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Low Sodium Meatball Lasagna

By: Bill

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This Low Sodium Meatball Lasagna made in the Instant Pot is so easy to make and tastes as good as a pan-layered lasagna. It is a little messier in appearance compared to a nice layered slice of lasagna but, for the ease, time savings, and taste it is well worth it.

Low sodium Instant Pot Lasagna
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>>> Did you notice I made this recipe right after my Low Sodium Italian Meatballs post? They will be required to fully make this recipe so you will have to make those first if you haven’t. I made the meatballs and lasagna all in one night. So it is still definitely doable to do both all in about an hour and a half.**

Sodium in this recipe compared

Typical sodium amount per serving900-1700mg
Sodium per serving for this recipe176mg
Calories per serving407
Recipe makes 8 = servings1

I have seen the sodium levels for Instant Pot and Crockpot lasagnas from 900mg all the way up to 1700mg of sodium per serving! But by making your own low-sodium meatballs, low-sodium sauce, and using lower-sodium cheese we can significantly reduce the sodium. The sodium level falls all the way down to a full tummy pleasing 176mg of sodium per serving.

Low Sodium Italian Meatball Lasanga Pin Me
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Making the meatballs for this recipe

When I make meatballs nowadays, I usually double the recipe so I can freeze some to have them on hand and use them in a recipe like this. It will cut about 40 minutes of the time if you already pre-made them.

For this recipe as written, I am calling for meatballs that are already or just made. See Low Sodium Italian Meatballs for the recipe. The sodium level for this recipe has been calculated with everything included as listed independent of that recipe.

If you do make the meatballs the same day, go ahead and prepare the sauce and lasagna noodles while the meatballs bake. This is easily done while the meatballs bake and then you will be ready to go with meatballs right into the pot for this recipe.

My tips for making Low Sodium Meatball Lasagna

First, don’t worry if you don’t have the meatballs made up. Even with making the meatballs I had dinner on the plate in less than two hours. And I was taking pictures too!

You can use the meatballs right from the oven or frozen if you have them already made up.

I found that when snapping the lasagna noodles placing the edge against my second inside middle finger knuckle gave pretty even squares of lasagna noodles.

Low sodium meatball lasagna on white plate
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Don’t worry if noodles break unevenly or little pieces break off. They will still taste good and end up in the same place. This dish isn’t as “pretty” as a layered pan lasagna so you will never even notice.

The pasta sauce I made for this is modeled after my Low Sodium Spaghetti Sauce – Meaty without the meat and onions. Check that out for a regular spaghetti dinner, it is really good and works great here too.

 I like to use the classic lasagna noodles for this recipe but you could also substitute farfalle (bowtie) pasta, rotini, penne, or large shells.

The great thing about ricotta cheese is that it has a quite low sodium content compared to many cheeses. But if you don’t have ricotta cheese on hand, you could leave it out or you can substitute it with sour cream or a few dollops of Mascarpone cream cheese. Cottage cheese is often used in lasagna as a substitute but is too high in sodium for our purposes.

Riccota cheese label
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Ricotta cheese label

Though I have not used either sour cream or Mascarpone I would just use them in an “emergency”.  I would make every effort to get the ricotta as think it really adds to the flavor. Besides, how can you have lasagna without ricotta cheese?

You could also make this in a slow cooker. Keeping ingredients and instructions the same, add water, meatballs, pasta, and pasta sauce to the slow cooker. Cover and cook on low for 3-4 hours. Then add in cheeses and stir.

My Instant Pot

To make this awesome Instant Pot Low Sodium Meal I used my 6 quart Instant Pot LUX60V3 6 in 1*. (see on Amazon) The Instant Pot multi-cooker, combines 6 kitchen appliances in one, pressure cooker, slow cooker, rice cooker, sauté, steamer, and warmer. This Instant Pot is one of the very few appliances that stay on my counter since I use several times a week. It’s super easy to use and clean.

My Instant Pot
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As always, please let me know how you like this recipe in the comments! I get motivated when I hear from you and am interested to learn about how you liked and served your Low Sodium Meatball Lasagna. So please, leave a comment or rating and share any tips you might have. You can follow me on Facebook and Pinterest also, for new recipes.

Low Sodium Meatball Lasagna

Written by: Bill
Low Sodium Meatball Lasagna may look a little messy but it delivers a great lasagna taste that can easily be made in a quick evening with little effort.
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Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 4 minutes
Come to temp and NPR 15 minutes
Total Time 34 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine American, Italian
Servings 8
Calories 418 kcal


  • 1 ¾ cups water
  • 24 Pre-cooked Low Sodium Italian Meatballs (See my Low Sodium Meatball recipe)
  • 8 oz uncooked lasagna
  • 1 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 1 cup Swiss Gruyere cheese
  • 3/4 cup ricotta (Using a full cup only adds 11mg of sodium /serving)

For the low sodium sauce:

  • 2 Tbsp pre-minced garlic
  • 1 Muir Glen fire roasted tomatoes no salt added
  • 1 can 6 oz. no salt added tomato paste
  • 1 tsp Italian seasoning salt free spice
  • 2 tsp dried parsley flakes
  • 1 tsp crushed red pepper
  • 1 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp ground fennel
  • 1 tbsp Liquid Smoke
  • 1 Tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 cup water


  • Combine all sauce ingredients in food blender and pulse until smooth.
  • Add in Low Sodium Italian Meatballs and water into Instant Pot and then a single layer of the pasta. Ladle some of the sauce on and continue layering pasta and sauce. Sprinkle the Italian seasoning on top. Do not stir.
  • Put the cover the Instant Pot and make sure valve is set to sealing. Set manual/pressure cook button to 4 minutes. When cook time has elapsed let the pot natural pressure release for 5-10 minutes and then turn valve to venting to release any remaining pressure. Remove the lid.
  • Lightly mix and stir in the cheeses.


  1. This recipe uses my Low Sodium Italian Meatballs. If making meatballs also, it will add about 50 minutes. Thaw meatballs if they are frozen.
  2. To make in the slow cooker is the same. Add water, meatballs, water, layer pasta, pasta sauce and top with Italian seasoning in the slow cooker. Cover and cook on low for 3-4 hours. Add in cheeses and stir.
  3. Using a full cup of Ricotta cheese only adds about 10mg more of sodium.
  4. Serving includes 3 meatballs and pasta.

I use, own and recommend these products and ingredients used in this recipe and I may earn commissions from qualifying purchases.


Serving: 1Calories: 418kcal (21%)Carbohydrates: 32.7g (11%)Protein: 28g (56%)Fat: 17.2g (26%)Saturated Fat: 7.4g (46%)Cholesterol: 162mg (54%)Sodium: 176mg (8%)Potassium: 467mg (13%)Fiber: 2.6g (11%)Sugar: 6g (7%)Iron: 4mg (22%)

The information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice. Please understand that not everyone’s sodium and dietary requirements are the same, therefore some recipes may be higher than you’re allowed.

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Hello, I'm Bill

Welcome!  After my stroke, I began to prepare low-sodium and reduced-fat meals. Tasty, easily prepared meals that can help you change to a low-sodium diet for a healthier life.  Read more

2 thoughts on “Low Sodium Meatball Lasagna”

    • I would yes, at least so you get the outside seared and crunchy bits. Add meatballs to the crock pot about half way through to finish off, due to the longer cooking time. I have not cooked this recipe in the crock pot, but this should work well. Bill


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