Let me ask you something, have you ever heard of a recipe that was so addictive, you just couldn’t stop eating it? Well, let me tell you about my “crack” Lasagna Recipe. Yes, you read that right, it’s called “crack” Lasagna because it’s so deliciously addicting that once you taste it, you’ll never want to go back to boring old lasagna again.
This recipe is truly one-of-a-kind and I’m excited to share it with all of you. It’s the perfect combination of creamy crack chicken, crispy bacon, and tangy ranch dressing, all layered between tender lasagna noodles and ooey-gooey cheese.
But don’t take my word for it, try it out for yourself and watch your family come running back for seconds and even thirds. It’s easy to make and requires only a few simple ingredients that are easily accessible at your local grocery store.
Are you ready to indulge in the ultimate comfort food? Buckle up and get ready for the best dang chicken lasagna recipe you’ll ever make!
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
Are you searching for a recipe that is simply irresistible, leaves your guests begging for more, and has them craving it for days after? Look no further than this “crack” Lasagna Recipe!
This delicious meal combines the creamy richness of crack chicken with the comforting goodness of lasagna, creating an explosion of flavors in every bite. Imagine layers upon layers of soft and tender lasagna noodles, smothered in a creamy crack chicken and pesto sauce, all blended perfectly with ricotta cheese and topped with melty mozzarella. And let’s not forget about the bacon! The crispy bacon provides a salty crunch that elevates the dish to new levels.
But this dish doesn’t rely on its taste alone; it scores high on convenience as well. This hearty recipe can be whipped up in just an hour or two and can serve up to eight people when prepared correctly. So, whether you’re cooking for a large gathering or planning ahead for a week’s worth of meals, this recipe ticks all the boxes.
Incorporating this recipe into your cooking repertoire will surely make you the star of any potluck or family occasion. One taste, and your family or friends will come running back for more. So don’t hesitate – give this “crack” Lasagna Recipe a try today!
Here are the ingredients you will need to make this mouth-watering crack lasagna recipe:
- Chicken breasts: The hero of the dish! Juicy and tender chicken breasts, cooked to perfection.
- Broccoli rabe and kale: Nutritious and delicious greens that add an earthy flavor to the dish.
- Lasagna noodles: Thick, flat pasta noodles that are boiled until tender before being assembled into the lasagna.
- Mozzarella cheese: A semi-soft cheese that is perfect for melting and adding that cheesy goodness to the dish.
- Ricotta cheese: A creamy Italian cheese with a slightly sweet flavor. It’s used to add creaminess to the lasagna layers.
- Low-fat cottage cheese: A lighter option to replace ricotta cheese if you prefer.
- Pine nuts: These small, crunchy nuts add a unique texture and nutty flavor.
- Pesto sauce: A classic Italian sauce made with basil, garlic cloves, olive oil, and pine nuts.
- Garlic cloves: Freshly minced garlic adds a pungent, sharp flavor to the dish.
- Olive oil: Used for sautéing ingredients and adds a rich, savory taste.
- Ranch seasoning: A blend of herbs and spices usually found in pre-packaged mixtures. Adds flavor to the creamy crack sauce.
This recipe is versatile enough to accommodate substitutions or additions based on your personal preference. The list above gives you a good base for making your Chicken Lasagna.
The Recipe How-To
Let’s start cooking! This crack lasagna is an easy and super hearty meal that will make your family come running. In this section, I’ll walk you through how to make this creamy cheesy crack chicken lasagna recipe in a baking dish.
Before we begin, let’s check that we have all the necessary ingredients:
- 12 sheets lasagna noodles, boiled
- 4 cups cooked chicken, shredded
- 1 cup cooked bacon, chopped
- 1/2 cup ranch dressing
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 1/2 cup chopped broccoli rabe
- 1/2 cup chopped kale
- 1 cup pesto sauce
- 1/2 cup toasted pine nuts
- 1 egg
- 15 oz. ricotta cheese
- 15 oz. low fat cottage cheese
- 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
If you’re missing any of these ingredients, take a quick trip to the grocery store and then join me back in the kitchen!
Step 1: Prep the chicken and bacon
Using two forks or your hands, shred the cooked chicken into bite-size pieces. Then chop the cooked bacon into small bits.
Step 2: Make the parsley-garlic mixture
In a mixing bowl, combine chopped broccoli rabe and kale with minced garlic, olive oil, and a pinch of salt and pepper.
Step 3: Combine the wet ingredients
In a separate mixing bowl, beat the egg with ricotta cheese and cottage cheese until well combined.
Step 4: Assemble the lasagna layers
Begin by spreading an even layer of pesto sauce on the bottom of a greased baking dish. Then add an even layer of boiled lasagna noodles. Spread half of the egg-cheese mixture evenly over the lasagna noodles. Sprinkle with shredded mozzarella cheese.
Next up, add another layer of boiled lasagna noodles and spread an even layer of ranch dressing over it. Add half of your shredded chicken over it, followed by half of your chopped bacon bits.
Add another layer of boiled lasagna noodles as the next layer then spread more pesto sauce on top. Cover with more egg-cheese mixture and sprinkle with more mozzarella cheese.
Repeat with more layers of boiled lasagna noodles, ranch dressing spread over it, shredded chicken over it followed by bacon bits until everything is used up!
Step 5: Bake it!
Place your baking dish in a preheated oven at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for about an hour or until your cheese has melted completely and is starting to brown at edges.
Step 6: Let’s Dig In!
When ready to serve cut them into square-shaped pieces.
Now that you know how
Substitutions and Variations
Are you feeling adventurous in the kitchen? Great! This recipe is very versatile and allows for plenty of substitutions and variations to make it your own. Let me walk you through some of my favorite ways to play with this lasagna recipe.
1. Vegetarian Option: If you prefer a meat-free option or just want to incorporate more veggies into your diet, you can swap the chicken in this recipe for spinach or broccoli rabe. These greens add a delicious depth of flavors and are packed with nutrients.
2. Cheese Swap: Want to experiment with cheese choices? Go ahead! While I love the classic combination of ricotta, mozzarella, and cottage cheese, you can try using goat cheese or feta for a tangier twist.
3. Different Sauce: Although I adore pesto sauce in this recipe, alfredo or marinara sauce is another fantastic option to layer between those noodles. You can even add buffalo sauce for an extra kick.
4. Bacon Bits: Oh yes! Bacon is a perfect addition to this already sinfully delicious dish, but if you’re looking for a vegetarian version, feel free to swap it out for crunchy pine nuts.
5. Different Noodle Types: Lasagna noodles aren’t your only option here! Try other noodle types such as ziti or penne to switch things up.
6. Cheesy Crack Chicken Casserole: Instead of layering the ingredients between noodles, try making a casserole version by mixing all the ingredients together!
Remember that cooking is all about experimentation and having fun with flavor combinations that satisfy your taste buds. So go ahead and let your creativity take over!
Serving and Pairing
Serving and pairing are crucial steps in making your crack chicken lasagna even more scrumptious. I recommend letting the lasagna rest for at least 15 minutes after you take it out of the oven. This allows the cheese to set and makes cutting easier.
When it comes to pairing, nothing beats a fresh green salad tossed in a tangy vinaigrette. I prefer using kale or broccoli rabe as the base, then adding some pine nuts for crunchiness. The bitterness of the greens balances perfectly with the rich and creamy crack chicken lasagna.
If you’re feeling adventurous, you could also serve the lasagna with a side of garlic bread or cheesy breadsticks. Garlic bread picks up on the garlicky notes of the pesto sauce and gives a great crunch to each bite. Cheesy breadsticks add another layer of cheesy goodness to your already indulgent dish.
For those who love a good red wine, I suggest a bold Cabernet Sauvignon or Zinfandel. A glass of red will help cut through the richness of the creamy cheesy crack chicken and cleanse your palate for each subsequent bite.
No matter what you pair your lasagna with, your family and friends will come running back for seconds (and possibly thirds!).
Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating
Now that you know how to make the ultimate “crack” Lasagna recipe, you might be wondering how to prepare it in advance or store it for later. Well, I’ve got you covered!
This dish is a great choice for meal prepping since it’s easy to assemble and can last for several days without losing its flavor or texture. You can even freeze it for up to 3 months! Here are some tips for making ahead, storing, and reheating your lasagna:
You can prepare the lasagna up to two days before baking it. Simply assemble the dish as directed and cover tightly with aluminum foil or plastic wrap. Refrigerate until ready to bake. Keep in mind that if you’re using fresh vegetables like broccoli rabe or kale, they may become a bit soggy when stored for too long.
If you have leftovers, store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. Alternatively, you can freeze any leftover portions by wrapping them tightly with plastic wrap and aluminum foil.
To reheat individual servings of “crack” Lasagna, place them on a microwave-safe plate and heat on high for 1-2 minutes, depending on your microwave’s power. Alternatively, place the entire baking dish in the oven at 350°F (175°C) until heated through.
Avoid overheating or reheating too many times as this can cause the cheese to become rubbery and tough.
By following these simple guidelines, you’ll be able to enjoy your delicious lasagna whenever you want!
Tips for Perfect Results
Mastering the art of lasagna-making is quite easy if you have the right tips and tricks up your sleeve. In this section, I’m going to share my secrets that guarantee perfect results every time you make this Crack Lasagna recipe.
Firstly, I recommend using fresh ingredients as much as possible. Fresh broccoli rabe and kale work wonders for this recipe. If you’re using canned vegetables, give them a quick rinse before adding to the dish to remove any excess salt or preservatives.
For the meat lovers out there, I suggest using ground chicken or turkey as a leaner alternative. Both of these meats work perfectly in this recipe and will give you a tasty base that won’t overpower the other flavors in your lasagna.
It’s also important to remember to spread each layer evenly! This will ensure that every bite is filled with all the flavors of the dish. Doing so allows the ingredients to cook evenly throughout and prevent any dry patches on the top when it comes out of the oven.
If you opt for cottage cheese instead of ricotta cheese, mix it in with an egg to help hold everything together while giving it that creamy texture we all love in lasagna.
