Going vegetarian for all the wrong reasons

As you may be able to tell by now, I love mushrooms.  I also have been trying to do some more vegetarian dishes ONLY BECAUSE it’s just cheaper most of the time.  I like to think of myself as the mathematical finance queen and am playing games with our monthly budget to see how we can better save for a house.

But that’s neither here nor there.

This is a vegetarian lasagna.  I wouldn’t call it a vegetable lasagna, because I hate the normal things that go into veggie lasagna like zucchini, and i don’t like red bell peppers with my Italian dishes unless they are roasted.  UGH!  Why didn’t I put roasted red peppers?  You should add them to this dish.  This is simply a lasagna absent of meat, and still very flavorful.  Anyway, feel free to add any cooked and seasoned veggie to the ricotta cheese & mushroom mixture to better satisfy your taste bud’s desires.

Please enjoy my half devoured lasagna photo

This is not too bad for you for a lasagna.  Before you make your sauce, saute all your veggies in olive oil and garlic.

Sorry about the blur… it’s smoke, and I have a pretty terrible camera.

Then chop them and set aside in a bowl.  Or chop them before you saute… I don’t know why I did things backwards.  Then start your simple marinara.  As you may notice in the recipe, this will be more than enough for the lasagna.  I like to make a lot and freeze or refrigerate for later; plus it’s so annoying to not use whole cans of tomatoes to me so I just made the recipe so that you use up both cans of tomatoes in one shot, and save the extras for a lazy, all-I-can-manage-to-do-is-boil-pasta day.

San Marzano tomatoes are the greatest thing on this earth. Please notice I used a shallow pan and it was not a good idea (this was only 1 can of tomatoes), I recommend a saucepan.

While it’s cooking, mix your ricotta filling – veggies, parsley, parmesan, S&P.  Eggs optional.

Anddd assemble!  This looks like not enough cheese, but trust me, once you spread it with the spoon and it bakes, it melts down and covers the entire surface.

Repeat a few times until you run out of the components, and top with more parmesan and the 2 cups of mozzarella cheese.  Bake at 350 for 50 minutes, covered.

Ta daaa! Crispy, crunchy, sort-of healthy lasagna!

Mushroom Lasagna

Serves 8 

Ingredients:

  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • 12 oz baby bella mushrooms, chopped
  • 56oz (2 cans) san marzano tomatoes
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1-2 tbsp Italian seasoning (or a few leaves of chopped fresh basil if you have it on hand)
  • ¼ cup dry red wine
  • 1 package no boil noodles (or boiled lasagna noodles)
  • 1 package part skim ricotta cheese
  • ½ cup parmesan cheese
  • 3 tbsp dried parsley
  • Salt & pepper
  • 2 cups shredded low fat mozzarella cheese

Method:

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees
  2. Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil on a deep skillet, sauté one of the garlic cloves for about a minute, and add chopped mushrooms, sautéing until just softened, about 5 minutes
  3. Put mushrooms to the side and add 2 more tablespoons of olive oil and sauté the rest of the garlic until softened, about 2 minutes.  Add tomatoes and mash gently, then add seasoning, salt and pepper, and wine.  Bring to a boil and then simmer for at least 10 minutes
  4. While the marinara is cooking, mix the mushrooms with the ricotta cheese, adding salt and pepper, parsley, and the parmesan.  At this point you may want to add an egg or two as traditionally used in lasagna, however the recipe will be fine if you leave it out (it reduces the cholesterol in the dish).
  5. Spray your 9×18 pan and add a thin layer of sauce on the bottom.  Then layer lasagna noodles, then cheese mix, then sauce, repeating until the last layer.  Once you top the final layer with the noodles, top with more sauce, then mozzarella cheese and the rest of the parmesan.  You will have leftover sauce, freeze or refrigerate to use later on some delicious ravioli or chicken parmesan
  6. Bake covered at 350 for about 50 minutes, until cheese is bubbly and the edges start to brown.

  Damage: 483 Calories/43g carbs/23g fat/26g protein/3g fiber

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7 thoughts on “Going vegetarian for all the wrong reasons

    • Thank you so much! Your blog is lovely as well. I do feel like people are so quick judge others in their dietary choices though so I didn’t want to offend with my cheapskate reasons, hah 🙂

    • Lol, you’re right. I don’t even think of those things… the only food I won’t make in the summer is soup. In this house I live in now I don’t feel like the oven warms it up at all.

      • Well thats good! Have you ever made gazpacho? I fricken love it but am normally too lazy to buy all the ingredients, excellent cold summer soup!

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