The ingredients that go into a lasagna are more appealing than the finished product, particularly this one! Which is why I'm not leading off with a photo of lasagna on a plate. But, also because it’s the specific ingredients that make this special, and they’ll be the reason you undoubtedly enjoy it!
9+ layers and no confusion.
At the base of the pan is your tomato sauce. With this, you're looking for something like a marinara. Accentuate your flavors, not overpower them. So, skip the spicy and definitely the sweet. Instead let’s grab the tomato basil, perhaps even a roasted garlic.
I just learned that there's such a thing as "no-boil noodles," which removes the first step to making lasagna! boil the noodles...
Next: all things good.
Our vegetables and carbs.
Add our fats, proteins, too!
With this ricotta cheese, you're leaving the cows and their mothers' alone, and you're also removing the top source of saturated fat in most American's diet! Dairy contributes to heart disease, type 2 diabetes, Alzheimer's disease and various cancers. Curious what we’ll use instead? The heart of our cheese is dairy free and therefore cruelty free.
We're making tofu ricotta! but you won't even know it.
We're using a whole block of tofu, I prefer the extra firm (which is high in protein), however, if you want more of a creamy vibe go with less firm.
Soy doesn't sit right for you? Or just not a tofu person?
**Substitute: Raw cashews soaked for 15 mins
My "must haves" for this recipe and the ones to come:
- nutritional yeast (in an old jelly jar, reuse what you can!)
- tomato basil marinara sauce
- mozzarella shreds from TJoes (dairy free)
- some nice broccolini - changes the game! Broccoli is a no for this one!
Don't let the presentation fool you. I constantly feel intimidated to try new recipes because they're always so flawless and I feel like the cooks never have to clean.
I do. I did.
My ingredients are everywhere! Blocks of tofu are scattered and there's a lemon waiting to clean my sink.
If you're not feeling broccolini - change it up! your vegetables can go a number of ways, add what suits you. However, if I may say so myself, mushrooms are a must.
You can't go wrong with portobello or cremini, the only difference: age of the shroom.
Remember: your holding layers are your tomato sauce and your noodles. Followed by your shrooms, another layer of sauce, optional layer of noodles, broccolini (or other veggie), ricotta, sauce, noodles, shrooms... and so on, until you run out of ingredients.
TOP WITH MOZZ.
& fresh basil.
and later... wah-la!
vegan cheese (I like TJoes mozzarella)
Tomato sauce (garlic or tomato basil)
2 grabs of broccolini or your desired lasagna veg
1 pckg of mushrooms
1/2 - 1 onion
3 -4 garlic cloves
Salt & Pepper
1 container firm tofu
1 lemon (juice)
3 tbsp olive or sesame oil
splash of apple cider vinegar
1/4 - 1/3 cup plant milk
6 ish tbsp nutritional yeast *to taste (I normally season until it looks like there's too much or it starts tasting cheesy)
1 tsp garlic powder
Fresh basil for topping
1. Drain or oat dry your tofu a bit, then break apart into food processor or blender.
2. Throw in olive oil, plant milk, lemon juice, nutritional yeast, splash of ACV and garlic powder. Blend/pulse until you reach the consistency of ricotta cheese. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed - I'm normally having to add more nutritional yeast.
2. Dice mushrooms
3. Chop onion and garlic and sauté in olive oil for 5-7 minutes on medium/low
4. Add mushrooms. Cook for 9ish minutes. season with salt & pepper to Taste.
4. Cook lasagna noodles according to package in boiling water *until SLIGHTLY undercooked
5. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
6. Slice or tear apart broccolini
1. Spread marinara sauce at the bottom of a baking dish, enough to cover the whole thing, without see-through spots
2. Arrange noodles to cover all sauce
3. Disperse mushroom mixture, follow by a layer of sauce, broccolini, then add layer of tofu ricotta. Keep going until your ingredients run out.
Top off with marinara sauce and a fluffy layer of vegan mozz cheese.
8. Cover with foil. Bake in oven for 20 minutes. Remove foil, and bake an additional 20 to 25 minutes. Cool for 15 minutes before serving (let's be real, this isn't going to happen - eat it ASAP).
Top off with fresh basil! Maybe, even something spicy.