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How To Reheat Lasagna – I Test 5 Methods [Pics]

This article was updated on 9th September 2023 for freshness and to incorporate new insights.

To help you avoid the potential pitfalls of a dry, overly crunchy, or watery lasagna, I personally tried and tested five ways to reheat it. Want a quick answer?

The best way to reheat lasagna is in the oven. Preheat the oven to 350°F and sprinkle 1-2 tablespoons of water over the lasagna to rehydrate it. Cover the dish with aluminum foil and reheat until the sauce is bubbling at the edges. If you’re in a hurry, you can also use the microwave.

How I tested reheating lasagna

I cooked up an extra-large batch of mid-week lasagna, ate more than I should have (with a side of garlic bread), and put the leftovers in the fridge. The following morning I tested five reheating methods:

  • The oven: Best overall result.
  • The microwave: Great if you’re in a hurry.
  • Frying in a skillet: Good result if the lasagna is cheesy.
  • In the air fryer: Good for crispy lasagna.
  • Steaming in a skillet: Not recommended – too watery.

Lasagna reheating tips


To tell if the lasagna is hot all the way through, stick a knife into the thickest part of the lasagna. If the metal is warm when you pull it out, the lasagna is done. 

If you want to go the extra mile, peel back the top layer of your lasagna and spoon in more tomato sauce, ricotta, and cheese in. This new layer makes sure the lasagna isn’t dry and makes up for all the sauce the pasta will have absorbed in storage.

If that sounds like too much work, a sprinkle of fresh herbs or a drizzle of pesto or infused oil will work wonders.

Reheating lasagna in the oven

Time: 10-15 minutes per portion
Rating:
9/10

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F, or 325°F if you’re using a toaster oven.
  2. Remove the lasagna from the fridge and allow it to warm up to room temperature while the oven is reheating.
  3. Sprinkle 1-2 tablespoons of water or leftover sauce over the lasagna.
  4. Cover with aluminum foil to keep the lasagna moist. 
  5. Reheat until hot all the way through and the sauce is bubbling around the edges (15-20 minutes for a slice, or up to 45 minutes for larger portions).
  6. Remove the foil for the last 5-10 minutes of heating to crisp the cheese. Add some extra cheese if you have any.
  7. Let the lasagna rest for a few minutes before serving.

Note: Keep a close eye on the lasagna if you’re using a toaster oven because the top can burn quite easily.

Letting the lasagna warm to room temperature first will help it heat more evenly and also reduce the time it needs in the oven. If you forget this step, don’t worry too much, just allow for a few extra minutes heating time.

I definitely recommended adding a little bit of newly grated cheese – it really brings the dish back to life.

Results: The lasagna tasted fresh, was heated evenly all the way through, and the top had some crisp. The only downside is that this is the slowest method, and is pretty inefficient if you’re just heating one portion.

Reheating lasagna in the microwave

Time: 2 minutes
Rating:
6/10

  1. Place 1-2 portions of lasagna on a microwave-safe plate (any more and you risk cold spots).
  2. Cover the lasagna with a damp paper towel.
  3. Reheat on full power for one minute, and then in 30-second intervals until hot.
  4. Allow the lasagna to rest for 30 seconds before serving.

Pro tip: don’t reheat a seafood lasagna in the microwave, the seafood will not survive and will turn horribly rubbery.

The damp paper towel creates steam to keep everything nice and moist. If you’ve got lots of melty cheese on your lasagna, stick a toothpick into the middle and rest the paper towel on it. This will prevent it from sticking to the cheese (although I didn’t have a problem with this).

Warning… Be careful not to overheat the lasagna or the pasta will become very chewy.

Results: This was the quickest and most convenient way to reheat a couple of slices of leftover lasagna, but the results weren’t the best. The sauce became slightly watery and the pasta was softer than with the other methods. Still totally edible though!

Reheating lasagna by frying in a skillet

Time: 3-4 minutes
Rating:
5/10 (it’s hit and miss)

  1. Remove your lasagna from the fridge and immediately cut the cold lasagna into small slices approximately one inch thick.
  2. Heat a skillet and a tablespoon of oil over medium-high heat.
  3. Fry the slices of lasagna on each side until golden brown. About 60 seconds per side.
  4. Remove the slices from the pan and allow them to rest for a minute or two.
  5. Serve hot.

This is a trick I learned from Reddit and the food genius Kenji López-Alt… I had to try it out.

Your lasagna must be cold and solid for this method to work. If your lasagna is room temperature, or it’s flimsy and poorly built, then it will start to fall apart in the pan and you won’t get the effect you’re looking for.

As the lasagna heats, the cheese melts and oozes out, then starts to turn crunchy in the pan. Or that’s what’s supposed to happen. Sadly, I don’t think my lasagna was suitable for this method because there wasn’t enough cheese to hold the pasta sheets together, so they started to collapse and there was no crust forming.

Psst… Kenji used a ricotta and spinach lasagna.

Results: When done right, this method totally transforms the lasagna into something unique and tasty. But it was quite a bit of effort compared to the other methods and messy!

Reheating lasagna in the air fryer

Time: 5-10 minutes
Rating:
8/10

  1. Set your air fryer to 350°F (180°C) and slice the lasagna into medium-sized slices.*
  2. Put the lasagna in a loaf pan or make a foil ‘pan’ for it (optional, you can slip this step if the lasagna isn’t too saucy).
  3. Cover the lasagna with aluminum foil.
  4. Place the lasagna in the air fryer and cook for 5-10 minutes until hot all the way through.

