Heirloom Tomato Panzanella Salad

This recipe was originally inspired by caprese salad! We wanted the classic tomato, basil, cheese trio married together with balsamic vinegar. However, we also wanted croutons in the mix (because bread!), so we ended up with an EPIC summer panzanella! …

Heirloom Tomato Panzanella Salad

This recipe was originally inspired by caprese salad! We wanted the classic tomato, basil, cheese trio married together with balsamic vinegar. However, we also wanted croutons in the mix (because bread!), so we ended up with an EPIC summer panzanella! The results were pretty stellar and we kept going back for seconds (and thirds). Even tomato haters are likely to fall for the classic flavors in this dish! Plus, just 10 ingredients and 30 minutes required.

Heirloom Tomato Panzanella Salad from Minimalist Baker →

Shrimp Pizza (3 Cheese!)

This shrimp pizza recipe is full of big flavor, starring buttery shrimp and 3 cheeses! It’s garlicky, creamy, and a total crowd pleaser. We’ve made just about every pizza recipe, from classic Pizza Margherita to fusions style taco pizza. But here’s a new-to-us pizza that instantly jumped to the top of our list: this 3 Cheese Shrimp Pizza! Shrimp on a pizza isn’t what might first jump to mind. But let me tell you: it’s a must try! The garlicky, buttery shrimp against creamy ricotta cheese is one of the best pizza topping combinations we’ve had in a while. It’s so satisfying, you’ll be hooked. It’s like shrimp alfredo on a pizza crust instead of noodles…which is just as good as it sounds. How to make the best shrimp pizza (basic method) Shrimp on pizza isn’t usually our first choice. But after eating an incredible seafood pizza at one of our favorite pizza joints in town, we knew we had to try it! Our version isn’t much like theirs (so you’ll have to go try it!). But what it does have in common: juicy, buttery garlicky shrimp! Here’s what to do to make the best shrimp pizza recipe: Saute the […]

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

This shrimp pizza recipe is full of big flavor, starring buttery shrimp and 3 cheeses! It’s garlicky, creamy, and a total crowd pleaser.

Shrimp pizza

We’ve made just about every pizza recipe, from classic Pizza Margherita to fusions style taco pizza. But here’s a new-to-us pizza that instantly jumped to the top of our list: this 3 Cheese Shrimp Pizza! Shrimp on a pizza isn’t what might first jump to mind. But let me tell you: it’s a must try! The garlicky, buttery shrimp against creamy ricotta cheese is one of the best pizza topping combinations we’ve had in a while. It’s so satisfying, you’ll be hooked. It’s like shrimp alfredo on a pizza crust instead of noodles…which is just as good as it sounds.

How to make the best shrimp pizza (basic method)

Shrimp on pizza isn’t usually our first choice. But after eating an incredible seafood pizza at one of our favorite pizza joints in town, we knew we had to try it! Our version isn’t much like theirs (so you’ll have to go try it!). But what it does have in common: juicy, buttery garlicky shrimp! Here’s what to do to make the best shrimp pizza recipe:

  • Saute the shrimp with garlic and butter. Get that shrimp perfectly sauteed before you use it as a pizza topping! Use the instructions below or our sauteed shrimp recipe.
  • Spread seasoned ricotta on the dough. There’s no need to make an alfredo sauce: just spread lightly seasoned ricotta straight onto the dough.
  • Top with mozzarella and Parmesan and bake! All you need is 5 to 7 minutes in a super hot oven. It’s best if you have a pizza stone! Speaking of…
Saute pan with shrimp

Use a pizza stone if you can!

This shrimp pizza is best if you bake it on a pizza stone. Why? A pizza stone makes the absolute perfect crust texture! Here’s what to know:

  • Pizza stone: A pizza stone is what makes Italian pizza crust crispy on the outside and soft on the inside. Here’s the best pizza stone we’ve found, plus care tips.
  • Pizza peel: Use a pizza peel to transfer the pizza onto the hot pizza stone in the oven. We recommend this Standard pizza peel or this Conveyor pizza peel.

Don’t have a pizza stone? That’s ok too! You can make your pizza right on a baking sheet.

Homemade pizza dough is best, or use these shortcuts!

In our professional opinion: it’s always worth it to make homemade pizza dough! The result is far, far better than what you can buy at the store. But of course: there’s not always time for that! We get it. Here are a few options for the dough for this shrimp pizza recipe:

  • Master pizza dough! This Best Pizza Dough has the absolute perfect flavor and texture. It is sublime. This one takes 15 minutes to make and 45 minutes to proof before baking.
  • Thin crust. Try this Thin Crust Pizza Dough! It’s easy to roll out into a thinner, crispier crust.
  • Pan pizza. Or, make it as a pan pizza in a cast iron skillet! This option takes a little longer but it’s easier to pull off.
  • Naan or flatbread pizza. Want to shortcut the process altogether? Try Naan Pizza or Flatbread Pizza.
  • Store-bought pizza dough. We do it in a pinch, too! Find a good quality brand (experiment to find your favorite).
Shrimp pizza

The shrimp to buy for shrimp pizza

There are lots of options at the store when it comes to shrimp! It doesn’t matter if you accidentally grab the wrong one for this recipe: pizza is very forgiving! But here are a few things to look for:

  • Find medium shrimp. Medium is nice for a pizza topping: it’s also labeled as 41 to 50 count. You could also use small shrimp.
  • Use peeled shrimp. Often we recommend tail on, but you don’t want that for pizza! If you buy the wrong kind, just remove the shell before cooking.
  • Fresh or frozen. Both are essentially the same freshness because most shrimp are immediately flash frozen. Just make sure to thaw the shrimp in advance.
  • Wild caught. Look for wild caught: it’s the most sustainable!
Shrimp pizza recipe

What to serve with shrimp pizza

This shrimp pizza recipe is a perfect meal: it’s gooey, garlicky, cheesy and very filling! We like pairing it with a green salad or other veggie side to amp the meal’s veggie quotient. Here are some ideas:

This shrimp pizza recipe is…

Pescatarian.

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Shrimp pizza

Shrimp Pizza (3 Cheese!)


1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (5 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 1 hour
  • Cook Time: 5 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 5 minutes
  • Yield: 8 slices

Description

This shrimp pizza recipe is full of big flavor, starring buttery shrimp and 3 cheeses! It’s garlicky, creamy, and a total crowd pleaser.


Ingredients

  • 1 ball Best Pizza Dough (or Thin Crust Dough)
  • 1/2 pound medium shrimp, deveined and peeled
  • 1/4 teaspoon plus 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 cup whole milk ricotta cheese
  • Fresh ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
  • Chopped parsley for garnish

Instructions

  1. Make the pizza dough: Follow the Best Pizza Dough or Thin Crust Dough recipe to prepare the dough. (This takes about 15 minutes to make and 45 minutes to rest.)
  2. Place a pizza stone in the oven and preheat to 500 degrees Fahrenheit. (If you don’t have a pizza stone, you can make the pizza on a baking sheet.)
  3. Prepare the toppings: If frozen, thaw the shrimp in advance. Mince the garlic. Pat the shrimp dry. In a medium bowl, mix the shrimp with the minced garlic and 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt. In a medium skillet, heat the butter on medium high heat. Cook the shrimp for 1 to 2 minutes per side until opaque and cooked through, turning them with tongs. When done, transfer the shrimp to a bowl.
  4. In a small bowl, mix the ricotta with the 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt and fresh ground pepper.
  5. Bake the pizza: When the oven is ready, dust a pizza peel with cornmeal or semolina flour. (If you don’t have a pizza peel, you can use a rimless baking sheet or the back of a rimmed baking sheet. But a pizza peel is well worth the investment!) Stretch the dough into a circle; see How to Stretch Pizza Dough for instructions. Then gently place the dough onto the pizza peel.
  6. Spread the seasoned ricotta onto the dough then 1/4 cup of the mozzarella cheese. Add the shrimp, reserving the butter at the bottom of the bowl. Top with the remaining 1/4 cup mozzarella cheese and Parmesan cheese. Add a sprinkle of the reserved butter (use about half). 
  7. Use the pizza peel to carefully transfer the pizza onto the preheated pizza stone. Bake the pizza until the cheese and crust are nicely browned, about 5 to 7 minutes in the oven (or 1 minute in a pizza oven).
  8. Top with the chopped parsley. Slice into pieces and serve immediately (cutting it with a knife is easiest to cut through the shrimp). 
  • Category: Main Dish
  • Method: Baked
  • Cuisine: Pizza

