Perfect Zucchini Lasagna

We cracked the code to the best zucchini lasagna! Roasted zucchini noodles and three cheeses make just the right Italian flavor. After years of testing, we’ve done it: we cracked the code to the Perfect Zucchini Lasagna! You might not share our elation if you haven’t attempted a no noodle lasagna before. It’s easy to spend lots of effort and end up with a watery mess. But not with this recipe! This zucchini lasagna alternates beautiful layers of roasted zucchini noddles, hearty garlicky tomato sauce and three gooey cheeses. It tastes as good–or better–than a classic lasagna! In fact, we might pick it over the classic. Here’s what to know about making a kick-ass lasagna that happens to be gluten free, too. Ingredients for zucchini lasagna This zucchini lasagna is not a traditional lasagna made with zucchini (though that would be good, too). It’s a no noodle lasagna that uses zucchini strips instead of noodles! The zucchini makes a lovely noodle-like texture to the cheesy mess. This also makes this a gluten free, paleo and keto lasagna, if that’s your diet preference. To us: it’s just delicious! Here are the main ingredients you’ll need for this recipe: Large zucchini: Size […]

A Couple Cooks – Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

We cracked the code to the best zucchini lasagna! Roasted zucchini noodles and three cheeses make just the right Italian flavor.

Zucchini lasagna

After years of testing, we’ve done it: we cracked the code to the Perfect Zucchini Lasagna! You might not share our elation if you haven’t attempted a no noodle lasagna before. It’s easy to spend lots of effort and end up with a watery mess. But not with this recipe! This zucchini lasagna alternates beautiful layers of roasted zucchini noddles, hearty garlicky tomato sauce and three gooey cheeses. It tastes as good–or better–than a classic lasagna! In fact, we might pick it over the classic. Here’s what to know about making a kick-ass lasagna that happens to be gluten free, too.

Ingredients for zucchini lasagna

This zucchini lasagna is not a traditional lasagna made with zucchini (though that would be good, too). It’s a no noodle lasagna that uses zucchini strips instead of noodles! The zucchini makes a lovely noodle-like texture to the cheesy mess. This also makes this a gluten free, paleo and keto lasagna, if that’s your diet preference. To us: it’s just delicious! Here are the main ingredients you’ll need for this recipe:

  • Large zucchini: Size matters, here! It’s nice to have larger zucchini for layering, and they fit in the pan easier than lots of small ones. But you can get away with small or medium if that’s all you have.
  • Ricotta, Parmesan, and mozzarella cheese: The Italian flavors in this recipe sing with three types of cheese!
  • Homemade tarragon tomato sauce: See the section below. You can substitute oregano if you don’t have dried tarragon.
  • Lemon zest and fresh thyme: These bring a zing and freshness that’s absolutely essential to the flavors.
Zucchini lasagna

How do you get the water out of zucchini lasagna?

Zucchini is over 90% water. The biggest issue with a zucchini lasagna it’s a watery mess when you pull it out of the oven. We’ve had this happen several times, so we’ve engineered this recipe to come out with the perfect texture ever time. Here’s how to get the water out of zucchini lasagna:

  • Roast the zucchini noodles. This cooks out a large amount of the water. You’ll roast them at 450 degrees for about 10 to 12 minutes. (This is much more effective than salting and draining the zucchini, like some recipes do.)
  • Don’t use too much tomato sauce. Tomato sauce also has lots of moisture! This recipe calls for just the right amount of tomato sauce for the pan.
  • Thicken the tomato sauce with cornstarch. This is another preventative measure! Adding a little cornstarch makes an even thicker tomato sauce with less water.
  • Let the lasagna cool for 15 to 20 minutes to set. Right out of the oven, there may be a little moisture. Let the lasagna sit and cool, which lets it absorb any remaining moisture.

With these steps, you’ll find this zucchini lasagna is not watery and has the perfect classic lasagna texture.

