Lower-fat beef lasagne
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- 2 celery stalks, finely chopped
- 1 carrot, finely chopped
- 2 x 400g (14oz) tins chopped tomatoes
- 2tbsp tomato purée
- 300ml (½ pint) hot beef stock
- 500g (1lb 2oz) lean beef mince
- 60g (2¼ oz) low-fat spread
- 60g (2¼ oz) plain flour
- 700ml (1¼ pint) semi-skimmed milk
- ½ tsp grated nutmeg
- 250g (9oz) lasagne sheets (fresh lasagne from the chiller cabinet are best)
Follow our step-by-step recipe to make this delicious lasagne. Lower in calories than your average lasagne recipe, this dish is the perfect recipe for the whole family with layer upon layer of pasta and mince.
This lasagne takes 10 mins to prepare and 1hr and 10 mins to cook and is well worth the wait. Lean beef mince and low-fat spread really do make a different in this dish.
Plenty of veggies and a mouth-watering tomato based stock makes this lasagne recipe a classic. Feel free to swap the veg in this recipe for your favourites instead but make sure you leave in the onions and garlic as they add a tasty kick to the dish.
Swap the spread for cheese instead for a naughty treat. Or if you want to be extra healthy swap the beef mince for lower-fat turkey mince.
This recipe serves 6 people and works out at 433 calories per portion as well as 17g fat, 0.9 salt and 6g saturated fat per portion.
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Step 1To make the base of the mince sauce start with the hard veg first.
Chop the onion, celery and carrot finely and crush the garlic. Put all vegetables in a pan, stir and season well.
Step 2If you can't get tinned chopped tomatoes, buy the tins of whole tomatoes and mash with a fork.
Add the tins of chopped tomatoes, tomato pureé and hot beef stock to the chopped vegetables. Cover and cook on a medium heat for 10 mins.
Step 3Getting the white sauce right is crucial, but don't worry, make it slowly over a low heat and use a hand-held whisk to beat out any lumps.
Melt the low-fat spread in a pan over a low heat - if it's too hot it will separate or burn and spoil. Gradually add the flour and stir in.
Step 4If you want to make this dish even lower in fat use semi-skimmed milk but not skimmed as it's not thick enough. You might not need all the milk, just enough to get a custard-like consistency.
Add the milk gradually, stirring all the time. Beat any lumps with a hand-held whisk.
Step 5You've almost finished the sauce, now for the finishing touch - nutmeg. It's easier to buy the ready grated stuff from the supermarket.
Turn off the heat, stir the sauce a final time and beat out any lumps with a whisk. Add the nutmeg, stir and set aside - don't worry if the sauce gets a skin.
Step 6Minced beef is best for this recipe and use lean mince to keep this dish low-fat.
Dry-fry the mince until it's brown.
Step 7If you want a stronger tomato taste swap tomato pureé for sun-dried tomato pureé.
Add the fried mince to the tomato and vegetable mixture, season to taste and stir.
Step 8Start with the mince sauce first so that the pasta doesn't stick to the bottom.
In an ovenproof dish spoon in the mince mixture. Cover the bottom of the dish with a layer of the sauce about an inch thick. Place the pasta sheets on top of the mince sauce, ensure the edges of the pasta sheets overlap a bit to hold the dish together.
Step 9The traditional way is to finish the dish with a layer of pasta and then the white sauce.
Spoon more mince sauce over the pasta sheets, then layer more pasta sheets on top of the sauce as before. Repeat this so that you have two or three layers of pasta - the dish should finish with pasta, not with mince.
Step 10You might like to add some grated cheese to the top of the lasagne, use Cheddar or Parmesan.
Spoon the sauce on top of the top layer of pasta and leave about half an inch from the top of the ovenproof dish. If it starts to brown too quickly cover with foil and continue cooking.
Step 11Because lasagne is so filling just have some salad and bread to soak up the sauces. And if you've got any left over mince sauce or white sauce you can freeze it.
Put the dish into a pre-heated oven at 180ºC/350F/gas 4 for 20-30 mins. If you notice the lasagne is going brown on top before it's ready cover with foil and continue cooking.