Keywords: Shrimp pizza, Shrimp pizza recipe

More great pizza recipes

We live for pizza over here! If you do too, here are a few more of our top pizza recipes to try:

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

Vegetarian Lasagna with Ricotta

This vegetarian lasagna recipe is a total crowd pleaser! The easy spinach and ricotta cheese filling is classic and creamy. When it comes to lasagna recipes…well, this one is tops. Meet our best vegetarian lasagna with ricotta, aka vegetarian lasagne! We’ve been honing meatless lasagna recipes for years. This one is the culmination of all of our research: and damn, is it good (if we may say so ourselves). The tomato sauce has just the right zing and garlic nuance, and the spinach ricotta cheese filling is classic and creamy. It’s scented with fresh thyme and a little lemon zest, which takes it to over the top status. There’s no one who will turn down a piece! At least, who we’ve met. Here are all our secrets. Ingredients in vegetarian lasagna Did I mention that we love easy recipes: or at least, recipes that are pretty simple to put together? The spinach ricotta filling in this vegetarian lasagna recipe is elegantly simple, with no need to chop a long list of ingredients. We’ve also got lots of time saving ideas for those evenings where you don’t have time to make your own marinara. Here’s what you need for this vegetarian […]

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

This vegetarian lasagna recipe is a total crowd pleaser! The easy spinach and ricotta cheese filling is classic and creamy.

Vegetarian lasagna

When it comes to lasagna recipes…well, this one is tops. Meet our best vegetarian lasagna with ricotta, aka vegetarian lasagne! We’ve been honing meatless lasagna recipes for years. This one is the culmination of all of our research: and damn, is it good (if we may say so ourselves). The tomato sauce has just the right zing and garlic nuance, and the spinach ricotta cheese filling is classic and creamy. It’s scented with fresh thyme and a little lemon zest, which takes it to over the top status. There’s no one who will turn down a piece! At least, who we’ve met. Here are all our secrets.

Ingredients in vegetarian lasagna

Did I mention that we love easy recipes: or at least, recipes that are pretty simple to put together? The spinach ricotta filling in this vegetarian lasagna recipe is elegantly simple, with no need to chop a long list of ingredients. We’ve also got lots of time saving ideas for those evenings where you don’t have time to make your own marinara. Here’s what you need for this vegetarian lasagna:

  • Tomato sauce: homemade or purchased (see section below)
  • Lasagna noodles (dried or fresh)
  • Baby spinach (or frozen)
  • Ricotta cheese, Parmesan cheese, and mozzarella cheese
  • Fresh thyme
  • Lemon zest
  • Nutmeg
  • Salt and pepper
Vegetarian lasagna recipe

Make homemade tomato sauce, or find your favorite brand

This vegetarian lasagna recipe features our favorite homemade tomato sauce for lasagna: made with garlic, tomatoes and our secret ingredient: dried tarragon. Here are a few notes about each type of sauce:

  • Make the homemade sauce for great flavor. When you have time, a homemade tomato sauce is where it’s at! This sauce is full of big flavor and takes only a few minutes of hands on time: it can simmer while you prep the other ingredients. Dried tarragon adds big Italian flavor: but if you can’t find it, you can use oregano as a substitute.
  • Or, go easy with purchased marinara! There are lots of nights where we want a shortcut. These days there are many high quality marinara brands on the market: look for organic if you can! Grab enough for 4 cups of sauce.
Easy marinara sauce

Substitute frozen spinach for fresh

Here’s another way you can customize this vegetarian lasagne recipe to your tastes: you can use fresh or frozen spinach! Here are the benefits of both:

  • Fresh spinach is tasty and often on hand. We often have a big box of baby greens in our refrigerator, so we love using fresh spinach here. It takes just a few minutes to wilt down on the stovetop.
  • Frozen spinach offers maximum flexibility! Frozen spinach is easy to stock in your freezer for whenever you have a lasagna craving (or spinach artichoke dip!). Make sure defrost and squeeze out all the water before you use it.

The best vegetarian lasagna recipe with ricotta cheese

Why make a vegetarian lasagna recipe with ricotta? Ricotta cheese is a creamy Italian cheese with a mild flavor. It’s most famously used in lasagna recipes to make that beautifully creamy, cheesy layer. We love it in this lasagna with ricotta because it has the best classic flavor.

  • What are other ways to use ricotta? Smear it on toast, swirl it into pasta, dollop it into scrambled eggs or even spread it onto a pizza. Want ideas? Go to these Genius Ricotta Recipes.
  • What are some substitutes for ricotta in lasagna? Don’t have ricotta, or don’t want to use it? You can also use the same amount of cottage cheese (if you can, food process it first) or creme fraiche as a substitute for ricotta in lasagna.
Lasagna recipe with ricotta cheese

Other filling variations!

Want to change up this lasagna recipe with ricotta? Here are some additional filling ideas that would go well with spinach and ricotta:

  • Spinach mushroom lasagna: Make the spinach and mushroom filling from Vegan Lasagna and substitute it for the spinach (with or without the cashews).
  • Kale lasagna: Make the spicy kale filling instead of spinach from Spicy Kale Lasagna.
  • Chard lasagna: Chop 2 bunches rainbow chard and wilt it down following the instructions in the recipe.

Make ahead and storage info

How to store vegetarian lasagna? Can you make it ahead? Here are a few pointers for this recipe:

  • Make ahead ideas: As noted above, you can use purchased marinara to make this recipe a little quicker. You can also cook the spinach in advance (or use frozen spinach). Mix up the cheese filling and refrigerate until ready to bake.
  • Or make ahead the entire pan: Make the vegetarian lasagna prior to baking, then refrigerate overnight. Increase the bake time as needed to cook until it’s warmed through and the cheese has melted.
  • Storage info: Refrigerate leftovers for up to 2 days. Or freeze them: it’s easiest to cut it into single servings and freeze each in separate containers. To reheat, defrost the vegetarian lasagna the refrigerator, then place in a baking dish, cover with foil and reheat at 400 degrees for about 15 minutes, until warmed through.
Lasagna with ricotta

Sides to serve with vegetarian lasagna

The great thing about a vegetarian lasagna recipe? You can use the long bake time to prep some tasty side dishes! Here are a few sides that pair well with lasagna:

This vegetarian lasagna recipe is…

Vegetarian. For gluten-free, use gluten-free lasagna noodles.

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Vegetarian lasagna

Vegetarian Lasagna with Ricotta


1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (6 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 45 minutes
  • Cook Time: 50 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 35 minutes
  • Yield: 9
  • Diet: Vegetarian

Description

This vegetarian lasagna recipe is a total crowd pleaser! The easy spinach and ricotta cheese filling is classic and creamy.


Ingredients

For the tomato sauce (or substitute 4 cups of your favorite marinara sauce)

  • 4 large garlic cloves
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 28-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)
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch (or arrowroot starch)

For the lasagna

  • 10 to 12 lasagna noodles (8 ounces, gluten-free as necessary)*
  • 5 ounces baby spinach** (or 8 cups chopped spinach)
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme
  • Zest of 1/2 lemon (about 2 teaspoons)
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 16 ounce (2 cups) ricotta cheese
  • 1 cup shredded Parmesan cheese, divided
  • 3 cups (12 ounces) shredded mozzarella cheese, divided
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Fresh ground black pepper