Best Zucchini Lasagna

Use a 9 x 9 pan, or equivalent volume

One note for the size of this recipe! You can only roast 2 pounds of zucchini at one time, and this makes just enough noodles for a 9 x 9 pan. If you’re cooking for more people, you can do 1.5 times the recipe for a 9 x 13 pan, or do two 9 x 9 pans. Just note that you’ll have to cook two batches of zucchini noodles! A good make ahead tip could be to roast the zucchini noodles in advance (see below).

In these photos, you’ll see we used a small rectangular baking dish that is the same volume as a 9 x 9″ pan (10 cups volume or 2.5 quarts).

Zucchini noodles
Layering the zucchini noodles

Make the homemade tomato sauce

For this zucchini lasagna, we recommend to make this homemade tomato sauce instead of using a purchased marinara sauce. Why?

  • The sauce has incredible flavor. The tomato sauce is one of the biggest influences on flavor in a lasagna We promise it’s worth the time to make it!
  • It’s thickened to avoid watery lasagna. As we noted above, this sauce is thickened so it avoids the problem of too much water. Many store-bought sauces can be too water.
  • The dried tarragon makes it a home run! Using dried tarragon in this recipe makes the flavors sing! If you can’t find it, you can use oregano. But it’s worth finding: especially if you’ve never tried it.
Zucchini lasagna
Here’s how to spread the tomato sauce and cheese layer

Make ahead tips for zucchini lasagna

This zucchini lasagna takes about 45 minutes to prepare, 40 minutes to bake, and 15 minutes to sit. So, make it when you have ample time! Here are a few things you can do to shortcut that 45 minute preparation time.

  • Roast the zucchini noodles in advance. One of the biggest time savers is roasting the noodles in advance. Roast them and then refrigerate until baking. They will accumulate moisture in the fridge, so pat them dry before assembling.
  • Make the tomato sauce in advance. It’s easy to let the tomato sauce simmer while you preheat the oven. But you can make it in advance too! Just refrigerate until serving: the flavor gets better over time.
Best zucchini lasagna

This zucchini lasagna recipe is…

Vegetarian, gluten-free, paleo and keto.

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Best Zucchini Lasagna

Perfect Zucchini Lasagna


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  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 45 minutes
  • Cook Time: 45 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Yield: 6

Description

We cracked the code to the best zucchini lasagna! Roasted zucchini noodles and three cheeses make just the right Italian flavor.


Ingredients

  • 3 large garlic cloves
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 15-ounce can crushed tomatoes, fire roasted if possible
  • 1 15-ounce can tomato sauce, fire roasted if possible
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon dried tarragon (or oregano)
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt, divided
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch (or arrowroot starch)
  • 2 pounds zucchini (3 large or 5 small medium)
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme
  • 2 teaspoons lemon zest (1/2 lemon)
  • 1 1/2 cups ricotta cheese
  • 3/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese, divided
  • 2 cups (7 ounces) shredded mozzarella cheese, divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • Fresh ground black pepper

