Polka Dot Lasagna Skillet

Kid Friendly30 Minute Meals

Easy Polka Dot Lasagna Skillet made all in one pot and only 30 minutes! Plus a cookbook review of #expresslanecooking | joyfulhealthyeats.com #recipes

Easy Polka Dot Lasagna Skillet made in just 30 minutes! Perfect for one of those quick weeknight meals! From the cookbook Express Lane Cooking!

A couple weeks ago, a friend of mine Shawn from the blog I Wash You Dry, came out with her first ever cookbook!

She was recently on QVC selling her book and within 10 minutes it sold out 5000 copies! So clearly it is a book that people are interested in!

As soon as this book hit the shelves I couldn’t wait to take a look. One of my goals is to eventually write my own cookbook and I love learning from other peoples.

Polka Dot Lasagna Skillet_1

The first thing I noticed about Shawn’s cookbook, Express Lane Cooking, is the beautiful photography! After all, we do eat with our eyes first and I was most definitely ready to eat the food right off the page as soon as I opened her book. The second thing I noticed was the creativity behind each recipe. Here are just a few examples that caught my eye: Crispy Thai Chicken Over Browned Butter Pasta, Peach Stuffed Chicken Rolls, Pan Seared Greek Steaks with Stuffed Tomatoes, Shrimp Stuffed Zucchini Boats, and my favorite Cheesy Portobello Stuffed Poblanos! Sounds so good right! {enter tummy rumble}

Shawn is a mom of four little ones so kitchen life can be a bit hectic. Most of the recipes on her blog are meant for the mom who doesn’t have a lot of time and needs something tasty to put on the dinner table in a hurry. Express Lane Cooking is sticking with that theme. After all, us busy moms need all the help me can get!

Easy Polka Dot Lasagna Skillet made all in one pot and only 30 minutes! Plus a cookbook review of #expresslanecooking | joyfulhealthyeats.com #recipes

In Express Lane Cooking, Shawn shows you how to take 5 key ingredients and make 3 different recipes using those ingredients. She does a great job of taking those ingredients and making 3 completely different dishes! For instance, with the recipe I am making today, her Polka Dot Lasagna Skillet, with those ingredients she also made Slow Cooker Ricotta Stuffed Meatballs, and Pasta Balls in Meat Sauce! So genius right! This book is a great way to not get “caught in a rut” cooking the same thing over and over again.

Here Polka Dot Lasagna Skillet is absolutely delicious! It took me 30 minutes to make and has all the same flavor profiles as lasagna but WAY easier! Plus, now she has me officially hooked on using fennel! This is definitely a must try once you get the book!

Now, even though the book does say only 5 key ingredients I wanted to let you know that there are more than just 5 ingredients used in the recipes. Just so you’re not caught off guard. I would more think of it along the lines of 5 main ingredients, the other ingredients could be considered staples in your kitchen. 🙂 But either way the concept of making 3 different recipes using the same ingredients is pretty innovative, and she even gives little tips at the end of each recipe!

Overall, I was very pleased with this book and definitely would recommend it if you’re looking for something to get you through the craziness of the busy school year!

Easy Polka Dot Lasagna Skillet made all in one pot and only 30 minutes! Plus a cookbook review of #expresslanecooking | joyfulhealthyeats.com #recipes


Polka Dot Lasagna Skillet

  • Author: Krista
  • Cook Time: 30 mins
  • Total Time: 30 mins
  • Yield: 6 1x
  • Category: pasta, beef, kid friendly, quick easy dinner ideas



  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 1 teasspoon dry fennel, crushed
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 2 cups pasta sauce
  • 2 cups bowtie pasta, uncooked
  • 2 1/2 cups water
  • pinch of red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 cup ricotta cheese
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup parmesan cheese
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper


  1. Heat a large skillet to medium high heat. Brown the ground beef and drain excess fat.
  2. Return skillet to the stove and add crushed fennel, 1 teaspoon of garlic powder, and onion powder, stirring until the beef mixture becomes slightly fragrant.
  3. Add the pasta sauce, uncooked pasta, water, and red pepper flakes.
  4. Stir and bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat to low and cover.
  5. Simmering for about 18-20 minutes, or until pasta is fully cooked.
  6. In the meantime combine ricotta, egg, parmesan cheese, basil, flour, garlic powder, salt, and apper in a large bowl. Mix until combined.
  7. Scoop large dollops of cheese mixture on top of the cooked pasta while it is still in the skillet. Make sure to space them out.
  8. Cover and cook for an additional 5 minutes, or until cheese has set.
  9. Serve.


Recipe is from the BookExpress Lane Cooking by Shawn Syphus from the blog I Wash You Dry

** I was not compensated in any way for this post. All opinions are 100% mine and honest. I just wanted to share the love and a good cookbook!**



Hey There

Hi! I'm the recipe developer and food photographer behind all these easy healthy recipes! I love food, Jesus, morning lattes, and am obsessed with fantasy football! { more }

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25 Responses
    1. Hey Kim, I love that you enjoy my lighten up versions. Totally makes me day! I am working on a lighten up lasagna recipe. But if you wanted to lighten this one up a bit, you could add just parmesan cheese on top instead of the ricotta mixture or add cottage cheese mixed with garlic powder and dry basil. 🙂 Hope that helps and stay tuned for a lighter lasagna recipe in the future! 🙂

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