Instructions

  1. Preheat: Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Boil the noodles*: Bring a large pot of well salted water to a boil. Boil the noodles until just before al dente, according to the package instructions, stirring often. Drain the noodles, then drizzle a baking sheet with a bit of olive oil. Lay the noodles flat onto the sheet, then turn them over so they become coated with olive oil to prevent sticking.
  3. Prepare the tomato sauce (or skip with purchased marinara): Mince the garlic. Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the garlic and sauté, stirring frequently. Once the garlic is fragrant after about 1 or 2 minutes, turn down the heat and carefully add the tomatoes (avoid any momentary spitting), tomato sauce, basil, tarragon or oregano, 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 on low heat while making the remainder of the recipe, at least 15 minutes. When ready to use, remove the pan from the heat.
  4. Wilt the spinach: In a large skillet, mound the greens and 1/4 cup water in the skillet and cook, stirring often, until completely wilted and reduced, about 3 minutes (the greens significantly reduce when cooking; if necessary, sauté in batches.) Sprinkle with 2 pinches of kosher salt and stir, then remove from the heat and allow to cool slightly. Once cooled, use your hands to squeeze out all excess liquid and discard. Roughly chop the spinach.
  5. Prepare the cheese filling: Destem the thyme, then roughly chop the leaves. Add 1 1/2 tablespoons thyme to a medium bowl and reserve about 1/2 tablespoon for topping the lasagna. To the bowl, add the lemon zest, nutmeg, ricotta cheese, 3/4 cup Parmesan cheese, 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese, kosher salt, and several grinds of black pepper. Stir to combine.
  6. Layer the lasagna: In a 9” x 13” baking dish, spread 1/2 cup tomato sauce on the bottom of the pan. Then top with 1 layer of noodles, half of the cheese mixture (in dollops then spread it out), half of the greens, and about 1 cup of the tomato sauce. Repeat again: 1 layer of noodles (you may need to cut a noodle in half for the side, depending on your pan), the remaining cheese mixture, the remaining greens, and 1 cup of the tomato sauce. Finally, top with noodles (again, you may need to cut a noodle in half for the top layer), then the remaining 1 1/2 cups of the tomato sauce. Sprinkle the entire top with the remaining 1 cup mozzarella cheese, 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, and 1/2 tablespoon thyme.
  7. Bake the lasagna: Cover the pan with aluminum foil and bake for 40 minutes. Carefully remove the foil and bake another 10 minutes, until bubbly and browned. Let stand for 15 minutes before serving (this allows the lasagna to set). Leftovers can be refrigerated for 2 to 3 days and reheated in a 375°F oven.

Notes

*If you use fresh lasagna noodles, they don’t need to be boiled. 

**You can also substitute 3/4 cup frozen spinach. Defrost it and squeeze of excess liquid: you can skip the cooking step. 

  • Category: Main Dish
  • Method: Bake
  • Cuisine: Italian inspired

Keywords: Vegetarian lasagna, vegetarian lasagna recipe, vegetarian lasagne recipe, lasagna recipe ricotta, lasagna recipe with ricotta cheese, lasagna with ricotta, lasagna with ricotta cheese

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

Spaghetti Squash Lasagna

Spaghetti squash lasagna is a deliciously satisfying no noodle spin on the classic! It’s full of so much flavor, you won’t miss the noodles. One look at that photo and we’re pulling up our sleeves to get cooking: are you? Meet your new favorite dream-boat meal: baked Spaghetti Squash Lasagna! This delicious no-noodle spin on the classic so satisfying, you’ll find yourself dreaming about the next time you get to eat it. It’s naturally gluten-free yet cheesy enough that you won’t miss the noodles. Mix those squash noodles with ricotta and Parmesan, then bake them with marinara and gooey mozzarella on top. This one went over very well in this household…even the 3 year old approved. How to make spaghetti squash lasagna: basic steps This spaghetti squash lasagna is very easy to make! But it does take a bit of time. Why? Spaghetti squash can take up to 1 hour to roast. Yes, everyone’s favorite squash is a little high maintenance like that. But never fear! Once your squash is roasted, it’s terribly easy to put together. Here’s what to do: Step 1 (40 minutes to 1 hour*): Roast the squash! See How to Cook Spaghetti Squash. *Note: Using the […]

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

Spaghetti squash lasagna is a deliciously satisfying no noodle spin on the classic! It’s full of so much flavor, you won’t miss the noodles.

Spaghetti squash lasagna

One look at that photo and we’re pulling up our sleeves to get cooking: are you? Meet your new favorite dream-boat meal: baked Spaghetti Squash Lasagna! This delicious no-noodle spin on the classic so satisfying, you’ll find yourself dreaming about the next time you get to eat it. It’s naturally gluten-free yet cheesy enough that you won’t miss the noodles. Mix those squash noodles with ricotta and Parmesan, then bake them with marinara and gooey mozzarella on top. This one went over very well in this household…even the 3 year old approved.

How to make spaghetti squash lasagna: basic steps

This spaghetti squash lasagna is very easy to make! But it does take a bit of time. Why? Spaghetti squash can take up to 1 hour to roast. Yes, everyone’s favorite squash is a little high maintenance like that. But never fear! Once your squash is roasted, it’s terribly easy to put together. Here’s what to do:

  1. Step 1 (40 minutes to 1 hour*): Roast the squash! See How to Cook Spaghetti Squash.
    *Note: Using the Instant Pot cuts this time in half.
  2. Step 2 (15 minutes): Make the filling and layer it up.
  3. Step 3 (10 minutes): Bake it until the cheese melts.
Spaghetti squash lasagna

Tips on how to cook spaghetti squash

The main task for this spaghetti squash lasagna is (no surprise!)…cooking the spaghetti squash. Here’s what to know about cooking this tough yellow squash:

  • Slice lengthwise to serve in “bowls”. Usually we slice the squash around the middle to get the longest noodles (see How to Cook Spaghetti Squash). But if you want to serve it in natural bowls, cit it lengthwise.
  • Roasting is the best method. Roast your squash at 400 degrees until it’s tender, 40 to 55 minutes.
  • Separate into noodles with a fork. Scrape out the cut sides with a fork: instant noodles!
  • Allow to steam 5 minutes in a colander. This helps to remove excess liquid.

Alternative method: Instant Pot!

Want to speed up the cook time? You can cook your spaghetti squash in the Instant Pot, with one caveat: you’ll have to cook them one at a time. This spaghetti squash lasagna calls for 2 squash, but only 1 can fit in an Instant Pot at a time.

The Instant Pot is significantly quicker: it takes only 13 minutes for the squash to cook. So even cooking two squash, it takes about half the time to pressure cook them. Score!

How to make spaghetti squash lasagna

Spaghetti squash lasagna filling ingredients & add-in ideas!

Once you’ve cooked up that spaghetti squash, the rest of the lasagna recipe is a breeze! Here’s what you’ll need for the filling, including an idea for some add-ins:

  • Ricotta cheese
  • Parmesan cheese
  • Mozzarella cheese
  • Italian seasoning
  • Spaghetti sauce: Use your favorite brand to keep this quick and easy. There are lots of great brands on the market these days that are minimally processed.
  • Add-in idea: To make it more filling, add plant-based crumbles! We used to avoid these, but lately there have been less processed versions on the market. For more details, see our Quick Chili recipe. You can also add cooked and drained ground beef for meat eaters.

Bake it in the shells, or use a baking dish!

The fun part about this spaghetti squash lasagna is that you can bake it in the shells for beautiful presentation! But it’s not required. Here are a few notes about both:

  • Bake it in the shell: When you scoop out the spaghetti squash strands with a fork, keep the skin of the squash in tact. It forms a natural shell that you can use for baking it! Pros: it’s beautiful. Cons: it’s pre-portioned so you can’t choose how much you want, and it’s harder to serve to a crowd. Kids also seem to prefer the next option.
  • Bake it in a 9 x 9 baking dish: Or, throw it into a 9 x 9 baking dish! It works just as well and takes a little less time to assemble. Pros: It’s easier to serve to a crowd, and seems more like “real” lasagna. Cons: It’s not nearly as stunning to look at.
Spaghetti squash lasagna

Make ahead tips for spaghetti squash lasagna

Can you make ahead parts of this spaghetti squash lasagna for easy prep? Absolutely. Here are a few options to choose from:

  • Roast the squash in advance. Simply roast your squash in advance and refrigerate until you want to bake. Some liquid may accumulate while it refrigerates: just pour it off. While the oven preheats, layer the ingredients. Increase the final bake time a little since you’ll be baking the noodles from cold (or warm them in the microwave before assembling).
  • Don’t assemble in advance. You might be tempted to assemble it then refrigerate, but we advise against this. Moisture can accumulate in the fridge, making it overly watery. Simply roast the squash in advance per above: you can layer it while the oven preheats and there’s no time lost!

Sides to serve with spaghetti squash lasagna

This spaghetti squash lasagna is a total show stopper that everyone will love! While it’s a great naturally gluten free and keto dinner option, it works for anyone no matter their eating preferences. Here are a few ways we’d accessorize it to make a healthy dinner (though on a weeknight, we usually just do non-recipes like raw veggies or a throw together salad):

We hope you love it as much as we do! Let us know in the comments below.

Spaghetti squash recipe

This spaghetti squash lasagna recipe is…

Vegetarian and gluten-free.

