Ultimate Cheese Lasagna

This cheese lasagna recipe is a keeper! Its perfect blend of cheeses will make you weak at the knees. It’s rich, creamy, incredibly cheesy, and absolutely delicious. Best of all, you can assemble it in about 20 minutes.

Watch the Video

Ultimate Cheese Lasagna Recipe Video

If you’ve seen our veggie or other lasagna recipes on the blog, you know we’re big fans of lasagna. This time, we’re returning to the basics with a cheese lasagna! No veggies or meat – just pure cheesy goodness.

We’re talking five delicious kinds of cheese! This cheesy lasagna is rich, creamy, and SO good! It’s the ultimate comfort food.

Five Cheese Lasagna made using the best recipe

How to Make the Best Cheese Lasagna

The secret to the best cheese lasagna is the perfect blend of cheeses. Here’s what we love to use:

  • Whole milk ricotta cheese: The classic base for a lasagna filling.
  • Mascarpone cheese: Adds extra creaminess.
  • Parmesan cheese: Provides a salty, savory flavor.
  • Mozzarella cheese: Essential for a gooey, melty result.
  • Fontina cheese: Melts beautifully! 

Why Ricotta and Mascarpone? While ricotta is a staple in lasagna, we also love combining it with mascarpone. It creates the absolute best cheese filling.

The result is a rich, creamy layer that perfectly complements the sauce and noodles. We’re so in love with this combination that we’ll be using it in all our future lasagna recipes!

Our ricotta-mascarpone filling includes parmesan cheese, salt, pepper, and one egg. The egg helps the filling stay in place, ensuring distinct and delicious layers.

Ricotta and Mascarpone Cheese Mixture for cheese lasagna

Assembling the Lasagna

In addition to the cheese, we use our homemade red sauce or jarred spaghetti sauce. Once you have your sauce, this cheese lasagna takes less than 20 minutes to assemble.

I start by layering sauce in my baking dish and top with my first layer of noodles (I love no-boil!), followed by half of the ricotta-mascarpone mixture and fresh basil leaves.

Creamy cheese layer assembly -- cheese lasagna

Top with another layer of noodles, sauce, mozzarella, and fontina cheese. Then add a third noodle layer, the rest of the ricotta-mascarpone filling, and more basil. I finish with a final layer of noodles, sauce, and a generous topping of mozzarella and fontina.

Assembling cheese lasagna

Cheese Substitutions for Lasagna

If you’re having trouble finding a specific cheese or it’s too expensive, here are some easy substitutions for the best cheese for lasagna:

  • Ricotta cheese: Cottage cheese offers a similar texture.
  • Mascarpone cheese: Use more ricotta cheese (8 ounces) OR make your own! Beat 8 ounces of cream cheese with 1/4 cup of heavy cream until smooth and creamy.
  • Mozzarella cheese: Try provolone cheese.
  • Fontina cheese: Substitute with provolone for its mild taste and excellent melting qualities.
  • Parmesan cheese: Try Grana Padano or Pecorino Romano for a similar salty, sharp flavor.

Making Vegetarian Cheese Lasagna

Most cheeses in our cheese lasagna recipe are vegetarian-friendly, but traditional parmesan cheese isn’t. It contains animal rennet, an enzyme that helps the cheese set. Here’s how to make this recipe vegetarian:

  • Check your labels: When buying cheeses, carefully read the labels to ensure they don’t contain animal rennet.
  • Skip the parmesan: Opt out of using parmesan in your lasagna.
  • Try nutritional yeast: Add a few tablespoons of nutritional yeast to your ricotta and mascarpone mixture for a cheesy, salty flavor similar to parmesan.

Make Ahead and Storing Tips

This vegetable lasagna is fantastic for prepping in advance. Here’s how:

  • Sauce: If you make our Homemade Red Pasta Sauce, it lasts in the fridge for up to 3 days or in the freezer for 3 months.
  • Assembled, Unbaked: You can assemble your lasagna and keep it covered in the fridge for up to 2 days. I like to place parchment or wax paper between the lasagna and any aluminum foil to prevent reactions with the tomatoes in the sauce.
  • Baked & Frozen: Your cooked lasagna freezes beautifully! Let it cool completely, then wrap it well with two layers of foil. Store in the freezer for up to 3 months. To reheat, thaw overnight in the fridge and bake at 350°F until heated through (30 to 60 minutes).

Storing Leftovers:

  • Fridge: Leftover cheese lasagna lasts 3 to 4 days in the refrigerator.
  • Freezer: Wrap leftover portions tightly or store them in freezer-safe containers for up to 3 months.

More Lasagna Recipes

Serving Cheese Lasagna

Ultimate Cheese Lasagna

  • PREP
  • COOK

We love this easy cheese lasagna! Its perfect blend of cheeses will make anyone weak at the knees. It’s rich, creamy, incredibly cheesy, and absolutely delicious. If you need cheese substitutions, you’ll find them in the article above. We’ve also included tips in the article for making this recipe vegetarian-friendly.

