Garfield is not the only one who LOVES lasagna!
My oldest son Zac is becoming a bit of a foodie. Maybe its because he’s been listening to me for all these years talk about food, or having them help me in the kitchen. Maybe it’s because he’s taking a Food Prep class in high school this year and is enjoying being creative in there. Maybe it’s just because he likes good food. 🙂 Whatever, the reason, it makes me proud to see him enjoying the tastes & flavors of REAL, home-cooked food. Usually, he’s the first to request certain dinners as well, especially when we’ve been in the season of eating out a little more than we should. (I know you’ve all been there!).
Sometimes, it’s a request for chili, sometimes enchiladas, but most of the time, it’s lasagna. Vegan Lasagna to be exact. This recipe by far is his favorite and was so loved by others, it was included on Buzzfeed, much to my kiddos delight. However, sometimes I just get bored with making it the same way and decided to turn this recipe into Easy-to-serve, Roll-ups.
These cute little rolls, didn’t take any longer than it would layering a big pan of traditional lasagna and I loved that each bite, was full of flavor and noodles. Kind of like when you eat from the center of the lasagna pan.
Here is just how easy this is…….
Start by cooking your noodles of choice in boiling water (add a pinch or two of salt to prevent sticking). Typically, I’d tell you to follow package directions, however, I like to “undercook” them so they are bendable, without ripping. Remember, your noodles will still cook in the oven, so you don’t want them to get mushy.
While those are boiling, go ahead and make your ricotta. I make it nut-free by using Tofu as the base, and then add in lemon juice, nutritional yeast, minced garlic, fresh basil, spices & diced sun dried tomatoes (which you can omit if you prefer).
Set this aside and start cooking your sausage (vegan of course). There are a lot of options to choose from, however, my favorite is by Tofurky. I’m including the link so you can check out the ingredients. This does contain gluten, so make sure you stay away from it if you are Gluten-free or Soy-free. Neat meat replacer could be an option for you if those are on your list of allergens, however, their products contain nuts, which is why it’s always important to READ YOUR LABELS.
Once everything is boiled, blended & sautéed, it’s time to assemble! Pour some sauce into your casserole dish just to make sure the noodles don’t stick. It can be homemade or jarred, but just make sure it’s no-to-low sugar, and made with fresh, organic ingredients for the best flavor.
Top with your minced sausage.
Then a little sauce.
Roll each loaded noodle, 1 by 1 and place in your pan, seam side down. Continue until all your noodles have been used (or you run out of toppings). I tend to be a little frugal on my first couple rolls to make sure I have enough, so if you’re ever over for lasagna rolls, I apologize in advance if you get the “skimpy” roll.
Once all your rolls are in the dish, pour a little extra sauce on top to help the rolls from drying out, then add extra shredded cheese. Bake 20 minutes or until everything is bubbling and melted. Serve with a side salad and some extra steamed veggies. If my Mom served this for you, she’d be sure to include Applesauce ;).
If you’re a pasta lover like myself, you’ll also want to check out Vegetarian Mamma’s vegetarian bolognese, it’s full of veggies & flavor.
- 1 Box of Gluten Free or Whole Wheat Lasagna Noodles
- 2 Cups fresh Spinach leaves
- 1 Jar Marinara Sauce (I used Roa's Spicy Arrabiata flavor)
- 2 Vegan "Italian" sausages cut into cubes (read labels to make sure it fits with allergy requirements)
- 1 lb. Extra firm tofu
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 1 minced garlic clove
- 2 TB. nutritional yeast
- 1/2 tsp. sea salt
- 1/2 tsp. black pepper
- 4 TB. Sun dried tomatoes, soaked in warm water, drained & chopped (optional)
- 1 TB dried Basil
- 1 tsp. dried Oregano
- In a large stock pot, add 10 cups of water and 2 TB. salt. Bring to a boil and add noodles. Cook noodles to "al " dente. Drain, rinse under cold water then drizzle with a little olive oil to prevent sticking. Set aside.
- Drain tofu and wrap in paper towel. Place on a plate then place a heavy pan on top of it and let it sit for about 10 minutes to press out some of the liquid. Drain liquid.
- Crumble tofu in a bowl. Add juice from lemon, garlic, nutritional yeast, salt and pepper, tomatoes (if using), basil and oregano. Then use a potato masher to blend it all together until it resembles ricotta.
- Preheat oven to 400°.
- In a large saucepan, add 2 TB olive oil and saute "sausage" cubes. Use the potato masher again and break into smaller pieces. Set aside.
- Prepare a 9x13, glass casserole dish by spreading 1/4 C. sauce on the bottom.
- Place parchment paper on your work surface and lay noodles out, row by row.
- Add your toppings, 1 by one in this order: Tofu ricotta, shredded mozzarella, spinach leaves, vegan sausage & sauce.
- Roll each lasagna strip into a nice, tight roll, then place in prepared dish, seam side down. Continue with remaining strips.
- Top with extra sauce and sprinkle with mozzarella shreds.
- Cover with foil and bake 10-20 minutes.
- Uncover and bake 10 more minutes so cheese melts on top.
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If you’re looking for another creative way to eat your lasagna, how about trying my One Pot Lasagna Soup? It’s mm-mm good!
I’d love to hear from you! Be sure to comment below when you make this dish and let me know what you think. And as always, be sure to follow Xander Friendly Foods on Instagram, Pinterest & Twitter for more recipes, health tips & favorite food shares.0