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Spaghetti squash lasagna

Favorite Spaghetti Squash Lasagna


1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (5 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 hour
  • Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Yield: 4 to 6
  • Diet: Vegetarian

Description

This spaghetti squash lasagna is a deliciously satisfying no noodle spin on the classic! It’s full of so much satisfying flavor, you won’t miss the noodles.


Ingredients

  • 2 medium spaghetti squash
  • Olive oil
  • 1 1/2 cups ricotta cheese
  • 1 1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese, divided
  • 1 teaspoon each dried thyme, basil and oregano OR 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
  • 1 1/2 to 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 2 1/2 cups spaghetti sauce or marinara, your favorite brand (24 ounce jar)*
  • 1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • Fresh basil, for garnish

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Roast the spaghetti squash: Using a small sharp paring knife, cut the spaghetti squash around the middle lengthwise. To cut, pierce the knife into the squash and swing down, making small slices around the squash until it breaks in half. Use the knife to cut around the seeds, and then scoop them out with a spoon. Rub the insides of the squash with 2 teaspoons olive oil total. Place the halves on baking sheet cut side down, and roast 40 to 55 minutes, depending on the size and freshness of the squash, until tender all the way through when pierced with a fork. Alternative method: Go Instant Pot Spaghetti Squash and cook the 2 squash separately (they each cook in 13 minutes).**
  3. Meanwhile, prepare the filling: In a large bowl, combine the ricotta cheese, 1 cup of the Parmesan cheese, 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper. Stir to combine.
  4. Make the squash noodles and steam 5 minutes: Allow the squash to cool slightly, then use a fork to scrape out the squash into “spaghetti” strands into a colander. Save the hard “shell” of the squash to use for serving, or you can use a 9 x 9 baking dish. Allow the squash to steam in sink for 5 minutes.
  5. Season the noodles: Place the noodles in a large bowl. Mix in 1 teaspoon kosher salt, 1 tablespoon olive oil, and the Italian seasoning. Add the cheese mixture and stir gently to combine (don’t overmix). Now for the important part: taste the noodles and add up to 1/2 teaspoon more salt, until the flavor pops. The exact amount will depend on the weight of your squash and the brand of ricotta. We typically end up adding between 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon more. 
  6. Layer the lasagna: Using the 4 squash shells or a 9 x 9 baking dish, do the following: place a layer of the cheesy squash and top it with a layer of 1 cup sauce (split among the shells if desired). Then top with the final layer of cheesy squash and the remaining 1 1/2 cups sauce. Sprinkle the top with 1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese and the remaining 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese (split across the 4 shells or in the pan).
  7. Bake: Place in the oven and bake 10 to 12 minutes until cheese is melted. Top with torn or chopped fresh basil. 

Notes

*To make a more filling spaghetti squash lasagna, simmer 1 1/2 cups frozen plant-based crumbles in the sauce for 1 to 2 minutes before serving. Or, cook and drain 3/4 pound ground beef and add it to the sauce.

**Make ahead tips:  Roast your squash in advance and refrigerate until you want to bake. Some liquid may accumulate while it refrigerates: pour it off before assembling. While the oven preheats, layer the ingredients. Increase the final bake time a little since you’ll be baking the noodles from cold (or warm them in the microwave before assembling). Don’t be tempted assemble in advance and refrigerate; too much liquid accumulates while in the fridge, so we don’t recommend this. 

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

Keywords: Spaghetti squash lasagna

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

Roasted Vegetable Baked Penne

This was actually supposed to be a baked ziti, but it turns out ziti is just about impossible to find in grocery stores right now, so I went with a Roasted Vegetable Baked Penne instead. Sometimes you just have to roll with it! This recipe is a very vegetable-forward version of my Classic Baked Ziti, chock […]

The post Roasted Vegetable Baked Penne appeared first on Budget Bytes.

This was actually supposed to be a baked ziti, but it turns out ziti is just about impossible to find in grocery stores right now, so I went with a Roasted Vegetable Baked Penne instead. Sometimes you just have to roll with it! This recipe is a very vegetable-forward version of my Classic Baked Ziti, chock full of colorful vegetables, a quick homemade red sauce, and layers of ooey-gooey cheese. This recipes makes a LOT of pasta but the leftovers are awesome and freezable! 

Overhead view of a casserole dish full of roasted vegetable baked penne

Take a Short Cut

This roasted vegetable baked penne is kind of a labor of love because there are so many moving parts, BUT you can take a short cut by using some jarred pasta sauce instead of making your own. Use about one and a half 24oz. jars of store-bought pasta sauce in place of the homemade sauce listed below.

How to Store Leftovers

As I mentioned in the intro, this makes a LOT of pasta. But the leftovers are super yummy, and it makes a really great item to stash in your freezer for grab-n-go lunches or quick dinners on busy nights. After baking, divide the pasta into single serving containers and transfer to the refrigerator. Once fully cooled, you can transfer some (or all) of the containers to the freezer for longer storage. I usually leave as many as I can eat in one week in the fridge and freeze the left. The leftovers can be reheated quickly in the microwave.

What Vegetables Can You Use?

I used a classic mix of zucchini, yellow squash, red onion, and bell pepper so I could have a really colorful mix. If you want to substitute any of these vegetables, here are some other good options:

  • Mushrooms
  • Eggplant
  • Broccoli
  • Cauliflower
  • Carrots

In general you want to opt for softer vegetables for this dish, as opposed to harder root vegetables, but if you do want to include vegetables that are more firm, make sure to cut them into much smaller pieces to help them soften more quickly while they roast.

Close up front view of roasted vegetable baked penne being scooped out of the casserole dish

 
Overhead view of roasted vegetable baked penne being scooped out of the casserole dish

Roasted Vegetable Baked Penne

Layers of pasta, flavorful roasted vegetables, a simple homemade red sauce, and melty cheese make this roasted vegetable baked penne to die for!
Total Cost $11.34 recipe / $1.42 serving
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 25 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 40 minutes
Servings 8
Calories 494.86kcal
Author Beth - Budget Bytes

Ingredients

Roasted Vegetables

  • 1 red onion $0.44
  • 1 zucchini $0.79
  • 1 yellow squash $1.11
  • 1 bell pepper $1.69
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil $0.26
  • tsp salt $0.02
  • tsp pepper $0.02

Simple Red Sauce

  • 1 yellow onion $0.32
  • 2 Tbsp butter $0.26
  • 1 28oz. can crushed tomatoes $0.79
  • 3 Tbsp tomato paste $0.12
  • 1 Tbsp Italian seasoning* $0.30
  • ¼ tsp salt $0.02
  • ½ cup water $0.02

Pasta & Cheese

  • 1 lb. penne $1.00
  • 15 oz. ricotta $2.19
  • 2 cups shredded Italian cheese blend**, divided $1.86
  • 1/4 tsp pepper $0.02
  • 1/4 tsp salt $0.02
  • 2 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley (optional garnish) $0.11

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 400ºF. Dice the red onion, zucchini, yellow squash, and bell pepper into 1-inch pieces. Spread the diced vegetables out over a large baking sheet. Drizzle with oil and a pinch of salt and pepper. Toss until all the vegetables are coated in oil.
  • Roast the vegetables in the preheated oven, stirring once half way through, for about 45 minutes or until the vegetables are soft and the edges are brown and caramelized.
  • While the vegetables are roasting, begin the red sauce. Finely dice the yellow onion and add it to a sauce pot with the butter. Sauté for a few minutes, or until the onion is soft. Add the crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, Italian seasoning, salt, and water.
  • Stir the sauce to combine. Allow the sauce to come up to a simmer, then turn the heat down to low and let the sauce simmer, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are finished roasting (about 30 minutes).
  • In a medium bowl, stir together the ricotta cheese, 1 cup of the shredded Italian cheese blend, and ¼ tsp each of salt and pepper.
  • Bring a large pot of water to a boil for the penne. Once boiling, add the penne and continue to boil until the pasta is tender. Drain the penne in a colander, then return it to the pot with the heat turned off.
  • Stir one cup of the red sauce into the drained pasta to coat the pasta in flavor. Add the roasted vegetables to the remaining red sauce and stir to combine.
  • To layer the casserole, place half of the sauce coated penne in the bottom of a 9x13" or 3 quart casserole dish. Add half of the cheese mixture on top in dollops, followed by half of the roasted vegetable and red sauce mixture. The ingredients do not need to create a solid layer or completely cover the previous layer. Repeat with a second layer of pasta, cheese, and vegetable red sauce. Finally, top the casserole with the second cup of shredded Italian cheese blend.
  • Cover the casserole with foil, making sure it doesn't touch the cheese on top. Place the casserole in the oven (still turned on to 400ºF) and bake for 35 minutes. After 35 minutes, remove the foil and switch the oven from bake to broil. Broil the top of the casserole to brown the cheese for 3-5 minutes (watch closely as broilers can vary quite a bit from oven to oven). Top with chopped parsley if desired and serve!

