KITCH 121: Vegetable Lasagna



I almost always seem to find myself disappointed by vegetable lasagnas. More often than not, they barely have any veg­etables, and if they do, it is usually limit­ed to a few specks of spinach. I have been searching for the right recipe for quite a while, but I have been disappointed by the abundance of “white sauce” and lack of vegetables. So I was thrilled when one of my older sisters taught me how to make her “recipe-less” lasagna. It is a pretty simple recipe – essentially, all you need to do is: chop, sauté, layer and bake. You can also decide how much more time you would like to put into it. For ex­ample, you can choose to make the pasta and tomato sauce from scratch, or just use lasagna noodles from a box and sauce from a jar. They even make whole-wheat lasagna noodles now. Also, I strongly rec­ommend using balls of mozzarella cheese rather than the pre-shredded cheese because they have a lot more flavor. In Price Chopper, you can find them by the canned foods aisle.


3 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil (this is a rough estimate; the eggplant will soak up a lot of oil, so you can start with less oil and add more as the bottom of the pan gets too dry)

1 large yellow onion, chopped

4 cloves of garlic, minced

2 medium eggplants

2 medium zucchinis

2 medium yellow squashes

2 containers (about 10 ounces each) of

portobello mushrooms

Kosher salt

Fresh ground black pepper

1 box of lasagna noodles

About 6 cups of raw spinach (one bag)

16 ounces of tomato sauce (1 jar) or a

batch of homemade sauce

1 cup of water

1 pound of fresh mozzarella cheese, cut

into relatively thin half-circle slices

1/4 cup fresh grated parmesan cheese

1. Preheat your oven to 375 degrees.

2. Heat the oil in a large pan over medium heat. Sauté the onion and garlic until they start to become translucent.

3. Chop the eggplant, zucchini, squash and mushrooms into chunks that are rough­ly the same size (approximately one-inch cubes). Add them into the pan and season liberally with salt and pepper and continue to stir frequently.

4. Fill a large bowl with very hot water (as hot as your sink will go). Put the noodles into the bowl and allow them to soak for about 20 minutes, and then drain.

5. Continue to cook the vegetables for a total of about 20-25 minutes, or until the vegetables have browned. Add the spinach into the pan of vegetables for just a couple of minutes, until wilted. Then, turn off the stove.

6. In a 9×13 glass-baking dish, layer the ingredients, roughly dividing them into equal parts (don’t worry about making it too exact). You will want to place three to four noodles (depending on exactly how big your pan is) lengthwise and slightly overlapping, and then one going the op­posite way. Layer in the following order: sauce, noodles, mozzarella cheese, veg­etables, sauce, noodles, mozzarella cheese, vegetables, sauce, parmesan cheese.

7. Bake for 25 minutes at 375 and then turn up the heat to 400 degrees and cook for about 10 minutes, or until bubbling. Let stand for about 10-15 minutes before serving to let the sauce thicken.

Contact Emily Suskin at

[email protected].