Lasagna with Turkey Meat Sauce

I am excited today to be participating in the #SundaySupper movement started by Isabel, the FamilyFoodie. I’ve been following this for several months now and the idea is that we all need to take the time, even if it’s just once a week, to get back to the family dinner table and share our time with family. For generations before ours, it was a weekly tradition and it’s something that we hope to make a tradition once again in households across the globe.
This week, we are cooking from The Mom 100 Cookbook by Katie Workman. The conversational tone of the intro and notes throughout make you feel like you’re listening to a friend who’s just sharing some tips that have worked for her and her family. The recipes include updated versions of old standbys like Macaroni & Cheese or Lasagna with Chicken Piccata-ed (with or without the sauce) but also a variety of other recipes that are sure to become new favorites. Sprinkled throughout the book are Cooking Tips for Make Ahead or Vegetarian options as well as a “What the Kids Can Do” section for every recipe.
This week I chose to make the Lasagna with Turkey Meat Sauce. We love lasagna and I especially love that you can make it ahead—either to store in the refrigerator or freezer—to pull out when company’s coming. Pair it with a yummy garden salad and some fresh bread and you’ve got a quick, company-ready meal that is a cinch to put together. The Turkey Meat sauce makes A LOT (like about 12 cups) so it’s perfect to make ahead and serve over pasta anytime or store in 5 cup quantities so you can assemble a lasagna at the last minute. Perfect!

Lasagna with Turkey Meat Sauce Recipe
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 container (32 ounces) ricotta cheese (note, I can only find 16 oz. containers at my store so if this is the case where you live, just buy two)
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • Kosher or coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 5 cups Turkey Meat Sauce (see recipe below) or 5 cups store-bought meat or pasta sauce
  • 12 no-cook lasagna noodles
  • 1 pound (4 cups) very thinly shredded mozzarella
  • Nonstick cooking spray (optional)
  1. If you are planning to bake the lasagna right away, preheat the oven to 375°F.
  2. Place the eggs in a medium-size bowl and lightly beat them. Add the ricotta, basil, oregano, and ¾ cup of the Parmesan and stir to blend. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Ladle a little of the sauce onto the bottom of a 13 by 9-inch baking dish. Arrange all 12 of the lasagna noodles on a work surface and spread theme evenly with the ricotta mixture. Place 4 ricotta-covered noodles in the baking dish, covering the bottom. Spoon about 1 ½ cups of the sauce on top, covering the ricotta mixture entirely. Evenly sprinkle one third of the mozzarella over the sauce. Repeat until you have 3 layers of noodles, sauce, and mozzarella. Sprinkle the top of the lasagna with the remaining ¼ cup of Parmesan.
  4. Cover the lasagna with aluminum foil. (Hint: Spray one side of the foil with nonstick cooking spray and place that side down on top of the lasagna; when you remove the foil, the cheese won’t stick to it!) tuck the lasagna in the refrigerator for a day or two if you like and cook it later; don’t preheat the oven yet if this is your plan.
  5. Bake the covered lasagna for 1 hour, removing the foil after 30 minutes so that the top gets bubbly and browned. You may wish to put a rimmed baking sheet on an oven rack placed below the lasagna pan to catch any drips. Let the lasagna sit for 10 to 15 minutes before cutting it, so that the pieces hold together better.
Turkey Meat Sauce for Pasta or Lasagna
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 pound ground turkey (don’t buy the ultra lean, use 93 percent lean/7 percent fat or 85 percent lean/15 percent fat)
  • 1 pound fresh hot turkey sausage, removed from the casing
  • 1 pound fresh sweet turkey sausage, removed from the casing
  • 1 ½ cups chopped onions
  • 3 shallots, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon finely minced garlic (about three large cloves)
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 2 teaspoons dried basil
  • Big glug or two of red or white wine, if you have a bottle open
  • 4 cans (28 ounces EACH), crushed tomatoes, preferably in puree
  • ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)
  • Kosher or coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
  1. Make the turkey meat sauce: Heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil in a large stockpot over medium-high heat. Add the ground turkey and the turkey sausage meat and cook, stirring frequently and breaking up the meat until it’s very crumbly and browned throughout, 4 to 6 minutes. Place the browned meat in a strainer and let the fat drain off.
  2. Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil in the same pot over medium heat. Don’t clean the pot! All those little browned bits of flavor from the meat, will season the sauce. Add the onions and shallots and cook, stirring frequently, until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, oregano and basil and cook, stirring, until you can smell the garlic and herbs, about 2 minutes. Add the wine, if using and cook, scraping up any bits stuck to the bottom of the pot, until the wine pretty much evaporates, about 1 minute.
  3. Add the tomatoes and red pepper flakes, if using, and stir to combine. Increase the heat to medium-high and let the tomato mixture come to a simmer, stirring it occasionally for about 10 minutes. Add the browned turkey and sausage mixture, reduce the heat to medium-low and let simmer, stirring occasionally, until nicely thickened and the flavors have blended, about 20 minutes. Taste for seasoning, adding salt and black pepper as necessary. You won’t need much; the sausages provide a whole lot of seasoning.
  4. If not using right away, allow it to cool then portion out into freezer safe containers, label and freeze to use for future meals or for Lasagna with Turkey Meat Sauce.

