{The Recipe ReDux}: Homemade Lasagna in Jars
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{The Recipe ReDux}: Homemade Lasagna in Jars

Intern Kylie here!

So my older sister is dating a nice Italian boy.  Like for real Italian.  Not like how I’m German because my great-great grandpa grew up in Germany.  Her boyfriend grew up just outside Milan and is only in the U.S. for his PhD.  So for this post we’ll lovingly refer to him as, “The Italian.”

Why is this relevant? Because in the year they have been dating, I have been fed more pasta, gnocchi and lasagna than ever before in my life.  I’m not complaining.  The only downside is that the majority of the dishes are made with heavy cream. Again, not complaining.  He’s making us recipes that were taught to him by his mom and I’m sure have been passed down for generations. And if there is one thing you don’t mess with, it’s family traditions.

The Italian has taught my family that it’s blasphemy to (1) put chicken on pizza and (2) order broccoli and cheese gnocchi at a restaurant.  And unless you want to be on the receiving end of a death glare, under no circumstances should you ever suggest dinner at Olive Garden.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
But all jokes aside, he’s really taught my family something about truly enjoying and savoring food.  At first, it drove me CRAZY that he didn’t eat dinner until around 9 pm.  I mean, WHAT?! When we would make dinner reservations with my sister and him we always had to compromise on the time.  I’m all for eating dinner at 6 pm…we’d usually end up with reservations at 7:30 pm.  Compromise.

It took me awhile to realize it, but even something as simple as waiting to eat dinner a couple hours later really made me slow down and start looking forward to food.  I mean, I always look forward to food…hence the food blog and the obnoxious here-is-everything-I-ate instagram.  But I feel like in the past year, since The Italian has been in all of our lives, I’ve started to appreciate food more.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

When he makes us dinner, it’s not just another lasagna or another bowl of pasta; it’s a way for him to be close to his family when they’re more than 5,000 miles away.  We all eat the food…The Italian putting his fork down after every bite (and taking sips of his red wine, which is a dinner essential for him) and he tells us how his mom’s version of the dish is always better (I think that part is true for all cultures).

So in the last year I’ve developed a better understanding of what food is.  It’s more than something to fill you up.  It’s a way to keep memories alive.  It’s a way to feel your mom in the kitchen when she isn’t there.  It’s a way to be at home when you can’t be.  To me it cares much more meaning than flavor.  And in the words of this girl, “nostalgia really is the best flavor.”

Understandably, I’ve recently developed a fondness for all things Italian.  Which is why when I was trying to think of something that had layers that I could put in a jar…lasagna immediately came to mind.

In this version of lasagna I left out the heavy cream and went for a lower fat cheese options (part-skim ricotta and low-fat mozzarella). And to cut down on the salt, I made homemade tomato sauce.  Well, kind of.  I used no-added-salt canned tomatoes for the base instead of fresh tomatoes…so I guess that’s kind of cheating.

Then you just layer all the lasagna ingredients into the jar, bake and you’re good to go.  Now, The Italian would probably tell me that it’s blasphemy to eat lasagna out of a jar…but I have to admit, it was pretty fun.

Buon appetite!

[yumprint-recipe id=’9′] 

 

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No Comments
  • dixya| food, pleasure, and health
    Posted at 07:59h, 21 August Reply

    this is such a creative recipe. I never thought about baking it in the jar.

    • Kylie @ immaeatthat
      Posted at 20:27h, 21 August Reply

      On pinterest I saw little banana breads baked into jars and I was like, “that is SUCH a good idea!!” So I went crazy thinking about what else I could bake in them:)) I was also thinking about somehow making a healthier deep dish pizza baked into a jar…don’t exactly know how it’d work but sounded fun:)

  • Deanna Segrave-Daly
    Posted at 09:11h, 21 August Reply

    As a Italian-American, I so love this post 🙂 My sister lived in Italy for 4 years too so I reaped the food benefits as well! I learned that you never ever ask for olive oil to drizzle on your bread at a restaurant – it’s considered poor taste (who knew?) These lasangas are so adorable – got me craving them for lunch!

    • Kylie @ immaeatthat
      Posted at 20:28h, 21 August Reply

      Definitely didn’t know that about olive oil + bread…I’ll keep that in mind when “The Italian’s” family comes to visit haha:)

  • Dr Barb, Nutrition Budgeteer
    Posted at 10:29h, 21 August Reply

    What a creative idea. When thinking about this month’s theme for Recipe Redux, never even thought about baking a meal in a jar. Very creative.

