Vegetarian Lasagna

Oooey gooey goodness! Who doesn’t love lasagna?! My favourite lasagna is a vegetarian one. Lasagna was the first dish my hubby made for me when we were dating.

It was also his first time making the dish. I have to say, it turned out pretty good! 🙂

Lasagna is one of those dishes you can eat at any time of the year. It’s great for BBQ’s or even for a holiday dinner party. Btw, I LOVE CHRISTMAS lol –had to add that in there! Growing up, my “mom’s lasagna” was delish! Her spin on it is to add a bit of Indian flavours and truthfully it was quite tasty. If you want a glance at that recipe, leave a comment below and I will share the ingredients!

I love Rao’s homemade sauces–they actually taste homemade (without all the extra work of making your own sauce). I was actually going to make fresh pasta but I didn’t have enough time. Fresh pasta makes a world of a difference. My boys love helping me make it; yes, my kitchen gets dirty but it’s soooo worth it! Fresh pasta recipe to follow soon!

The spinach-ricotta mixture is a must! Feel free to omit the egg if you don’t eat it. I use this same mixture when I make manicotti or stuffed shells. It’s become a family favourite and my boys like that there’s more than just cheese and sauce in their lasagna.

For the lasagna noodles, I don’t like using the no-boil ones. I find them a lot chewier. That’s not to say I wouldn’t ever use them, but if I did, I would boil them anyway! Lol.

Tip: before covering the lasagna with foil, insert about 5 toothpicks (pic below) to stop the cheese from sticking on the foil. Cheese should not be wasted. 🙂

You can serve this dish with some Caesar salad and garlic bread, but my favourite is a simple arugula salad with some lemon juice, shaved parmesan, salt, and pepper. Okay, I’m seriously getting hungry writing this. Buon Appetito! 🙂

Servings: 4

Ingredients:

Spinach-Ricotta Mixture:
• 500g ricotta container
• 300g frozen spinach (I didn’t use all of the spinach from the bag in the picture above)
• ¼ cup chopped parsley
• ¼ cup chopped basil
• 1½  tbsp grated parmesan
• 1 egg (optional)
• Freshly ground pepper
• ¼ tsp salt

Remaining ingredients:
• 1 medium onion, chopped
• 1 green pepper, chopped
• 1 red pepper, chopped
• 300g mushrooms, chopped
• 1 zucchini, chopped
• 2 jars of Rao’s Marinara Sauce
• ½ tsp dried oregano
• ½ tsp Italian seasoning
• 1 tsp pureed garlic
• ¼ chilli flakes
• 2-3 tbsp olive oil
• 2 tbsp grated parmesan cheese

1. In a large pot, heat oil on medium heat. Add in garlic and cook for about 1 minute.

2. Add in onions, peppers, and zucchini. Mix.

3. Once the vegetables are halfway cooked, add in the mushrooms, oregano, italian seasoning, chili flakes, salt, and pepper. Mix and cook until all the liquid has evaporated.

4. Once all the liquid is gone, add in the marinara sauce bottles. Simmer on low heat for about 30 minutes.

5. Meanwhile, boil water in a large pot. Add noodles and cook according to directions on box. Drain in a colander and set aside.

6. In a mixing bowl, combine all ingredients for the spinach-ricotta mixture. Mix and set aside.

7. Preheat oven to 375°F.

8. Lightly grease a baking tray.

9. Time to layer! Spread a thin layer of sauce.

10. Lay out the noodles. Overlapping is OK. (see pic above)

11. Spread a layer of the spinach-ricotta mixture. Top with mozzarella cheese.

12. Add another layer of noodles. Spread the sauce over the noodles.
Top with more mozzarella cheese.

13. Add another layer of noodles. Repeat steps 10-13. (Basically, you will have approx. 2 layers of spinach-ricotta and sauce each). The last layer of pasta will have just mozzarella cheese and grated parmesan.

14. Cover the lasagna with foil. Don’t forget those toothpicks!

15. Bake in a preheated oven for about 45 minutes.

16. Remove the foil and broil for about 2-3 minutes to slightly brown the cheese. Do not take your eyes off the oven.

17. Remove from heat. Let the lasagna sit on your counter for about 10 minutes or more before cutting. This is key for the lasagna to keep its shape.

18. Serve with garlic bread and/or salad of your choice.

2 thoughts on “Vegetarian Lasagna

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