Makes 8 servings

Watch Us Make the Recipe

You Will Need

12 to 15 lasagna noodles, preferably no-boil noodles; see notes

8 ounces (226g) whole milk ricotta cheese

8 ounces (226g) mascarpone cheese

1 cup (2oz) grated Parmigiano Reggiano or Grana Padano cheese

1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt

1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper

1 large egg, lightly beaten

1/2 cup fresh basil leaves, torn into small pieces

8 ounces (226g) mozzarella, shredded, 2 packed cups

5 ounces (142g) fontina cheese, thinly sliced or shredded

3 cups homemade red pasta sauce or use one 28-ounce jar of spaghetti sauce


    1Preheat your oven to 350°F (177°C). Lightly grease a 13×9 inch baking dish, or use non-stick cooking spray.

    2Combine ricotta, mascarpone, parmesan, salt, pepper, and the beaten egg in a medium bowl. Mix well.

    3Spread 1 cup of sauce evenly over the bottom of your prepared baking dish. Place 3 to 4 lasagna noodles over the sauce, overlapping slightly. Break noodles into smaller pieces to fill any large gaps.

    4Spread half of the cheese filling over the noodles, followed by half of the basil leaves. Add another layer of noodles, then spread 1 cup of sauce over them. Sprinkle with half of the mozzarella and half of the fontina cheese. Repeat these steps again: add noodles, the rest of the cheese filling, the remaining basil, noodles, and sauce. Finish by sprinkling the rest of the mozzarella and fontina cheese.

    5If your lasagna dish is very full, place the baking dish on a baking sheet to catch any sauce or cheese that might bubble over.

    6Bake the lasagna, uncovered, until the cheese is bubbly and the noodles are cooked through, about 30 minutes. For a golden-brown top, broil for 1 to 2 minutes.

    7Let your lasagna cool for at least 10 minutes before serving.

Adam and Joanne's Tips

  • Noodles: For a faster option, use no-boil lasagna noodles. They’re a bit thinner than traditional noodles, which we like. This recipe calls for one 9-ounce box. If you prefer traditional lasagna noodles, that’s perfectly fine! Just remember to boil them before layering your lasagna.
  • Nutrition facts: The nutritional information provided below is an estimate.
Nutrition Per Serving Serving Size 1/8 of the recipe / Calories 574 / Total Fat 32.7g / Saturated Fat 18g / Cholesterol 124.7mg / Sodium 1001.6mg / Carbohydrate 43g / Dietary Fiber 5.6g / Total Sugars 6.3g / Protein 24.7g
AUTHOR:  Adam and Joanne Gallagher
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14 comments… Leave a Review
  • Barbara A December 24, 2023, 11:26 pm

    We made this receipe tonight for our Christmas Eve dinner. It was delicious and easy to assemble. We would definitely make this again.

    • Joanne March 12, 2024, 3:05 pm

      Such wonderful news, Barbara! Thanks for coming back and letting us know!

  • Lesley October 23, 2023, 3:01 pm

    Made this last night! That cheese mixture with ricotta and marscapone was genius! Add the fontina (one of my favs) and the torn basil and Parm. Oh this was amazing. Thanks for the lovely Sunday dinner inspo. My husband and I have had a Sunday dinner tradition for 13 years and this will certainly stand out.

  • Mary Dawson October 21, 2023, 12:22 am

    I like ground beef in my lasagna. Can I use this recipe and add beef?

  • Ellen March 15, 2023, 8:37 pm

    I’ve tried the ricotta many times, but find I very much prefer the outcome when I use whole milk cottage cheese. Don’t know why, but it is much cheesier. I’m fussy about cottage cheese, too. (I have food allergies.) So I always get one that has no additives like gums and such — just milk, salt and culture, I think. I can’t remember if even the best has preservatives, but it’s amazing how many put gums and other thickeners in.

  • Deme Joyce February 25, 2023, 2:55 pm

    Excellent recipe!

    • Joanne February 27, 2023, 4:04 pm

      We are thrilled that you enjoyed it!

  • JBH February 15, 2023, 12:21 pm

    Easy, minimal prep and clean up, and delicious! I used mascarpone and cottage cheese.

    • Joanne February 20, 2023, 5:50 pm

      We are thrilled you enjoyed it!

  • Leah September 26, 2022, 12:33 pm

    Delicious!!! I made my own red sauce based on an arrabbatia recipe I found years ago to add a little kick and it was amazing.

    • Leah September 26, 2022, 12:35 pm

      I also added a bit of parsley on the top and broiled it on the top rack until it was brown on the top! Making it again tonight.

  • Diane July 21, 2022, 1:47 pm

    I made this last night. Fast, easy and absolutely delicious! I served it with a side of meatballs and an EVOO/lemon dressed arugala salad topped with Parmesan ribbons. Would be a fabulous meal for guests as well. This will be added to our list of family favorites. Thank you!

  • Elaine June 23, 2022, 9:23 am

    I made this last night for company. Everyone absolutely loved it !! It’s so so good . I covered mine for 25 mins then uncovered it for 5min., worked perfectly. Thank you for the guided , easy directions. Much appreciated. Thanks for all your great recipes and hard work !!


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