Skillet Lasagna

skillet lasagna in a large pan

 The Spruce Eats / Leah Maroney

  • Total: 30 mins
  • Prep: 5 mins
  • Cook: 25 mins
  • Servings: 4 servings
  • Yield: 1 pan

Skillet lasagna is a super easy and cozy pasta dinner that is a lot less work than making an actual lasagna. No pre-boiling noodles, meticulous layering, and close to an hour of baking—just all of the flavor, texture, and goodness of your favorite lasagna, without any of the fuss.

We made it super easy and threw this all together with pre-made sauce, but you can use homemade sauce to make it extra special. You'll need over three cups of marinara to make this recipe. You may need to add more sauce as it is cooking depending on how much liquid the noodles absorb. 

This is the perfect weeknight dish. Serve with a Caesar salad and some garlic bread for a filling, complete meal.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 pound lasagna noodles
  • 1/2 pound ground Italian sausage
  • 3 1/2 cups prepared tomato or marinara sauce
  • 1 teaspoon salt (plus more, to taste)
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup ricotta cheese
  • 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese (plus more for garnish)
  • 1/3 cup parmesan cheese (grated)
  • Garnish: Fresh parsley (chopped)

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    ingredients for skillet lasagna on a marble board
     The Spruce Eats / Leah Maroney 
  2. Break up the lasagna noodles into large, bite-sized pieces. 

    broken up lasagna noodles
      The Spruce Eats / Leah Maroney
  3. Add the ground sausage to a large pan (that has a lid) and break into chunks. Heat the sausage on medium-high heat without stirring until nice caramelization forms. This takes about 3 minutes. Use a wooden spoon to break the sausage into smaller crumbles and continue cooking until completely cooked through.

    browned sausage in a white pan
      The Spruce Eats / Leah Maroney
  4. Add the tomato sauce, salt, and dried basil to the sausage in the pan. Add the water. Stir and heat on medium-low heat until just warmed through.

    sausage and tomato sauce in a white pan
      The Spruce Eats / Leah Maroney
  5. Add the lasagna noodles and press them into the sauce as best as you can. Try to submerge as many of the noodles as possible.

    lasagna noodles in a sauce filled pan
     The Spruce Eats / Leah Maroney 
  6. Place the lid onto the pan and cook for 15-20 minutes or until the noodles are soft and have absorbed most of the sauce. Stir every few minutes to ensure even cooking of all of the noodles, adding a little more sauce and/or water if the mixture gets too dry.

    cooked lasagna noodles in a skillet
      The Spruce Eats / Leah Maroney
  7. Once the noodles have cooked, stir in the ricotta cheese, mozzarella cheese, and parmesan cheese until evenly distributed. Allow the cheeses to melt. Add more salt to taste.

    cheese mixed with lasagna noodles and sauce in a skillet
     The Spruce Eats / Leah Maroney 
  8. Top with chopped parsley and more cheese if you wish. Serve and enjoy.

    skillet lasagna garnished with parsley
      The Spruce Eats / Leah Maroney

Recipe Variations

  • If you don't have lasagna noodles, swap them for other pasta shapes like penne.
  • If you’re looking to add even more flavor, you can season the ricotta cheese before adding it to the skillet. Fold in salt, pepper, dried basil, and parmesan cheese to the ricotta before dolloping it onto the skillet. 
  • You can use ground beef or ground turkey instead of ground Italian sausage for a milder dish. 
  • Try fresh mozzarella instead of shredded.