Warm up without the guilt with this delicious and simple vegetarian, noodle-free lasagna recipe. It uses zucchini instead of the noodles, and quinoa gives you the protein and texture of ground beef, minus the heaviness. The beauty of this lasagna recipe is that it is adaptable. You can sub in your favorite veggies, cheeses (or nondairy cheese substitute) and even add other beans or grains in place of the quinoa.
(Makes one 9×13 inch dish)
2 cups vegetable broth
1 cup quinoa, rinsed and drained
2 cups + ½ cup organic tomato sauce (use more than 2 cups if you like it saucy)
¼ cup finely chopped onion
1 tsp oregano
¼ cup fresh chopped basil
2 zucchinis, sliced very thin lengthwise
2 cups mushrooms
2 cups organic ricotta cheese
1 organic egg, beaten
1 cup organic shredded mozzarella
¼ cup organic Parmesan cheese
Preheat oven to 350ºF. Place sliced zucchini on a paper towel. Sprinkle with salt and cover with another paper towel. Let stand while making the quinoa for about 25 minutes. This will help release the moisture in the zucchini. Blot when done. Bring broth, quinoa, ½ cup tomato sauce, onion and oregano to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until liquid is absorbed about 20–25 minutes. Stir in fresh basil when done. Mix the beaten egg with the ricotta and set aside. In a 9×13 glass baking dish spread half of the quinoa mixture on the bottom of the dish, then add 1/3 of the tomato sauce. Layer ½ of the zucchini, ½ of the mushrooms, ½ of the ricotta/egg mixture and 1/3 of the mozzarella. Repeat the layers sprinkling the Parmesan cheese as the last step. Bake for 30–45 minutes until cheese is melted and zucchini is tender.
*For a dairy-free version use nondairy cream cheese in place of ricotta and nondairy shredded mozzarella.
Randy Boyer, B.A., is an author and co-founder of The Healthy Shopper Inc. This article was originally published on NaturallySavvy.com
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*Image of “lasagna” via spilltojill/Flickr