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Nanna’s Birthday Lasagna with Homemade Marinara Sauce

  • Author: Elizabeth Van Lierde
  • Prep Time: 40 mins
  • Cook Time: 1hr
  • Total Time: 2hr
  • Yield: 6-8 1x
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Bake
  • Cuisine: Italian


A perfect week night dinner, that everyone will love! With this homemade marinara sauce no one will forget! 



3 Tablespoons of olive oil

1 Yellow onion, diced

3 Cloves of fresh garlic, minced

1 Tablespoon of fresh thyme

1 Tablespoon of chopped fresh oregano

1 Teaspoon of red chili flakes

2 Teaspoons of garlic salt or to taste

Black pepper to taste

1 Bay Leaf

(2) 32 Ounce canned San Marzano Tomatos

1 Tablespoon of tomato paste

32 Ounces of cooked al dente lasagna noodles

32 Ounces of ricotta cheese

1/4 Cup of fresh basil leaves, chopped

16 Ounces of shredded mozzarella cheese

1 Tomato, thinly sliced

Parmesan for serving


  1. In a large dutch oven or heavy bottom sauce pan heat olive oil on medium heat. Add in chopped onion and cook for 8-10 mins or until translucent. Add in minced garlic and herbs and cook for 1-2 mins or until fragrant. Add in San Marzano tomatoes, crushing them in your hand before adding them to the pan. Add in tomato paste, chili flakes, garlic salt, pepper, and bay leaf. Stir together and let simmer for 20-30 minutes, stirring frequently. You can take an immersion blender to the sauce after cooking or leave as is (the photos above are a chunkier consistency). 
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  3. In a large casserole dish add in layers as follows:
  4. Sauce, noodles, ricotta cheese, basil, noodles, sauce, mozzarella cheese, and repeat!
  5. Top the very top layer with mozzarella cheese and freshly sliced tomatoes. Bake for 40-60 minutes or until the tomatos are roasted and the top is golden. 

Keywords: Italian, lasagna, homemade, dinner, easy meals