Hearty Meal: Venison Lasagna

Venison Lasagna
A family favorite, venison & sausage lasagna.

Have ground meat sitting in your freezer, unused and waiting for a good meal? With a few ingredients, you can make this hearty meal that the whole family will enjoy! Add some garlic bread and a side salad, and it’s a perfect evening meal or Sunday supper.

Ingredients

  • 9 lasagna noodles
  • 1 1/4 pounds bulk Italian sausage
  • 3/4 pound ground venison or elk
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 cans (one 28 ounces, one 15 ounces) crushed tomatoes
  • 2 cans (6 ounces each) tomato paste
  • 2/3 cup water
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 3 tablespoons plus 1/4 cup minced fresh parsley, divided
  • 2 teaspoons dried basil
  • 3/4 teaspoon fennel seed
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon coarsely ground pepper
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 carton (15 ounces) ricotta cheese
  • 4 cups shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
  • 3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Directions

  1. Cook noodles according to package directions; drain. Meanwhile, in a Dutch oven, cook ground venison or elk, sausage, and onion over medium heat 8-10 minutes or until meat is no longer pink, breaking up meat into crumbles. Add garlic; cook 1 minute. Drain.
  2. Stir in tomatoes, tomato paste, water, sugar, 3 tablespoons parsley, basil, fennel, 1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  3. In a small bowl, mix egg, ricotta cheese, and remaining parsley and salt.
  4. Preheat oven to 375°. Spread 2 cups of venison meat sauce into an ungreased 13×9-inch baking dish. Layer with 3 noodles and a third of the ricotta mixture. Sprinkle with 1 cup mozzarella cheese and 2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese. Repeat layers twice. Top with remaining meat sauce and cheeses (dish will be full to the top).
  5. Bake covered for 25 minutes. Then bake uncovered for 25 minutes longer or until bubbly. Let stand 15 minutes before serving.

Alternative Ideas

  • Don’t have Italian sausage on hand? Additional ground venison will work just fine.
  • If you want to add veggies to this dish, saute them ahead of time to release some extra moisture. Then layer in with your meat and cheeses.
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Jason Ashe
Jason Ashe is an avid whitetail deer enthusiast and avid hunter from the finger lakes region of New York. A full time social media specialist in the outdoor industry and habitat specialist with Mid-Lakes Whitetails, Jason has been featured in such publications as Quality Whitetails numorouse times and been paired with hunting greats in Outdoor Life for his knowledge and passion for hunting mature deer. Turkeys, Coyotes also top the list of game that Jason pursues in any down time he has from whitetails. He consideres himself lucky to have whitetails and hunting be a part of everyday life. His wife Laura also shares in his passions along with their 2 children.