Olive Garden Lasagna (Classico Recipe)

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This Olive Garden Lasagna is just like the restaurant’s Classico recipe! Featuring layers of tender lasagna noodles, a rich and flavorful meat sauce, and 4 types of cheese, it’s comforting, hearty, and incredibly delicious. Make this Olive Garden lasagna recipe for your next family dinner — everyone is sure to ask for seconds! 

Titled Image: Olive Garden Lasagna Classico Recipe


 

Olive Garden Lasagna

I don’t know about you all, but I grew up on lasagna. It was always one of my favorite meals by my mom…

I am the Slow Roasted Italian, after all, so it should come as no surprise!

I make my Italian sausage lasagna most often, or this cheesy skillet version when I want something for meatless Monday.

Lasagna Dip is most certainly on the menu when I have people over, and I love Instant Pot Lasagna Soup on a cold winter’s night!

I’ve always been a fan of Olive Garden lasagna too — their Classico recipe is one of my go-to’s when Chad and I have a date night.

Well, if you know anything about me, you know that I love to make copycat versions of my favorite restaurant meals.

That’s why I’m sharing this Olive Garden lasagna recipe with you!

Made with a classic ground beef and sausage sauce, plus ricotta, Parmesan, and Pecorino Romano, it’s just as good as it sounds.

Prepped in 30 minutes and baked in the oven in less than an hour, it’s a wonderful option for a hearty weeknight feast!

ingredients for Olive Garden Lasagna

Ingredient Notes and Substitutions

  • Ground Beef – I typically like to use ground beef with an 80/20 fat-to-meat ratio for Olive Garden lasagna.

    It adds flavor and moisture to the sauce, which is great for both taste and texture!
  • Italian Sausage – My favorite type of sausage has got to be Italian.

    Made with the perfect dose of spices and seasonings, the flavor is rich, herby, and either sweet or spicy depending on the variety you choose. 
  • Onion & Garlic – These aromatics add much to the overall flavor of the meat sauce!

    Don’t skip them — and I also don’t recommend replacing fresh with powdered for this lasagna Classico by Olive Garden.
  • Crushed Tomatoes – You’ll need a 28-ounce can for the sauce.
  • Tomato Paste – To add more rich and intense tomato flavor to the entire dish.
  • Cheese – I’m using ricotta, grated Parmesan, grated Pecorino Romano, and shredded mozzarella!
  • Egg – I add one large egg to the cheese layer to help bind the ingredients together.
  • Lasagna Noodles – Make sure to cook the noodles to al dente before getting started!
  • Seasonings – You’ll need fresh basil, dried oregano, salt, freshly ground black pepper, and fresh parsley.
ground beef mixture for filling lasagna

Tips and Tricks to Make Perfect Lasagna Classico from Olive Garden

  • Allow the meat to brown.

You have to make sure to let the ground beef and sausage cook on their own with the chopped onion and garlic before adding the tomatoes and other ingredients!

This gives the flavors the chance to develop — it really makes a difference in the overall taste of the dish!

Don’t forget to add a bit of salt and pepper to taste as it browns too.

  • Simmer that sauce.

While working on the prep for your Olive Garden lasagna recipe, simmer the sauce for at least 20 minutes before assembling. 

Again, it allows the flavors to develop and meld together. The longer you leave it, the tastier it will be.

  • Don’t overcook the noodles.

As mentioned, you need to cook the lasagna noodles to al dente — nothing more, nothing less.

They will continue to cook a bit once you put your Olive Garden lasagna Classico in the oven to bake.

 If you over-boil them, they will turn to mush!

  • Let it rest before serving.

I know you’re going to want to dig right into your lasagna as soon as it comes out of the oven!

But, it’s important to let it rest for at least 10 minutes before slicing and serving.

The resting period helps the layers set, which will make serving a lot easier.

cheese mixture for filling lasagna

Prep Ahead

  • Chop the onion
  • Mince the garlic
  • Chop the parsley for the cheese layer
  • Shred the mozzarella cheese

Kitchen Tools You Will Need

  • 9×13 Baking Dish – This set is one of my favorites! It comes with a lid for easy storage and is great for casseroles too.
  • A large skillet with a lid – To help the sauce cook evenly, a wide skillet works best. Ideally, it should be more than 12 inches in diameter.
  • Mixing Bowls – I like to have a variety of sizes on hand, and this set has them all.
  • Box Grater – As much as I love buying bagged shreds because it’s easier, freshly grated cheese melts down so much smoother and tastes better too.