Notes

*If you do not have Italian seasoning, you can replace this with equal parts dried basil, dried oregano, dried morjoram, and thyme.
*If you do not have shredded Italian cheese blend, use equal amounts shredded mozzarella, Parmesan, and provolone. 

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 494.86kcal | Carbohydrates: 60.24g | Protein: 20.76g | Fat: 19.79g | Sodium: 681.56mg | Fiber: 5.35g

How to Make Roasted Vegetable Baked Penne

Whole vegetables on a cutting board

For the roasted vegetables I used one red onion, one zucchini, one yellow squash, and one red bell pepper. You can choose just about any vegetable you’d like (see notes above the recipe for suggestions).

Diced vegetables on a baking sheet

Preheat the oven to 400ºF. Dice the vegetables into 1-inch pieces. Place the diced vegetables on a large baking sheet, drizzle with 2 Tbsp olive oil, and a pinch of salt and pepper. Toss the vegetables until they are coated in oil.

Roasted vegetables on the baking sheet

Transfer the baking sheet to the oven and roast, stirring once halfway through, for about 45 minutes or until the vegetables are soft and caramelized on the edges.

Diced onion and butter in a sauce pot

While the vegetables are roasting, begin the rest of the casserole. Start with the homemade red sauce. Dice one yellow onion and add it to a sauce pot with 2 Tbsp butter. Sauté over medium heat until the onions are soft.

Red sauce ingredients in the pot

Once the onions are soft, add one 28oz. can crushed tomatoes, 3 Tbsp tomato paste, 1 Tbsp Italian seasoning, 1/4 tsp salt, and ½ cup water. Stir to combine. Allow the sauce to come up to the simmer, then turn the heat down to low and let it continue to simmer, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are done roasting (about 30 minutes). 

Cheese mixture ingredients in a bowl

While the vegetables are roasting and the red sauce is simmering away, prepare the cheese. Stir together 15oz. ricotta, 1 cup shredded Italian cheese blend, ¼ tsp pepper, and ¼ tsp salt.

Stirring red sauce into cooked pasta.

Bring a large pot of water to a boil for the pasta. Once boiling, add 1 lb. penne and continue to boil until the penne is tender. Drain the pasta in a colander, then return it to the pot with the heat turned off. Add 1 cup of the red sauce and stir to coat.

Roasted vegetables added to the pot of red sauce.

Stir the roasted vegetables into the rest of the red sauce.

Layer one of baked penne in the casserole dish

Now that the sauce, cheese, and pasta are done, it’s time to start layering! Add half of the sauce coated pasta to the bottom of a 9×13″ (3 quart) casserole dish. Next, add half of the cheese mixture in dollops, followed by half of the vegetable red sauce. Each layer will not fully cover the previous layer. You don’t need to spend time trying to spread it out. It will all melt together as it bakes.

Second layers of baked penne in the casserole dish

Repeat with a second layer of pasta, cheese, and vegetable red sauce. Finally, add the second cup of shredded Italian cheese blend on top.

Baked Penne casserole with foil covering half the dish

Cover the casserole dish with foil, taking care not to let it touch the cheese. Bake the casserole for 35 minutes.

Finished roasted vegetable baked penne in the casserole dish

After 35 minutes, remove the foil and change the oven from bake to broil. Let it broil for a few minutes, or until the cheese is golden brown on top. Top with a couple tablespoons of chopped fresh parsley for garnish, if desired.

Overhead view of roasted vegetable baked penne being scooped out of the casserole dish

Enjoy!

The post Roasted Vegetable Baked Penne appeared first on Budget Bytes.

Gluten-Free Vegan Sausage Pizza

When craving pizza night, this is the recipe I go for: a simple gluten-free crust (either store-bought or homemade), simple red sauce, quick sautéed veggies, our homemade vegan sausage, and nut cheese.
The result is an incredibly comforting meal made …

Gluten-Free Vegan Sausage Pizza

When craving pizza night, this is the recipe I go for: a simple gluten-free crust (either store-bought or homemade), simple red sauce, quick sautéed veggies, our homemade vegan sausage, and nut cheese.

The result is an incredibly comforting meal made with 9 real, whole food ingredients that taste AMAZING. Let us show you how it’s done!

Pizza Crust

For this version, we used Simple Mills Gluten-Free Crust (NOT SPONSORED, we just love it!) to keep it quick and easy so we could focus on the homemade toppings.

Gluten-Free Vegan Sausage Pizza from Minimalist Baker →

Melted Zucchini Baked Ziti.

Oh guys. I am super super into melted zucchini baked ziti right now. Pretty sure this is my summer love language. It’s been my little secret in the kitchen for the last few weeks. It’s a dish we’ve eaten constantly. Eddie is thisssss close to being sick of it because I’ve made it so much. […]

The post Melted Zucchini Baked Ziti. appeared first on How Sweet Eats.

Oh guys. I am super super into melted zucchini baked ziti right now.

melted zucchini baked ziti

Pretty sure this is my summer love language.

It’s been my little secret in the kitchen for the last few weeks. It’s a dish we’ve eaten constantly. Eddie is thisssss close to being sick of it because I’ve made it so much. Oh well! More for me. 

melted zucchini and garlic in skillet

Plus look at all that green! And garlic! Totally an excellent way to eat veggies.

zucchini and fresh basil in skillet

I absolutely love this method of cooking zucchini. It melts into an almost-sauce. You sauté it with some olive oil, salt and garlic and is melts into zucchini strands that are soft and flavorful and kind of caramelized!

It’s SO good.

noodles

I’ve made a zucchini sauce recipe before from bon appetit, but a few weeks ago my friend Flavia started making a version of the zucchini pasta on her instagram. It got me SO excited for summer and all the uses for zucchini. Other than this summer squash brown butter pasta, another huge fave. 

And this one is great because you can use up a LOT of zucchini squash. For instance, I like to make this sauce with four or five whole zucchini. They melt down so much (almost like when you cook onions) that you will be shocked!

pasta tossed with melted zucchini

Also! This baked ziti is for all my friends who are usually very underwhelmed by baked ziti. Hi. It’s me! Right?!

There are a few variations of baked ziti that are incredible, and actually I have another one coming in my book next year. But on the regular, it’s just not like there is much going on and if you don’t love tomato sauce, it can be even more underwhelming! Hi. Me again.

This is the solution. 

fresh mozzarella covering zucchini ziti

A summery baked pasta. It’s perfect as a side dish for a party or amazing for dinner with a big greens salad. I’ve probably made this dish ten times in the last month, giving it away to friends and family with abandon. Pretty sure come the end of the summer with zucchini is everywhere, I’ll have a bunch at my doorstep! 

melted zucchini baked ziti

Here’s the scoop:

It’s still simple and flavorful, almost like a naked pasta. Noodles, zucchini, garlic and olive oil. Some pesto stirred in towards the end. Any variety you like! Loaded up with parmesan, ricotta and fresh mozzarella. Tons of chopped fresh basil too! 

Make it in a skillet for weeknight dinner, or make it in a baking dish to take to a cookout as the side dish.

Oh and I actually have another skillet lasagna coming next week that is similar and oh so good – with other flavors that just scream summer.

melted zucchini baked ziti

Anywayyyy… you bake it for just a bit to bring everything together. Then eat the cheesy goodness. 