Instructions

  1. Preheat: Preheat the oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Prepare the sauce: Mince the garlic. Add the butter to a medium saucepan over medium heat: once melted, add the garlic and saute until fragrant, about 1 minute. Turn down the heat and carefully add the crushed tomatoes, tomato sauce, basil, tarragon, 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, and several grinds of black pepper. Remove 1/4 cup of the sauce and stir it with the cornstarch, then add it back to the pan (this helps to thicken the sauce). Simmer while making the remainder of the recipe, at least 15 minutes. When ready to use, remove the pan from the heat.
  3. Roast the zucchini noodles: Slice the zucchini into noodles 1/4 inch thick, using a knife or mandoline (if you have a mandoline, it’s the easiest way to get uniform pieces). You can discard the pieces that are just the peel. Place the zucchini strips on two parchment-lined baking sheets and drizzle them with olive oil, then use your hands to rub it so they are lightly coated on both sides. Sprinkle with 1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided across the 2 trays. Roast 10 to 12 minutes, until just tender. Remove the pans from the oven and set aside.
  4. Meanwhile, prepare the cheese filling: Destem the thyme, then roughly chop the leaves. Add 2 tablespoons thyme to a medium bowl and reserve about 1/2 tablespoon for topping the lasagna. To the bowl, add the lemon zest, ricotta cheese, 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese, nutmeg, 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, and several grinds of black pepper. Stir to combine.
  5. Turn down the oven: Turn down the heat to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
  6. Assemble the lasagna: In a 9” x 9” baking dish (or similar volume baking dish), spread a 1/2 cup tomato sauce on the bottom of the pan. Then top with 1 layer of the zucchini noodles, half of the cheese mixture (in dollops) and about 1/2 cup of the tomato sauce, using a spatula to spread the sauce evenly over the cheese. Repeat again, topping with 1 layer of noodles, the remaining cheese mixture, and 1/2 cup of the remaining tomato sauce. Finally, top with a final layer of noodles, then another 1/2 cup tomato sauce. Sprinkle the entire top with the remaining 1 cup mozzarella cheese, 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, and 1/2 tablespoon fresh thyme.
  7. Bake the lasagna: Bake the lasagna for 40 minutes, uncovered. Let stand for at least 15 minutes before serving (this allows the lasagna to set; you can let it sit even longer if desired). Leftovers can be refrigerated for 2 to 3 days and reheated in a 375°F oven.

Keywords: Zucchini lasagna, Gluten free lasagna, No noodle lasagna

More zucchini recipes

Summer is all about zucchini recipes! Here are some we recommend giving a try:

  • Baked Zucchini So easy to make, covered in a light coating of crunchy breadcrumbs and Parmesan! This veggie is at its best roasted in a hot oven.
  • Squash and Zucchini Casserole Crowd pleaser! A cozy summer side dish, it’s topped with crunchy breadcrumbs and Parmesan.
  • Best Zucchini Muffins Greek yogurt makes them ultra moist, and turbinado sugar adds a satisfying crunchy topping.

A Couple Cooks - Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

Zucchini Lasagna Bolognese with Spicy Basil Breadcrumbs.

Okay this zucchini lasagna bolognese may be my favorite dish of the entire summer. And that sure is saying something. Right?! I can’t even TELL you how obsessed we are with this meal. It was one of those that I couldn’t get out of my head. Honestly, I was inspired a few weeks ago by […]

The post Zucchini Lasagna Bolognese with Spicy Basil Breadcrumbs. appeared first on How Sweet Eats.

Okay this zucchini lasagna bolognese may be my favorite dish of the entire summer.

zucchini lasagna bolognese

And that sure is saying something. Right?!

I can’t even TELL you how obsessed we are with this meal. It was one of those that I couldn’t get out of my head. Honestly, I was inspired a few weeks ago by our August book club pick – the School of Essential Ingredients – where she talks about a bolognese. And if you have my book The Pretty Dish, you know it holds our all-time favorite bolognese recipe.

zucchini sweating

So THEN, combined with my obsession with zucchini? I could not be stopped. I basically made it for breakfast one day.

It.was.incredible.

making turkey bolognese

I don’t always love replacing noodles with zucchini. And I’m not saying this should replace your favorite lasagna. I’m saying… make this in addition to it. Let this be your summer lasagna. It is so fantastic and I need you to experience it! 

It’s cheesy. Bubbly. Saucy. Comforting. Absolutely delicious. It is all the things!

turkey bolognese

Let me tell you about the zucchini lasagna bolognese layers:

We have zucchini, obviously. 

We have a turkey bolognese, which is a little riff on my favorite one in second cookbook, and it uses a jarred sauce, but it is still loaded with flavor. It’s very semi-homemade, if you will. 

Then, there’s the cheesy ricotta layer. 

Lots of grated cheese.

And then!

In addition to our slightly high-maintenance lasagna, we’re adding in an extra step. I promise it’s worth it. While the lasagna is in the oven, making some spicy basil breadcrumbs.

