‘Traditional’ Vegan Lasagna

Posted on November 29, 2011

Happy Wednesday, foodies!! How’s your week so far? blank Traditional Vegan Lasagna Mine’s been pretty good- I worked the last two days, but like always, it didn’t feel like work. When I arrived on Monday, I was asked to make my Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookie Dough Balls for a snack, and then we all made our own sushi for dinner. Tuesday was a yummy pasta- I’ll get a recipe up for it soon! But first I have lasagna for you <3

Considering it’s one of my favourite pastas, it had been too long since I’d indulged in lasagna. Of course, Dallas was stoked on the idea of munching on it, but he said he wanted it to taste as close to traditional lasagna as possible. Truth- so did I. Can do ;)

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I don’t often cook with veggie ‘meats,’ but we had both agreed this dish had to be traditional. So Yves Italian veggie ground round made its way into this, and we were both very happy with the results. Though somewhat time-consuming, I was surprised at how easy it is to actually make lasagna! Noodles are easy to prepare, the ‘cheese’ was blended in the food processor, and the ‘bolognese’ was cooked in a pot before everything was assembled. Wanna see how it’s done?

I boiled the lasagna noodles until al dente, and drained the water {reserving 1/2 cup of the pasta water for the ‘cheese’}, and laid the noodles out to prevent them from sticking together. They were set aside. {Forgot to take a picture. Oopsie.}

I’ve made ‘ricotta’ from tofu before, but I’m still sometimes apprehensive about putting tofu into new meals I make for Dallas. Number One trick to successfully feeding a vegan diet to an omnivore- make everything taste amazing! I found and made this pumpkin lasagna about a month ago, and decided I really like the rutabaga and chickpea combo for a ricotta substitute, so this was my base. I added more flavours to make it really pop, too.

I chopped rutabaga and boiled it until tender. The cooked rutabaga, 1/2 cup of lasagna pasta water, and 1 small can of chickpeas were tossed into the food processor and pureed until smooth. The remaining ‘cheese’ seasonings were added, and the mixture was set aside.

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I sauteed the garlic and onion in olive oil before adding the mushrooms and zucchini.

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Then the veggie ground round was added…

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…and finally the tomato sauce and seasonings. Like a big pot of spaghetti sauce. Nom nom.

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Time to assemble! First, I spread a layer of the ‘bolognese’ on the bottom.

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This was topped with lasagna noodles…

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…then came the ‘cheese’ sauce and raw spinach {you didn’t really think I would leave out the greens, did you? ;) }.

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I continued layering in the same pattern until I got to the top. The last layer of spinach was topped with Daiya cheddar ‘cheese.’

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Then I added another layer of noodles {because, why not?} and one last sprinkling of Daiya. Mmmmm!

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Cover it with tin foil- Now it’s ready for the oven!

For the remaining 15 minutes of cooking, I removed the tin foil. When the timer went off, the lasagna was removed from the oven. It then sat for another 10 minutes before we sliced and served.

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Ohhh the anticipation!! I was so excited to finally dig in! blank Traditional Vegan Lasagna

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Aaaaand it was a hit!! Dallas and I both agree there was nothing missing from it blank Traditional Vegan Lasagna 100% perfect vegan lasagna <3 Best part? Between the two of us, there were about 4 or 5 days worth of lasagna, so we had our fill. Although, looking at these pictures kinda makes me want more… hehe. And though I thought about it… no, we didn’t share ;)

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Enjoy your lasagna, foodies! From my kitchen, to yours <3

1 package lasagna noodles {I had 7 noodles leftover}

For the ‘cheese’ sauce:
1 rutabaga, peeled _ chopped
1 can chickpeas, rinsed _ drained {398ml}
1/2 cup reserved pasta water
1/2 cup nutritional yeast
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 tbsp dried basil
1 tsp sea salt
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp paprika
1/4 cup non-dairy creamer, plain
black pepper, to taste

For the ‘bolognese’:
2 tbsp olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 white onion, diced
1 medium zucchini, diced
2 cups white mushrooms, sliced
1 package Yves Italian ground round
1 tomato, diced
3 cans tomato sauce {398 ml}
1 tbsp Italian seasoning
1 tbsp dried basil
2 tsp sea salt

3-4 cups baby spinach, raw
2 cups Daiya cheddar ‘cheese’

