Loaded with 7 vegetables, this is the BEST Vegetarian Lasagna recipe! The cheese mixture is rich and creamy with spinach and ricotta, the vegetable tomato sauce is super robust, and everything gets sandwiched between layers of lasagna noodles and extra cheese. Perfect for the whole family!
I love to sneak vegetables onto my kid’s plates in any way I can, and this Vegetarian Lasagna is hands down one of our family’s favorite dinners to make! I love it because it’s packed with 7 vegetables: spinach, tomatoes, mushrooms, carrots, celery, onion, and garlic. My kids love it because it tastes amazing. Pasta and cheese. Who doesn’t love that?!
This Vegetarian Lasagna recipe is really easy to throw together as well. I make a spinach ricotta cheese mixture (I used my Spinach & Ricotta Stuffed Shells for inspiration. They are the BEST!), a veggie-packed tomato sauce, and then they both get layered with lasagna noodles and extra cheese. Assembling the lasagna is fun and a great way to get the kids to help you out in the kitchen!
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What is Vegetarian Lasagna made of?
- Cheese: I sprinkled both mozzarella and sharp cheddar cheese over the ricotta spinach mixture, and also on top of the lasagna before baking it in the oven. Cheddar adds a sharp tangy flavor and mozzarella gives us that amazing stretchy cheese texture.
- Pasta: No boil lasagna noodles are perfect for this! They cut out an extra step in prep and they taste just like regular lasagna noodles! You can also substitute gluten-free lasagna noodles if needed.
Ricotta Spinach Mixture
- Spinach: I prefer to use fresh spinach, however, fresh or frozen spinach can be used. Just make sure if you are using frozen spinach to defrost it and drain all of the extra moisture from the spinach. If you don’t the lasagna will get soggy and watery.
- Cheeses: Both ricotta and parmesan are needed here. Ricotta is rich and creamy, parmesan contrasts it with its sharpness. The flavor combo is addictive!
- Egg: Egg binds all of the other ingredients together and helps them not to separate into the other layers while baking.
- Seasonings: I add garlic powder, onion powder, nutmeg, salt, and pepper to season. The taste is absolutely perfect.
Veggie Loaded Tomato Sauce
- Butter & oil: I add these to the pan before I begin to sauté the vegetables. Butter adds flavor as well, it’s delicious!
- Vegetables: I managed to pack 5 vegetables into this tomato sauce: mushrooms, carrots, celery, onion, and garlic are sliced and diced, and added. It is seriously veggie-loaded and healthy!
- Tomatoes: Both crushed tomatoes and tomato sauce make for a robust tomato base.
- Seasoning: I add Italian seasoning, along with some salt and pepper. Italian seasoning is the perfect blend of herbs to make this lasagna recipe taste authentic.
- Sugar: Just a tablespoon of sugar brings out the sweetness in the tomatoes. Feel free to substitute it for honey or leave it out if you’d prefer.
How to make Vegetarian Lasagna
Ricotta Spinach Cheese mixture
1. Begin by preheating the oven to 350 degrees. In a small bowl combine the mozzarella and sharp cheddar cheese. Set aside.
2. Add 1 tablespoon of oil to a large cast-iron pot and then add in spinach and cook until wilted.
3. Add cooked spinach to a large bowl with ricotta, egg, parmesan cheese, garlic powder, onion powder, nutmeg, Italian seasoning, salt, and pepper. Mix well to combine.
Veggie loaded tomato sauce
1. Add the oil and butter to the same pan the spinach was cooked in. Add in mushrooms and cook over medium-high heat until golden brown.
2. Add carrots, celery, and onion to the skillet. Cook for 3-4 minutes or until the vegetables are golden brown. Stir in garlic and cook for an additional minute.
3. Pour in crushed tomatoes, tomato sauce, Italian seasoning, and sugar. Stir to combine and simmer for 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
How to assemble Vegetarian Lasagna
1. Ladle 1/2 cup of the tomato sauce on the bottom of a casserole dish, and then in this order layer: 3 lasagna noodles (or as many as you can fit), 1/3 of the ricotta cheese mixture 1/3 of the mozzarella/cheddar shredded cheese and 1/4 of the sauce. Repeat until all of the sauce, noodles, and cheese are used making sure to use the remaining cheese for the topping.