Yes, spicy basil breadcrumbs!!

layering the zucchini lasagna bolognese

Making these separate allows them to add extra crunch to the top of the dish. They don’t melt into the cheese layer. Instead, they blanket the top, adding excellent crispy crunch. And flavor, of course.

Doesn’t that all sound insane!?

zucchini layers in lasagna

So here’s the kicker.

The dish is not difficult to make. But it does require a few steps and there are two important things you MUST do if you want this to work.

First, you must must must sweat out the zucchini before making this. So slice your zucchini, sprinkle it with salt, and then let it go for at least 30 minutes. Make the bolognese, make the ricotta, do laundry, whatever. Just let it sit and sweat out the water so your dish isn’t liquidy!

zucchini lasagna bolognese

Next, you also must let it sit for at least 30 minutes (or more) before slicing into it. Just like a regular lasagna. You have to let this settle once it finishes baking. Then (as you can see in the pictures below!), it will slice nicely and not be a watery mess. 

zucchini lasagna bolognese

Those two things are KEY to perfect zucchini lasagna. Unfortunately, they do add some time to this dish. It’s mostly passive time, so don’t freak out when you see how long this takes! I promise you it’s worth it. 

zucchini lasagna bolognese

I already have an incredible lasagna bolognese recipe here on the blog, but I’m telling you… this one… it’s is SPECIAL.

Plus, vegetables!

zucchini lasagna bolognese

Hello dinner tonight!

sliced zucchini lasagna bolognese

Zucchini Lasagna Bolognese

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Zucchini Lasagna Bolognese

This zucchini lasagna bolognese is summer dinner perfect. It's loaded with flavor and topped with spicy basil breadcrumbs. Delish!
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Prep Time 50 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Resting time 30 minutes
Total Time 2 hours
Servings 8 people
Author How Sweet Eats

Ingredients

  • 4 to 5 medium-sized zucchini squash
  • kosher salt
  • freshly cracked pepper
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 small sweet onion, diced
  • 12 ounces cremini mushrooms, chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 pound ground turkey
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 24 ounce jar marinara sauce
  • ¼ cup half and half
  • ¼ cup finely grated parmesan cheese
  • 16 ounces ricotta cheese
  • 1 large egg
  • cup finely grated parmesan cheese
  • ½ teaspoon dried basil
  • 16 ounces freshly grated mozzarella or provolone cheese
  • 8 ounces fresh mozzarella, sliced
  • parmesan cheese, for sprinkling
  • fresh basil, for topping

spicy basil breadcrumbs

  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • ½ cup seasoned panko breadcrumbs
  • ½ teaspoon dried basil
  • ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