1. Prepare lasagna noodles according to package directions. Drain water, reserving 1/2 cup for the ‘cheese’ sauce. Lay noodles out flat on a plate or platter and set aside.
2. In a small pot over medium-high heat, boil rutabaga in water until tender. Drain water and transfer cooked rutabaga to food processor. Add in chickpeas and puree. Slowly stream in pasta water through the top until ‘cheese’ is at desired consistency. Add in all remaining ‘cheese’ ingredients and process until smooth. Set aside.
3. In a large pot over medium-high heat, saute the garlic and onions in olive oil for 2-3 minutes. Add zucchini _ mushrooms. Cook another 6-8 minutes until zucchini is tender.
4. Add Yves ground round to pot. Cook another 3-4 minutes before adding remaining ingredients. Reduce heat to medium-low, allowing to simmer for 5-6 minutes. Remove from heat.
5. Time to assemble! Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
6. In the bottom of a 9×9 pan, spread a layer of prepared ‘bolognese.’ Top evenly with lasagna noodles.
7. Spread a thin layer of ‘cheese’ sauce over lasagna noodles. Top with raw spinach. Continue to add layers- bolognese, noodles, ‘cheese,’ spinach.
8. When you get to the top, sprinkle the last layer of spinach with half of the Daiya cheese. Add one more layer of noodles, sprinkle with remaining Daiya, then cover with tin foil.
9. Bake at 375 degrees for 50 minutes. Remove tin foil and bake uncovered for 10 minutes more. Watch to make sure it doesn’t burn.
10. Remove pan from oven and resist temptation- let sit another 10 minutes before digging in.
11. Slice desired portion, scoop out with a spatula, and serve!

peace, love, food <3

Char, xo

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Categories: Pastas | 26 Comments

26 Responses to ‘Traditional’ Vegan Lasagna

  1. Kit-Kat says:

    Funny, we had lasagna at our house not too long ago. My mom makes it with almost too much noodles, though. I prefer a higher ratio of produce and sauce to noodles in my lasagna. The “ricotta” looks amazing! We use tofu in ours, too, but we just crumble the soft kind more like fetta cheese. It tastes amazing plain, but I gotta show my mom this recipe. I bet she’ll love your concepts! :-)
    Do you prefer your lasagna with more noodles than produce and sauce?

  2. Good old nutritional yeast! It makes the most amazing cheeze sauces, eh? I haven’t used imitation meat much either, so it’s interesting to see how people find it. Love a good ol’ lasagna!

    • Omg, I know! I loooove nutritional yeast! We use it a lot here :D
      Thankfully Dallas has warmed up pretty easily to imitation ‘meats.’ He likes veggie burgers, the veggie ground round…come to think of it, I think those are the only two I’ve used at home, haha :P Though we also use quite a bit of Daiya :)

  3. this looks straight up incredible.

  4. this looks crazy good! it’s PERFECT looking…professional! the noodles, the sauce, the layers..amazing work.

  5. Ok, seriously, where the heck do you live because I’m coming over!!!! You’re food is to die for. This lasagna looks like restaurant style and I’m starving over here now at 9:19pm!!!


  6. Though I love my meat and cheese, that lasagne looks absolutely delicious!
    I love your blog. Really, really.
    I’m so intrigued by nutritional yeast…I want to try it!

    • Thank you, Lindsey! Dallas is the same- he likes his meat and cheese, so I’ve really been challenging myself to make food that’s just amazing. So far so good! He has yet to bring any meat in the house and he has high praises for this lasagna :) When I first went vegan I was kinda unsure about trying nutritional yeast, but I’m so glad I finally did! It adds a yummy ‘cheesy’ flavour to sauces and helps thicken them. I go through a lot of it, it’s just so good :D

  7. Ashley says:

    We made this last night and it was amazing! I was a little skeptical at first because I’m not a fan of rutabaga but the “ricotta” mixture was really delicious. Five stars from both me (vegan) and my omnivorous boyfriend!

  8. Malin says:

    *dies* lasagna is a favorite! this one looks delicious!!

  9. Linda says:

    does this lasagna freeze well?

  10. Sounds awesome as always Char!! I love the cheese sauce, I may have to make it just for fun!!! I haven’t had lasagna in forever!!!

  11. Shaka! says:

    That looks fuck’n gooooooood~~~~!!

  12. Alex Maxwell says:

    I made this for Xmas 2011. Will be making this for Xmas this year again, going to buy the ingredients right now! Good job creating this recipe Char! Keep it up :)

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