This twist on traditional lasagna has italian sausage (mild or spicy!) and a creamy chipotle sauce! It also makes 2, so you can give one to a friend or save one in the freezer for later!
So it’s that time of year again….
School’s back in session.
For some, it’s the happiest time of the year! The kids go back to school and you can settle back into routine.
For others, namely those kids that have to go back and their teachers, not quite as fun!
It’s not like I don’t love my job, and it’s not like my 60 14-18 year old students aren’t going to be super excited to see me (rolls eyes), but it’s just so much nicer sitting around home, having every day open to
do whatever I want blog and be a mother.
And I know there are people who work more than 5 hours and 20 minutes — which includes a 75 minute prep and a 30 minute lunch — and then have to go home and make supper… but it still feels like a lot somedays.
There are a lot of things bloggers do behind the scenes that not everybody knows about. In fact, I didn’t even know about them until I started, which is maybe why I started in the first place! But I’m glad I did and I’ve learned an incredible amount so far.
We love pasta.
And I love my freezer as much as I love my slow cooker.
When the middle of August rolls around, I’m usually starting to stock up the freezer a bit so I can have a few extra nights off of supper duty when I’m working. Because if you’re going to make one, you may as well make two. Or more.
So the recipe I’m including for you makes two lasagnas, but it can be easily be halved if you only want one!
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Creamy Chipotle and Italian Sausage Lasagna
- 1 lb italian sausage 4-5 links, casings removed
- 1 lb lean ground beef
- 1/2 medium onion diced
- 3/4 cup frozen spinach thawed and drained
- 1/2 tsp garlic
- 18 lasagna noodles
- 1/2 cup butter
- 1/2 cup all purpose flour
- 3 cups milk
- 1 cup tomato sauce
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2-1 tsp chipotle peppers in adobo pureed
- 1 1/2 cups diced tomatoes drained
- 4 cups shredded cheese
- In a large pan, fry italian sausage, beef and onion together until browned. Drain any extra fat.
- Stir in spinach and garlic and cook 1-2 minutes. Remove from the pan (set aside) and wipe clean with a paper towel.
- While your meat is cooking, cook your noodles according to the package. Drain and set aside to let cool so you can handle them. I often soak mine in some cold water for a few minutes.
- In the frying pan melt the butter. Whisk in the flour until smooth and cook 1 minute.
- Stir in milk, 1 cup at a time, whisking and cooking until thickened after each addition. When all milk has been added and mixture is thick, stir in sausage mixture, tomato sauce, salt, chipotle peppers (less for less heat, more for more heat) and tomatoes. Adjust seasonings to taste.
- Assembly:Spray two 9×13″ pans with non stick spray (I use one foil pan for the freezer lasagna, and keep one to bake the next day). Line each pan with 3 noodles. Top the noodles in each pan with ⅙ of the sauce (you’re just trying to keep the sauce spread evenly throughout the dish). Top with a sprinkle of cheese. Repeat layers two more times: 3 noodles, ⅙ of the sauce, sprinkle of cheese. 3 noodles, remaining sauce, remaining cheese.
- To bake:Set in the fridge until ready to bake or place right into an oven preheated to 350 degrees F. Bake for 45 minutes – 1 hour until heated through and cheese starts to brown. If your cheese begins to look too dry, cover with a piece of tin foil sprayed with non stick spray. Let sit 5 minutes before slicing.
Spray a piece of plastic wrap with non stick spray and place spray-side down on top of the lasagna (you don’t want that cheese to stick while it’s freezing!). Cover with a piece of tin foil and write the date and name of the dish. I also write a reminder to take the plastic wrap out before baking. Freeze flat.
On the day you want to eat it, remove from the freezer in the morning and let thaw. It won’t be completely thawed by the time you go to bake, which is fine. You can also pop right into the oven from the freezer, provided you used a foil baking pan, you’ll just want to make sure the middle is hot before serving. Bake at 350 degrees for at least 1 hour, up to 1.5 hours, until heated through.
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