Classic Lasagne Recipe by Brian McDermott

This Classic Lasagne Recipe is from Donegal Table by Brian McDermott.

I believe every child or young adult should know how to make some version of lasagne. Niamh includes carrots in her lasagne. The reason? She likes them. I taught Niamh this recipe years ago, and now she’s made it her own. She’s even appeared with me on RTÉ’s Today Show recently, so watch this space, she tells me!

Serves 6


Meat Sauce
Drizzle of rapeseed oil
500g minced beef
1 onion, finely chopped
4 cloves of garlic, crushed
1 carrot, chopped
2 tsp dried oregano
Glass of red wine
75g tomato puree
400 g tinned chopped tomatoes
Freshly ground black pepper
350ml beef stock

White Sauce
70g butter
70g plain flour
700ml milk
1 bay leaf
Pinch of nutmeg
Freshly ground black pepper
100g Cheddar cheese

300g lasagne sheets
30g Parmesan cheese


1. Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F/Gas Mark 6.
2. Heat a pot, add a drizzle of oil and brown the meat. Add the chopped onion, garlic and carrot and cook for 4–5 minutes. Add the oregano.
3. Add the wine and allow it to reduce by half. Then add the tomato puree and chopped tomatoes. Season with freshly ground black pepper. Add the beef stock and allow to simmer for 1 hour, stirring occasionally.
4. While the meat is simmering, make the white sauce by melting the butter in a saucepan and adding the flour. Cook for 2 minutes, then add the milk, bay leaf, nutmeg and pepper and allow the sauce to thicken, whisking all the time. Once thickened, add half the grated Cheddar and then put the sauce aside.
5. Soak the lasagne sheets in warm water for at least 15 minutes before assembling.
6. Spoon a thin layer of meat sauce into an ovenproof dish, then a little cheese sauce. Put a layer of lasagne on top. Repeat.
7. Sprinkle the final layer of lasagne sheets and cheese sauce with the remaining Cheddar and the Parmesan.
8. Bake for 1 hour. Allow to stand for 10 minutes before serving.


Brian McDermott has built a national reputation as a chef on one simple belief – that tasty, healthy food based around traditional recipes and local produce is something every family can make and enjoy.

Every family can enjoy this collection of achievable, affordable and accessible recipes celebrating the best of Donegal’s warmth and traditions.

Whether it’s cooking freshly-caught mussels for the fishermen at Greencastle pier or sharing his skills with others at his cookery school, Brian loves to celebrate the best of his home county’s warmth and traditions.

Brian McDermott Brian McDermott

You may also like...