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Super Easy Better than Frozen Meat Lasagna with Vegetarian and Gluten Free Option

January 5, 2013
Noodles on Sauce

So here we are, week two of another twofer. Today we’re going to use half the sauce we made last week to make a scrumptious, way better than frozen, lasagna.

Lasagna is such a comforting food and so versatile. It’s great for dinner parties or just hanging at home with the fam (leftovers!). There is also a lot you can do with it… for instance vegetarian, gluten free lasagna. Just replace the noodles with zucchini or eggplant, see the “Make it Vegetarian” notes below the recipe. Best of all, you’re going to love how easy this is!

Ingredients

  • 2-1/2 cups of Red Sauce
  • 6 lasagna noodles, oven ready
  • 1 15oz container of ricotta cheese
  • 1/4 cup grated parmesan + 2 Tablespoons
  • 1 egg
  • 1 Tablespoon Italian Seasoning
  • 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

Gluten Free

  • Use sliced eggplant or zucchini in place of the noodles

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a medium bowl, mix together your ricotta, 1/4 cup parm, Italian seasoning and egg until a consistent texture is reached.

Place 1/2 cup of sauce in the bottom of a 13×9 pan. Place two noodles on top. I go ahead and break up another noodle to evenly cover the surface because two don’t completely cover my pans surface. Next, spread half your ricotta cheese mixture over the noodles. Cover with more sauce, then more noodles, then the rest of the ricotta mixture. Now cover again with sauce, the rest of your noodles, the last of your sauce and top with mozzarella cheese and the reserved two tablespoons of parm. Cover in foil and bake covered for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake for 20 minutes until the top is nice and golden and bubbly. Let set up for 15 minutes before serving or it will just puddle all over the plate!

To make this vegetarian simply use a meatless sauce. To make it gluten free check your ricotta cheese label carefully, some brands use grain based thickeners (ewww) and replace your noodles with zucchini or eggplant. With either one you need to start with 3/8 inch thick slices, I use a mandolin for this. Place them on a baking sheet sprayed with not stick cooking spray. Bake at 400 degrees for 15-20 minutes. You want the veggies to release a lot of their water so you don’t have lasagna soup. Now build according to the instructions above. It’s still so good that I’ve had people challenge me that those weren’t noodles when I used zucchini!

Noodles on Sauce

Noodles on Sauce

Ricotta on Noodles

Ricotta on Noodles

 

Lasagna Ready For Oven

Lasagna Ready For Oven

Bubbly Lasagna

Bubbly Lasagna

Variations:

Add (1) package of thawed and drained frozen spinach and (1) additional egg to the ricotta mixture for extra veg.

Add 1/2 lb of Italian sausage, browned, crumbled, and drained, on top of the two ricotta layers before adding sauce for extra meat.

Get really wild and go white. Use the spinach suggestion above. Place shredded chicken on top of the ricotta/spinach layers and use the béchamel sauce found here instead of red sauce. Or you could use the sauce from “Bacon Mac & Cheese” and have Chicken Bacon Lasagna. Oh great, now I’m hungry!

Enjoy, and please let me know what variations you come up with! I’m always looking for more.

 

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. January 5, 2013 8:15 PM

    This look so good.

  2. January 7, 2013 8:37 PM

    Love the idea of different options for making one recipe.

  3. January 8, 2013 8:42 PM

    I am gluten and dairy free. I will have to try this.

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