Instructions

  • Cut the zucchini into thin slices, about ⅛ inch. I find this works best with a knife, as I actually like the slices about ⅛ inch thick. If you’d like thinner slices, use a mandolin or vegetable peeler. You are going to need 4 layers of slices, and with the 9x13 inch dish, I usually need approximately 7 slices across for each layer. So in totally, roughly 28 to 32 slices.
  • Place the zucchini in a single layer on paper towels or kitchen towels. Sprinkle it all over with salt. Let it sit for at least 30 minutes, but even up to 60 minutes. This will remove the water so the lasagna isn’t watery. While the zucchini sweats, make the bolognese.
  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
  • Heat the olive oil in a large skillet or pot over medium-low heat. Stir in the onions, mushrooms and garlic with a pinch big of salt and pepper. Cook until softened, stirring often, about 5 to 6 minutes. Add in the ground turkey. Cook until browned, stirring and breaking apart the meat, about 5 to 6 minutes. Once browned, stir in the tomato paste, basil, oregano and pepper flakes.
  • Add in the marinara sauce. Stir in the half and half and the parmesan cheese. Taste and add more salt and pepper if you think it needs it! This will differ depending on the brand of sauce you use. Let this sit over low heat, stirring occasionally, while you make the ricotta mixture.
  • In a bowl, stir together the ricotta cheese, egg, parmesan and basil until combined.
  • Now it’s time to make the lasagna! Press towels over the zucchini very well to remove all the liquid. Place a few spoonfuls of the bolognese sauce in the bottom of a 9x13 inch baking dish. Layer one row of zucchini slices in a single layer.
  • Spoon some of the bolognese all over the zucchini slices. Take a third of the ricotta mixture and dollop it all over the meat, using your spoon to spread it out if you’d like. Sprinkle on a few handfuls of the grated mozzarella cheese. Add another layer of the zucchini slices.
  • Repeat what you just did. Add the bolognese sauce, a third of the ricotta mixture, then a sprinkle of cheese. Add another layer of zucchini slices. Add more bolognese sauce, the remaining ricotta mixture, and a sprinkle of cheese. Top with the final layer of zucchini slices.
  • For the final layer, add the bolognese sauce. Top with the fresh mozzarella slices. Add any remaining grated cheese. Bake the lasagna for 35 to 40 minutes.
  • Once finished, let it set up for another 30 to 45 minutes. I know this is difficult, but just like with regular lasagna, it will cut so much nicer if it sits and settles. This will NOT slice into perfect layered slices, but if you let it sit before slicing, it will slice nicely and shouldn’t be a watery mess!
  • Before slicing, top with the basil breadcrumbs, extra parmesan and fresh basil. Devour!!

spicy basil breadcrumbs

  • While the lasagna is baking, make the breadcrumbs. Heat the butter in a skillet over medium heat. Once melted, stir in the breadcrumbs, basil and pepper flakes. Cook for 1 to 2 minutes, tossing, until browned and crispy. Sprinkle on the lasagna when it comes out of the oven.

Notes

If you have extra bolognese, store it in the fridge and serve with pasta.
If you want to make this in a 9x9 inch dish, you can halve everything and it will work!

zucchini lasagna bolognese

I mean, the CHEESE!

The post Zucchini Lasagna Bolognese with Spicy Basil Breadcrumbs. appeared first on How Sweet Eats.

Quick and Easy Beef Lasagna

Quick and Easy Beef Lasagna
Lasagna is one of my favorite pasta dishes to make, even though I probably make simple spaghetti a bit more often. Lasagna, with its delicious layers of meat, cheese and sauce, is perfect for serving a group or when you want to make a dish large enough that you’ll have leftovers for a …

The post Quick and Easy Beef Lasagna appeared first on Baking Bites.

Quick and Easy Beef Lasagna
Lasagna is one of my favorite pasta dishes to make, even though I probably make simple spaghetti a bit more often. Lasagna, with its delicious layers of meat, cheese and sauce, is perfect for serving a group or when you want to make a dish large enough that you’ll have leftovers for a couple of days. This Quick and Easy Beef Lasagna recipe is a go-to for me and it should get lasagna into your regular dinner rotation a bit more often, too!

The lasagna uses a couple of shortcuts that will allow you to put it together quickly. First, it uses store-bought marinara sauce as a base instead of a made-from-scratch sauce. Pick any brand that you like and get two 16-oz jars of it (you can get away with 1 28-oz jar if your brand makes extra large sizes). It also uses no-boil lasagna noodles, which cook as the lasagna bakes in the oven. No boil noodles make assembly very easy and save you lots of time – as well as having to boil a big pot of extra water – during prep.

It takes about 15 minutes or so to assemble all the components for the dish, including the time to prepare the meat sauce. The lasagna is assembled with layers of meat sauce that alternate with a ricotta and parmesan cheese mixture. You’ll get plenty of meat, pasta and cheese in every bite – making the dish both well balanced and hearty. The baking time is about 45 minutes in total, which means that this will be ready to serve in about an hour, and most of that time is hands-off while the dish is in the oven baking.

I typically make this recipe with lean ground beef, however it can also be made with ground turkey. No matter which meat you are using, I prefer to use leaner ground meats in my lasagnas because I don’t want too much extra fat to collect in the baking dish as the lasagna cooks. There is plenty of liquid from the pasta sauce for the leaner meats to stay moist, as well.

