how to make no-boil lasagna

How To Make No-Boil Lasagna

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Do you avoid making lasagna because you don’t like to boil lasagna noodles?  Boiling lasagna noodles is a hassle – you have to wait for the water to boil, handle the pot of hot water so you can drain it, and the worst part is if lasagna noodles stick to the bottom of the pot and get torn!  Yes, you can stir the lasagna noodles in the pot of boiling water to prevent them from sticking to the bottom, but who like to hover over a boiling pot of water watching those lasagna noodles :)

I used to really dislike boiling lasagna noodles until I discover a way to make no-boil lasagna.  You can make no-boil lasagna with any kind of lasagna noodles.  Some lasagna noodles are labeled “no-boil lasagna noodles”, but I make no-boil lasagna even with regular lasagna noodles that are not labeled “no-boil”.

Making no-boil lasagna is easy.  Here are 2 things you need to do to make no-boil lasagna:

1) Soak lasagna noodles in the hot water
2) Add extra water to your tomato sauce

Soaking lasagna noodles is super easy.  Just put them in a baking dish and fill the dish with hot tap water.  That’s it!  Leave it on the counter for 15 minutes, while you prepare other stuff for lasagna.  Then take the noodles out of the hot water, and assemble your lasagna as usual.

Here’s the picture of lasagna noodles soaking in hot water in a glass baking dish:
soaking lasagna noodles for no-boil lasagna

Now, see how soft are the lasagna noodles after soaking:
lasagna noodle picture

When you assemble your lasagna, add water to your tomato sauce at the ratio of 1 part water to 2 parts of tomato sauce.  For example, if you are using 1 jar of tomato sauce, mix this tomato sauce with 1/2 jar of water.

With this no-boil lasagna method, lasagna noodles already get soft from soaking, and then finish cooking in the oven with the lasagna.

Who needs the hassle of boiling noodles for lasagna when you can make no-boil lasagna!  No-boil lasagna is the only kind of lasagna I make these days, and there is absolutely no difference in taste between no-boil lasagna and conventionally cooked lasagna.

Enjoy your no-boil lasagna, and please check out my easy meat lasagna recipe!

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6 replies
  1. John Sinclair
    John Sinclair says:

    I’ve been no-boil for years; it’s the only way to make Thursdays a regular Lasagna Day.

    At first (for a couple of years), I used the dry noodle layered with a moist sauce and about an extra half-cup or so of water in a 9×13 lasagna dish. I worked a restaurant for a while that used this method. Dry noodles are great.

    I’ve used this pre-soak method and found it successful and easy. However, my apartment complex runs their water-heater at something like 110 to 120 degrees. (They say it’s for safety, but the truth is they’re just cheap.) Make sure your water is hot — 160 to 180, or so. I bring the water to simmer and take it off the heat for a few minutes before submerging the pasta. Even better is what Melanie suggests — pour the hot water into a baking dish over the noodles.

  2. J.C.
    J.C. says:

    Wish I would have seen this before I assembled my pasta strips. The recipe i used called for “no boil” noodles but did not call for extra water. So, of course, I assembled everything THEN read the pasta box which said to add 1/2 cup water for every 5 strips of pasta and cover with foil etc. I wasn’t sure so poured in about a cup or so of water. Hope it doesn’t come out “soupy” – gulp ! We will see, dinner is served in about a half hour.

  3. Rebecca Carter-Christie
    Rebecca Carter-Christie says:

    How about assembling the lasagna, and refrigerating for a day, without soaking oven ready noodles for 15 min in hot water? Think this will work ?


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