This roasted vegetable lasagna is absolutely chock-full of veggies and has a delicious cottage cheese layer. The whole thing is topped with plenty of mozzarella cheese for one epic meal! This will be your go-to meatless lasagna recipe for Sunday supper and special occasions!
This vegetarian lasagna recipe was originally posted in February 2016 and has been updated with new pictures, recipe details and small recipe tweaks.
Remember that homemade lasagna recipe I shared a little while back? Well, today I’m sharing another delicious lasagna recipe.
Like traditional lasagna, this meatless lasagna is a labour of love.
This ain’t no 30-minute meal kinda thing. This homemade veggie lasagna is a proper Sunday supper or a special occasion meal. Feel me?
This time of year I crave all the comfort food.
And one of my fave things is lasagna.
I mean, cheese, carbs and a rich tomato sauce; what’s not to love?
And, though it is a labour of love, homemade lasagna is always worth it.
This recipe makes a big pan of lasagna, so it’s great if you have a crowd.
I think one of my favourite parts about making anything like this is watching the cheese bubble in the oven. It’s hypnotic, isn’t it?
Ingredients for Meatless Lasagna
- Lots and lots of veggies (onion, eggplant, zucchini, mushrooms, bell pepper, carrots, celery, onion, spinach and fennel)
- Plenty of cheese (cottage cheese, Parmesan, fresh & shredded mozzarella cheese)
- Lasagna noodles
- Tomato sauce
- Tomato paste
- Herbs, seasonings and aromatics, like basil, parsley, oregano, chili flakes, bay leaves, nutmeg, garlic, salt and pepper
- Olive oil and butter
How To Make This Recipe
So, essentially, this vegetarian lasagna recipe has:
- Layers of roasted veggies
- Layers of sautéed mushrooms
- Creamy cottage cheese layers
- Veggie packed tomato sauce
- Plenty of shredded mozzarella cheese
- Fresh lasagna noodles
There’s lots of goodies packed in here but if you take each step at a time, there’s nothing to it! So, let’s get going!
Full details are in the recipe card below, but here are the basics:
- Get your eggplant and zucchini ready for the oven first by peeling, slicing and placing on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Brush with olive oil and give a little sprinkle of salt and pepper.
- Roast and set aside once done.
- To a pot, add some olive oil and butter. Once butter is melted, add sliced mushrooms.
- Cook, season and set aside.
Make cottage cheese layer
- Add baby spinach to a pot with a little nutmeg.
- Cook until just wilted.
- Then, remove excess moisture by pressing against a fine mesh sieve or squeezing with a clean tea towel (so your lasagna doesn’t get all watered down). Note: The spinach isn’t actually going through the sieve (only water). We’re just using it to press the moisture out.
- Combine spinach with mozzarella, Parmesan, parsley, salt, pepper and egg.
- Mix together and set aside.
Make lasagna sauce
- Heat some olive oil in a pot and add finely chopped carrots, celery, onion and fennel. Cook until softened. Season with a little salt and pepper. Add garlic and cook a little.
- Stir in tomato paste and cook out a little.
- Stir in bell peppers, canned tomatoes, herbs, more seasoning and water (rinse out your cans of tomatoes to get every last bit of that goodness).
- Cook until thickened. Remove & discard bay leaves.
Looking good, right? You can taste test, if you like, with a little hunk of bread. Don’t have to twist my arm!
Assemble and bake
- Preheat your oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Grab a deep lasagna pan and start assembling this bad boy. Add a little sauce to the bottom of the pan. Then, the order goes:
- Fresh lasagna noodles.
- ⅓ each of tomato sauce, roasted eggplant, roasted zucchini, sautéed mushrooms, cottage cheese mixture and 1.5 cups of shredded mozzarella cheese.
- Do this two more times.
- Then, add some fresh mozzarella over the last layer.
- Place some wooden toothpicks (that have been first soaked in water before using) over top of the lasagna (sticking out for easy removal later) and bake. The toothpicks help prevent the aluminum foil from sticking to the cheese. Lost cheese stuck on aluminum foil and not in your pie hole is never a good thing, LOL. Note: Make sure you keep track of how many toothpicks you stick in the lasagna (and they are mostly sticking out) so you can easily remove them all later.
- Carefully remove cover and toothpicks partway through and bake some more.
- Let cool a little, garnish and serve up this scrumptious meatless lasagna!
Best Pan To Use for Lasagna
This is a large lasagna with a lot of height.
I recommend going with a 9-inch x 13-inch deep lasagna pan.
Sides To Serve With Lasagna
This meatless lasagna recipe is delicious with any of these sides:
- Mixed green salad
- Roasted broccoli
- Garlic bread
- Focaccia or simply your favourite variety of bread
Tips For Making This Recipe
- I highly recommend using good quality canned tomatoes. I love San Marzano.
- A food processor is your friend here. Save time chopping those veg for the sauce by blitzing them with a food processor. Don’t have one? No worries! Simply finely chop.
- If you want to used canned mushrooms instead of fresh, that’s okay. You could skip cooking them. Just drain and use in the recipe.
- Fresh lasagna noodles were used so they literally went from the package to the casserole dish. You could use dried lasagna noodles should you wish. Simply cook per package instructions before using in this veg lasagna.
- If you don’t want to use fresh fennel, try a teaspoon and half or so of fennel seeds.
More Yummy Meatless Recipes
If you make this veggie lasagna recipe, be sure to leave a comment below!