This dish is always a big hit and I’m sure it will be for your family, too. If you have leftovers, wrap them up and store them in the refrigerator. They can be reheated by putting a serving in a bowl with a few tablespoonfuls of marinara sauce (so the leftovers stay moist when you are reheating them) and heating it in the microwave for a minute or two.

Quick and Easy Beef Lasagna
2 tbsp olive oil
1 lb lean ground beef
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
2 16-oz jars marinara sauce
15 oz ricotta cheese
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground pepper
1 large egg
15 no-boil lasagna noodles
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

Preheat oven to 350F.
In a large saucepan, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add ground beef and cook, breaking the meat up with a spatula, until fully cooked. Season beef with garlic powder, salt and red pepper flakes. Add in marinara sauce and bring to a simmer, then remove from heat.
In a large bowl, combine ricotta cheese, parmesan cheese, salt, pepper and egg. Stir to combine.
Take out a 9×13-inch baking dish and spoon about 1/3 cup of sauce over the base of the dish. Add one layer of three lasagna noodles. Top noodles with 1/2 of the cheese mixture, spreading it into a thin, even layer. Top with another layer of noodles, then add a little under 1/2 of the meat sauce. Repeat the process again with layers of noodles, cheese, noodles and meat. Top the last layer of meat (if you have a bit of extra cheese mixture, feel free to dollop it in with the last meat layer) with another layer of noodles and pour on any remaining sauce. Cover evenly with mozzarella cheese.
Cover baking dish with aluminum foil.
Bake for 30 minutes, then uncover the lasagna and bake for an additional 15 minutes, until sauce is bubbling and cheese has begun to brown slightly at the edges. Allow lasagna to cool for at least 10-15 minutes before serving.

Serves 9-12

The post Quick and Easy Beef Lasagna appeared first on Baking Bites.

Grandma Jo’s Lasagna Wasn’t an Heirloom Until It Became Mine to Make

Good food is worth a thousand words—sometimes more. In My Family Recipe, writers share the stories of dishes that are meaningful to them and their loved ones.

My grandmother is a great cook. Read More >>

Good food is worth a thousand words—sometimes more. In My Family Recipe, writers share the stories of dishes that are meaningful to them and their loved ones.


My grandmother is a great cook.

Read More >>

Favorite Vegan Lasagna

This will become your new favorite vegan lasagna: guaranteed. In fact, it’s our favorite lasagna, period! It’s whole food plant based and dairy free. This post was created in partnership with ALDI. All opinions are our own. Are you a lasagna lover? Us too. Lately Alex and I wondered: is cheese essential to that classic Italian baked pasta? After lots of testing…turns out, no! Vegan lasagna is majorly good. In fact, Alex and I agreed: this is our favorite lasagna, period. Everything for this recipe we got from ALDI, our favorite place to stock up on high quality, affordable and organic ingredients. You can make this huge pan on a budget, so it’s a healthy whole food plant based (WFPB) recipe that’s affordable to all! It pleases everyone (even meat eaters) and is great for holiday entertaining or a casual family dinner. Ready to get started? Want to try it? Tell us if you head to ALDI to stock up and make this recipe! Head to the ALDI website for a store locator. Tell us in the comments below, or tag us on Instagram using @acouplecooks and @aldiusa. What makes it the BEST vegan lasagna? No matter how you eat, this vegan lasagna will be […]

A Couple Cooks – Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

This will become your new favorite vegan lasagna: guaranteed. In fact, it’s our favorite lasagna, period! It’s whole food plant based and dairy free.

Vegan Lasagna

This post was created in partnership with ALDI. All opinions are our own.

