Ready-to-eat lasagne are a staple of my weight loss program, particularly when the climate will get colder. There’s nothing like an oozy hunk of meat, cheese and carbs to make you are feeling as should you’ve simply tucked your self right into a pasta doona. Consuming lasagne below a blanket manifests a stupendous sense of symmetry: I’m at one with the universe in all its multi-layered glory.
Plus, it’s reasonably priced: you’ll be able to have a full meal for below $3 – although it’s a staggering testomony to the velocity of inflation that this can be a 20% value enhance since I final wrote about low cost lasagne.
As a public service, I examined eight chilled or frozen lasagne discovered at Aldi, Coles and Woolworths supermarkets. Most had been single-serve beef lasagne, with one gluten-free model included, and had been ready based on the microwave instructions on the pack. Each was rated on its flavour (beefy, tacky), look (bonus factors for a parsley garnish) and – importantly – post-microwave structural integrity. Had been my assessments solely subjective? Sure, however after consuming greater than 3kg of lasagne in per week, I’m principally an skilled.
Greatest general, and finest worth for cash
Worldwide Delicacies Italian Fashion Beef Lasagne 400g, $2.49 from Aldi (frozen), $0.63 per 100g
I’d by no means tried this Aldi one earlier than my lasagnethon, nevertheless it’s now my high choose for flavour and worth. There’s an excellent distinction in textures, and it’s meatier and cheesier than a few of the others with 14% beef and greater than 3% cheese, based on the substances checklist. The additional cheese does give it a extra greasy look which I personally don’t thoughts (it’s form of like how the oil and coconut milk separate in rendang), however some would possibly discover it off-putting.
The remainder of the take a look at
World Kitchen Beef Lasagne 1.2kg, $7.99 from Aldi (chilled), $0.66 per 100g
That is unbelievably good worth. The pasta sheets are thick and delicate, the cheddar and mozzarella are wealthy and creamy with out being cloying, and the ragu feels hearty and healthful with tomato, onion, carrot, zucchini, celery, spinach and pink wine. It is available in a foil baking tray so it’s supposed for the oven, however as a result of it’s a recent lasagne you might simply lower out a portion and microwave it as a substitute, should you want a sooner technique. Whereas different lasagne puddled limply when transferred to a plate, the depth and structural integrity of this one makes it an excellent choice to serve with a salad or sides. Actually, if I didn’t stay alone, I’d most likely purchase this often. However for one particular person, a kilogram of lasagne is … loads.
Coles Frozen Beef Lasagne Pasta 400g, $3 from Coles (frozen), $0.75 per 100g
With extra sauce than construction, the Coles model lasagne is one to eat straight out of the tray, presumably with a spoon. Regardless of 4 layers of pasta sheets, it has a shallow profile that doesn’t actually maintain collectively after microwaving. The ragu is fairly gentle on mince (the substances don’t truly specify how a lot beef is current, which makes me suspicious) however the general mixture remains to be comforting.
Woolworths Beef Lasagne 375g, $4 from Woolworths (frozen), $1.07 per 100g
The sprinkle of parsley and parmesan is a pleasant contact, nevertheless it doesn’t contribute a lot to the flavour, which is pleasantly bland. This one options three layers of pasta and a really beneficiant quantity of bechamel (39%), but it nonetheless holds its form nicely after slicing. The meat sauce accommodates 15% beef nevertheless it’s a fine-textured mince that tastes extra just like the filling in a meat pie than a bolognese. That’s not a foul factor, and I might eat this once more.
Word: there may be supposedly one other cheaper Woolworths model lasagne nevertheless it wasn’t in inventory at any of the shops I visited in Melbourne.
McCain Beef Lasagne 400g, $5.60 from Coles or Woolworths (frozen), $1.40 per 100g
McCain’s model made an honest impression at first chunk however after a pair extra forkfuls, I felt it went means too laborious on the tomato. The acidity was overpowering and made me really feel agitated as a substitute of cosy. It’s additionally intensely salty, which bears out within the fantastic print: 340mg of sodium per 100g (others had been within the 200 to 305mg vary). I favored the feel of the parmesan crumb however in any other case, this one was my least favorite.
On The Menu Frozen Beef Lasagne 260g, $4.50 from Woolworths or Coles (frozen), $1.73 per 100g
That is tolerable and nothing extra. My gripes are admittedly petty: there’s no cheese, solely bechamel; there are solely three layers of pasta as a substitute of 4. However probably the most severe flaw is the scale. I simply don’t know once I’d ever need a 260g serving of lasagne – it’s too small for a meal and too wealthy for a snack.
Tutto Pasta Gluten Free Lasagna 350g, $6.50 from Woolworths (frozen), $1.86 per 100g
This was probably the most reasonably priced gluten-free possibility I might discover and whereas it’s dearer than the non-gluten-free lasagnes, it’s not any higher. There are 4 layers right here however they disintegrate and mix collectively as you eat as a result of the pasta sheets (rice flour, water, eggs, tapioca, corn maize and xanthan gum) don’t maintain collectively. There’s chunky beef, cheese and many tomato, however no bechamel so it tastes extra like a bolognese polenta bake than lasagne. It’s, nevertheless, truly fairly tasty, and it jogged my memory how a lot I get pleasure from a polenta bake.
Latina Beef Lasagne 350g, $7.50 from Woolworths (chilled), $2.14 per 100g
This refrigerated or ‘recent’ lasagne is fairly satisfying. There’s the progressive design of placing the bechamel within the center as a substitute of on high, and the ragu is flavourful. As a basic rule, pasta sheets are inclined to have higher texture in refrigerated lasagne in comparison with frozen ones. That mentioned, you may get thrice the burden of recent lasagne for nearly the identical value at Aldi.