Simple Vegetable Lasagna {GF + DF}

I have made this Simple Vegetable Lasagna a few times in the last two weeks, trying to perfect it. The first time was overly salty, whoops, plus I didn't have enough sauce to cover the edges, which as anybody who makes lasagna often knows, that means crunchy shell edges, ick! So I made a few adjustments and this vegan lasagna recipe is finally ready to share with y'all! 

The ricotta "cheese" I use here isn't homemade. Sometimes I like to focus on making dishes using accessible healthy store bought items. If you are feeling inclined to make your own, I do have a wonderful macadamia nut ricotta cheese recipe. It stores in the fridge nicely for a good week so feel free to make it ahead. 

Of course if this was an online culinary school, I'd even be making the noodles myself. But let's face it, we don't always have time for all that and my goal isn't to scare you away, it's to help you ease into a healthier lifestyle. 

So, even since discovering Kite Hill {Tal Ronnen's publisher set me a copy of his amazing book Crossroads and that's where I discovered his brand}. These plant-based cheese and yogurts are better than any I've ever had. I swear the yogurt tastes like regular  yogurt. And in this recipe, the ricotta, tastes like traditional ricotta. Their products really are revolutionary (I was not paid to say this, these are 100% my own views). 

I love this particular red sauce. It's a bit sweeter and richer than your typical marinara which goes well in a baked lasagna. There is no sautéing here either, just a quick blender puree. You can feel free to use it on zucchini noodles or over linquini or as a pizza sauce as well. It's very versatile. 

VEGAN VEGETABLE LASAGNA RECIPE

makes 9 servings

Tomato SAUCE INGREDIENTS

3/4 cup cherry tomatoes {or chopped large tomatoes of choice}

4 dates

2 Tbls olive oil

3/4 tsp sea salt

1/4 cup sun dried tomatoes 

1 1/2 Tbl whipped garlic spread {sub 3 cloves garlic, chopped}

1/4 cup miso {sweet or white}

handful of raw cashews

1/3 cup water

1/4 tomato paste

SAUCE DIRECTIONS

In a high speed blender, you'll want to blend up everything until smooth. A few chunks are fine, I like some texture, but be sure the wet stuff if thoroughly blended up. No sautéing or cooking necessary!

LASAGNA INGREDIENTS

1 box gluten free lasagna noodles

2 medium sized zucchini, chopped into pieces or long julienne style slices

2 cups lightly packed spinach leaves

1 or 1 1/2 containers Kite Hill store bought ricotta or homemade macadamia nut ricotta

Vegan parmesan cheese

Basil for garnish

sea salt, for sprinkling each pasta layer

LASAGNA DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 350 or 375 degrees F. 
  2. Boil water in a medium sized pot. Once boiling add the lasagna rice noodles. Cook for about 5 minutes until they are soft, al dente style (not overly cooked).
  3. In an 8x12 baking dish, you'll start by pouring enough sauce to barely cover the bottom of the dish. 
  4. Layer slices of zucchini or sprinkles chopped pieces if you chose to chop the zucchini
  5. Layer the gluten free noodles next until zucchini is covered. 
  6. Spread some ricotta "cheese" onto the noodles and sprinkle with sea salt. 
  7. Pour tomato sauce to cover the noodles. 
  8. Layer or sprinkle more zucchini and then add the spinach leaves. 
  9. Cover that with pasta noodles and sprinkle with sea salt. 
  10. Cover with sauce. 

....keep repeating this process until everything is gone. Note: remember the first mistake I made when making this: I didn't cover the edges really well with sauce, so they were tough and/or crunchy. Be sure ALL pasta is covered in either cheese or sauce or both. 

11. Sprinkle final layer or tomato sauce with vegan parmesan cheese before baking. Of course this is an optional step if you don't have any on hand or didn't make any.

12. Bake for 30 minutes or until shells are complete cooked and edges are lightly browned.   

Don't forget to share your thoughts or question in the comments below. Feel free to share on Instagram if you do in fact make a recipe. Please hashtag #puremamas or tag @julinovotny and follow me for so many recipes and photos that I don't share on my blog - for whatever reason.  

These store well in an airtight container. Keep refrigerated. Reheat the next day for epic leftovers. Check out the Instagram shot of my leftovers.