Make lasagna a little more affordable by using a little less cheese?!? Here’s my attempt!
Lasagna Rolls Ups
Make lasagna a little more affordable by using a little less cheese?!? Here's my attempt!
Servings - 4 servings
- 16 lasagna noodles
- 1 lb. ground beef
- 2 cups spaghetti sauce
- 1 cup chopped spinach
- 1/2 small 1/2 onion
- 2 tsp 2 tsp garlic powder
- 2 Tbsp Italian seasoning
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 1 cup ricota cheese
- 6 slices provolone cheese
- fresh veggies, as side dish
- Cook lasagna noodles as directed on box. These must be cooked so that they can be rolled. Don't think the no boil kind will work!
- Thaw and brown ground beef. Drain. (I had some cooked ground beef in the freezer.) In skillet, cook ground beef with onion, chopped spinach, Italian seasoning, garlic powder, salt and pepper.
- Then add spaghetti sauce. Simmer until sauce is thick and chunky.
- Lay lasagna noodles over the side of a 9x13 baking dish, so that you put the ricotta and sauce in the middle of the noodle and wrap the two ends around the ricotta/meat sauce into a "roll up."
- Repeat for all the noddles until the baking dish is filled with lasagna rollups. Spread remaining meat sauce over the top of the roll ups.
- Place 6 slices of provolone cheese on top of the roll ups.
- Bake rollups for 20 minutes at 350 F, uncovered.
- Steam broccoli in glass dish covered with saran wrap for 4 minutes in the microwave, or use stovetop steamer.
- Prepare frozen corn as directed on package instructions.
- Serve lasagna rollups with sides of steamed broccoli and corn.
You could make your own fresh mozzarella and ricotta — http://www.cyber-kitchen.com/ubbs/archive/DAIRY/Cheese_Mozzarella.html
I haven’t tried this yet because I haven’t been able to find citric acid in a store near me and haven’t ordered it from online sources. But I’m sure that it would be pretty cheap to make it in bulk (just the cost of the milk and the upfront costs for cheesecloth, citric acid, and rennet). You could also try making fresh lasagne noodles — that would just take flour, water, and patience with a rolling pin.
Is cottage cheese any cheaper than ricotta? I think it is, and it’s also easier to get low-fat, so that’s what I usually use for lasagna.
It’s $6.91 for the whole recipe/meal, but in my home, we would only eat TWO of the roll ups as a serving, not four, so that actually cuts the cost of the meal down to $3.45 for a family of four for us. (using your prices – we pay more for ground beef than that, because we buy whole beef and have it butchered.)
HOW do we get ground beef for $1/pound? We’re glad to get it for under $3/pound, for 70/30 chub…?
Martha Artyomenko says
Well, when I make lasagna, we omit the meat. This makes it cheaper, also I make my sauce from scratch buying #10 cans of the tomato product instead of ready made sauce. This makes it so it is much cheaper for the sauce.
Also, we can mozzerella pretty cheap right now, it was $8 for 5 lbs of grated mozzerella cheese last I checked so that makes it pretty cheap.
Question: Why does the recipe call for spices in addition to what is already in the pre-prepared sauce? It’s only ten cents, but it seems superfluous.
I made your roll up lasanga last night, it was a hit with the family, thank you for the recipe
Stephani Satterfield says
I use tomato sauce instead of pre-made sauce ($.33/can) and use fresh grated carrots in my lasagna, which could be a substitute for the broccoli and corn. Usually 1 to 2 cups of carrots, so that would be about $.40 (?) for veggies.
Thanks for your idea. My mom saw you on Rachael Ray and told me about $5 suppers. We’re going to give it a go.
Amy Johnson says
Have you tried Zucchini Casserole? It has all the flavors of a lasagna, but uses rice instead of noodles…and it freezes very well!
Slice and blanch zucchini and layer in bottom of 9×13 pan.
Cook 2 cups rice and mix with 2 cups of tomato sauce and ~3/4 lb cooked ground beef. Layer this next. Next a thin layer of cottage cheese and some shredded cheese. More zucchini, and rice/sauce meat. Sprinkle with cheese and bake at 350 until bubby. This is a favorite for my family and it is a great use of our giant zucchini from our garden. If you want to freeze them, put them together and don’t bake. They will thaw on the counter for the morning and be ready for dinner.
Thanks Amy! Sound delish!!!
Instead of the ricotta in the roll ups try using cottage cheese. This is what I use in my lasagne and no one has been able to tell the difference. Still get compliments!
For a more economical version of lasagna, you can use italian sausage instead of beef. And instead of a cottage cheese or ricotta layer, you could do a layer of classic bechemel sauce. (Butter/Flour roux, with milk) and can also cut the fat that way by using fat free milk. It gives a nice creamy feel without the need for so much cheese.
Funny — my mother in law ordered this at Olive Garden this weekend and I already had the recipe tagged to make it soon for the family. I make this a little differently- – I spread the cheese (ricotta and some mozzarella mixed with egg and Italian seasoning) lightly down the length of the noodle (leaving some room at the ends) and then roll. I stand them on end in the pan, then bake them in sauce like you would stuffed shells. These freeze well too …. used to make them a long time ago when it was just hubby and myself, now that we have four kids I don’t think I need to worry about trying to freeze any!! There won’t be any left!!
Looks good. I’ll have to try it. One queston: WHERE do you find 3/4 lb. of ground beef for $0.75? I can’t get it at that price even on sale and in bulk!
I was thinking the same thing! Even in bulk at Sam’s or BJ’s I can’t get it below $2.99 lb.
This recipe sounds delicious tho, and I think to make it cheaper I’m going to go with a veggie version.
@Suzanne – we make them that way ALL the time! I make multiple batches and freeze them so that we have an easily-made dinner on the nights when we have sports practices, lessons and other stuff. 🙂 To cut the cost, I occasionally use spinach and make a vegetarian version, then I serve with a meat-flavored sauce to make up for it. DH can’t have red sauce anyway, so the spinach also goes really well with alfredo.
Rachel - Following in my Shoes says
What is the best way to freeze these?
Clare Weisberger says
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Exactly how does this fall under gluten free, dairy free, and soy free? I see gluten and I see dairy. Very confused here.