The Best Ways To Reheat Lasagna

It's pretty hard to beat lasagna when it comes to comfort food — Italian or Italian American style. In response to a YouGovAmerica poll asking Americans what their favorite Italian dish is, 83% of participants favored the classic casserole dish layered with pasta, sauce, vegetables, meat, and cheese fillings. Lasagna beat out other VIPs (very important pasta) such as ravioli and baked ziti, coming in second only to garlic bread. Lasagna is a dish that appeals young and old folks alike. It often appeals to picky eaters as well, making it a solid choice for family dinners, dinner parties, and potlucks.

And since lasagna is made in a baking dish, a single recipe often provides up to 12 servings. As delicious and popular as lasagna is, a couple of squares are usually left in the pan after dinner. If you're like most, you store it in the fridge and take it out when you're ready to heat it. Want to serve up leftover lasagna that's as good as day-one lasagna? Read on to learn how best to reheat this all-star dish.

In the oven

In the culinary world, there's a saying that the best way to reheat a dish is to heat it the way it was cooked initially (via Commercial Appeal). This holds true for lasagna. According to Taste of Home, oven reheating is the best approach for lasagna. It's the method that's least likely to dry the dish out. However, it's also one of the slower methods, so keep that in mind if you're raring to eat.

To reheat lasagna in the oven (or toaster oven), preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit or 325 degrees if you're using the toaster oven. Taste of Home notes that you shouldn't set the temperature any higher, which risks drying lasagna out. Then, wrap the dish tightly with foil and place it in the oven, allowing it to bake until the internal temperature reaches about 165 degrees for about 30 to 45 minutes. If you don't have a thermometer, look for the lasagna to start sizzling around the edges and for the cheese on top to fully re-melt.

In the microwave

Although microwaves often get flak for reheating items unevenly and causing them to dry out (via CNET), this handy kitchen appliance is highly recommended for reheating lasagna — especially if you're reheating just one or two slices. This method is also the quickest one, so microwaving is the way to go if you're really hungry.

According to PureWow, adding a bit of liquid to the lasagna slices is the perfect way to keep them from getting dry. Place the lasagna in a microwave-safe container. Next, sprinkle it with 1 or 2 tablespoons of leftover sauce if you happen to have any. If not, sub sauce for water or broth. Then, cover the dish, heat on medium for 60 to 90 seconds, and remove the lasagna. Finally, uncover it and cut into the slice to make sure it's hot all the way through.

Pure Wow advises that if the edges are warmed but the center remains cold, you can try peeling off some of the top layers, placing them to the side of the other layers, and reheating in additional 30-second increments. Then, you can pop the top layers back on, and you're ready to eat.

In a skillet

According to Taste of Home, skillet reheating is a good choice for leftover lasagna, approximating an oven-baked taste while heating much faster than an oven and generating less heat in your kitchen, too. The outlet suggests using a cast-iron skillet, which distributes heat more evenly, adding a slice or two of lasagna, and adding ¼ cup of water per slice of lasagna. The added moisture will steam up when the pan is heating and help rehydrate the dried-out layers of pasta.

Heat the skillet over medium-high heat until the water starts to simmer, then reduce the heat to medium-low, cover the pan, and heat for about 20 minutes, shaking the pan occasionally, so the lasagna doesn't stick. Taste of Home suggests removing the lid for the last five minutes of cooking to get a nice crispness on the bottom layer of pasta before digging in.

In the air fryer

Do you have an air fryer? As explained by Grub Street, the air fryer, a kitchen appliance that "fries" food by blasting it with hot air, first debuted in 2010 and rapidly became "the next Instant Pot." Its popularity is still going strong. Between late May 2017 and mid-March 2019, nearly 10 million air fryers were sold. And if you've got one at home, you're in luck: This appliance is a good choice for reheating slices of leftover lasagna, according to Cooking Chew.

To do so, preheat the air fryer to 375 degrees Fahrenheit, then place a slice or two of lasagna in a small heat-safe loaf pan. Wrap the pan tightly in aluminum foil, then place it in the air fryer and heat until the lasagna reaches an internal temperature of about 165 degrees. The process should take about 15 to 20 minutes, but you can check after 10 minutes. Look for bubbly sauce and melted cheese as your cues that the lasagna is ready to be served.