash
  • Eggplant
  • Zucchini
  • Roasted peppers
  • yellow onion
  • Boiled chopped, and drained kale (or spinach)

For assembling the lasagna

  • Pecorino Romano
  • 1 lb. mozzarella
  • 2 quarts tomato sauce
  • 3 lbs. cooked ground ground beef


Make the bechamel:

  • Melt the butter in a heavy bottom saucepan over medium heat. Add the flour and stir to incorporate. Cook over medium heat, frequently stirring, for about 1 minute. This eliminates any “raw flour” taste. Add the milk and then stir over medium heat until the mixture comes to a very gentle boil and thickens. Add 1 tsp salt and some freshly ground black pepper. Remove from the heat and stir in the ricotta. Set aside.

Roast some vegetables:

  • I slice vegetables, coat with some olive oil, season with salt and pepper, and roast in a 400-degree oven until they have released most of their liquid and begun to caramelize. Set the vegetables aside.

Brown the beef:

  • Place a large skillet over medium heat, add the beef, season with 1 tsp salt and some freshly ground black pepper, and cook the beef, stirring occasionally. Drain the excess fat from the meat. Discard the fat. Set the meat aside.

To assemble the lasagna:

  • Ladle some tomato sauce on the bottom of a large lasagna pan. Then, cover with a single layer of noodles. Break the whole noodles as necessary to patch together a complete layer.
  • Add a layer of roasted vegetables, ladle some bechamel sauce, and sprinkle some Pecorino Romano and shredded mozzarella.
  • Add another layer of pasta. Then add a layer of meat, ladle some tomato sauce over the meat, and sprinkle some Pecorino Romano and shredded mozzarella.
  • Repeat with another layer of vegetables and the final layer of meat. Finish the top with a layer of pasta, tomato sauce, and some grated cheese.
  • Oil a piece of parchment or wax paper to cover the lasagna. Then, seal with aluminum foil.
  • Bake in a 350-degree oven for 1 ½ hour. Allow the lasagna to rest (covered) for ½ hour before serving.
  • Make-ahead method: Allow the lasagna to cool completely and refrigerate for 24 hours.   Then, cut the lasagna into your desired portion size, and wrap each portion in plastic wrap. Arrange the wrapped lasagna portions on a tray that will fit into your freezer. Freeze the lasagna portions on the tray. Once frozen, I transfer them into freezer bags, making them easier to store.
Recipe Rating