Everybody loves lasagna! That savory meaty sauce, the fluffy ricotta, some rich tomato flavors, and of course the delicious handful of cheese! But unfortunately, it isn’t always possible to make your own.
Lasagna can take hours to make and with the busy lives we lead, nobody has the time. But luckily, there is a solution: frozen lasagne! Now before you go off on us, frozen lasagne doesn’t mean always artificial and processed.
What is the best kind of frozen lasagna? The best type of frozen lasagnas is made from fresh and natural ingredients. When choosing which lasagne to purchase, make sure to stay away from GMO ingredients, artificial colorants, flavorings, and preservatives.
Today, we will be looking at everything you need to know about frozen lasagne including what to look out for when buying and choosing the best option from the hundreds available.
And finally, we will be looking at a ton of different types and sizes you can conveniently find online that are both convenient and delicious.
What Is Lasagna?
Lasagna actually has an extremely rich history and isn’t close to what we know modern lasagne as.
The modern term “lasagne” originated from the word “lagana”, which in Roman times referred to thin rectangular or square sheets of pasta-like dough. This dough was made from wheat flour like regular pasta is today.
In 1880, for the first time ever, the tomato was introduced into the recipe in Naples. Yes! Believe it or not but originally lasagne was made without any tomato! Crazy, right?
They also used tiny fried meatballs made from locally made sausages. Yum!
Anyway, at the beginning of the 20th century, a restaurateur from Bologna popularized the use of spinach in the dough, creating the now extremely popular spinach lasagne sheets.
Around the same time, the uber creamy béchamel sauce was added to most recipes along with Parmigiano cheese as a topping.
Today, the most common recipe (or combination of ingredients) used to make lasagne includes wheat or spinach pasta (lasagne) sheets, béchamel or ragu sauce, minced meat, and grated cheese.
To make lasagne even more complex, different regions have different types of lasagne they make.
The most popular ingredients used in Italian regions include some combination of mozzarella, ricotta, tomato sauce, ground beef, pork, chicken, spinach, zucchini, olives, mushrooms, wine, garlic, onion, and oregano.
How Lasagna Is Made
So, as we have mentioned, there are many different versions of lasagne, but they are all made in relatively the same way and assembled using the same steps.
Some people pre-cook their lasagne sheets; however, if you cover them with sauce when layering, the moisture in the sauce essentially cooks them.
We rarely add cooked lasagne sheets—it’s just more work to an already labor-intensive dish!
If you are making lasagne sheets from scratch, you can simply roll them out, cut them into the correct sized pieces, and add them in layers. Do not pre-cook them or dry them before using them (if you want to use them fresh).
Any meat should be pre-cooked and pre-seasoned. As with all your components, make sure not to overseason or under season your food.
The entire dish should be well-balanced in flavor, so keep this in mind every time you are adding spice or salt.
Lastly, the cheese! For lasagne, any type of cheese can work that compliments the rest of the flavors. Try using easy-melting cheeses like cheddar or parmesan. You can incorporate some cheese in your sauce as well and use it as a topping.
To assemble your lasagne, we like starting with some sauce at the bottom followed by a lasagne sheet.
Make sure to always add a relatively thin layer of sauce underneath and on top of each sheet (this helps the dried pasta sheets cook).
Then, add some meat, cheese, and any accompanying ingredient. Top with sauce, a lasagne sheet, some more sauce, and then the filling ingredients again.
We also like ending the layering with another lasagne sheet, some sauce, and a bunch of cheese!
By adding a layer of pasta at the bottom and top, you create a more structurally sound portion that won’t fall apart when plated.
If you are making frozen lasagne or are buying store-bought frozen lasagne, the process stays exactly the same, but the dish is allowed to completely cooled before being frozen, or it is flash-frozen to maintain freshness.
Different Types Of Frozen Lasagna
Today, the word lasagne has evolved into more of a concept than an actual set list of ingredients.
The word refers more to the layering aspect of the dish than anything else. So, that is why you will sometimes see “chocolate mousse lasagne recipe” or “vegan lasagne”.
Here are only a few and most common varieties of frozen lasagne you will find at your local grocery store or that you can make yourself.
Meat lasagne is a broad term used to describe virtually any type of lasagne that contains meat. This can include lamb or mutton, pork, or beef, even chicken!
Usually, it is in the form of ground meat; however, a lot of regions use sliced sausages. Turkey is also a very popular type of poultry used in certain areas.
Vegetarian And Vegan Lasagna
Despite being meat-free, vegan and vegetarian lasagnas aren’t that different from regular lasagne. The meat part is usually substituted with a very savory ingredient like lentils or aubergine.
