You know what my definition of what making a lasagna was? Buying the Stouffer’s family size meat and cheese lasagna at the grocery store, cutting some slits into the plastic cover and popping it in the oven and considering it done. Not that there is anything wrong with that but let me tell you, once you’ve had this lasagna, you won’t want to go back. Trust.
This is all about some fresh veggies, marinara sauce and cheese. Lots and lots of cheese. My meat eating husband loves this lasagna too because the veggies give it so much substance that you don’t miss the meat. But hey, if you must have meat in your lasagna, throw some in with the veggies!
I got this recipe from my friend Carrie over two years ago when I first met her. She made this for a housewarming party she hosted one night and I’ve never been the same since.
This really is an easy lasagna to make and it makes plenty! I made this for a friend this past week and her husband and kids loved it. So much so that her 4 year old daughter came up to me at church this past Sunday just to tell me how much she loved it. A kid telling me they ultimately love veggies? Yes, please.
Excuse my not getting a shot of a slice fresh out of the pan but this was purely made for a sweet friend and my dear husband stopped me from taking a slice out, photographing and then placing it back. Wahhhhh.
Make ahead if you want and freeze the uncooked lasagna to have on hand for a quick meal to take to a friend in need or for your family when time crept up on you and you forgot to go to the grocery and dinner needs to be made!
9-12 cooked lasagna noodles (3-4 noodles each layer depending on your pan size and preference)
1 jar traditional marinara sauce
1 jar chunky vegetable marinara sauce
2 c mozzarella cheese
1/2 c freshly grated parmesan cheese
15 oz part skim ricotta cheese
A healthy mixture of herbs/seasonings to your taste (salt, pepper, basil, parsley, oregano, etc)
3 portobello mushrooms, chopped
1 zucchini, chopped
1 yellow squash, chopped
1/2-1 small bag of baby spinach
2 bell peppers, any color, sliced
1 onion, diced
1 garlic clove, minced
Sautee all veggies and garlic in large pot until soft. Season to liking. Add both jars of marinara and mix well.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees if baking immediately.
Mix ricotta cheese with 1/4 c parmesan cheese and herbs/seasonings in bowl and set aside.
Layer bottom of 9×13 pan with enough sauce and veggie mixture for a nice thin layer (1-1 1/2 c).
Place your 3-4 lasagna noodles on top. Spread 1/2 of ricotta cheese mixture onto noodles. Top with another generous cup of veggie sauce and top with 2/3 c mozzarella cheese. Repeat with lasagna noodles, rest of ricotta cheese, generous cup of veggie sauce and another 2/3 c mozzarella. Add last layer of lasagna noodles, remainder of veggie sauce, and 2/3 c mozzarella cheese. Top with 1/4 c parmesan and fresh basil.
Cover with foil and bake for 45 minutes at 350 degrees. Uncover and bake for an additional 15-20 minutes until cheese is bubbly.
*If freezing, take out of freezer, bake covered for 45 minutes and uncovered for an additional 40-45 minutes until bubbly.