oh yeah, forgot to mention, if you’re using fresh lasagna noodles, never ever pre-cook them.
Companies are selling "no-boil" lasagna noodles. However, IMO, it’s just a marketing scheme. I’ve made lasagna without precooking the noodles and the lasagna noodles were simply regular dry noodles. As long as there’s enough moisture, the noodles will cook in the oven and will suck up the moisture from the jarred tomatoes (and the ricotta cheese). This can be a very effective technique to get the noodles to have a subtle tomato flavor. But, it’s risky, because too little water, and the lasagna is dry. One trick is to include cottage cheese in your lasagna. Not only does cottage cheese produce a nice creamy texture, but the moisture content will make it nearly impossible to have a dry lasagna even when not precooking your noodles.
I have found, that drier lasagnas are best for food pics, but wetter lasagnas taste better.
There are other techniques to making lasagna as well, that does pre-boil the noodles, yet it’s never too soggy. One method involves cooking the meat in the sauce overnight. Precook the lasagna noodles, however, when putting the layers together, strain the meat from the sauce by spoon and put only the meat as a layer (you will not include a sauce layer). The lasagna, as it’s cooking in the oven, will have only a little sauce on it – the residual sauce that coated the beef and sausage (there will be sauce in the casserole dish, but only a little bit). Once finished, cut into servings and plate a serving, then ladle the sauce from the stove top over the top of the lasagna.
The noodles, will be slightly softer than al dente, because it will have taken in some moisture from the cheese, but it won’t be mushy. Plus, by ladling the sauce over the top, one has more control over how wet the lasagna will be served.
Any method has its benefits and its drawbacks. Deciding on which method to use, ultimately depends on one’s own preferences. Personally, I think lasagna should be slighty softer than al dente, and, given the choice, I’d rather the cook err on the side of wet, than dry.