If you look at my maiden name you’d swear I was 100% German. It’s long, complicated, and reads differently than it’s spelled. But guys? I just KNOW I’m Italian through and through. German food is great and all, but Italian food and culture is what really gets my heart pounding.
Yesterday when I decided on lasagna for dinner I couldn’t stop thinking about making it all.day.long. Case in point.
Lasagna’s one of those things that can be really unhealthy (let’s be honest, that’s the version I love), but it’s also something that can be super healthy too! This version is something I can imagine would be great for kids (or adults) who don’t love vegetables since everything is shredded and spiced just right! And the best part is you could sub any number of veggies in (eggplant would be great).
- 3-4 large carrots
- 2 large zucchini
- 1 red bell pepper
- 1 red onion
- 1 small container mushrooms
- 4 cloves garlic
- 1 small shallot
- 1 lb ground turkey (turkey sausage would be great though)
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 6-oz can tomato paste
- 1 28-oz can crushed tomatoes
- lasagna noodles (I like the kind you don’t have to boil)
- 1/2 Tbsp salt
- 1/2 Tbsp black pepper
- 1 1/2 Tbsp dried basil
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1 tsp dried thyme
- 1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
- 1/2 tsp dried sage
- 1/2 tsp dried rosemary
- 1 15-oz container ricotta cheese
- 3 cups mozzarella cheese
- 1/4 cup parmesan cheese
- 1 egg
- 1/2 tsp nutmeg
First things first, preheat a deep pot over medium heat and preheat the oven to 375. Coat the bottom of the pot with olive oil and start browning/cooking the turkey. While that’s going, shred all of the veggies. I would HIGHLY suggest getting a food processor with a shredding blade attachment since it will make your life 100% easier. Word on the street is it will help you win the lottery, live in your dream home, and meet the person of your dreams. That’s just rumor though.
These are my favorite lasagna noodles ever! I was introduced to them by my beautiful friend Emma and haven’t turned back since.
Add the veggies straight to the pot. You can certainly drain the turkey if you would like but I love the added flavor and the moisture is needed in the sauce to cook the noodles. Stir in the spices and cook, stirring constantly, for about 5 minutes. Stir in the tomato paste:
Put a lid on that sucker and simmer over very low heat while you get everything else together. In a bowl combine the ricotta, the egg, nutmeg, and a pinch of salt and pepper. Spray a 9×13 pan with nonstick spray. Take the sauce off the heat and get ready for LAYERING!
Top with the ricotta mixture and spread as best you can. This will melt when you bake it, so it’s not imperative you get it perfectly spread. Plus you’ll likely go crazy trying…not that I know from experience or anything…
Continue layering sauce, pasta sheets, ricotta mixture, and mozzarella until you run out of ricotta Then top with sauce, another layer of mozarella, and the parmesan. Bake, covered with foil, at 375 for 50-60 minutes. Remove the foil and broil the top til brown and bubbly. Let sit for 10-15 minutes before serving!
Like I said, kids will like this because you can’t even see the veggies! Unless of course the kids are like me and LOVE their veggies. I was totally that kid in school that got excited about carrot sticks in my lunchbox and brussel sprouts for dinner.
Guys, this recipe makes the perfect dinner and leftover lunch…and in this case, breakfast 🙂