Lasagna with Bechamel

12 servings


1 hour

active time

1 hour 45 minutes

total time


12 oz lasagna noodles ((12 sheets dry lasagna noodles))

1 lb mozzarella cheese (shredded)

8 oz parmesan cheese (freshly grated)

3 tbsp olive oil

6 cloves garlic (minced)

2 tbsp tomato paste ((See Note 1))

1/2 cup dry red wine (optional)

1/2 tsp sugar

1/2 tsp dried oregano

1/2 tsp kosher salt

1/4 tsp red pepper flakes

28 oz crushed San Marzano tomatoes ((See Note 2))

12 fresh basil leaves (finely chopped)

1/4 cup butter (or oil or fat drippings)

1/4 cup all purpose flour

1/8 tsp kosher salt

1 dash white pepper

3 cups milk (any variety)

1 lb lean ground beef

1 lb hot Italian sausages (casings removed)

1 tbsp olive oil

1 tbsp fennel seeds

2 tsp red pepper flakes

6 cloves garlic (minced)

1 large white onion (chopped)

1 marinara sauce (entire batch of above recipe)


Marinara Sauce

In a large skillet, heat the oil over a medium-high flame and add the minced garlic and sauté for 2 minutes.

Reduce the heat to medium and add the wine (optional), tomato paste, sugar, dried oregano and salt and red pepper flakes, sauté for 2 minutes.

Add the tomatoes, stir and simmer until reduced slightly, about 20 minutes. In last 10 minutes of simmering, add the basil and stir. Season the sauce with more salt to taste.

At this point you could leave it chunky or for a smooth sauce you could use a hand blender and puree or put in a blender and blend until smooth. Set aside.

Bechamel Sauce (white sauce)

Warm the milk in a saucepan or microwave in measuring cup.

In a medium sauce pan melt equal parts butter and then the flour.

Whisk the flour and butter together and allow to simmer on low to cook the flour 1-2 minutes. The lightest (white color) roux will be slightly puffed.

Gradually add the warm milk and whisk to incorporate until a smooth sauce forms on low heat. Cook several minutes, sauce will thicken. Set aside.

Meat Sauce

In a large skillet or Dutch oven over medium-high heat, add olive oil. Add the fennel seeds and red pepper flakes. Saute for 30 seconds and add the onion. Continue cooking on medium-high heat until the onion is soft, 2 minutes. Add the garlic, stirring constantly for 30 seconds.

Add the ground beef and sausage and brown meat over medium-high heat, breaking the meat apart into pieces with spoon. When cooked drain excess grease and transfer to food processor. Pulse several times until crumbly and nearly pureed.

Return mixture to the skillet or Dutch oven and add the Marinara Sauce (recipe above). Stir to combine the meat and marinara sauce.

Cover and allow the sauce to simmer for about 20 minutes on low heat, stirring occasionally. Add 1 cup of water if it gets too thick and continue cooking to reduce.

Lasagna Noodles

In a 9x13" baking dish add the dry lasagna noodles and cover with hot water. Allow to rest for 20 minutes. Drain into a large colander.


Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease the 9x13" baking dish with cooking spray.

We will be making 3-4 layers of lasagna, so divide accordingly.

Start by spreading some of the meat sauce on bottom of greased dish. Layer on top with 3 lasagna noodles or more to cover bottom.

Spread more meat sauce over the noodles, followed by the Bechamel Sauce (recipe above), then mozzarella and parmesan cheeses, spreading all to the edges.

Repeat this 3-4 times to use up all noodles, sauces and ending with cheeses on top.

Bake for 30 minutes until top is golden brown and cheeses are bubbling. Allow the lasagna to rest for 15 minutes before serving.

12 servings


1 hour

active time

1 hour 45 minutes

total time
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