Meatless Lasagna Recipe (Veggie Lasagna)
- 2 eggplants, peeled and sliced about ½-inch thick
- 3 zucchini, peeled and sliced about ½-inch thick
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- ½ tablespoon olive oil
- 1.5 pounds baby bella (cremini) mushrooms, sliced (or use white button mushrooms)
- pinch salt
- pinch freshly ground black pepper
Cottage Cheese Layer
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- 10 ounces fresh baby spinach
- ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 2 cups cottage cheese
- 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
- ⅔ cups grated Parmesan cheese
- ⅓ cup chopped fresh parsley
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 large whisked egg
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 carrots, peeled and finely chopped
- 3 ribs celery, finely chopped
- 1 yellow onion, peeled and finely chopped
- 1 bulb fennel (bulb only), core removed and bulb finely chopped
- 6 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 (5.5-ounce) can tomato paste, a 156 millilitre can
- 2 bell peppers, diced
- 2 (28 ounce) cans whole peeled San Marzano tomatoes, tomatoes roughly mashed with a potato masher to break before using
- 1 cup chopped fresh basil, loosely packed
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes, or to taste
- 2 bay leaves
- ¾ teaspoon salt, divided (or to taste)
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Other Lasagna Ingredients
- 12 ounces fresh lasagna noodles (6 to 8 sheets, depending on size), or your favourite dried variety (if your sheets are the smaller dried variety, you'll need around 10 sheets)
- 4.5 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
- 8 ounces fresh mozzarella, sliced (or you could use 2 cups of shredded mozzarella)
- Basil, chopped or torn (garnish to taste, optional)
- Parsley, chopped (garnish to taste, optional)
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Brush eggplant and zucchini with ½ of the olive oil (1.5 tablespoons) and sprinkle with salt and black pepper. Place on two parchment paper-lined baking sheets and bake 25 minutes, turning once (brushing second side with remaining 1.5 tablespoons of olive oil). Carefully transfer eggplant and zucchini to a plate and set aside.
- Meanwhile, heat butter and olive oil in a large sauté pan or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add mushrooms, cook 10 to 12 minutes (allow mushrooms to sit for a few minutes before stirring occasionally). Once done, season with salt and black pepper. Transfer mushrooms to a plate and set aside. Yields about 3 cups (cooked).
Cottage Cheese Layer
- In the same pot you cooked the mushrooms in, heat olive oil (wipe out pot first, if needed). Add spinach and nutmeg and cook, stirring occasionally, until just wilted, about 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from pot and squeeze out excess moisture via a sieve or tea towel. Chop. Note: If using a sieve, the spinach isn't actually going through the sieve (only water). We're just using it to press the moisture out.
- Place cottage cheese in a bowl, along with cooked spinach, mozzarella, Parmesan, parsley, salt, black pepper and egg. Mix to combine and set aside.
- Heat olive oil in a large enameled cast-iron Dutch oven over medium heat. Add carrots, celery, onion and fennel. Cook, stirring every so often, for about 15 to 20 minutes. Season with ¼ teaspoon each of salt and pepper.
- Stir in garlic and cook one minute.
- Stir in tomato paste and cook 2 to 3 minutes.
- Stir in bell peppers.
- Add canned tomatoes, basil, oregano, crushed red pepper flakes, bay leaves, remaining ½ teaspoon of salt, remaining ¼ teaspoon of black pepper and ½ cup of water (rinse out tomato cans). Stir to combine. Bring to a simmer so the sauce is gently bubbling/simmering and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 35 to 40 minutes or until sauce has thickened and flavour has intensified. Remove bay leaves. Will yield about 7 to 8 cups of sauce after it has reduced.Note: Taste for seasoning and if you want a little more salt, add to taste.
Assembling and Baking Lasagna
- Set oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Place 6 to 8 wooden toothpicks in a dish of water on your countertop to soak for use later.
- In a large 9-inch x 13-inch deep lasagna pan (with sides at least 3.5 to 4 inches tall) add ½ cup of sauce.
- Add one layer of noodles on top (if using fresh, no need to cook. If using dried noodles, cook per package instructions and proceed with the recipe).
- Spread ⅓ of sauce on top of noodles, followed by ⅓ of the eggplant, ⅓ of the zucchini, ⅓ of the mushrooms, ⅓ of the cottage cheese and 1.5 cups of shredded mozzarella cheese.Note: The cottage cheese is thick. I like to 'dollop' the cottage cheese onto the lasagna all over (rather than spread).
- Repeat TWO more times (another layer of noodles, followed by ⅓ of sauce on top of noodles, followed by ⅓ of the eggplant, ⅓ of the zucchini, ⅓ of the mushrooms, ⅓ of the cottage cheese and 1.5 cups of shredded mozzarella cheese).
- Top with sliced fresh mozzarella.
- Stick 6 to 8 wooden toothpicks (that have been soaked in water before using) in top of the lasagna, mostly sticking out (so the aluminum foil doesn't stick to the cheese), cover with aluminum foil and bake for 30 minutes. Carefully remove aluminum foil and toothpicks (and discard) and bake for an additional 10 to 15 minutes or until cheese gets a little golden brown and bubbly.Note: Make sure you keep track of how many toothpicks you stick in the lasagna (and they are mostly sticking out) so you can easily remove them all later.
- Carefully remove from the oven and let cool 30 minutes (don't skip this). Garnish, if desired, with basil and parsley, cut into pieces and serve. Enjoy!
Nutrition estimate (if provided) is based on 1 Serving.
Nutrition information (if provided) is provided as a courtesy and should be considered an estimate only. Ingredients can vary and Girl Heart Food makes no guarantees to the accuracy of this information. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
A note on times provided: appliances vary, any prep and/or cook times provided are guidelines only.
Tried this recipe?
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