Just a few simple ingredients is all it takes for homemade pasta sauce!

I buy our cheese in bulk blocks then use a Salad Shooter (remember those?) to shred it all. I can freeze the unused portion to pull out for recipes later.

Sauteeing the onions, garlic and spices. This sauce is really pretty quick to make.

Ingredients for the sauce ready for some simmering!

These are the ingredients for the lasagna…plus the homemade sauce.

I use a splash guard when my sauce is simmering…no more red sauce splatters everywhere!

Layering the ingredients is simple and quick.

The finished lasagna–ready for eating!

Be sure to check out all the recipes from these other fabulous bloggers participating in this week’s #SundaySupper event!

  • Soups and Salads:
  • Japanese Restaurant Salad ~ Hezzi-D’s Books and Cooks
  • Cauliflower and Cheddar Soup served in Bread Bowls ~ Daily Dish Recipes
  • Main Dish Recipes:
  • Caribbean Warm Spice Chicken with Cinnamon Ginger & Paprika ~ Sue’s Nutrition Buzz
  • Fresh Mozzarella Pasta Casserole ~ The Meltaways
  • Pulled Pork ~ Momma’s Meals
  • Easy Chicken Enchiladas ~ In the Kitchen with Audrey
  • Teriyaki Skewers ~ Messy Baker Blog
  • Garlic, Lemon, and Rosemary Roasted Chicken ~ Family Foodie
  • Sauteed Corn Spinach, Bacon and Scallions ~ Comfy Cuisine
  • Lasagna with Turkey meat sauce ~ Meal Planning Magic
  • One Pot Arroz con Pollo ~ Juanita’s Cocina
  • Sesame Noodles ~ Big Bear’s Wife
  • Honey Ginger Soy Chicken ~ The Weekend Gourmet
  • Desserts:
  • Chocolate Peanut Butter Squares ~Mama’s Blissful Bites
  • Rum laced Fudgy One Pot Brownies ~ Baker Street
  • Bacon & Dried Cherry Chocolate Chip Cookies ~ Chocolate Moosey
  • Birthday Chocolate Cupcakes ~ Basic and Delicious
  • Simple Vanilla Cake ~ Mrs. Mama Hen
  • Aaron E’s Favorite Apple Coffee Cake ~ Soni’s Food for Thought
  • Wine Pairing to complement our recipes ~ ENOFYLZ
  • Connect with Katie Workman, Author of The Mom 100 Cookbook:

    For the next three months, I and many more bloggers from all over will be featuring recipes from the book. The twist is that each month has its own theme: June is Portable Dishes for getting together with friends, July is Vegetarian recipes and August is Back-To-School recipes. We are honored to be featuring the cookbook for #SundaySupper this week. I’m guessing you will love Katie Workman’s new cookbook and her solutions for all the cooking-for-kids dilemmas that many of us face every day.

    Join us for #SundaySupper on Twitter starting at 3:00 pm EST. We are featuring Portable Recipes for getting together with friends from The Mom 100 Cookbook. Katie Workman will be joining us to answer questions, give tips and inspire at 5:30 pm EST. We’ll share these fabulous recipes and want you to share yours with us! Although the fun starts at 3 pm EST, we’ll be chatting all afternoon until dinner time and sometimes beyond. All you have to do is follow the hashtag #sundaysupper on twitter or follow along on TweetChat.  Alse be sure to check out the #SundaySupper Pinterest Board for more wonderful, simple recipes for summer. We welcome everyone Around The Family Table!

    And last but not least, be on the lookout here on my blog sometime this week for a giveaway of The Mom 100 Cookbook!

    Disclaimer: I am not being compensated for this post other than receiving a free copy of the cookbook. All the opinions presented here are my own.


    1. Pam @ The Meltaways says

      I started to choose this myself! Even though I didn’t, I already made the sauce, too : ) Now I’m going to have to make that lasagna!


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