Meat Lasagna (For Two!)

I know, my food pictures are the WORST. I always get too hungry and remember to take a picture AFTER I've eaten!

I know, my food pictures are the WORST. I always get too hungry and remember to take a picture AFTER I’ve eaten!

Kevin’s birthday was yesterday so I wanted to make a nicer dinner for the two of us, since I decided red wine sadly doesn’t qualify as a true “meal” (stupid American puritanical ideas). Still, I didn’t want to spend most of the night prepping in the kitchen. The solution? A nice meat lasagna in a much smaller quantity than those found in the typical huge trays. To be honest, even with the two of us, it still left us about half for leftovers. But a whole lot better than an entire pan worth of wasted pasta-deliciousness! This recipe, modified from this one I found on Pinterest, is super easy to change up based on what you have at hand and what you are craving. For example, I had some leftover kale in the fridge that I wanted to use up so I added that into the meat sauce as it simmered. Mushrooms, zucchini, olives, or many other veggies could easily be added in to kick up the flavor and health factor. Now onto the recipe!

Meat Lasagna (For Two!)

Ingredients

  1. Dry lasagna noodles (6 noodles, I used no boil ones and added 1/2 cup water on top to help it cook then)
  2. 1/2 lb lean ground beef
  3. 1/2 cup freshly minced onion
  4. 2 to 4 garlic cloves, chopped
  5. 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  6. 1 teaspoon dried basil
  7. Salt
  8. Black pepper
  9. 1 tablespoon olive oil
  10. 1 jar (15 ounce) marinara sauce ( I used at 23 oz one as used no boil noodles
  11. 1 cup ricotta cheese (I used light)
  12. 1 egg or egg substitute
  13. 1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
  14. 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  15. Any other veggies you want to add (I used kale)
  16. Directions
  17. 1. Preheat oven to 375°F.

  18. 2. If using normal lasagna noodles–cook noodles and drain.

  19. 3. Saute the chopped onion and garlic in olive oil in a large skillet for a few minutes then add ground beef, oregano, basil salt and pepper and cook until the meat is browned.
  20. 4. Then stir in marinara sauce and simmer over low heat for 15 minutes, making sure sauce doesn’t overcook.
  21. 5. In a small bowl, whisk together a lightly beaten egg with ricotta and parmesan.

  22. 6. In the bottom of a loaf pan, place about 1 cup sauce across the bottom. Top with two noodles, then top with another cup or so of the meat sauce mixture. Top with another two noodles and the ricotta mixture. Top with the last two noodles and the remaining sauce. Layer mozzarella across the top.

  23. 7. Put aluminum foil over the top (loose if used cooked noodles, tight if used no boil) and put in oven for 45 minutes.
  24. 8. After 45 min, take off the foil and cook uncovered for 10 minutes. Before slicing, let lasagna rest 10 minutes outside of the oven.
  25. 9. Enjoy!
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Crockpot Meatball Sandwiches For 2

photo(5)

Another day, another new recipe! This one is a good comfort food staple–a meatball sandwich! It is simplified by having it cook in the crockpot. The original recipe from MOMables is made for 4-5 people and has you make extra sauce, which I didn’t think was needed. I also used hotdog buns for rolls, as I had some on hand. You can obviously use some classier rolls from the bakery.

Crockpot Meatball Sandwiches For 2

Ingredients

  • 1/2 lb. of lean ground beef (or ground turkey)
  • 2 tablespoons of bread crumbs
  • 1/2 can of diced tomatoes (I used the normal 16oz Hunt’s one)
  • 1/2 large egg (or egg substitute), lightly beaten
  • 2 tbsp. of Italian Herb or oregano seasoning
  • 1 tsp. of garlic powder seasoning
  • 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 of an onion, diced
  • about 12oz of pasta sauce
  • Rolls or hot dog buns
  • 1/2 cup of shredded mozzarella cheese or Parmesan for topping

Instructions

  1. Place the diced onion evenly on the bottom of the crockpot.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together your ground beef or turkey, bread crumbs, egg, seasonings, and

    Parmesan cheese.

  3. Roll mixture into approximately 1″ diameter balls and begin to place in

    your crockpot.

  4. Pour the half can of diced tomatoes over the meatballs.
  5. Pour enough pasta sauce over the meatballs, just to cover them.
  6. Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours.
  7. About 10 minutes before serving, heat your oven to about 400 degrees and toast the rolls or buns.  After about 5 minutes, put your meatballs and some sauce into the rolls, sprinkle on mozzarella or Parmesan  on top, and put back in the oven for about 3-4 min more.

Chicken & Rice Casserole For Two

Chicken & Rice Casserole before I put it in the oven!

Chicken & Rice Casserole before I put it in the oven!

I really like to try out new homemade meals for Kevin and me. Since I’m only cooking for two, it can be a bit of a challenge to find recipes that don’t make too servings. I hate wasting food so recipes that make like 6 servings just doesn’t work. Luckily I discovered this website called “Reservations for Two.” The blogger does an awesome job of listing some interesting, tasty dishes that are perfectly proportioned. I tried out the chicken and rice casserole this week and it was a great success! Here is the link to the recipe and blog if you want to try it out this week! I have also listed out the slightly modified directions I used here to make it easy.

Chicken and Rice Casserole

Ingredients
1/4 cup green onions, diced
1/2 lb boneless skinless chicken breasts, diced and cooked
1-2 cups fresh green beans, chopped into smaller pieces
1 (8-ounce) can water chestnuts, drained and chopped into smaller pieces
1 (4-ounce) can diced pimentos, drained
1 (10-ounce) can condensed cream of celery soup (we used the 98% fat free one to cut down on fat)
1/2 cup skim milk
1 box (about 6-ounces) long-grain and wild rice, cooked according to package directions
1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
salt and pepper (I also added some bit of garlic powder and some dry mustard)

Directions 
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2. In a medium mixing bowl, combine ingredients; mix well.
3. Pour into a greased baking dish.
4. Bake uncovered for 35 minutes.
5. Let it sit for a few minutes and then serve.

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