Are you a lasagna lover? Us too. Lately Alex and I wondered: is cheese essential to that classic Italian baked pasta? After lots of testing…turns out, no! Vegan lasagna is majorly good. In fact, Alex and I agreed: this is our favorite lasagna, period. Everything for this recipe we got from ALDI, our favorite place to stock up on high quality, affordable and organic ingredients. You can make this huge pan on a budget, so it’s a healthy whole food plant based (WFPB) recipe that’s affordable to all! It pleases everyone (even meat eaters) and is great for holiday entertaining or a casual family dinner. Ready to get started?

Want to try it? Tell us if you head to ALDI to stock up and make this recipe! Head to the ALDI website for a store locator. Tell us in the comments below, or tag us on Instagram using @acouplecooks and @aldiusa.

Vegan lasagna

What makes it the BEST vegan lasagna?

No matter how you eat, this vegan lasagna will be a hit. Promise. We had a few friends over to try it, and here’s what we heard: “Wow! This is so good. I can’t stop eating it. I need another piece!” Somehow we stumbled upon a truly delicious way to make a dairy free lasagna. Even better, it’s easy to make and made with all whole foods. No cheese or meat substitutes here! Here’s what makes this vegan lasagna special:

  • Really good pasta sauce. We used an organic pasta sauce from ALDI and it has a great, robust flavor. You’ll want to use the best sauce you can find (more on that below).
  • Mushroom, cashews, & spinach. For a meaty filling, chop mushrooms and cashews, and sauté with spinach.
  • Hummus! Our secret ingredient is hummus! It stands in for the typical creamy ricotta cheese filling and infuses huge flavor.
  • “Parmesan” Cashews blended with garlic powder make for a Parmesan-like topping.
Dairy free lasagna ingredients

Watch how to make vegan lasagna

No boil noodles are required!

This vegan lasagna is made with no boil lasagna noodles. No boil noodles are required here: no substitutions please! No boil noodles are different from standard noodles: they’re made especially so you don’t have to cook them before baking lasagna. This makes prep time shorter. Even better, some people even argue that no boil noodles have the superior texture for a lasagna. So wins all around!

More liquid is required in a lasagna when making it with no boil noodles. This recipe is specially formulated to cook the no boil noodles while baking. Bottom line: Don’t try this dairy free lasagna recipe with standard noodles, or it could end up too watery.

Another noodle note: If you have a large 9 x 13” aluminum pan with square sides, you’ll need 13 ounces noodles. A 9 x 13” glass baking dish with rounded sides only needs 10 ounces of pasta noodles! (Odd, we know!) Because baking dish shapes and noodle shapes can vary, make sure you have enough pasta based on the baking dish you plan to use.

Layering lasagna: step 1
Here’s how to layer! First, the sauce and no boil noodles.
Layering dairy free lasagna
Next, the hummus.
Layering dairy free lasagna
Then, the mushroom spinach topping.
Layering lasagna
Finally, tomato sauce!

Use a high-quality pasta sauce.

The only other “must” for this recipe: find a high-quality pasta sauce! Alex and I made this dairy free lasagna recipe especially to use pasta sauce because: let’s face it! Lasagna takes a while to make. There are lots of high-quality pasta sauces these days, even organic. Find your favorite and use it for this lasagna: it truly speeds up prep time. You could of course substitute your favorite homemade marinara sauce. For this recipe, we used Simply Nature Organic Tomato & Basil Pasta Sauce from ALDI. It had fantastic flavor and really made this vegan lasagna shine.

Best vegan lasagna

Are there any time savers?

Lasagna is notoriously time-intensive. We’ve optimized this vegan lasagna recipe so that it’s as easy to make as possible. If you’re looking for ways to save time when baking it the day of, here are a few options:

  • Use a food processor (optional). A food processor is not required for this recipe! We used ours because it makes chopping the mushrooms and making the “Parmesan” topping very fast. If you don’t have one, you can use a regular large knife for chopping.
  • Make the mushroom filling and Parmesan in advance. The main prep steps here are the mushroom filling and the dairy free “Parmesan” topping. You can make and cook the filling in advance: just store it refrigerated until making the lasagna. Make and store the Parmesan topping at room temperature.
Dairy free lasagna

Sides to serve with vegan lasagna

Ready to make this vegan lasagna into a meal? The best side to serve with lasagna is the good old standard: a green salad! Here are a few we’d recommend:

This vegan lasagna recipe is…

Vegetarian, vegan, plant based, and dairy free. For gluten free, use gluten free no boil lasagna noodles.

