food & Wine


Hearty cheat's lasagna

Hearty cheat's lasagna

It’s quick and easy to make and it’s packed with flavour. Try it out for yourself! You won’t regret it.

Serves: 6

Prep: 20 mins

Cooking time: 50 mins


  • 1 tbs olive oil
  • 2 red onions, peeled, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 500g beef mince
  • 3 x 400g cans diced tomatoes
  • 1 tsp white sugar
  • 1⁄2 cup fresh basil leaves, roughly chopped
  • 625g packet fresh ricotta and spinach tortellini
  • 250g piece mozzarella, thickly sliced
  • fresh basil leaves, to serve Béchamel sauce
  • 40g butter, chopped
  • 1⁄4 cup plain flour
  • 3 cups full cream milk
  • Pinch ground nutmeg


  1. Preheat oven 220°C fan forced. Lightly grease a large, deep ovenproof dish.
  2. Heat oil in a medium, deep frying pan over medium heat. Add onions and garlic. Cook, stirring occasionally for 6 minutes, or until onion is soft. Increase heat to high, add mince. Cook, stirring to break up mince, for 4 minutes, or until browned.
  3. Add tomatoes and sugar. Bring to boil. Gently boil, stirring occasionally, for 15 minutes, or until sauce thickens slightly. Stir in basil. Season.
  4. Meanwhile, cook pasta in a large saucepan of boiling, salted water for 3 minutes. Drain.
  5. For béchamel sauce, melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat until foaming. Add flour. Cook, stirring for 2 minutes, or until bubbling. Remove from heat. Slowly add milk, whisking constantly, until smooth. Return to the heat. Cook, whisking until sauce comes to the boil. Remove from heat. Stir in nutmeg, season.
  6. To assemble, spoon half the pasta into the prepared dish. Spoon over half the beef mixture. Spoon over half the béchamel sauce. Repeat with remaining pasta, beef mixture and béchamel sauce. Top with mozzarella.
  7. Place onto a tray and bake for 25 minutes, or until cheese is golden. Sprinkle with extra basil leaves and pepper. Serve.

Serving suggestion: Delicious served with rocket and baby spinach tossed with balsamic dressing.

Tip: Tortellini can be replaced with other types of filled pasta i.e. agnolotti or ravioli.

Tip: Try adding 2 teaspoons dried chilli flakes with onion and garlic for a spicy kick.

Make ahead tip: You can make the lasagna to the end step 5 the night before. Cover and place in the fridge. It will take about 40 minutes to cook from fridge temperature.

Photo and recipe courtesy of Australian Onions.