The dried lasagne sheets that you buy are also usually made without eggs, making them at the very least vegetarian. Always check the packaging though to ensure it’s right for you.
Vegan lasagna uses some type of vegan cheese and a vegan-bechamel sauce made with either almond or soy milk.
Believe it or not, but there is a massive debate regarding the “right” type of cheese used for making lasagne.
So naturally, there are a ton of manufacturers that uses the exact same recipe, but they change the cheese. If you’re a cheese-fanatic and are looking for a specific cheese in the recipe, make sure to check the ingredients list!
Why Should I Buy Frozen Lasagna?
Okay, so we know everyone is always like “homemade is better”, but to be honest, life gets busy!
Having a freezer stocked with ready-to-heat frozen food is one of our biggest life hacks for getting through those extremely busy days, weeks, and even months!
And, who said frozen lasagne has to be commercially made? You can buy homemade artisan frozen lasagne or even make big batches in advance and freeze them yourself.
And to get even more honest about lasagne, it takes a lot of work to make it! Not only work but time as well.
You will not be able to make your own lasagne in under 1 hour. It usually takes about 30 minutes (at least) to bake – that doesn’t even include preparing and pre-cooking the other ingredients!
And then most importantly, frozen lasagne is the best when you get unannounced visitors and didn’t have any time to cook. By simply popping one of these in the oven, you have a hearty meal in minutes.
Nutritional Value Of Frozen Lasagna
Frozen lasagne isn’t necessarily your “healthiest” dinner option, but moderation is key! We know, it’s especially hard when it comes to pasta.
While it is a dish that is high in fiber and protein (only when using high protein ingredients), it is also high in sodium and fat.
Plant-based lasagnas do often offer some additionally nutritious elements from the presence of greens in the dish.
How To Cook Frozen Lasagna
Obviously, the “frozen” part is what makes it so extremely convenient. That is why the entire dish has already been cooked to ensure you basically only have to defrost and reheat it – sometimes both at the same time!
To cook your frozen lasagne in an oven, simply preheat it to 400°F. Remove any plastic packaging and cover the lasagne with some foil (if it isn’t already covered).
Place it inside the oven for between 30-40 minutes depending on the size—you don’t have to thaw it first.
You can also reheat lasagne inside a microwave if you want to speed up the entire process as well. Just remember that a microwave targets small water particles to create steam that heats the lasagne.
This means your lasagna won’t have that baked, bubbly, and crispy cheese layer as it would in the oven.
You should also first check if the packaging is microwave safe and remember to transfer the dish to a microwave-safe plate or bowl.
An air fryer is actually also a very handy piece of equipment to have when it comes to reheating frozen food. However, depending on the size of your air fryer, you might only be able to fit a small portion inside.
Set the air fryer to its defrost temperature (usually around 170°F) and cook it for about 15 minutes Then, increase the heat to 400°F and cook it for another 10-15 minutes.
The best frozen lasagne isn’t always determined by the prettiest packaging. There are a lot of other factors to consider before simply grabbing one from the shelf.
Before getting into the specific things to consider, we first feel that it is extremely important for us to mention that you should check the packaging itself. Frozen food shouldn’t have any visible ice crystals on or inside the package.
Ice crystals are a sign that the food has defrosted (or at the very least left the frozen cold chain) and have been refrozen.
This is something a lot of people overlook but could have big effects on your health. For example, the food could have already been spoilt before being refrozen.
Good quality lasagne should be packed with flavors that have also been very well balanced—even if it is frozen lasagne! But we admit, it is nearly impossible to tell from packaging alone whether or not something will be good.
What you can do is check the list of spices on the ingredients list. If there are a lot of spices, chances are the lasagne will be flavorful. If they merely say “spices” it will probably lack that something special.
You can also have a look at what meat has been used and whether they list the fat percentage. Fat means flavor, so if they used something fatty like beef, you will have a very umani and rich dish.
And finally, you can have a look at the type of cheese. For example, matured cheddar has a much more intense flavor compared to regular cheddar and parmesan has a much deeper flavor than gouda.
This is naturally a personal preference factor; however, more intense cheeses will create a more flavorful dish!
Quality Of Ingredients
Buying any frozen food product that uses organically farmed ingredients or even simply non-GMO ingredients does give you the satisfaction of knowing you are consuming better alternatives.
It adds quality to your dish and arguably ensures that the manufacturer cares just as much about the quality of their products’ flavor.
You can also look at the type of ingredients used to determine whether they meet your need.
For example, if you need a high protein ingredient, you can choose animal meat or plant protein.
