Lasagna, a staple in Italian cuisine, is impossible to resist in this cute guilt-free cupcake version!
This classic dish from the Bel Paese is a staple of italian cuisine. Usually served on Sundays, lasagna is in the memories of all true Italians. It’s not unusual to hear something like ” Nothing can beat my grandma lasagne!”- It’s the perfect meal to gathers= the family together and transform any day into a special occasion.
Although it takes quite a little bit time to put it together, making lasagna is a lot easier than you think and it’s a super versatile dish. You can make the classic recipe which includes a rich bechamel and bolognese sauce ( in Italian we called it “ragù”), or you can mix your favorite ingredients, make a vegetarian lasagna, or add some delicious homemade pesto sauce to the bechamel. Creativity is the key!
The classic lasagna is a very rich meal and is often hard to resist seconds, so if you’re watching your weight is not really recommended. I can see the disappointment on your face, but here’s the good news! This secret I’m about to tell you will spare you the pain of saying NO to lasagna. Because you really don’t want to miss this goodness.
Lasagna cupcakes are the real key to enjoy this amazing Italian dish without feeling guilty. In fact, one of the secrets for healthy eating is portion control, which can be a helpful trick when you’re trying to lose weight. These bite-sized lasagna version were meant satisfy your taste buds, plus they’re incredibly pretty! This way of serving your favorite lasagna recipe saves you a great amount of calories and they’re also fun to eat.
Perfect for a dinner party or a Sunday brunch, these lasagna cupcakes will impress your guest into a very tiny bite. If you have a little more time, I recommend you to make your homemade fresh pasta, it always makes a difference. Plus, if you use fresh pasta, you can skip the process of boiling it before use.
What the rest of the world calls bolognese sauce, in Italy we call it ragù sauce. This is my mum’s original recipe, she skips the pancetta or guanciale which are added in the traditional recipe. I agree with her, with this little trick the ragù comes out lighter and healthier without sacrificing the taste, and the many fresh herbs inside the sauce give a wonderful aromatic flavor to it.
I love making these Lasagna cupcakes, they bring a festive note to the table and are incredibly fun to serve and eat. I promise both grown ups and kids will love this recipe!
- 8 fresh pasta sheets
- 1 cup bechamel sauce
- 1 cup Parmesan finely grated
- 180gr /7oz lean beef mince
- 180gr/7oz lean pork mince
- 1 garlic clove, slightly crushed
- 2 shallots, minced
- 1 carrot, minced
- 1 celery stalk, minced
- 2 fresh bay leaves
- 2 fresh thyme sprigs
- 4 fresh basil leaves
- 1 can peeled tomatoes, juice and seeds removed
- ½ glass white wine
- 1 glass vegetable stock
- Extravirgin olive oil
- Salt & pepper
- For the ragu:
- Heat a large frying pan with olive oil and garlic. Once garlic is lightly roasted remove from the pan.
- Add minced carrot, celery and shallots and gently cook over medium heat. Add the herbs and season to taste.
- Cook for 2 mins then fold the meat in. Stir-fry all the ingredients for 5 mins or until the meat is no longer pink.
- Pour the wine in and allow the alcohol to evaporate over high heat.
- Chop the tomatoes and fold them into the pan together with some basil leaves. Gently cook over low heat for about 1 h, stirring and adjusting seasoning along the way. Pour some stock in during cooking, to prevent the sauce of getting dry.
- Once the ragu is cooked,prepare the lasagna cupcakes.
- Cut the lasagna sheets in circles, with the help of cookie cutters. Make 8 large circles that fit and slightly overlay a muffin cup. Cut 16 more small circles, for the cupcakes inside layers.
- Distribute a tiny layer of bechamel sauce on the base of each cupcake tin.
- Press a large circle on the bottom of each base.
- Pour 1 large tbsp of ragu on top of each one.
- Cover with 1 tbsp of bechamel sauce, and sprinkle with Parmesan. Top with a small pasta circle. Repeat the process with another tbsp of ragu, bechamel and Parmesan.
- Top with a final layer pasta circle, bechamel sauce and sprinkle with Parmesan.
- Bake for 15 mins in a preheated oven until the lasagna cupcakes are crisp and golden on top.
- Serve immediately and enjoy!