Simple, flavorful and so insanely good! 

melted zucchini baked ziti

Melted Zucchini Baked Ziti

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Melted Zucchini Baked Ziti

This melted zucchini ziti is made with an olive oil zucchini sauce, lots of garlic, fresh basil, ricotta and mozzarella. It's summer perfect!
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Prep Time 40 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 4 as a meal, 6 as a side dish
Author How Sweet Eats

Ingredients

  • 1 pound ziti pasta, or similar cut noodle
  • ½ cup reserved pasta water
  • cup olive oil
  • 4 medium zucchini squash, sliced into rounds or chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves minced
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 3 tablespoons pesto
  • 1 cup packed fresh basil, plus extra for topping
  • 12 ounces ricotta cheese
  • 12 ounces fresh mozzarella cheese, sliced
  • grated parmesan cheese, for serving

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Bring a pot of salted water to a boil and cook the pasta according to the package directions. Be sure to reserve the ½ cup of the pasta water after cooking!
  • Heat a large skillet (you can do an oven safe one if you don’t want to transfer) over medium-low heat and add the olive oil. Add the zucchini, garlic, salt and pepper. Stir to combine. Cook, stirring often, until the zucchini cook down and sort of melt into the pan. Stir in the red pepper flakes.
  • Stir in the reserved pasta water and the pesto. Stir in the fresh basil. By this time the pasta should be finished. You can either add everything to a baking dish or add it all to the skillet if it’s large enough. Toss the pasta with the zucchini pesto mixture - whether it’s in the dish or skillet.
  • Add the ricotta cheese in scoops throughout the pasta. Toss it together until the ricotta coats most of the pasta. Add the fresh mozzarella - a few slices in the noodles and a few on top too.
  • Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, just until the cheese melts everything comes together. Remove and serve immediately with a sprinkle of fresh parmesan and fresh basil for garnish.

melted zucchini baked ziti

Plus, veggies!

The post Melted Zucchini Baked Ziti. appeared first on How Sweet Eats.

Ultimate Spinach Pizza

Get your greens and pizza fix all at once with this spinach pizza! Ricotta, mozzarella and Parmesan cheese make for a creamy pie everyone will love. Want to get your greens and eat your pizza too? Try this Spinach Pizza! It’s got the power to change the minds of spinach haters everywhere. Yes, this pizza is all about garlicky, savory flavor! Any bitterness in the spinach melts away into the three cheeses. Ricotta makes for a creamy base, and mozzarella and Parmesan add stretchy texture and savory flavor. Top it off with herby spinach and a few colorful vegetables, and it’s a crowd-pleaser that everyone will love (especially with Italian salad). Even spinach haters! The secret to this spinach pizza? Frozen spinach. This spinach pizza has a little secret. It uses frozen spinach! Now, why is that important? It’s not just for the convenience factor (though that’s a thing). Frozen spinach has a satisfying texture: think spinach artichoke dip! Fresh spinach and frozen spinach are almost like two separate ingredients. Frozen spinach is blanched before it’s packaged, meaning it’s cooked quickly before freezing. This gives it a super satisfying texture when topped on a pizza: lightly crunchy and almost fluffy, […]

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

Get your greens and pizza fix all at once with this spinach pizza! Ricotta, mozzarella and Parmesan cheese make for a creamy pie everyone will love.

Spinach pizza

Want to get your greens and eat your pizza too? Try this Spinach Pizza! It’s got the power to change the minds of spinach haters everywhere. Yes, this pizza is all about garlicky, savory flavor! Any bitterness in the spinach melts away into the three cheeses. Ricotta makes for a creamy base, and mozzarella and Parmesan add stretchy texture and savory flavor. Top it off with herby spinach and a few colorful vegetables, and it’s a crowd-pleaser that everyone will love (especially with Italian salad). Even spinach haters!

The secret to this spinach pizza? Frozen spinach.

This spinach pizza has a little secret. It uses frozen spinach! Now, why is that important? It’s not just for the convenience factor (though that’s a thing).

  • Frozen spinach has a satisfying texture: think spinach artichoke dip! Fresh spinach and frozen spinach are almost like two separate ingredients. Frozen spinach is blanched before it’s packaged, meaning it’s cooked quickly before freezing. This gives it a super satisfying texture when topped on a pizza: lightly crunchy and almost fluffy, whereas cooked spinach can get a little slimy. It reminds us of spinach artichoke dip!
  • It’s easy to use frozen spinach: no cooking necessary. Yes, the convenience factor is a thing too! Frozen spinach just needs a rinse under warm water to thaw it. No cooking required!
Spinach pizza

How to make spinach pizza (basic steps)

This spinach pizza is a white pizza, meaning it has a white sauce (or olive oil) that covers the dough. The most technique-driven part of making a pizza is the pizza crust, which we’ll walk through down below. Here are the basic steps (or go right to the recipe):

  • Make the pizza dough. See below for more on how to do it. Or, you can also do a “cheater” pizza by using this as a topping for Naan Pizza or Flatbread Pizza!
  • Thaw and season the spinach. All it needs is a quick rinse under warm water. Here’s the important part: squeeze out as much water as possible over a strainer! This brings the spinach to a dry, almost crumbly texture. This is what you want!
  • Season the ricotta. Mix it with some salt, pepper and minced garlic.
  • Top with mozzarella and Parmesan, then the spinach and veggies. That’s it!

A few more white pizza recipes? Try our Ricotta Pizza or White Pizza (Pizza Bianca).

Homemade pizza dough & alternative options!

Homemade pizza dough is absolutely worth the effort: and once you practice a few times, it will become second nature! There are also several alternative options that are easier and quicker. Here’s a breakdown:

  • Pizza dough: master recipe! This Best Pizza Dough is our tried and true crust: it comes out with the absolute perfect texture. Stretching the dough takes a bit of practice, but it’s not hard. Head to How to Stretch Pizza Dough.
  • Thin crust. Try this Thin Crust Pizza Dough: it’s easy to roll out into a thinner, crispier crust.
  • Naan or flatbread pizza. To make a quick and easy pizza, try our Naan Pizza or Flatbread Pizza.
  • Pan pizza. You can even make this into a pan pizza in a cast iron skillet! It takes a little longer, but it’s easier because you don’t have to stretch the dough.
How to make spinach pizza
How to make

Equipment you need (for the master recipe)

If you make our master pizza dough recipe or the thin crust pizza, you’ll need a few tools for your spinach pizza. Here’s what we recommend:

  • Pizza stone: You can bake pizza on a baking sheet, but it’s infinitely better on a pizza stone! A pizza stone is what makes Italian pizza crust crispy on the outside and soft on the inside. Here’s the best pizza stone we’ve found, plus care tips.
  • Pizza peel: When you use a pizza stone, it’s easiest to use a pizza peel to transfer the pizza onto the hot pizza stone in the oven. We recommend this Standard pizza peel or this Conveyor pizza peel.

Variation: make it into Spinach Artichoke Pizza!

Do you love spinach artichoke dip? (We do!) You can easily make this spinach pizza into a Spinach Artichoke Pizza! Here’s what to do:

  • Remove the red onion and red pepper.
  • Top it with a handful of chopped artichokes from a can or jar of artichoke hearts.
  • Or make this Spinach Artichoke Pizza, a slightly different variation!
Spinach pizza

Other topping ideas

There are lots of other fun topping ideas for this spinach pizza! Here are a few ingredients we’d try:

  • Tomatoes, thinly sliced
  • Feta cheese crumbles
  • Bell peppers, multi-colored
  • Caramelized onions
  • Prosciutto

This spinach pizza is…

Vegetarian.

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Spinach pizza

Ultimate Spinach Pizza


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  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 1 hour
  • Cook Time: 5 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 5 minutes
  • Yield: 8 slices
  • Diet: Vegetarian

Description

Get your greens and pizza fix all at once with this spinach pizza! Ricotta, mozzarella and Parmesan cheese make for a creamy pie everyone will love.


Ingredients

  • 1 ball Best Pizza Dough (or Thin Crust Dough)
  • 8 ounces frozen spinach
  • 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 cup whole milk ricotta cheese
  • Kosher salt
  • Fresh ground black pepper
  • 1 handful sliced red onion
  • 1/2 jarred roasted red pepper (or fresh red bell pepper), diced
  • 1/2 small garlic clove (1/4 teaspoon minced)
  • 1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese

Instructions

  1. Make the pizza dough: Follow the Best Pizza Dough or Thin Crust Dough recipe to prepare the dough. (This takes about 15 minutes to make and 45 minutes to rest.)
  2. Place a pizza stone in the oven and preheat to 500°F. OR preheat your pizza oven (here’s the pizza oven we use).
  3. Prepare the spinach: Run the spinach under warm water in a strainer, then squeeze out as much water as possible so that it has a dry, crumbly texture. Mix it in a bowl with 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt, the garlic powder and the oregano.
  4. Prepare the other toppings: Mince the garlic. In a small bowl, mix the ricotta with the kosher salt, fresh ground pepper and minced garlic. Thinly slice the red onion, and dice the roasted red pepper.
  5. Bake the pizza: When the oven is ready, dust a pizza peel with cornmeal or semolina flour. (If you don’t have a pizza peel, you can use a rimless baking sheet or the back of a rimmed baking sheet. But a pizza peel is well worth the investment!) Stretch the dough into a circle; see How to Stretch Pizza Dough for instructions. Then gently place the dough onto the pizza peel.
  6. Spread the seasoned ricotta onto the dough. Top with the mozzarella cheese, Parmesan cheese, spinach, red onion, and red pepper.
  7. Use the pizza peel to carefully transfer the pizza onto the preheated pizza stone. Bake the pizza until the cheese and crust are nicely browned, about 5 to 7 minutes in the oven (or 1 minute in a pizza oven). Slice into pieces and serve immediately.

