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Lasagna Roll-Ups

Pasta and cheese all rolled up into irresistible bundles sound great to me! I mean, what's there not to love? Hot gooey cheese and perfectly cooked pasta showered in your favorite sauce is a delicious meal. The noodles are rolled and loaded with cheese and chopped fresh spinach so it's packed with nutrients, too. These can be assembled ahead of time so this dish is perfect for entertaining.

Ingredients for Lasagna Roll-Ups:

12 lasagna noodles, cooked according to package directions

10 - ounces fresh baby spinach

1/4 pound chopped pancetta

1 egg, lightly beaten

2 cups ricotta or a small container

1 cup + 1/2 cup Shredded Italian Blend Cheese

1/2 cup parmesan

1/3 cup coarsely chopped fresh basil

kosher salt

black pepper

1/8 teaspoon nutmeg

3 cups tomato sauce

Time-Saving Tip: The roll-ups can be prepared in advance and refrigerated. Bake before serving.

Let's see what we need.

We're ready to cook.

Saute the pancetta in a dry pan. Cook a few minutes until lightly browned but not crisp. Set aside.

While the pasta water is coming to a boil get started preparing the filling. In a large food processor add the spinach and pulse until finely chopped. Add only half of the spinach and process a little before adding the rest of the spinach. Set aside.

Mix together the ricotta, egg, parmesan, nutmeg, and 3/4 cup of cheese blend. Then stir in the spinach, basil, and pancetta.

I like to measure out the filling for each roll before I start rolling the lasagna. It helps to keep me honest so I don't over-fill some rolls. Use a 1/2 cup measure and scoop out 12 - 1/2 cup portions of filling. I just put them on foil. It makes the next step much quicker, too.

I like to place all of the noodles on a flat surface, top with filling, and then roll-up jelly roll style.

Spread 1 cup of sauce on the bottom of the glass baking dish. Place the roll-ups on top. Be sure to put the seam side down.

Top the rolls with another cup of sauce. Sprinkle with 3/4 cup of the cheese blend. Cover tightly with foil. At this point, the lasagna roll-ups can be refrigerated for a day. Bring to room temperature for an hour before baking. Or if you want to eat immediately place them in a preheated 425-degree oven. Bake about 25 minutes and then bake an additional 10 minutes uncovered.

It's ready! This looks so good and I can tell you it's delicious. Pass around a little extra sauce and cheese and you're good to go. Or if you're like me, sprinkle some chili flakes on top. This is a great make-ahead dish which means it's perfect for entertaining. Just add a salad and dinner is made.



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