The Best Vegetarian Lasagna

The Best Vegetarian Lasagna

I have been getting a few requests to post a vegetarian main dish, so here it is…and WOW did this turn out better than I anticipated. This vegetarian lasagna is so flavourful and creamy thanks to the Vegan Lemon Basil Ricotta. This was an absolute game changer, do not omit this from the lasagna!

Since I try and reduce my dairy consumption, especially from cow’s milk, I was longing for a creamy lasagna. Dairy is a common allergen so this lasagna can easily be 100% vegan, I left an option to use the “cheese” of your choice for the top layer. That is why I still tagged it as dairy-free. You can easily top the lasagna with your favourite vegan shredded cheese. Brands like Daiya and Earth’s Island have some pretty good options. I opted to try a goat’s milk shredded cheese I came across at the health food store and it was really good. If you do want to indulge in some dairy products, goat’s and sheep’s milk are far less allergenic as they have a different casein protein structure than cow’s milk. 

Lasagna is a great way to get in a variety of veggies that is sandwiched between pasta and yummy sauces. I also used brown rice lasagna noodles to keep it gluten-free and they tasted really good. You can find them everywhere these days. 

The Best Vegetarian Lasagna

Below you will find the recipe for the Vegetarian Lasagna along with a Simple Tomato Sauce and the Vegan Lemon Basil Ricotta. 

Vegan Lemon Basil Ricotta

Vegan Lemon Basil Ricotta
  • 2 cups of slivered almonds
  • ¼ tsp of garlic powder
  • 1 tsp of sea salt
  • 3 tsp of nutritional yeast
  • ¼ cup of fresh basil, chopped
  • 2 tbsp of lemon juice
  • ¾ cup of filtered water + more if required
  1. Soak the slivered almonds in water overnight. You can also soak them in hot water for 3-5 hours if you are running short on time.
  2. Strain and rinse the almonds and add them to a food processor. 
  3. Add the filtered water, garlic powder, nutritional yeast, lemon juice, and ½ tsp of sea salt.
  4. Pulse until a fluffy texture starts to form. Remove the lid and taste test. Add the remainder of the salt if necessary. You may need to add ¼ cup more water to get the right consistency, depends on how long the almonds soaked for.
  5. Add in the basil and pulse. Make sure not to over mix the almond mixture to keep its fluffy consistency. 
  6. Remove the almond ricotta and place it in a bowl in the fridge.

Simple Tomato Sauce

  • 2 tbsp of Extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 small onion or ½ large onion, diced
  • 3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
  • Pinch of red pepper flakes
  • 1 can of peeled San Marzano tomatoes 
  • 1 cup of fresh basil
  • 1 tsp of dried oregano flakes
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  1. In a pot, add olive oil and small onion. Cook until translucent.
  2. Add in garlic and cook for 1 -2 minutes on low heat.
  3. Add in the can of tomatoes and bring to a simmer.
  4. Season with salt and pepper, red pepper flakes, and dried oregano.
  5. Continue to stir and break up the tomatoes into chunks. Simmer for about 15 – 20 minutes. Once it is done, take an immersion blender and blend the sauce leaving some chunks of tomatoes.
  6. Add in the basil. Stir and store in a glass jar.
The Best Vegetarian Lasagna

The Best Vegetarian Lasagna

Ingredients

  • 1 package of brown rice lasagna noodles
  • 2 cups of tomato sauce (option to use recipe above)
  • 1 eggplant
  • 2 zucchini
  • 1 package of your favourite mushrooms, sliced (brown, shiitake…)
  • 1 large package of baby spinach
  • 1 tbsp of vegan butter
  • ½ tsp of dried thyme
  • 2 cups of Vegan Lemon Basil Ricotta (recipe above)
  • 1 – 1 ½ cups of your favourite shredded cheese (Vegan, Goat’s milk…)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400F and prepare 2 baking trays with parchment paper.
  2. Bring a large pot of water to a boil.
  3. Peel the eggplant and slice into ¼ inch rounds.
  4. Slice the zucchini into 1/8 inch long vertical slices.
  5. Layer the slices of eggplant on one sheet, and the zucchini on a second sheet.
  6. Drizzle with a bit of avocado or olive oil, and season with salt and pepper. Bake in the oven for 10 – 15 minutes.
  7. While the vegetables are cooking, your large pot of water should be at a boil. Cook the package of brown rice lasagna noodles as per the package instructions.
  8. Now prepare the mushroom and spinach filling. On medium heat, add the vegan butter and mushrooms to the skillet. Season with salt, pepper, and dried thyme. Once the mushrooms are cooked after about 8-10 minutes, add in the whole package of spinach. Season with more sea salt. It will wilt down pretty quickly and remove from heat.
  9. Once the eggplant and zucchini have been removed from the oven, reduce the temperature to 350F.
  10. Start assembling the lasagna. In a square or rectangular dish, add a nice thick layer of tomato sauce. Then add a layer of lasagna noodles. Next, add a thick layer of the Vegan Almond Ricotta. Follow with a layer of grilled eggplant and top with half of the spinach and mushroom mixture. Cover with a layer of tomato sauce.
  11. Repeat, add a layer of lasagna noodles, almond ricotta, grilled zucchini this time, spinach and mushroom. Cover with tomato sauce.
  12. Top the lasagna with shredded cheese of choice, cover the dish with foil (poke a few holes in it) and bake in the oven for 40-50 minutes.
  13. For the last 5 minutes, remove the foil and cook on the top rack to melt the cheese. You can also choose to set the oven to broil for 1 – 2 minutes. Watch closely.
  14. Remove from oven and serve.
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