Cooking for one (or two) seems impossible when all of the recipes online are typically for four servings or more. Want to know my little secret? Any meal can be made a meal for one—you just don’t have to cook as many meals for yourself. So when prepping a meal, say like this cottage cheese lasagna, you bake a pan of it and eat it for dinners throughout the week. Easy, peasy.
This recipe makes nine servings! Talk about a lot of prep! It’s a great dinner for two—especially if you’re stuck inside—and will last you at least three or four days of dinners. However, if you’re just cooking for yourself, simply cut the recipe in half. You can always prep it in a small 8 x 8″ pan and make four or five slices of cottage cheese lasagna instead.
Why cottage cheese?
To be honest, I always thought lasagna was made with ricotta cheese and nothing else. Ricotta is typically the cheese you would see in stuffed pasta dishes, like ravioli or tortellini. But when my mother-in-law fed me a slice of her lasagna and surprised me by sharing her secret ingredient, I was hooked. Cottage cheese is delicious in lasagna, and it’s much easier to spread in the lasagna when building it.
My trick to perfectly reheating lasagna.
Reheating a slice of this lasagna is super easy. I’ll put the slice on a plate and reheat it for one minute, then slice the piece in half and heat it up for another minute. That way it perfectly reheats on the outside and the inside as well.
Yes, you can freeze this for later.
The glorious thing about lasagna is how you can easily prep it and freeze it for later! I like to prep mine and freeze it in our 13 x 9″ casserole dish. Here’s what to do get it prep it:
- Prep the lasagna as normal, until you reach the part where you would have to bake it.
- Cover it and place it in the freezer for up to 3 months. When you’re ready to bake the lasagna, you can either thaw it then bake, or bake it from frozen.
- If thawed: Thaw the lasagna in the fridge for 24 hours. Bake as normal.
- If frozen: Bake for 1 1/2 hours, or until the center is no longer frozen.
The aluminum foil is important.
Don’t make the mistake I once did! The aluminum foil is very important for the lasagna because it keeps the moisture in it, making the noodles nice and soft. If you bake it without the aluminum foil you’re likely to have a very crunchy top to your lasagna, meaning you’re probably going to discard that whole first layer.
Make it a well-balanced meal.
A slice of lasagna is great for dinner, but let’s be honest, one slice alone isn’t that filling. You’ll want to make it a well-balanced meal by adding some kind of vegetable side. I enjoy having cottage cheese lasagna with a side of Italian greens and balsamic vinaigrette. Or you could have it with one of the following sides:
Need more meals you can prep?
Here are some of my favorite dinner recipes to prep and eat throughout the week—even if I’m only cooking for myself and my husband.
Cottage Cheese Lasagna
- 1 lb. ground beef or ground turkey!
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp onion powder
- 1/2 tsp Italian seasoning
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 8 oz. lasagna noodles
- 1 jar pasta sauce 26-28 oz.
- 1 cup cottage cheese
- 1 cup low-moisture mozzarella cheese shredded
- 1/2 cup grated parmesan
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
- In a large skillet, cook the ground beef until no longer pink. Discard the grease into a can.
- Sprinkle in the garlic powder, onion powder, Italian seasoning, and salt into the ground beef and mix.
- In a 9×13" deep casserole dish, lay down a single layer of uncooked lasagna noodles.
- Pour in 1/4 of the pasta jar sauce and spread across the noodles.
- Add in 1/3 cup of the cottage cheese and spread.
- Add in 1/3 of the ground beef mixture.
- Sprinkle in 1/4 cup of the mozzarella cheese and 2 tablespoons of the parmesan.
- Repeat the same layering (steps 4-8) for two more layers—noodles, sauce, cottage cheese, ground beef, mozzarella cheese, and parmesan.
- For the last layer, simply add noodles, sauce, the last 1/4 cup of mozzarella and the last 2 tablespoons of grated parmesan.
- Cover the casserole dish with a piece of aluminum foil and place in the oven.
- Bake for 45 minutes. Remove the aluminum and bake for another 10 minutes (55 minutes total).
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