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Vegan lasagna

Favorite Vegan Lasagna (Easy & Dairy Free!)


1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (26 votes, average: 4.62 out of 5)

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 35 minutes
  • Cook Time: 50 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 25 minutes
  • Yield: 12

Description

This will become your new favorite vegan lasagna: guaranteed. In fact, it’s our favorite lasagna, period! And it’s 100% whole food plant based.


Ingredients

  • 8 ounces baby bella mushrooms
  • 1 cup roasted Southern Grove Cashews with Sea Salt, divided (roasted salted cashews)
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary
  • 2 tablespoons Simply Nature Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 5 ounces Simply Nature Organic Baby Spinach
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice + 1 teaspoon lemon zest, divided (1/2 lemon)
  • 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 2 25-ounce jars Simply Nature Organic Tomato & Basil Pasta Sauce (or marinara sauce)
  • 2 8-ounce cans Happy Harvest Tomato Sauce
  • 10 to 13 ounces Reggano Oven Ready (No Boil) Lasagna Noodles* (see note!)
  • 8-ounce container Simply Nature Organic Garlic Hummus
  • Dried oregano, for sprinkling
  • Fresh ground black pepper

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375°F.
  2. Make the spinach mushroom filling: Pull out the stems of mushrooms with your fingers. In a food processor or with a large knife, roughly chop the mushrooms, 1/2 cup of the cashews and the rosemary. Add 2 tablespoons olive oil to a skillet and bring to medium heat. Sauté mushrooms and cashews for 3 minutes until soft but still hold their shape. Add the spinach (saving out a few leaves for the garnish) and sauté until wilted, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in 1/4 teaspoon of the kosher salt, a few grinds of pepper, and the lemon juice. Let stand until assembling.
  3. Make the dairy free Parmesan topping: in a food processor or blender, blend 1/2 cup cashews with the garlic powder and lemon zest until it’s ground into about the texture of a shaker can of grated Parmesan. (Alternatively, chop as finely as possible with a knife.)
  4. Mix the sauce: In a large bowl, mix together the pasta sauce and tomato sauce.
  5. Layer the lasagna: In a 9 x 13” baking dish, spread tomato sauce on the bottom of the pan. Then top with 1 layer of noodles (our pan held 3 noodles longwise and 3/4 noodle widthwise), breaking noodles as necessary**. Spread with half of the hummus, half of the mushrooms and a tomato sauce layer. Repeat again: 1 layer of noodles, half of the hummus, half of the greens and tomato sauce. Finally, top with noodles, then tomato sauce again. Sprinkle the entire top with the “Parmesan” and dried oregano.
  6. Bake: Cover the pan with aluminum foil and bake for 40 minutes, then 10 minutes uncovered. Let stand for 15 minutes before serving (this allows the lasagna to set). If you’d like, finely chop spinach leaves to use as a garnish (for looks only!). Cut into pieces and enjoy.

Notes

*Important: You must use no-boil lasagna noodles for this recipe! Do not substitute standard noodles. The amount of sauce is formulated for no boil noodles, which need more liquid than standard lasagna noodles.

**If you have a large 9 x 13” aluminum pan with square sides, you’ll need 13 ounces noodles. A 9 x 13” glass baking dish with rounded sides only needs 10 ounces of pasta noodles! Baking dish shapes and noodle shapes can vary, so make sure you have enough pasta based on your baking dish.

  • Category: Main Dish
  • Method: Baked
  • Cuisine: Italian

Keywords: Vegan Lasagna, non dairy, dairy free, cheeseless, lasagna, italian

A Couple Cooks - Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes