Lasagna is a favorite in my house but when I do not have to prepare the beloved baked pasta dish, I turn to lasagna grilled cheese. This sandwich is quick, easy, and so delicious. It has all the flavors found in a classic lasagna without the hassle of trying to put the dish together. Italian bread is piled high with ricotta cheese, Italian sausage, marinara sauce and fresh basil. A meal like this comes together in under 20 minutes and is a guaranteed crowd pleaser. If your family loves Italian food, they are going to salivate over this lasagna grilled cheese.
Lasagna Grilled Cheese
4 Italian sausage links, casings removed (sweet or hot)
2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
1 cup ricotta cheese
1 cup shredded Italian cheese blend
4 tablespoons parmesan cheese
8 fresh basil leaves, chiffonade
1/2 cup marinara sauce
8 slices Italian bread
1/2 stick unsalted butter, softened
kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Step 1: Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add the sausage and cook until browned, breaking up the meat as you go, about 5 to 7 minutes. Line a plate with a paper towel and drain the excess fat from the sausage.
Step 2: In a small bowl, combine ricotta cheese, parmesan cheese, and shredded Italian cheese blend and mix until the ingredients are well incorporated. Season with salt and pepper.
Step 3: Heat a skillet over medium high heat. Butter all the bread slices on one side. Place a slice of bread, buttered side down in the hot pan. Working quickly, spread the ricotta mixture evenly over the bread. Top with sausage crumbles, a few spoonfuls of marinara sauce and a sprinkling of basil. Place another slice of bread, buttered side up, on top. Once the bottom has browned, carefully flip the sandwich to brown the other side, about 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from pan and repeat 3 more times. You can keep the sandwiches warm in a low oven.