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slice of lasagna on a plate

Classic Lasagna Bolognese with Bechamel Sauce

Lasagna Bolognese includes only fresh egg pasta, Bolognese ragù (slow-cooked meat sauce), creamy béchamel (white sauce) and plenty of grated Parmigiano cheese. The result is a melt in your mouth, creamy, decadent, and satisfying lasagna that is distinct to Italy. When you make this recipe you will feel like you are dining at an Italian trattoria on the streets of Italy. It is a recipe loved by all and bring me back to my home in Italy. This is the recipe I grew up eating at large tables filled with family, love, and laughter. I hope you love it as much as I do!

  • Total Time: 50 minutes
  • Yield: 6-8 servings 1x

Ingredients

Units Scale

Bechamel Sauce:

  • 3 tbsp butter unsalted
  • 3 tbsp all-purpose flour all purpose
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 tablespoon of parmigiano
  • 1/8 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp salt or to taste

Instructions

  1.  Make the ragu sauce recipe and set aside (can be made days in advance and stored in fridge)
  2. Make the Bechamel Sauce (can be made days in advance and stored in fridge):  In a medium saucepan on low medium heat melt the butter.
  3. Whisk in the flour until well combined with butter. Keep whisking for about 2 to 3 minutes. Add the rest of ingredients: milk, nutmeg and salt and whisk everything together.
  4. Cook for another 5 minutes and keep whisking as it gets thicker. Add the parmigiano and stir to combine. You will know it is ready when it sticks to the back of the spoon. Turn off heat and set aside.* 
  5. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F
  6. Make the Bechamel Sauce (can be made days in advance and stored in fridge): Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook the pasta (6 at a time for dried pasta) until they are tender but still underdone (they will finish cooking as the lasagna bakes).
  7. Set the al dente pasta noodles on a clean tea towels as you are layering the lasagna. Cover with another tea towel so the pasta doesn't dry out or stick together.
  8. Grease a 9X13 rectangular baking dish with the olive oil, add a large dollop of ragu sauce and spread it around the bottom of the pan.
  9. Put a layer of lasagna pasta (use 4-5 depending on size) in the dish (you may need to cut any excess to make them fit) top with a layer of ragu sauce, one-third of the bechamel sauce, and one-third of the parmigiano cheese (use your fingers to spread it evenly).
  10. Season with salt and pepper if desired. Repeat this process until layers are complete ending with bechamel and cheese on top.
  11. Bake until the lasagna is bubbling and the cheese is melted and lightly browned on top, about 30-40 minutes. Remove from the oven and let rest a few minutes before serving, or cool completely, cover well, and refrigerate for up to 3 days, or freeze.

Notes

*Know your béchamel is done: A properly thickened roux should “coat the back of the spoon,” which means dip your spoon into the béchamel and then draw a finger through the coated spoon. Does the sauce wipe clean, leaving an open space? Then your béchamel is done and ready. 

  • Author: Elena Davis
  • Prep Time: 20 min
  • Cook Time: 30 min
  • Category: Savory
  • Method: Italian
  • Cuisine: Italian

Keywords: lasagna, traditional Italian recipe, lasagna bolognese, lasagne bolognese, lasagna recipe, meat sauce, ragu, bechamel, white sauce, dinner recipe, Italian dinner