The cheese that is used in lasagne affects the creaminess of the dish. Cheddar and ricotta make excellent lasagne with a relatively mild flavor.
Parmigiano Reggiano on the other hand will add a rich intense flavor. Cheeses like feta should be avoided because it has bad melting characteristics.
And for vegetarian and vegan options (or any option that needs to meet a certain dietary requirement), just make sure to check the ingredients list and whether the product has been certified vegan.
Since we have already mentioned that lasagne isn’t the healthiest meal you can consume, we thought to rather look at the nutritional value in a different way.
Obviously, you can still compare ingredients used from item to item, but a big overall problem when it comes to frozen foods is the number of preservatives added to them that make them keep longer while staying flavorful.
We would highly recommend only buying homemade or artisanal or no-preservative frozen food items.
You should also check for any other additives like stabilizers, colorants, and additives. These are all extremely popular additions to frozen lasagne specifically that help give it that movie-moment look.
One of the main reasons for buying frozen lasagna is because of how convenient it is to make.
Cooking time and methods is very important when buying a frozen lasagne because, believe it or not, many frozen foods take just as long to heat as it would making them from scratch.
The shorter the cooking time (in an oven) the better! The lasagne is (or should be) already partially cooked and only need to be thawed and reheated throughout.
You should also see how you need to reheat the lasagne. Some types cannot be reheated inside a microwave, while others cannot be reheated inside an oven. Some of them you may even need to still add the toppings before serving!
The 13 Best Frozen Lasagnas
Who would’ve thought that there are so many different types of frozen lasagnas available on the market? It seems almost impossible to choose!
Luckily, we have compiled a list of our favorite lasagnas that can all be conveniently found online. We’ve tried to include a wide variety of types so that you can find something you and your family will love!
|1.||Stouffer’s Lasagna With Meat And Sauce||Best overall frozen lasagna|
|2.||Cali’flour Foods Lasagna With Meat Sauce||Keto-friendly|
|3.||Michael Angelos Lasagna With Meat & Sauce||No artificial ingredients|
|4.||RAO’S Made For Home Family Size Frozen Meat Lasagna||Made with fresh pasta|
|5.||Real Good Gluten-Free Frozen Lasagna Bowl||Gluten-free|
|6.||Stouffer's Frozen Plant-Based Lasagna||No artificial colorants|
|7.||Marie Callender's Italiano Lasagna With Ricotta Cheese||Made using ricotta, parmesan, mozzarella, and romano|
|8.||Lean Cuisine Lasagna With Meat Sauce||Convenient single serving portions|
|9.||Pesto Chick‘n Lasagna||Vegetarian|
|10.||Udi’s Gluten-Free Frozen Italian Sausage Lasagna||Great budget-friendly option|
|11.||Amy’s Frozen Organic Vegetable Lasagna||Non-GMO|
|12.||Great Value Frozen Mexican-Style Lasagna||Unique Mexican-Style Lasagna|
|13.||Simek’s All Natural Meat Lasagna||Made with all-natural ingredients|
1. Stouffer’s Lasagna With Meat And Sauce
This is one of our favorite classic frozen lasagnas made from 100% pure beef and vine-ripened tomatoes.
It has been topped with deliciously creamy real mozzarella cheese.
The reason we emphasize “real” when it comes to the mozzarella is that a lot of frozen food products often use artificial substitutes.
This is a family-sized meal that can serve up to 4 people. This specific product however contains 3 packs so that you have multiple dinners ready to go! It is extremely convenient and can be served alongside a ton of accompaniments.
2. Cali’flour Foods Lasagna With Meat Sauce
While this isn’t a vegetarian lasagna, it certainly has a very veggie taste to it.
This lasagne is made with a meat sauce and layered with cauliflower noodles, basil, spinach, and ricotta cheese.
And to make it even better, this is a keto-friendly frozen meal that is low in carbs, gluten-free, and grain-free, making it perfect for the whole family!
This is definitely a meal your entire family will enjoy and that isn’t too high in calories. There are also other flavors available including chicken enchilada and a veggie enchilada.
3. Michael Angelos Lasagna With Meat & Sauce
This dinner for two is another that uses classic lasagne flavors to create an amazingly well-balanced meal.
It doesn’t contain any preservatives and no artificial ingredients have been used.
You can expect a deliciously creamy meat sauce made with a ripe vine-tomato sauce base, and finally, topped with some flavorful Romano cheese.
This range of lasagne is also made from scratch in smaller batches to ensure you get the freshest possible flavors and the highest possible quality!