2. Bake for 40-45 minutes or until the lasagna is bubbling and golden brown on top. If it is starting to get too brown cover it with foil.
3. Allow lasagna to cool for at least 20 minutes before slicing and serving.
Storage & Reheating Instructions for Vegetarian Lasagna
- Store Vegetarian Lasagna in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days.
- Reheat it in the microwave or oven until it is heated through. You may want to cover it with aluminum if you’re heating it in the over so the top doesn’t turn too brown.
- Freeze this lasagna in an airtight container in the freezer for up to 4 months. You can freeze it either right after assembling it without baking it, or after you bake the lasagna. Thaw completely in the fridge overnight and bake or reheat it in the oven.
Tips for Success
- Use no-boil lasagna noodles to save time when prepping this vegetarian lasagna! You can substitute gluten-free noodles as well.
- Add in either fresh or frozen spinach. If using frozen, thaw it completely and drain all of the moisture out before cooking. Otherwise, the lasagna will turn into Lasagna Soup!
- This is a great recipe for meal prep! It’s really easy to throw together, and you can store it in the fridge or freezer before baking. I like to make a couple of lasagnas at the same time and freeze one for a few weeks later. When you’re ready to eat it, thaw it in the fridge overnight and then bake it as instructed below in the recipe card.
Why is my veggie lasagna watery?
This happens when the vegetables aren’t cooked down enough as they’re being sautéed, particularly the mushrooms and the spinach if you are using frozen. To avoid watery vegetarian lasagna, cook the mushrooms until they are golden brown. For the spinach, either opt for fresh spinach instead of frozen or if you’re using frozen, thaw the spinach and drain it well before adding it to the ricotta spinach mixture.
Is ricotta cheese vegetarian?
Yes! Ricotta cheese is a dairy product made from whey which is derived from milk. It contains no meat at all, just like most other cheeses.
Which is better for lasagna: cottage or ricotta?
Many people have different preferences on this one, however, if you were to ask me, ricotta wins over cottage cheese every time, especially when making vegetarian lasagna! It is rich, creamy and so smooth, whereas cottage cheese is lumpy and doesn’t taste as rich. Trust me, add ricotta cheese to your homemade lasagna!
More vegetarian Italian pasta favorites to try at home
- Spinach and Ricotta Stuffed Shells
- Tortellini, Tomato, and Spinach Soup
- Penne Alla Vodka with Sun-Dried Tomatoes
- Pasta with Garlic and Oil
- The BEST Mushroom Carbonara
products i used
- 2 cups mozzarella, shredded
- 2 cups sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
- 9 no boil lasagna noodles
Ricotta Spinach Mixture
Ricotta Spinach Mixture
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a small bowl combine the mozzarella and sharp cheddar cheese. Set aside.Add 1 tablespoon of oil to a large cast iron pot. Add in spinach and cook until wilted.
- Add cooked spinach to a large bowl with ricotta, egg, parmesan cheese, garlic powder, onion powder, nutmeg, Italian seasoning, 1/2 tsp salt and 1/2 tsp pepper.
Veggie Loaded Tomato Sauce
- Add the remaining tablespoon of oil and butter to the same pan the spinach was cooked in. Add in mushrooms and cook over medium high heat until golden brown.
- Add in carrots, celery and onion to the skillet. Cook for 3-4 minutes or until the vegetables are golden brown.Stir in garlic and cook for an additional minute.
- Pour in crushed tomatoes, tomato sauce, Italian seasoning and sugar. Stir to combine and simmer for 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Ladle 1/2 cup of the tomato sauce on the bottom of a casserole dish.
- In this order layer: 3 lasagna noodles (or as many as you can fit), 1/3 of the ricotta cheese mixture 1/3 of the mozzarella / cheddar shredded cheese and 1/4 of the sauce. Repeat until all of the sauce, noodles and cheese are used making sure to use the remaining cheese for topping.
- Bake for 40-45 minutes or until the lasagna is bubbling and golden brown on top. If it is starting to get to brown cover with foil.
- Allow lasagna to cool for at least 20 minutes before slicing and serving.