Serving Suggestions

Make it a true restaurant-quality meal and serve your lasagna Classico Olive Garden style with fresh salad and breadsticks

Or, pair it with Italian green beans, air fryer cauliflower, or grilled asparagus for some extra veggies.

And, if you’re craving the dessert version of this savory wonder, check out my chocolate lasagna dessert!

layering lasagna in baking dish

Storing, Freezing, and Reheating my Olive Garden Lasagna Recipe

You can store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3-5 days. Make sure to let it cool completely before popping it in the refrigerator!

Lasagna Classico by Olive Garden freezes well — both baked or unbaked. Make sure to wrap it tightly in foil either way, and it will last for up to 2-3 months.

To reheat, use your microwave for single servings. Heat in 30-second increments until warmed through. 

You can use your oven for larger portions: preheat it to 325°F and heat covered in foil for 20-30 minutes or until hot.

If working from frozen, let the lasagna thaw in the refrigerator overnight first.

Olive Garden Lasagna FAQ

What is in Olive Garden Lasagna?

According to the official Olive Garden website, their lasagna is made with layers of pasta, meat sauce made with ground beef and sausage, mozzarella cheese, ricotta, Parmesan cheese, and Romano cheese. As you can see, my Olive Garden Lasagna Classico recipe is pretty darn close!

What is the correct layering for lasagna?

Start with a thin layer of meat sauce on the bottom of the pan so nothing sticks. Then add the noodles, the ricotta cheese mixture, and shredded mozzarella cheese. Repeat this twice before baking!

Do you need to cook lasagna sheets first?

Yes, you need to cook the lasagna noodles to al dente before assembling your lasagna. The sheets need to be pliable to get those layers right! Just remember not to overcook the noodles or you’ll end up with a mushy mess.

pan of olive garden lasagna classico recipe

Enjoy!
With love, from our simple kitchen to yours. 

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closeup of Olive Garden Lasagna

Olive Garden Lasagna Classico on a white plate

Olive Garden Lasagna (Classico Recipe)

Donna Elick
Olive Garden Lasagna is the perfect comfort food meal! Make my version of hearty Lasagna Classico by Olive Garden yourself at home tonight!!
Tried this recipe?Please comment and review!
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes
Course Main
Cuisine Italian
Method Oven, Stovetop
Servings 8

Ingredients
 

Meat Sauce:

  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1/2 pound ground Italian sausage
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 can, 28 ounces crushed tomatoes
  • 1 can, 6 ounces tomato paste
  • 2 tablespoons fresh basil, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Cheese Mixture:

  • 15 ounces ricotta cheese
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 cup grated Pecorino Romano cheese
  • 2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1 large egg

Additional:

  • 12 lasagna noodles, cooked al dente
  • 3 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
  • Fresh parsley for garnish

Instructions
 

  • In a large skillet over medium heat, combine ground beef, Italian sausage, and chopped onions. Cook until the meat is browned and onions are translucent.
  • Add the minced garlic and cook for an additional minute.
  • Stir in crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, basil, oregano, salt, and pepper. Simmer on low heat for at least 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Meanwhile, cook lasagna noodles according to package, until al dente. Separate noodles and lay flat on parchment or wax paper until ready to use.
  • Preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C).
  • In a mixing bowl, combine ricotta cheese, Parmesan cheese, Pecorino Romano cheese, parsley, and egg. Mix well until you have a smooth consistency.
  • Spread a thin layer of meat sauce in the bottom of a 9×13 inch baking dish. Arrange 4 cooked lasagna noodles over the sauce. Spread a third of the cheese mixture over the noodles. Sprinkle a cup of mozzarella cheese over the cheese mixture. Repeat the layers twice, starting with the meat sauce and finishing with a layer of mozzarella cheese. Cover the baking dish with foil and bake for 25 minutes.
  • Remove the foil and bake for an additional 25 minutes, or until the cheese is bubbly and golden.
  • Allow the lasagna to rest for at least 10 minutes before slicing. This helps the layers set and makes serving easier. Garnish with chopped fresh parsley and enjoy!

Nutrition

Serving: 1 | Calories: 689cal | Carbohydrates: 38g | Protein: 42g | Fat: 40g | Saturated Fat: 20g | Cholesterol: 158mg | Sodium: 858mg | Sugar: 3g | Fiber: 2g | Calcium: 536mg | Iron: 3mg

All nutritional information is based on third party calculations and is only an estimate. Each recipe’s nutritional value will vary depending on the ingredients used, measuring methods, and portion sizes.

Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
Olive Garden Lasagna Classico Recipe - PIN

Originally published February 2024

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