THE BEST VEGAN LASAGNA
This lasagna idea has been in the back of my mind for weeks and I finally had the energy to take on this 3 hour task and let me tell you this recipe will please both plant eaters and carnivores alike!
I definitely suggest doing some prep ahead of time (to keep you sane) and customizing it to what you have on hand and what you like.
I also have been on the search for a good whole wheat lasagna noodle that doesn't break when cooked (why I used regular white pasta here), so if you have any suggestions please leave below!
THE BEST VEGAN LASAGNA RECIPE
3 cups of my plant based cheese sauce
1 recipe of my plant based ricotta (recipe at bottom of this page)
2 cups regular tomato sauce
3 cups of my tempeh meat sauce (or substitute with more regular sauce)
1 package of lasagna noodles (I used about 16 pieces total or about 3/4 of the package)
16 oz of mushrooms diced small (any kind will work)
1 small zucchini diced small
4 cups of spinach
1/2 large onion diced small
4 cloves of minced garlic
*a handful of basil ribbons for garnish
Make cheese sauce, ricotta, and meat sauce according to their recipes (definitely recommend doing this ahead of time)
Saute mushrooms and onions until all the liquid has left the mushrooms and onions are lightly caramelized. Then add zucchini and garlic, cook till zucchini is cooked through, then add spinach, cook till wilted. Transfer to a bowl for assembly.
*Preheat oven to 350 F
Cook your pasta according to package instructions. I cooked the noodles a few at a time in heavily salted water (to prevent sticking) for 3 minutes each as they would finish in the oven. Then layered them on a lined baking sheet with parchment paper in between.
Layer a 9x13 baking dish with about 1/2 cup of plain sauce and spread evenly over the bottom. Now line the base with pasta noodles. You may have to cut some to make them fit.
Next add a 1 1/2 cup layer of the meat sauce, a third of the "ricotta" mix (I like to do small dollops all around), and half of the mushroom mixture.
Add the next layer of noodles and top with 1/2 of the plant based cheese mixture and half 1 cup of the regular sauce.
Add the next layer of noodles and add the remaining meat sauce, a third of the "ricotta" mix (I like to do small dollops all around), and the remaining mushroom mixture. (Basically the first layer).
Then top with your final layer of noodles, the remaining half of the cheese sauce, and the remaining ricotta.
Bake at 350F covered for 40 minutes, then uncovered for 10 minutes.
Let rest for 5-10 minutes (so it will hold it's shape better) and garnish with fresh basil.
*If you have any sauce remaining you can add it at any layers you like or save to top leftovers.
TOFU RICOTTA RECIPE
1 block of extra firm tofu (pressed for at least an hour)
1/4-1/3 of a cup of nutritional yeast
2 tsp salt
2 tbsp olive oil
1 cup soaked cashews
1/2 lemon's juice
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
Combine all ingredients in a food processor and pulse till everything is smooth (with some chunks) but well combined.
*The key to getting a realistic tasting ricotta is the fattiness from the oil and the saltiness. This is why I do recommend adding the oil, but if you are looking to avoid it I'm sure it would still taste great.
I hope you enjoy this recipe! The time you will put in is definitely worth it :) Please share your creations with me on instagram and leave any questions below.