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Vegan lasagna made easy

August 31, 2010

Yesterday, besides showing off my new toys (a TofuXpress and a spiralizer!), I gave a recipe for tofu ricotta cheeze. You’ll need a batch of that for this simple lasagna, as well as a ribbon-cut zucchini, but you can just slice it very thinly if you don’t have a spiralizer. I recommend using my perfect marinara sauce in this, but you can use any sauce you like, jarred or fresh; you’ll need about 3 cups, give or take. Lastly, feel free to substitute just about anything you want for the “meat”—Boca crumbles, homemade mock meat of any kind, sliced mushrooms, or even just a can of cannellini beans. Possibilities galore!

1 lb. vegan sausage or beef (like LightLife), crumbled and browned OR 1 batch tempeh sausage crumbles
1 batch tofu ricotta cheeze
½ batch perfect marinara sauce
½ package whole-grain lasagna noodles, cooked per pkg directions, drained, and cooled
1 zucchini, spiralized into ribbons OR very thinly sliced lengthwise
Nutritional yeast, vegan mozzarella, or both, for topping (optional)

Once you’ve prepped your ingredients, lasagna is just a matter of assembly. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and grease a 9-inch square baking dish. Spread a thin, even layer of sauce (about ½ cup) across the bottom, then arrange 1/3 of the cooked lasagna noodles in a single layer on top, cutting them to fit as necessary.

Crumble half the tofu ricotta over the noodles.

Arrange half the ribboned (or thinly sliced) zucchini atop the ricotta.

Evenly distribute half the “sausage,” then spoon more sauce (½-¾ cup) on top.

Repeat the layers: 1/3 of the noodles, the other halves of the ricotta, zucchini, and “sausage,” and more sauce. Finally, add the last 1/3 of the noodles and cover the top completely with sauce. Sprinkle nutritional yeast across the top, and/or add a layer of sliced or shredded vegan mozzarella if desired (I didn’t, clearly).

Cover with foil and bake for 35-45 minutes, until heated through. (If you added mozzarella, you’ll want to take the foil off for the last 10 minutes or so to brown the cheeze.) Remove from the oven, then please let it cool for 10-15 minutes before serving, lest it fall apart when you try to cut it!

Serve generous slices of lasagna topped with extra sauce and nutritional yeast.

Uh, YUM! I wasn’t a big lasagna fan in the past precisely because of the ricotta, but the use of tofu ricotta has made me a convert! As for the rest – pasta, marinara, “sausage,” and a zucchini for good measure – what’s not to love?! Even the staunchest vegan-skeptic wouldn’t be able to turn down this tower of Italian tastiness.

Yield: 6 servings.
Per serving: 371 calories, 11.3g fat (1g sat), 46.3g carbs, 9g fiber, 22.6g protein.

If you like this, you might also like…
Spaghetti & vegan meatballs
Spaghetti with tomato and peas
Tempeh bolognese sauce

20 Comments leave one →
  1. August 31, 2010 12:16 pm

    Yes please. Nice dish Amber. I am going to have to try those tempeh sausage recipe. Thanks!

  2. August 31, 2010 12:23 pm

    There may come a day when I decide to take the full vegan plunge, and it’s nice to know I won’t have to give up favorites like lasagna!

    I think my perfect version would leave out the “meat” and load up on mushrooms!

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      September 1, 2010 9:27 am

      Yes! There’s very little you’d have to truly “give up” to go vegan (unless you’re a person who thinks a big hunk of steak is the perfect meal, hehe).

      Mushrooms would be great here, especially if they were sautéed with a little olive oil, garlic, and sage first!

  3. Shawn permalink
    August 31, 2010 9:31 pm

    Amber, your blog is simply AWESOME!!! I love reading it and seeing the photos. It really makes me wish I could be a better cook! Your dishes all look fabulous!

    I am signing up for your email updates.

    You simply amaze me!! ❤

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      September 1, 2010 9:27 am

      Thank you so much Shawn! I’m so glad you’ve found me!

  4. August 31, 2010 9:37 pm

    I’ve always found lasagna a bit bland and boring too, but this does look miiiiighty tasty. I guess a dish like this really is the sum of its parts, right? And when those parts come from your capable hands… I’m in. (Theoretically/from afar.)

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      September 1, 2010 9:33 am

      Ditto; lasagna never excited me before, and often repelled me. What really got to me is ricotta—the taste and texture of it would make me want to retch! (Proof positive, I guess, that even as a kid, dairy and I were just not friends.) Even though this tofu ricotta aims to imitate the real stuff (and I’m told it does so quite well), it somehow registers differently to me. It must be my brain coming to the rescue and remind my taste buds that it’s delicious soy, rather than gloopy spoiled cow fluid =X

  5. August 31, 2010 11:11 pm

    Yum! I’m not a fan of commercial fake sausage, but I found I can make a better tasting alternative myself. Tamari, fennel, and fresh sage sauteed with plain soy crumbles works wonders! My grandfather couldn’t tell the difference ;).

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      September 1, 2010 9:25 am

      That sounds awesome! Soy sauce, fennel seed, and sage are key ingredients in my tempeh sausage recipe, which I would have made for this lasagna if I’d had time :]

  6. Mom permalink
    August 31, 2010 11:44 pm

    Mmm, looks delicious. I like the zucchini in there! Look like great lasagna.

    LOVE your blog!! Everyone needs to subscribe!

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      September 1, 2010 9:38 am

      Thanks mom. Since I’m not a zucchini lover on its own, it’s nice to be able to sneak it into things like this.

  7. September 1, 2010 2:32 pm

    if anyone EVER tries to say that vegan (and GF vegan if you use zuke noods) is not hearty or filling, I will suggest this to them 🙂

    glad youre loving the gadgets, i love mine too!


    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      September 1, 2010 2:36 pm

      Why thank you! 😀 Oh yes, this’ll definitely stick to anyone‘s ribs!

  8. September 1, 2010 3:29 pm

    WOW…your lasagna looks and sounds fantastic!!! I haven’t tried to make lasagna since I became vegan, but when I decide to…this is going to be the recipe that I make! Great job!!!

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      September 1, 2010 4:48 pm

      Thank you!! The “discovery” of tofu ricotta was momentous for me 😛 I can’t wait to see if you make this! If you have time, you should definitely try including the tempeh sausage crumbles in there.

  9. September 1, 2010 8:17 pm

    Oh my gosh, that looks soooo good!

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      September 2, 2010 8:10 am

      Thanks! There’s something undeniably droolworthy about a big, saucy heap of noodley casserole, isn’t there?

  10. September 2, 2010 11:13 am

    yum! ive been waiting for the temps to go down a bit, then its lasagna time.

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      September 2, 2010 11:18 am

      Yeah, this is probably more of a winter recipe, but the craving I had was just too strong! :]

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