Meatball Lasagna

Hearty beef Mediterranean meatballs give this Meatball Lasagna recipe its name. In addition to the traditional lasagna ingredients and meat beef, we sneak in sweet peppers and goat cheese.

Meatball Lasagna in baking dish
Photo: Jason Donnelly
Prep Time:
30 mins
Roast Time:
20 mins
Stand Time:
20 mins
Bake Time:
55 mins
Stand Time:
15 mins
Total Time:
30 mins
Servings:
9

Ingredients

  • 2 medium green sweet peppers, seeded and quartered

  • 6 dried regular or whole wheat lasagna noodles

  • 1 ½ cup shredded reduced-fat mozzarella cheese (6 ounces)

  • ½ of a 15-ounce carton light ricotta cheese (3/4 cup)

  • ¼ cup soft goat cheese (chèvre) or finely shredded Parmesan cheese (1 ounce)

  • 1 ½ cup light or low-fat tomato-basil pasta sauce

  • 1 recipe Mediterranean Meatballs

  • Small fresh basil or oregano leaves (optional)

Mediterranean Meatballs

  • ½ cup bottled roasted red peppers, drained and finely chopped

  • ¾ cup soft whole wheat bread crumbs (about 1 slice)

  • ¼ cup refrigerated or frozen egg product, (thawed) or 1 egg, lightly beaten

  • 3 tablespoon tomato sauce

  • ¼ cup snipped fresh basil, or 1 tablespoon dried basil, crushed

  • 2 tablespoon snipped fresh Italian (flat-leaf) parsley

  • ¼ teaspoon salt

  • teaspoon black pepper

  • 1 pound 95% lean ground beef

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 425°F. Line a large baking sheet with foil. Place sweet pepper quarters, cut sides down, on the prepared baking sheet. Roast, uncovered, about 20 minutes or until pepper quarters are charred. Wrap peppers in the foil; let stand for 20 minutes. Using a small sharp knife, peel and discard skins from pepper quarters. Set aside. Reduce oven temperature to 375°F.

  2. Meanwhile, cook lasagna noodles according to package directions. Drain noodles; rinse with cold water. Drain well; set aside. For filling, in a small bowl stir together 1 cup of the mozzarella cheese, the ricotta cheese, and goat cheese or Parmesan cheese; set aside.

  3. To assemble, spread 1/2 cup of the pasta sauce in the bottom of a 2-quart rectangular baking dish. Layer two of the cooked noodles in the dish. Arrange cooked meatballs in a single layer on top of noodles in dish. Add two more of the cooked noodles. Top with the ricotta cheese mixture, spreading evenly. Arrange sweet pepper pieces over ricotta mixture. Top with the remaining two cooked noodles. Spread the remaining pasta sauce over noodles.

  4. Bake, covered, for 50 minutes. Sprinkle with the remaining 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese. Bake, uncovered, for 5 to 10 minutes more or until heated through. Let stand 15 minutes before serving. If desired, garnish with fresh basil.

Mediterranean Meatballs

Mediterranean Meatballs:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a 15x10x1-inch baking pan with foil; set aside. In a large bowl combine roasted red peppers, bread crumbs, egg, tomato sauce, basil, parsley, salt, and pepper. Add ground beef; mix well. Shape meat mixture into 24 meatballs. Place meatballs in the prepared pan. Bake about 20 minutes or until cooked through (160°F). Transfer meatballs to a tray.

To Make Ahead:

Place cooked meatballs in an airtight container; cover. Store in the refrigerator for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

255 Calories
8g Fat
20g Carbs
23g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 9
Calories 255
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 8g 10%
Saturated Fat 4g 20%
Cholesterol 66mg 22%
Sodium 423mg 18%
Total Carbohydrate 20g 7%
Total Sugars 6g
Protein 23g
Vitamin C 48.6mg 243%
Calcium 205mg 16%
Iron 2.6mg 15%
Potassium 440mg 9%
Folate, total 48mcg
Vitamin B-12 1.2mcg
Vitamin B-6 0.3mg

*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.

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