Stretching a Buck Lasagna

by Merissa on June 3, 2011

in Recipes


This lasagna "recipe" is our favorite! It's simple and easy and uses whatever food you already have on hand. I came up with this a few years ago as a way to make lasagna but avoid some of the higher priced items that many lasagnas have.

What you need:

  • Lasagna noodles
  • Cottage Cheese
  • Shredded Cheese
  • Hamburger
  • Pasta Sauce

Here are the ingredients I had on hand to make this today, lasagna noodles, cottage cheese, cheddar cheese, hamburger, and leftover pasta sauce from a previous meal.

Mix together the cheese and cottage cheese. Usually we prefer mozzarella cheese with the cottage cheese when I can get it. In this cheese mixture you can add any herbs or spices you might want, we like to add a little garlic salt or onion salt. You will need about 2 cups of shredded cheese and 2 cups of cottage cheese for a 9x13 pan although if you have less, don't worry about it!

Spread just a little of the sauce and the meat on the bottom of a 9x13 pan. You don't need too much, just enough so the noodles won't stick to the bottom of the pan.

Add a layer of noodles on top of this meat sauce, then scoop 1/2 of the cheese mixture on top of the noodles and spread it around. If you don't have lasagna noodles you can also use any other kind, I've done that before to make more of a pasta bake and it works fine!

Place another layer of noodles on the cheese mixture. Top that with a layer of sauce and meat and the rest of the cheese. Add a third layer of noodles and pour the rest of the meat and sauce on top. You will need about a quart of sauce and at least 1/2 lb of meat to make the sauce. Finally pour about 1/2 c. water around the edges of the dish.

Bake at 350F covered for 30 minutes and then uncovered for 15 minutes or until bubbly. This dish freezes really well!

(linked to Unwasted Homemaking, Pennywise Platter Thursdays, Crockpot Ladies)



Print Friendly

Disclaimer: This post may contain a link to an affiliate. See my disclosure policy for more information.

3:00 pm

{ 13 comments… read them below or add one }

1 kim yamaguchi June 17, 2011 at 5:35 pm

YUM! Looks good and as I read this I remembered that I have a box of lasagna noodles in the pantry *and* I’ve been really bored with spaghetti lately. I don’t have cottage cheese on hand though… I’m sure I can whip something up anyway!


2 Tara @ Crock-Pot Ladies January 5, 2012 at 8:19 am

Yum! Thanks for sharing this great recipe on our Whip It Up Wednesday!


3 marci357 January 23, 2012 at 12:05 pm

If you line a pan with tin foil, it is easy to take it out when it has cooled and then pop it into the freezer that way. Saves your pan from being in the freezer if you only have one that size.


4 Britni @ Our Eventual Homestead January 27, 2012 at 3:00 pm

Do you cook the pasta first or just put it in dry? From the photos it looks dry but I always cook my noodles al dente first. Thanks!!


5 Merissa January 27, 2012 at 3:07 pm

Nope, in this recipe the pasta just goes in dry. It’s so easy!


6 Angela November 21, 2012 at 9:03 am

NIce blog


7 sharon December 28, 2012 at 4:04 pm

you can also do this in the crock pot, have done this before and it is a great meal. cook on low for about 6 hours.


8 Merissa December 28, 2012 at 4:06 pm

Thanks for sharing this tip!


9 Kristin October 11, 2013 at 12:45 pm

This is the recipe I use, but I add a little sour cream to the cottage cheese mixture. SO good!


10 Merissa October 11, 2013 at 12:46 pm



11 effie August 4, 2014 at 3:04 am

Great twist on lasagna !


12 reidun March 21, 2015 at 10:18 am

Just wondering, what are the expensive ingredients you are referring to that are usually in lasagna that aren’t in this one? I live in Canada, and here dairy products are the most expensive (cheese costs more than beef) so I make lasagna for company only.


13 Merissa March 21, 2015 at 11:33 am

Lasanga noodles can be $3 to $4 per box, ricotta or cottage cheese would be at least $3 to $4 a tub, ground beef is running around $5 per pound right now, plus any extra cheese, veggies, sauce, etc.


Leave a Comment

Thanks for taking a moment to share your thoughts and your story. I love to hear from you and love when you are able to add something constructive to the conversation! Please remember this is a supportive and encouraging community. LHL reserves the right to delete any personal attacks, rude or offensive language, or anything not deemed family friendly. If you don't have anything nice to say, please keep it to yourself.

See our Comment Policy for more information.