It is best not to put a saucy lasagna ‘naked’ into the air fryer because it can make a mess. And I recommend medium-sized slices because if the slices are too big, the outside of your lasagna will start drying out before the inside is warm enough. 

If you like your lasagna reheated with some ‘crispy’ bits, don’t cover the top with foil.

Results: The air fryer was quick and brilliant at crisping the lasagna back up. But the pasta was a little bit drier than with the other methods I tried – some extra sauce would have fixed this though.

Reheating lasagna by steaming in a skillet

Time: 3-5 minutes
Rating:
7/10

  1. Heat a non-stick pan on medium-high heat.
  2. Add the lasagna and sprinkle 3-4 tablespoons of water around the pan. Or throw an ice cube into the pan with the lasagna.
  3. Reduce the heat to medium-low.
  4. Cover the skillet with a lid* to retain the steam.
  5. Heat for 3-5 minutes, depending on the size of the portions.

It’s best to use a non-stick pan for this, but if you don’t have one, simply lightly oil the skillet before adding the lasagna. 

If you don’t have a lid, you can use a sheet of foil to cover the pan. You’re effectively steaming the lasagna with this method. The water will vaporize and, trapped by the lid, will warm and re-moisturize your leftovers. But go easy on the water.

I used way too much water on my first attempt with this method, and the lasagna pretty much disintegrated.

Results: The lasagna was nice and moist and the cheesy was really gooey, but the whole thing felt a bit wet. There was none of the crispiness that I like.

How to reheat frozen lasagna

You can freeze your lasagna before or after baking, but the reheating process is the same.

To reheat frozen lasagna, thaw it in the fridge overnight. Then take the lasagna out of the fridge and let it come to room temperature while you preheat the oven to 350°F. Cover the lasagna in foil and bake until heated through and bubbling.

This will take around 45-60 minutes for a whole lasagna. And to get a crispy top, remove the foil for the last 10 minutes of baking.

Always aim to thaw frozen lasagna before cooking it. Thawed lasagna will reheat much more evenly and there’s no risk of a still-frozen center.

If you’ve run out of time to thaw the lasagna, you can reheat it straight from frozen in the oven. Preheat the oven to 400°F, cover the lasagna with foil, and bake it until piping hot all the way through (this can take up to 2 hours). Remove the foil for the last 15 minutes to crisp the cheese.

If you’ve got a frozen slice of lasagna, you can thaw it using the microwave. But this is hit and miss and you may end up with mushy pasta. 

How to store lasagna

After letting your lasagna cool to room temperature, transfer it to an airtight container or cover the baking dish tightly with aluminum foil or plastic wrap. Lasagna lasts between 3 and 5 days in the refrigerator. It also freezes exceptionally well.

Vegetable lasagnas won’t last as long as meat lasagnas. Cooked vegetables tend to get pretty sad-looking in the fridge after 3 days, so that would be my limit for veggie lasagna. 

If you have any spare sauce leftover from making the lasagne, save this too. You can use the sauce to help brighten up the dish when reheating it. 

Can you freeze lasagna?

Lasagna freezes well and will keep for up to 3 months in the freezer. You can freeze it baked or unbaked. Go for unbaked if you want the best quality lasagna, but if you’re after a quick freezer meal, opt for baking before freezing.

Be aware of using lots of watery vegetables in the lasagna if you plan to freeze it. Vegetables like zucchini don’t always fare well in the freezer.

How to freeze lasagna

  1. Allow the lasagna to cool to room temperature.
  2. Slice the lasagna into portions (optional).
  3. Wrap lasagna portions tightly in plastic wrap or foil. Or you can cover a whole lasagna in its baking dish (as long as it’s freezer and oven-safe).
  4. Aim to eat the lasagna within 3 months.

It’s important not to put warm lasagna in the freezer. Any condensation will turn into ice crystals which will play havoc with the texture of your lasagna. 

Psst… foil trays are ideal for freezing lasagna because you can transfer them directly from the freezer to the oven.

Read Next: What To Eat With Lasagna
Read Next: The Best Way To Reheat Garlic Bread

How To Reheat Lasagna [Tested Methods]

In this short recipe, I show you the very best way to revive your leftover lasagna.
5 from 2 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: lasagna, reheat lasagna
Prep Time: 0 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
Servings: 1 person
Calories: 135kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 portion lasagna
  • 2 tbsp water

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  • Place the lasagna in an oven-safe dish.
  • Sprinkle 1-2 tablespoons of water or leftover sauce over it.
  • Cover with aluminum foil to keep the lasagna moist.
  • Reheat for up to 45 minutes (slices take 10-15 minutes).
  • Remove the foil for the last 5-10 minutes of heating to crisp the cheese. Add some extra cheese if you have any.
  • Remove when the lasagna is bubbling around the edges.
  • Serve piping hot.

Notes

It can be tricky to tell if the lasagne is hot all the way through, but I have a neat trick to help you.
Stick a knife into the thickest part of the lasagna.
If the metal is warm when you pull it out, the lasagna is done.
Of course, a temperature probe would be more accurate, so use that if you have one. You’re looking for a temperature of 165°F.

Nutrition

Serving: 100g | Calories: 135kcal

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