4. RAO’S Made For Home Family Size Frozen Meat Lasagna
If authentic came in a box, this would be one of the closest Italian lasagnas you could find.
It is made with fresh pasta, a mix of fresh ricotta and mozzarella cheese, and beef and sausage.
Finally, it’s finished off with a beautiful marinara sauce.
You can also expect some rich and deep tomato flavors alongside garlic, basil, and parsley. This is arguably one of our favorite frozen lasagnas and at a very affordable price!
5. Real Good Gluten-Free Frozen Lasagna Bowl
This is arguably one of the most delicious gluten-free and grain-free lasagnas we have ever had – and it’s frozen!
It is made with a classic home-style marinara sauce and creamy ricotta cheese.
Layered between these are delicious chicken pieces and some parmesan slices.
This is a single portion of lasagne that is perfect for a single, or an entire family! And, to make it even better, one portion only contains about 11 grams of carbs and is packed with 32 grams of protein.
6. Stouffer‘s Frozen Plant-Based Lasagna
Trust us, it is hard to believe that this is a meatless lasagne!
Stouffers have found the secret to getting that perfect meaty flavor without having to add any inside.
They have also used some delicious mozzarella cheese and of course, the classic tomato sauce.
This product also doesn’t contain any artificial flavoring or colorants and can be heated in the oven and the microwave in less than 10 minutes – quick and easy!
7. Marie Callender’s Italiano Lasagna With Ricotta Cheese
This Italian-style lasagne is perfect for any romantic dinner for two or simply a great movie night amongst family and friends.
The pasta has been made from scratch making it extra special.
And, they have also decided to use a blend of cheeses including ricotta, parmesan, mozzarella, and romano.
The tomato base is made from ripened vine tomatoes and they have also added some delicious Italian sausage.
This lasagne can also be conveniently heated in an oven or microwave.
8. Lean Cuisine Lasagna With Meat Sauce
It sometimes feels like every company is making the same type of lasagne.
However, what makes this one unique to most is that it uses actual meat inside, not only a meat sauce!
This classic lasagne is made with the highest quality ingredient.
It includes some deliciously seasoned meat, tomato sauce, parmesan cheese, and some partially skimmed mozzarella cheese.
This is another single-portion product making it much easier for you to provide just the right amount of food for a dinner party! No more wasting food and endless amounts of leftovers!
9. Pesto Chick‘n Lasagna
This is a vegetarian lasagne that has been made with kale, butternut squash, and delicious plant-based chicken.
They have also used organic pasta, so you know you have quality on your hands!
It does however still contain parmesan cheese so it isn’t suitable for vegans or people with lactose intolerance.
You can heat this lasagne inside the microwave or bake it in an oven – either way, it is an incredibly delicious and healthy alternative to regular fatty lasagne.
10. Udi’s Gluten-Free Frozen Italian Sausage Lasagna
This is a simple and very budget-friendly Italian sausage lasagne that also includes ricotta and mozzarella cheese.
It is extremely creamy and absolutely stuffed with flavor! And, did we mention that it is gluten-free!?
And, it doesn’t contain any preservatives, colorants, or other additives. This single-portion pack contains about 16 grams of protein and only 430 calories.
11. Amy’s Frozen Organic Vegetable Lasagna
This is an incredible vegetable lasagne!
It doesn’t contain any GMO ingredients, is Kosher certified, and is both soy and tree nut-free.
It is incredibly quick and convenient to reheat and trust us, your whole family will love it!
It contains organic pasta layers, ricotta, mozzarella, and parmesan cheese, as well as a variety of organic vegetables including spinach, zucchini, and carrots.
And the tomato sauce has an incredibly rich and complex flavor profile because it has been made using sun-ripened organic tomatoes.
12. Great Value Frozen Mexican-Style Lasagna
If you are planning on having a big dinner party or family gathering, then you have to get this party-size lasagne.
This lasagne definitely has a twist on traditional recipes.
It combines the best elements of lasagne with the best elements of nachos! Yes, you read that right.
This lasagne has been made using beef, beans, cheddar cheese, tortilla chips, and is finally finished off with a creamy nacho sauce. It is bound to have your guests drooling at the mere sight of it.
13. Simek’s All Natural Meat Lasagna
Last but certainly not least, we have this delicious family-sized lasagne made from all-natural ingredients.
Deliciously seasoned beef, handmade fresh lasagne sheets, a mixture of parmesan and mozzarella cheese, some fire-roasted tomatoes—what’s not to love!
And, you can bake it in the oven for roughly 60 minutes, or pop it in the microwave on a busy night for only 18 minutes.
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