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

Keywords: Spinach pizza

More favorite pizza recipes

It’s pizza party time! Here are a few more topping ideas to try:

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

Mushroom and Spinach Pasta with Ricotta

There’s something really special about the simplicity of pasta with butter, salt, and pepper. The creaminess of the butter and the little pops of salt and pepper sitting on the surface of the pasta, it’s simple goodness at its best. I love this combo so much that I’ve made several variations on that theme over […]

The post Mushroom and Spinach Pasta with Ricotta appeared first on Budget Bytes.

There’s something really special about the simplicity of pasta with butter, salt, and pepper. The creaminess of the butter and the little pops of salt and pepper sitting on the surface of the pasta, it’s simple goodness at its best. I love this combo so much that I’ve made several variations on that theme over the years. This week I added some sautéed mushrooms, garlic, spinach, and a few dollops of fresh ricotta for extra creaminess. This Mushroom and Spinach Pasta with Ricotta is still an incredibly simple and delicious pasta dish, perfect for those nights when you want something special, but not complicated. Pair it with a glass of white wine and you’ve got a really amazing dinner!

Easy Mushroom and Spinach Pasta with Ricotta

Mushroom and Spinach Pasta with Ricotta on a plate with a black fork, next to a few whole mushrooms

If you’re as in love with the simple combo of pasta, butter, salt, and pepper as I am, check out my other variations on this simple dish: Spicy Orecchiette with Sausage and Kale, Fresh Tomato Basil Pasta with Ricotta, Garlic Parmesan Kale Pasta, or Bowties and Broccoli.

What Kind of Mushrooms Should I Use?

I’ve been really taking advantage of these Baby Bella mushrooms from ALDI that have been $1.69/8 oz. for a while, so that’s what I used. You can use regular white button mushrooms, if needed, or full sized portobello mushrooms. If you have access to something a bit fancier, like morels, by all means take advantage of that! 

Can You Freeze Mushroom and Spinach Pasta with Ricotta?

I don’t suggest this pasta dish for freezing. The “sauce” is extremely light and will get absorbed into the pasta, leaving it dry. Even when reheating refrigerated leftovers, you may want to add a little extra butter to make up for what has absorbed into the pasta while it is in the refrigerator.

What Can I Substitute for Mushrooms?

This dish is all about the mushrooms. If you don’t like or are allergic to mushrooms, I suggest trying one of the other similar recipes linked above (just below the first photo).

What Can I substitute for Spinach?

You can either leave the spinach out, or try something like kale. If using kale, you’ll just need to sauté a bit longer to soften the kale (see Garlic Parmesan Kale Pasta).

What Can I substitute for Ricotta?

If you’re not a fan of ricotta, you can either leave it out, or add a generous amount of Parmesan to the pasta in its place.

Close up of Mushroom and Spinach Pasta with Ricotta in the skillet, from the side.

 

Mushroom and Spinach Pasta with Ricotta

This simple Mushroom and Spinach Pasta with Ricotta is an easy and elegant dinner option for busy weeknights when you need to make dinner FAST.

  • 8 oz. bowtie pasta ($0.53)
  • 16 oz. baby bella mushrooms ($3.38)
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil ($0.32)
  • 2 Tbsp butter ($0.20)
  • 2 cloves garlic ($0.16)
  • 2 cups fresh spinach ($1.07)
  • salt and pepper to taste ($0.05)
  • 1/2 cup whole milk ricotta ($1.00)
  • 1 pinch crushed red pepper (optional) ($0.03)
  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil for the pasta. Once boiling, add the bowtie pasta and continue to boil until tender (about 7 minutes). Reserve 1/2 cup of the starchy pasta water before draining in a colander.

  2. While the pasta is cooking, prepare the rest of the dish. Wash and slice the mushrooms, then add them to a large skillet along with the olive oil. Sauté over medium heat until the mushrooms have released all their water, the water has evaporated, and the mushrooms begin to brown (about 7 minutes).

  3. While the mushrooms are cooking, mince the garlic. Add the garlic and butter to the browned mushrooms and continue to cook over medium for 1-2 minutes more, or just until the garlic softens a bit.

  4. By this time the pasta should be finished cooking. Add about 1/4 cup of the reserved pasta water to the skillet and stir to dissolve any browned bits off the bottom of the skillet. The starchy pasta water and butter will make a slurry that will act as a light "sauce" that helps the salt and pepper adhere to the surface of the pasta.

  5. Add the fresh spinach to the skillet and stir just until wilted (1 minute). Add the drained pasta to the skillet and stir until everything is evenly combined. Turn the heat off and season liberally with salt and pepper. If the pasta is dry, you can add an additional splash of the reserved pasta water.

  6. Finally, spoon the ricotta on top of the pasta in one-tablespoon dollops. Add a pinch of red pepper on top, if desired, and serve warm.

Scroll down for the step by step photos!

A skillet full of Mushroom and Spinach Pasta with Ricotta with spinach leaves and whole mushrooms on the sides

 

How to Make Mushroom and Spinach Pasta – Step by Step Photos

Cooked bowtie pasta with starchy pasta water in a measuring cup on the side

Begin by cooking 8 oz. bowtie pasta. You’ll be able to prepare the rest of the dish while the pasta is cooking. Bring a large pot of water to a boil, add the pasta, then continue to boil until the pasta is tender (about 7 minutes). Before draining, reserve about ½ cup of the starchy pasta water.

Sliced mushrooms and olive oil in a large skillet

After you get the water started, wash and slice 16 oz. baby bella mushrooms. Add them to a large skillet with 2 Tbsp olive oil and sauté over medium heat.

Water releasing from mushrooms in the skillet

As you cook the mushrooms they’ll begin to release water. Keep cooking until all of that water evaporates and the mushrooms begin to brown.

Butter and garlic added to the skillet with mushrooms

Once the mushrooms have browned a little, add 2 Tbsp butter and two cloves of minced garlic. Sauté only for 1-2 minutes more, or just until the garlic softens a bit.

Add spinach and starchy water to skillet

Add about ¼ cup of the starchy pasta water to the skillet and stir to dissolve any browned bits off the bottom. The butter and water will make a sort of slurry that acts as a light sauce. Add 2 cups fresh spinach to the skillet and stir just until the spinach has wilted (about 1 minute). 

Stir cooked pasta into skillet

Finally, stir the cooked and drained pasta into the skillet until everything is well combined. Turn the heat off and then season liberally with salt and pepper. If the pasta is too dry here, you can add a splash more of the reserved starchy pasta water.

Finished Mushroom and Spinach Pasta with Ricotta in the skillet next to spinach leaves and whole mushrooms

Finally, add ½ cup whole milk ricotta in one-tablespoon dollops on top of the pasta and sprinkle a pinch of crushed red pepper over top, if desired. Serve warm!

Close up side view of Mushroom and Spinach Pasta with Ricotta on a plate with a black fork.

The post Mushroom and Spinach Pasta with Ricotta appeared first on Budget Bytes.

Classic Baked Ziti

As soon as the weather turns cool, I grab the cozy sweaters and start cooking the comfort food, like this Classic Baked Ziti. It’s rich and gooey with its layers of pasta, homemade red sauce with Italian sausage, and three types of melty cheese. Total comfort in a bowl. And the best part is that […]

The post Classic Baked Ziti appeared first on Budget Bytes.

