Gluten Free Vegetarian Lasagna

14 Dec

One of the things I miss most about my gluten-filled lifestyle is pasta. The smell of my mom’s lasagna, or my grandmother’s delicious spaghetti and meatballs that always knew how to woo me into a comforting fullness that I have since been missing in my last year and a half of (mostly) gluten-free living. I wanted to make something similar to these old favorites, but a bit more healthy, and tummy-friendly. Also, I find that the winter vegetables have a very filling and grounding effect, which I like during the cold season. I chose to go meat-free on this recipe. However, ground turkey or sausage could easily be added if you’re craving a some extra protein. I have been experimenting with different types of gluten-free pastas. The Tinkyada rice pasta has been my favorite so far, so I used their lasagna noodles, though any type of lasagna noodles will work.

1 box Gluten-Free lasagna noodles
1 medium sweet potato, sliced thin (about 1.5 cups)
1 small butternut squash, peeled and sliced thin (about 1.5 cups)
1 medium zucchini, sliced thin (about 1 cup)
1 cup kale, torn into bite size pieces
1 red bell pepper, sliced thin (about 1 cup)
16oz ricotta cheese (can be substituted w/ cottage cheese)
8 oz shredded mozzarella
homemade red sauce (see recipe below), or 1 jar of gluten-free pasta sauce

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Very lightly grease a glass baking dish with olive oil. Cook noodles according to directions. Once noodles are thoroughly cooked and veggies are prepped, you can begin to layer. I always start off with a thin layer of sauce at the bottom. I layered my noodles, 1st veggie, ricotta, mozzarella, red sauce, noodles, 2nd veggie, ricotta, mozzarella, red sauce, and so on, but there really is no wrong way to do it. I did put the zucchini and kale together in a layer. You can mix the vegetable slices in each layer, or do each layer separately, either way the texture, and flavor is going to be delicious! Just make sure to finish the top with red sauce, and a good sprinkle of mozzarella to keep everything moist while it bakes. Once you have layered your ingredients, pop into the oven to bake for 1 hour. If the top begins to get too brown, cover with aluminum foil for the duration of the cook time.  And voila! A yummy, healthy, gluten-free, vegetarian option that is as satisfying as it is good for you!

Homemade Red Sauce:
3 (14.5 oz) cans stewed tomatoes
1 sliced roasted red pepper (I used the jarred kind)
4 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 of a medium onion, chopped (about 1/2 cup)
2 tbsp oregano
1 tbsp basil
2 tsp parsley
2 tsp black pepper
1 tsp salt
pinch of sugar
dash of cayenne pepper
cornstarch as needed to thicken

Put all ingredients into a medium sauce pan, over medium heat, bring to a simmer, and adjust to low, stirring occasionally for about 15 min. Once flavors have come together, use an immersion blender, (or regular blender) to create an even consistency. May adjust spices to taste.

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