Another secret tip is to use pesto sauce in one of your layers. The herbaceous and garlicky flavors pair well with the richness of the creamy crack chicken and bacon ranch.
Lastly, if you’re making this dish for a larger crowd or need to make it ahead of time, consider layering it into individual baking dishes rather than one large pan. This makes for easy reheating and ensures that everyone gets their fair share of cheesy goodness with every serving!
With these simple tips, you’ll be well on your way to creating an incredibly delicious Crack Lasagna that will have your entire family come running back for seconds!
By now, you should have a good grasp on how to make this mouth-watering “Crack” Lasagna recipe. However, as with any recipe, you may have some lingering questions about ingredient substitutions, cooking times or serving sizes. Don’t fret! In this section, I’ll be answering some frequently asked questions to ensure you’re armed with all the information you need to make this the best lasagna yet. So let’s dive right in!
Do no-boil lasagna noodles work?
Lasagna can be prepared in a jiffy with the help of no-boil noodles. Not only are they a time-saver, but they also offer a tastier alternative to the standard lasagna noodles that require pre-cooking.
Is there a difference between oven ready lasagna noodles and regular?
I was pleasantly surprised when I discovered that no-boil lasagna noodles worked just as well as regular ones. After some research, I found out that the only difference is that no-boil lasagna noodles are boiled before drying, while regular ones are boiled after drying. They are essentially identical. This realization came to me on November 16, 2016.
Can I soak lasagna noodles instead of boiling?
Let me tell you about an awesome hack for making lasagna that will save you time and create a delicious dish. Instead of boiling the lasagna noodles, soak them in warm water while you simmer the sauce. This not only saves time, as the noodles cook faster in the oven when they’re soaked, but also allows them to absorb the flavors of the sauce. The best part? The soaking process can be done simultaneously with the sauce simmering, so it doesn’t add any extra time to the recipe. So go ahead and try out this trick during your next cooking adventure!
How do the layers of lasagna go?
First, we need to prepare our baking dish by spreading a thin layer of pasta sauce at the bottom. Then, we’ll place our cooked lasagna noodles, making sure to cover the entire surface. Next up is the ricotta cheese mixture, which should be spread evenly on top of the noodles. After that, we’ll add the meat sauce, also evenly spread.
We’ll repeat the layers – noodles, ricotta cheese, and meat sauce – two more times to ensure the flavors are evenly distributed. Finally, we’ll put a final layer of noodles, pasta sauce, and top it off with mozzarella and parmesan cheese. This way, our lasagna will have a nice cheesy crust on top.
If you’re still on the fence about trying this “crack” lasagna recipe, let me make one last persuasive argument. This dish is the epitome of comfort food – warm, cheesy, and filled with flavor. It’s a crowd-pleaser that will have your family and friends begging for seconds (and thirds). Plus, it’s versatile enough to be modified with your favorite ingredients to make it your own signature dish.
So, why not give this recipe a try? It’s an easy yet impressive dish that will have your loved ones wondering how you whipped up such a delicious meal. Don’t be surprised when they come running to the table as the aroma fills the room. Trust me, they won’t be disappointed.
In conclusion, I believe this “crack” lasagna recipe deserves a spot in your recipe collection. Whether it’s for a cozy night in with family or a potluck party with friends, this recipe is sure to satisfy everyone’s taste buds. So go ahead and give it a try – you won’t regret it!
“crack” Lasagna Recipe
- 1 lb sweet Italian sausage (I like turkey or chicken sausage)
- 1 lb broccoli rabe (bunch or bag) or 1 lb kale (bunch or bag)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 3 garlic cloves
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/2 cup pesto sauce
- 15 ounces low fat cottage cheese
- 15 ounces ricotta cheese
- 1 egg, slightly beaten
- no-boil lasagna noodles
- 1 cup mozzarella cheese (low fat or fat free is fine)
- 1/4 cup pine nuts (optional)
- Brown and crumble sausage in a skillet.
- Wash and chop greens.
- Remove sausage from pan and drain on paper towels.
- Wipe out skillet. Heat olive oil in skillet and saute garlic.
- Add greens to skillet.
- Cook uncovered till wilted down.
- Add 1/3 cup water to skillet.
- Cook on low heat covered till greens are tender.
- Add the sausage back into the cooked greens.
- Set aside 1/2 cup to 1 cup of the greens sausage mixture for the top.
- Mix cottage cheese, ricotta, pesto and egg together. Salt and pepper to taste.
- Line the bottom of a lasagna pan with the lasagna noodles.
- Put half of the sausage/greens mixture on top of noodles followed by ricotta mixture.
- Layer with more lasagna noodles. Top with sausage/greens mixture followed by remaining ricotta mixture. Place another layer of noodles on top. Cover with monzerella cheese, reserved sausage/greens mixture and pine nuts if desired.
- Bake for 1/2 hour till melty and bubbly.
Your Own Notes
Recommended Recipes Just For You
Anna is a culinary expert who specializes in grilling delicious BBQ dishes. She also enjoys sharing her recipes and experiences with her foodie community on her blog. She’s the total package for any backyard barbecue!