    • Kylie @ immaeatthat
      Posted at 20:31h, 21 August Reply

      I blame pinterest haha:) I saw someone bake banana bread into a jar and thought it was such a good idea!

  • Alex @ Delicious Knowledge
    Posted at 13:25h, 21 August Reply

    So cute! As an Italian (my dad is from Italy) I totally understand the appreciation of food part. I love that I was taught, from an early age, the art of cooking and of course- my grandma’s recipes. This lasagna in jars looks so yummy! As one who does not practice portion control around lasagna, this looks like a great solution!

    • Kylie @ immaeatthat
      Posted at 20:33h, 21 August Reply

      Haha yes!! Definitely a great solution for portion control! And I bet your grandma’s recipes are what dreams are made of…so delicious I’m sure:)

  • Karman
    Posted at 17:45h, 21 August Reply

    Really enjoyed this post and hearing about “the Italian”–Love how that culture embraces meal time!

    • Kylie @ immaeatthat
      Posted at 20:34h, 21 August Reply

      It’s been so fun to be around him and experience it all:) It’s funny though, there are 5 of us in my family but I feel like he’s had a greater impact on us than all 5 of us have had on him.

  • Deb @ Dietitian Debbie Dishes
    Posted at 18:29h, 21 August Reply

    Mmm… I love this idea! These are so cute. I feel like they would be easy to pack in a lunch and reheat at work too!

    • Kylie @ immaeatthat
      Posted at 20:37h, 21 August Reply

      Ohh definitely something easy to grab-n-go and then reheat. My grad school is starting up soon so next week I’ll be back to packing lunches. I should make a batch of these again this weekend, would definitely be convenient!

  • Meal Makeover Mom Janice
    Posted at 20:40h, 21 August Reply

    Love this idea! Wouldn’t this be fun to heat up, wrap in foil, and send in a child’s school lunch?

  • Diane Boyd
    Posted at 20:44h, 21 August Reply

    I think there are lots of people packing lunch and dinner these days who would love this recipe!

    • Kylie @ immaeatthat
      Posted at 08:08h, 22 August Reply

      It’s a good change from the typical sandwich or salad that people (myself included) tend to pack for lunch. I know I’d look forward to this way more than I would look forward to a sandwich haha:)

  • Nikki @ The Kids Menu
    Posted at 22:08h, 21 August Reply

    Love it!! What a fantastic idea – I would have been worried about baking in a jar too.

    • Kylie @ immaeatthat
      Posted at 08:05h, 22 August Reply

      I think I had a couple visions of the jar exploding in the oven…but everything seemed to come out okay:)

  • Nina @ Whats for eats
    Posted at 01:16h, 22 August Reply

    I have a real problem making lasagne in a tray – making individual portions in a jar like this sounds like the answer!! Love the story that goes with your recipe too Robin.

    • Robin
      Posted at 08:52h, 22 August Reply

      Hi Nina-
      Isn’t Kylie smart for coming up with such a great recipe (and story)? I think it’s going to be a great solution for lots of folks!

  • Liz - Meal Makeover Mom
    Posted at 06:53h, 22 August Reply

    Wow. What a clever recipe. I never thought about baking in mason jars, but it sure makes sense! This is SO family friendly … and healthy, of course 🙂

  • Jessica @ Nutritioulicious
    Posted at 08:09h, 22 August Reply

    I studied abroad in Italy when I was in college, so I have a special place in my heart for Italians (and Italian men 😉 Absolutely love this recipe – so creative!

    • Kylie @ immaeatthat
      Posted at 09:49h, 23 August Reply

      I completely regret not studying abroad in college. I bet living in Italy was a dream! Glad you like the recipe:)

  • sandra
    Posted at 14:12h, 22 August Reply

    what a great idea. I love the individual pots for a savory lunch treat.

    • Kylie @ immaeatthat
      Posted at 09:51h, 23 August Reply

      And with all the layers I thought they were fun to make…even if they do take a little time to layer everything into the jar. But I think kids could enjoy helping layer everything together!

  • Mary @ BrightonYourHealth
    Posted at 23:09h, 22 August Reply

    I really loved your article and recipe. Great idea for lasagna in a jar! Did the “Italian” taste it and what did he think 🙂 ?
    I live in France and visit Italy (just to eat) a few times a year. Usually I love to go to Bologna, Italy, a wonderful city known as one of the food capitals of Italy and is located close to Milano.
    I love how your sister’s boyfriend cooks the family food and you sit and savor every bite. Adored your comment on how eating at the Olive Garden just wouldn’t happen (agree!) and no broccoli and gnocchi.
    Just love it all.
    And yes, 9 pm is my dinner time too!
    Grazie mille for this wonderful post!
    Mary Brighton

    • Kylie @ immaeatthat
      Posted at 09:59h, 23 August Reply

      Haha I love that you visit Italy, “just to eat” hahaha:) I’d love to be able to hop over to Italy for a quick dinner! Living in Texas it takes me ~6 hours just to get out of the state…so I really can’t just hop into a new culture very quickly. Europe sounds like such a fun place to live.

