Lasagna with Italian Sausage {#sponsored}

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Sargento. All opinions are 100% mine.

With the holidays upon us, lots of people are probably thinking of ham, turkey, stuffing, and cranberry sauce. At least that is the traditional fare in my house. However, over the years I have heard several people say that their traditional meal includes lasagna. I have a friend who will visit her parents and her in-laws on Thanksgiving, so she has turkey, ham, etc at lunch, but for dinner, her mother-in-law prepares lasagna and some different dishes that incorporates their family’s heritage. I think that is a pretty neat idea.

Since I’ve been thinking about lasagna non-stop, I decided it was time to make it. I had homemade Italian turkey sausage in the freezer, so I decided to use that for the meat sauce, but you could use ground beef, ground turkey, or skip the meat all together. You could use roasted vegetables, as well. I added a little kale in with the meat, but just a little, and chopped very fine because my kids can spot something green in their food a mile away. When they asked what the flecks of green were, I told them they were herbs. No, I don’t advocate lying to your children, but, well, I will lie to mine if it means getting some vegetables in them. (And technically, there are herbs in there.) Of course, the most important component of lasagna, in my opinion, is the CHEESE. Mo’ cheese is mo’betta in my house.

My plan was to pick up mozzarella, provolone, and parmesan but then I saw the Sargento Chef Blends Shredded 6 Cheese Italian and I thought, YES! It’s a blend of Mozzarella, Provolone, Parmesan, Fontina, Romano and Asiago. Why limit myself?! I also used sliced Provolone and shredded Parmesan. What can I say, I really like cheese.

Lasagna takes some time and isn’t exactly ‘quick and easy’, but it is definitely worth it. I would also say this was Holiday worthy as well!

Lasagna with Italian Sausage

  • 1 1/4-1 1/2 pounds of ground meat (I used homemade Italian turkey sausage)
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1-2 cloves garlic, minced
  • Kale, stem removed, finely chopped (desired amount, optional)
  • 1 jar (approx 24 oz.) or 2 1/2 cups of your favorite spaghetti sauce
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 2 cups ricotta cheese (or cottage cheese if you prefer)
  • 1 cup Sargento Artisan Blends Shredded Parmesan Cheese, divided
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried parsley
  • 1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 9-12 lasagna noodles (depending on pan size, mine held 9)
  • 8 oz. Sargento Chef Blends Shredded 6 Italian Cheese
  • 6 slices of Sargento Provolone (or 12 if using the Ultra Thin sliced)
  • olive oil (for drizzling bottom of pan)
  1. Prepare meat sauce by browning ground meat on medium high heat (if not using Italian sausage, then season meat with salt and pepper, to taste) with the onion, garlic, and kale (if using). Once meat is cooked through and onions are tender, drain any fat and add the spaghetti sauce and crushed red pepper flakes. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for about 30 minutes.
  2. In a small bowl, combine the ricotta cheese, 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, egg, parsley, Italian seasoning and salt. Set aside.
  3. Boil lasagna noodles per instructions on box for al dente.
  4. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and drizzle olive oil in the bottom of a 9 x 13 baking dish.
  5. Arrange 3 to 4 lasagna noodles in bottom of pan, side by side (mine held 3).
  6. Spread 1/3 of the ricotta cheese mixture over noodles.
  7. Top cheese mixture with 1/3 of the meat sauce.
  8. Top meat sauce with 1/4 of the Shredded 6 Cheese Italian cheese.
  9. Repeat steps 5-8 two more times.
  10. After the last layer is complete, place the 6 slices of Provolone cheese on top along with remaining Parmesan.
  11. Cover with aluminum foil and bake until bubbly (40-45 minutes). Then remove foil and bake for another 15-20 minutes or until cheese is browned and bubbling.
  12. Let lasagna cool for 15-20 minutes before serving (if you can wait that long, we couldn’t!)

Recipe adapted from South Your Mouth


Look at all that cheese! Can you see why I’m a fan of Sargento Shredded Cheese? Well, not just the shredded, we use the sliced all the time too. We love Swiss, Provolone, and Cheddar on our sandwiches. If you love cheese too, then check out Sargento on Pinterest. There are lots of recipes available!

Also, Sargento currently has a recipe contest going on. Head to Sargento on Facebook to find out all the details and enter to win! You have to submit an original recipe and photo of a dish featuring a Sargento Shredded Natural Cheese variety, plus an explanation of why using real, fresh-tasting ingredients like Sargento Shredded Natural Cheese matters to you. The Facebook recipe contest winner will receive $2,000 toward kitchen supplies and ingredients for the perfect holiday meal, plus a year’s supply of Sargento Shredded Natural Cheese. Sounds good to me!

I’m curious, what do your traditional Holiday meals include?

Visit Sponsor's Site

Cincinnati Chili

I’ll be honest.  I’m a born and bred Southern girl, and never had I heard of putting chili on spaghetti.  You put spaghetti sauce on spaghetti.  Or, if you are feeling fancy, maybe some white sauce, but not chili.  So, when Biz from My Bizzy Kitchen started talking about ‘Chili Mac‘, I was intrigued.  When she said, chili with no beans, I was sold.  I wanted to give her Cincinnati Chili a try.  And yes, Biz, I went and put green onions all over it 😉

Cincinnati Chili 

  • 1.5 pounds ground turkey (or ground beef)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 2 cups tomato sauce
  • 2 tablespoons cider vinegar
  1. Heat oil in a large pot over medium heat and cook onions until softened. 
  2. Add garlic, tomato paste, chili powder, oregano, cinnamon, salt and pepper, cooking until fragrant (just a minute or two). Add ground turkey, breaking it up into small pieces. *I cooked my turkey until almost done before adding in #3, however, for traditional Cincinnati chili, ground beef (or in my case, turkey) is supposed to cook in the boiling broth.
  3. Stir in chicken broth, tomato sauce, and vinegar.
  4. Bring to boil, then reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until chili is slightly thickened, about 20 minutes.
To serve – Can be served over spaghetti, with toppings of choice.  
According to ‘What’s Cooking America‘….
Cincinnati chili lovers order their chili by number. Two, Three, Four, or Five Way.”

Two-Way Chili:   Chili served on spaghetti
Three-Way Chili:   Additionally topped with shredded Cheddar cheese
Four-Way Chili:   Additionally topped with chopped onions
Five-Way Chili:   Additionally topped with kidney beans

Verdict? This was delicious.  A little different than what I am used to, but delicious all the same.  This is why I love reading food blogs! You learn so much about how others view food, what their traditions are, and about how different regions have their own ‘specialties’. I don’t think about foods varying very much just from state to state, but they do.  Plus, I wasn’t exposed to much more than meat and potatoes growing up! I guess Eastern NC is known for their BBQ (pork, of course).  Not sure what else?!
What foods are most popular where you live?  Feel free to leave links, recipes, etc!