So many lasagna recipes feature meat, especially in the sauce. Turns out, you don’t need meat to have a good time at the dinner table! Vegetarian Lasagna doesn’t even feature pasta; instead, it uses layers of tender sweet potatoes, in their sunset-orange and caramellike glory, to support the vibrant tomato sauce, garden fresh spinach, and melty cheese. Yes, Vegetarian Lasagna breaks all the lasagna rules, all while looking (and tasting) good doing it! This might become your new favorite way of making the Italian classic!

Ingredients

For the tomato sauce:

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more, to taste
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 (28-ounce) can whole peeled tomatoes
  • black pepper, to taste

For the lasagna:

  • 2 (10-ounce) boxes frozen chopped spinach, thawed
  • 1 pound mozzarella, grated
  • 2 pounds ricotta
  • 1/2 cup parmesan, grated
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg, grated
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 3 pounds sweet potatoes

Directions

Step 1 –Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Step 2 –Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat.

Step 3 –Add the onions and 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and cook until soft and translucent, about 5 minutes.

Step 4 –Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 2 minutes.

Step 5 –Add the can of tomatoes and mash them into a purée with some chunks remaining.

Step 6 –Bring the sauce to a simmer and cover the pan partially with a lid.

Step 7 –Allow the sauce to simmer, stirring occasionally, until thickened, about 30 minutes, then transfer the pan from the heat.

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Step 8 –Season the sauce, with the salt and the pepper.

Step 9 –Drain the water from the spinach and place it on a clean kitchen towel, wringing it to remove any extra moisture.

Step 10 –Break up the spinach in a large mixing bowl.

Step 11 –Set aside 1 cup of the mozzarella, while adding the remaining mozzarella to the bowl with the spinach.

Step 12 –Add the ricotta, the parmesan, the nutmeg, the eggs, 2 teaspoons of the salt, and 1/2 teaspoon of the pepper to the spinach mixture, mixing well with a wooden or rubber spoon until combined.

Step 13 –Peel the sweet potatoes and cut them lengthwise into 1/4-inch planks.

Step 14 –Begin to assemble the lasagna by adding 3/4 cup of the sauce to the bottom of a deep 9×13-inch baking dish.

Step 15 –Place a single layer of the sweet potato slices along the bottom.

Step 16 –Add 1/4 of the ricotta and spinach mixture, using the back of a spatula or spoon to smooth it out evenly over the sweet potato layer.

Step 17 –Dollop 3/4 cup of the sauce on top of the ricotta mixture.

Step 18 –Add another layer of the sweet potatoes, facing them in the opposite direction from the previous layer.

Step 19 –Repeat all of these steps until there are four total layers, ending with the remaining sauce.

Step 20 –Cover the dish with foil and bake for 25 minutes.

Step 21 –Remove the foil and top the lasagna with the reserved mozzarella.

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Step 22 –Bake uncovered until the dish is bubbling, the mozzarella is golden, and the sweet potatoes are tender, about 45 minutes-1 hour.

Step 23 –Allow the dish to rest for about 20 minutes before slicing and serving.