As soon as the weather turns cool, I grab the cozy sweaters and start cooking the comfort food, like this Classic Baked Ziti. It’s rich and gooey with its layers of pasta, homemade red sauce with Italian sausage, and three types of melty cheese. Total comfort in a bowl. And the best part is that Baked Ziti is not fussy. You don’t have to worry about delicate sheet pasta or getting your layers perfect. It’s freeform, messy goodness at its best!

Classic Baked Ziti with Sausage

Overhead view of a wooden spoon scooping baked ziti out of the corner of a white casserole dish

Can I Use a Different Pasta Shape?

If you can’t find ziti (a smooth, tubular shaped pasta), you can substitute penne or rigatoni in this recipe. Rigatoni is the most similar to ziti, the only difference being that it has a ridges and is slightly shorter and wider. 

Can I Add Vegetables to Baked Ziti?

Yes! I almost always add extra vegetables to whatever I’m cooking, but today I decided to go with the classic form of Baked Ziti. If I were to add vegetables, I would probably add some fresh spinach into the sauce and stir until it is wilted. Or, roast some broccoli, zucchini, or eggplant, and then toss that into the sauce. 

Can I Substitute the Sausage?

The Italian sausage adds a lot of flavor to this dish, but there are still a few options for substituting the sausage. You can use ground beef, turkey, or chicken, but you’ll probably want to double the Italian seasoning blend to make up for the herbs that are found in Italian sausage. You can also use a vegetarian Italian sausage alternative, or substitute with a pound of chopped mushrooms.

Front view of a wooden spoon lifting a scoopful of Baked Ziti from the casserole dish

What Should I Serve with Baked Ziti?

Homemade Garlic Bread is awesome with baked ziti, but if you want some vegetables on the side I would go with something like Oven Roasted Frozen Broccoli, or do a simple side salad of mixed greens with Italian dressing, and whatever vegetables you have in your fridge (tomatoes, mushrooms, carrots, etc.). 

How Long Does This Last?

This Baked Ziti will keep in the refrigerator for 4-5 days. I highly suggest dividing the leftovers into single servings so they cool quickly in the refrigerator. This recipe makes 8 large servings, so once the servings are cooled completely in the refrigerator, you can transfer a few to the freezer for longer storage. Then each serving is just a quick microwave away from being a filling last-minute dinner!

 

Classic Baked Ziti

Like a freeform lasagna, this Baked Ziti has layers of pasta, homemade red sauce with Italian sausage, and three types of melty cheese!

  • 1 lb. Italian sausage (sweet, mild, or hot) ($3.49)
  • 1 yellow onion ($0.27)
  • 3 oz. tomato paste ($0.27)
  • 1 28 oz. can crushed tomatoes ($1.00)
  • 1 Tbsp Italian seasoning blend ($0.30)
  • 1/2 cup water ($0.00)
  • 1 lb. ziti ($1.67)
  • 1/2 Tbsp salt (for pasta water) ($0.05)
  • 15 oz. ricotta ($1.69)
  • 1 cup Italian cheese blend* ($1.15)
  • freshly cracked black pepper ($0.05)
  • 2 cups shredded mozzarella ($2.29)
  • 1 handful chopped parsley (optional, for garnish) ($0.20)
  1. Brown the sausage in a large skillet or pot over medium heat, until it's brown and crispy on the edges (pork sausage contains a lot of fat, so I didn't add any extra to the skillet).

  2. While the sausage is browning, finely dice the onion. Add the onion to the skillet once the sausage has browned, and continue to sauté over medium heat until the onion is soft and translucent.

  3. Add the tomato paste, crushed tomatoes, Italian seasoning, and 1/2 cup water to the skillet with the sausage and stir to combine. Place a lid on the skillet and allow it to come up to a simmer. Once simmering, turn the heat down and allow it to continue to simmer while you cook the ziti. Stir the sauce occasionally as it simmers.

  4. After getting the sauce started, begin the ziti. Bring a large pot of water with 1/2 Tbsp salt to a boil over high heat. Once boiling, add the ziti, and let it continue to boil until the ziti is tender (about 7-8 minutes). Drain the ziti in a colander. Shake the colander a bit to shake excess water out of the pasta.

  5. While the pasta and sauce are cooking, prepare the cheese filling. Add the ricotta, Italian cheese blend, and some freshly cracked black pepper (about 10 cranks of a pepper mill) to a bowl and stir to combine. Begin to preheat the oven to 350ºF.

  6. After draining the ziti, return it to the pot and add 1 cup of the red sauce. Stir to coat the cooked pasta in sauce.

  7. Pour half of the ziti to a 9×13" baking dish. Add half of the ricotta mixture on top of the ziti in small dollops. Finally, spoon half of the red sauce and sausage over the pasta and ricotta. It's okay if the ingredients don't cover in a solid layer. Repeat these layers with the second half of the pasta, ricotta mixture, and sauce. Finally, top with 2 cups shredded mozzarella.

  8. Cover the baking dish with foil, making sure it's slightly tented so that it doesn't touch or stick to the melted cheese. Transfer the covered casserole to the oven and bake for 20 minutes.

  9. After baking for 20 minutes, remove the foil, and turn the oven on to broil (keep the casserole on the middle rack, about 10-12 inches from the broiler). Broil for 5 minutes, or just until the cheese is slightly browned. Keep a close eye on the baked ziti as it broils, because broilers can vary in intensity. Top with chopped parsley, if desired, then serve.

*In place of Italian cheese blend you can use a mix of mozzarella and Parmesan.

Scroll down for the step by step photos!

A white plate with baked ziti, garlic bread, and a black fork.

 

How to Make Baked Ziti – Step by Step Photos

Browned Italian sausage in a skillet

Begin by browning 1 pound Italian sausage in a skillet until it is brown and crispy on the edges. Pork sausage has quite a bit of fat in it on its own, so I didn’t add any extra to the skillet.

Diced onion added to the skillet with the sausage

While the sausage is browning, finely dice a yellow onion. Add it to the skillet with the browned sausage and continue to sauté for a few minutes more, or until the onion is soft and translucent.

Crushed tomatoes being poured into the skillet, with sausage, onions, tomato paste, and Italian seasoning

Add 3 oz. tomato paste (half of a 6 oz. can – don’t forget to freeze the rest of the can!), 1 Tbsp Italian seasoning blend, one 28 oz. can of crushed tomatoes, and 1/2 cup water. Stir to combine, place a lid on the skillet, and let it come up to a simmer. Once simmering, turn the heat down to low and let it continue to simmer, stirring occasionally, while you begin cooking the ziti.

Boiled ziti in a pot of water with a wooden spoon

Once the sauce is simmering away, begin cooking the ziti. Bring a large pot of water with 1/2 Tbsp salt to a boil over high heat. Once boiling, add 1 lb. ziti. Continue to boil the ziti until tender, then drain in a colander. Shake the colander a bit to shake out the excess water.

Ricotta, Italian cheese, and black pepper in a bowl

While the ziti is boiling and the sauce is simmering, make the ricotta cheese blend. Add 15 oz. ricotta, 1 cup Italian cheese blend, and some freshly cracked black pepper to a bowl. Stir to combine. Also begin to preheat the oven to 350ºF at the time.

Sauce being added to cooked ziti in the pot.

After draining the ziti, return it to the pot and add 1 cup of the red sauce. Stir to coat the ziti in the sauce.

First layers of pasta, cheese, and sauce in the casserole dish

Pour half of the sauce coated ziti into a 9×13″ casserole dish. Add half of the ricotta mixture on top of the ziti in small dollops, then add half of the red sauce on top. Don’t worry if the layers don’t cover each other in a solid layer. It doesn’t have to be perfect!

Second layers of pasta, ricotta, and sauce, and final layer of mozzarella

Repeat with a second layer of pasta, ricotta mixture, and sauce, then top with 2 cups shredded mozzarella.

Baked ziti with melted cheese and foil peeled back

Cover the casserole with foil and bake for 20 minutes. Make sure the foil is slightly tented so it doesn’t touch the cheese and stick when it melts.

Broiled baked ziti with browned cheese on top

After baking for 20 minutes, remove the foil, turn the oven to broil, and return the casserole to the oven (keep it on the middle rack, about 10-12 inches from the broiler). Broil for about 5 minutes, or just until the cheese is browned on top. Keep a close eye as it broils because broilers can vary in intensity.

Finished baked ziti casserole topped with chopped parsley and a wooden spoon on the side

Garnish with a little chopped parsley, if desired, then serve!

Overhead view of a spoon just beginning to dig into the baked ziti casserole

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