      The “Italian” DID try the lasagna and he said he enjoyed it…but he wouldn’t ever say anything bad about anything I cooked:) His sister actually lives in France too…she’s in Lyon.

  • Chocolate Crepes for One | Yeah...imma eat that.Yeah…imma eat that.
    Posted at 08:29h, 23 August Reply

    […] is so cute, it just kills me.  I’m just all about the cute food..whether it’s in a jar or folded up into a cute, little triangle.  I think cuteness has a way of adding flavor.  […]

  • heidi@betterthandormfood
    Posted at 18:29h, 23 August Reply

    I love this idea, esp for work lunches. My hubby and I fight for leftovers that we can bring the next day. I’m making this instead.

    • Kylie @ immaeatthat
      Posted at 20:24h, 23 August Reply

      Do it…and then hide them in the back of the fridge so they don’t disappear on you:)

  • Alex
    Posted at 20:20h, 25 August Reply

    I LOVE this idea! Portion control, deliciousness and perfect for an on-the-run, throw in your bag lunch!

  • Lasagna in Jars | STL Cooks
    Posted at 10:38h, 28 August Reply

    […] and recipe reprinted with permission from robinsbite.com and […]

  • 8 Genius Ways to Use Mason Jars In the Kitchen - Everything Sugar
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    […] your Instagram followers) can really appreciate the layers. We love this light lasagna recipe from RobinsBite for another reason, too: It’s made with lean turkey and low-fat cheese, and it’s […]

  • 8 Genius Ways to Use Mason Jars In the KitchenHealthy Living | Healthy Living
    Posted at 00:37h, 19 April Reply

    […] your Instagram followers) can really appreciate the layers. We love this light lasagna recipe from RobinsBite for another reason, too: It’s made with lean turkey and low-fat cheese, and it’s […]

  • Stephanie
    Posted at 13:05h, 07 May Reply

    Can you tell me what temperature you bake these at? I can’t find it listed anywhere.

    • Robin
      Posted at 15:48h, 07 May Reply

      Whoops!! Sorry about that–it’s 350. Thank you for stopping by!

  • Nova
    Posted at 10:43h, 14 May Reply

    So…how do you eat these? I mean, they look awesome, but I don’t understand how to eat them. Isn’t the jar hot? Once the jar cools down, isn’t the food cooled off too? And, instead of getting a bit of every layer in every bite, do you end up eating first sauce, then noodles, then cheese, etc? Mild confusion aside, I love how this make lasagna portable!

    • Robin
      Posted at 11:42h, 15 May Reply

      Aren’t they adorable? I’m passing your question along to the original author, Kylie Held from @immaeatthatblog. I’ll look forward to her reply, too.

    • Kylie @ immaeatthat
      Posted at 22:22h, 16 May Reply

      Hi Nova! Yes, the jar is hot. These wouldn’t be the best for little kiddos:) I let mine cool for 10ish minutes before serving so the jar wasn’t 300F+. But you still have to be careful not to handle the jar…kind of like when you order enchiladas at a Mexican food restaurant and you have to be careful not to touch the hot plate.

      Also, I just dug in and got noodles+sauce+cheese in every bite! No layer by layer eating!:)

  • N.C.
    Posted at 16:14h, 26 August Reply

    How do you mince olive oil I wondered out loud! Under your tomato sauce ingredients you listed olive oil to be minced!!!!! Also I assume you mean to cook this at 350 degrees for the 45 minutes, right? I didn’t see a temperature listed. Anyway, this sounds great and am about to embark on this cooking venture today. Thanks.

    • Robin
      Posted at 08:34h, 27 August Reply

      Oops! no mincing of olive oil needed! Thanks for catching that! Yes, 350 for 45 minutes. Enjoy!

  • Jody
    Posted at 13:21h, 25 February Reply

    Hi there,

    This looks like an amazing idea. Just a quick question – can you bake the lasagna and then refridgerate it and heat it back up? I was thinking of baking one for my lunch but would have to make it the night before.

    Jody

    • Robin
      Posted at 15:28h, 25 February Reply

      Yes! Absolutely. Thanks, Jody! Enjoy!

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