Gluten Free Lasagna
Most people can agree that lasagna is an easy meal that makes a large enough quantity to store in the freezer for a lazy day or gift to someone. But seriously...how often do you come across gluten free lasagna?! Basically never. I was surprised when I stumbled upon Melissa Wood’s vegan and gluten free lasagna recipe last year. And I was absolutely thrilled when the lasagna tasted the exact same as a non-gluten free version.
In truth, I have never followed Melissa’s exact recipe, but I use hers as a guide. The first time I used her recipe, I adapted it and instead made a half vegetarian-half meat lasagna. That was tasty. The version I am sharing with you today is vaguely based on Melissa’s recipe, but kind of totally different. Basically it’s a really good way to sneak in some veggies, and I would highly recommend it to anyone who’s traditionally adverse to greens. My family loved it and ate the entire thing within a few days.
A note on gluten free lasagna noodles
Obviously, in a gluten free lasagna, the most important part of the recipe is the noodles. Melissa uses Jovial lasagna noodles in her recipe. I have never found that brand in my grocery stores, and instead have used Tinkyada (found at my local Stop & Shop in Boston). These noodles are AMAZING, I would even eat them plain. If you see Tinkyada noodles in your store, I would highly recommend those. Unfortunately this time around in DC, I wasn’t able to find either of those brands, so I went with a Whole Foods Brand which doesn’t require you to cook the noodles beforehand. The Whole Foods noodles were a big time saver and they tasted nicely in the lasagna, but on their own they don’t compare to the Tinkyada noodles.
2 zucchinis (you might have a bit of leftover, but one isn’t quite enough)
Half an onion
2 cloves of garlic
Ground beef (I like to get 85% lean, 15% fat)
40 oz Marinara sauce (I used Victoria White Linen marinara, but have also used Melissa Wood’s preferred sauce- Organico Bello Spicy Marinara and I loved that too)
6 oz can of tomato paste
One box of gluten free lasagna noodles (I used Whole Foods Brand Yellow Lentil & Brown Rice Gluten Free Lasagne. These did not require me to cook beforehand! Other gf lasagna noodles do, so be sure to read the box!)
2 8oz bags of shredded mozzarella cheese
Begin by preheating the oven to 375 degrees.
Thinly slice zucchini into preferred shape. I like cutting them lengthwise so they don’t take up too much space in the lasagna. Set aside.
Dice onion and garlic. In a pan, heat up a bit of olive oil and add diced onion and garlic. Add a little salt and let them simmer into soft (about 5 mins).
Add ground beef. Mix with garlic and onion.
Add oregano, basil, salt and pepper. Start slowly with the seasoning and when the meat is brown, feel free to taste test and see if you need any more.
Once the meat is brown, pour in half a jar of marinara sauce and a full 6oz can of tomato paste. Mix and stir, add any seasoning if necessary. Let simmer on low heat for five minutes.
In a separate pan, satay zucchini strips/pieces with olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. Cook until zucchinis are soft.
If your noodles require boiling beforehand, this would be the time to do it. Since mine did not, I went ahead to layering.
Coat your lasagna pan with a thin layer of marinara sauce.
Place three gluten free lasagna noodles into the pan. The noodles will expand as they bake, so leave a little space between each noodle.
Add a layer of meat sauce across the entire pan.
Sprinkle a layer of shredded mozzarella cheese.
Place a second layer of three gluten free noodles.
Spread some more plain marinara sauce over the lasagna.
Layer your cooked zucchini pieces.
Add a third layer of three noodles.
Spread another layer of meat sauce over the lasagna.
Scoop ricotta cheese on top and spread.
Add the fourth and final layer of noodles.
Put a final thin layer of plain marinara sauce over the top.
Sprinkle another layer of mozzarella and add as much nutritional yeast as you’d like.
Bake in the oven for 40 minutes. Let cool before serving.