A Very Vedged Out Lasagna

My friend Heidi at Lightly Crunchy once said to me

“I’m curious about how you’d make vegan lasagna. No cheese?”

(okay, this was really in a comment, since we’ve never really ‘met’. She lives in Canada and I live in Utah, and yes, to answer your next question, I’m vegan and I’m a Mormon, and no I don’t have 10 children or any sister wives despite the size of this lasagna)

THIS is how we do it at Vedged Out.

A Very Big Very Vedged Out Lasagna

1 Package whole wheat lasagna noodles (I like Delallo Organic no-boil flat sheets), you can use gluten-free noodles instead if you like – 1 large diced onion – 2 grated carrots – 2 stalks celery, diced – 5 minced garlic cloves, divided – 1 large diced eggplant – 8 oz. diced mushrooms – 1 head broccoli, chopped – 2 diced zucchini or summer squash – 2 C. chopped baby spinach leaves – 1/2 C. Chopped black olives (or kalamata or green olives depending on your preference) – kernels cut from 1 ear of corn (or 1/2 C. frozen corn) – 1 block sprouted firm tofu – 2 T. nutritional yeast – 1 t. each of dried thyme, basil, parsley and oregano – couple dashes red pepper flakes – 4 oz of this awesome cashew cheez minus the crushed red pepper flakes or other lame vegan cheez – 3 cups unsweetened almond milk – 4 T. whole wheat pastry flour (or 2 T. cornstarch for gluten-free version) – one 28 oz can Muir Glen Fire Roasted Organic Crushed Tomatoes – one 15 oz can Muir Glen Organic Tomato Sauce.

Method: Water sauté onions, celery and carrots until translucent, add all other veg except 2 cloves of the garlic and the spinach. Cook for 5 minutes more until veggies are crisp tender. Add fire roasted crushed tomatoes, spices, salt and pepper to taste.  Set aside.

Crumble tofu into a bowl, add 1 clove minced garlic, the spinach and the nutritional yeast, stir it all together.

In a small saucepan heat the almond milk and the flour or cornstarch, when it comes to a boil, add in the cashew cheez and the last remaining clove of garlic, salt to taste. This is your cheez sauce.

Assembly time! Using a deep dish lasagna pan, pour 1/2 can of the tomato sauce in the bottom. Level it out with a spoon until the bottom is covered in sauce, place 3 lasagna sheets over the sauce, then layer with half of the veggie mixture. Add 3 more lasagna sheets. Layer the tofu mixture and 1 C. of the cheez sauce over the top. Add 3 more lasagna sheets, your next layer you will do the remaining half of the veggie mixture, the remaining half of the tofu mixture and one more cup of the white sauce.

Add your final layer of pasta sheets, top with the other half of the tomato sauce, then drizzle with the cheez sauce.

Bake uncovered for 60 minutes at 375 degrees. Let cool for 20 minute before serving if you don’t want sloppy lasagna. Even better and less sloppy on the second day.

p.s. this dish makes 12 filling servings, you can easily halve the recipe and bake it in a 9×9 square dish. It has zero cholesterol (duh, veggies don’t have cholesterol), is super low in fat and crazy high in fiber. You can really use whatever veg you have on hand, but perhaps not cabbage, or for that matter, brussels sprouts.

Check out Vegan Bloggers Unite today, my first post is live there! Are you a Vegan Blogger? You can post there too.

The lovely Lidia who runs the site is always looking for new material. :) Check out the deets here.

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60 comments

  1. That looks yummers! I’ve made a couple vegan lasagnas (and I’m pretty sure I blogged about at least one), and now that it’s “turn on your oven” weather again I want to try some more… Maybe with your cheese sauce!

  2. I love Chef Aj’s Disappearing Lasagna and more importantly so does Andrew, but your picture looks so good I am going to try this one.

    1. The cheez sauce adds that extra creamy deliciousness I was missing before I started adding it to lasagna. If it has too many veggies, just cut back on the ones he doesn’t love, or chop them really, really small so he can’t see them ;)

          1. That’s just crazy talk!
            Actually, I’m allergic to peppers and all their derivative spices, so I can’t use paprika. It’s been a pretty big bummer, but I usually find a way around it. :)

    1. Ha, I never make lasagna the same twice, I think you may have been the unfortunate recipient of the one I made with too much swiss chard. Sometimes you can have too much of a good thing!

      Thanks for the birthday wishes :) Feeling younger than last year, which is a good thing!

  3. Oh, yum! This looks so good, I bet you could even get it past my husband. Actually, though I will probably continue to use cheese, I will use your idea to add corn and eggplant and make it vegetarian sometime. I use the other veggies already, but a few more and I could leave out the hamburger or sausage. Great looking food, as always! You make it look easy.

    1. Thanks Heidi! I made one with a veggie meat substitute when my carnivore hunter brother stayed a week with us, he said he could tell it was veggie meat, but he couldn’t tell I hadn’t used dairy, which was a surprise to me, so maybe you could sneak it past the husband. And yes, you could totally make this, its super easy, as long as you don’t mind lots of chopping, which I can see you all ready do a fair bit of when you cook. Besides, you have all that lovely pasta sauce and oven dried tomatoes you made that would round this out so nicely!

    1. Thanks Anne, I’ve been meaning to try the raw lasagna on your site for a while. I may have to head over there now ;)

      Thanks also for the birthday wishes. It was supposed to be a secret ;)

  4. Aw, criminey! I really need to get on that Pomona pectin, don’t I? We’ve just been making lasagna without the cheese. It tastes fabulous, but I just don’t feel like mine is a lasagna without the goo…

    Thanks for the heads-up on vegan bloggers. I’ll go check it out, being a newbie and all. :)

    1. Yes, yes you do! Whole Foods has it for the best price if you live near one. And goo is an important element of lasagna.

      Oh, and please do VBU, it’s easier than it looks, don’t be intimidated! It’s a great community!

    1. Yay Sarah! Thanks so much for saying that, it really is ridiculously simple. I have to say the pepper jack is still my favorite. I fool lots of guests with it!

    1. Thanks Lucy, it really is a wonderful dish. I used to be one of those grim minced beef eaters and now I can’t figure out for the life of me why I ever ate that way, so much better loaded with veg, and so much better for you!

    1. I’ve tried it and it doesn’t work. Pomona’s thickens and sets differently than other brands of pectin. If you can’t find it locally, you can order it directly off their site. http://www.pomonapectin.com/HTML/order/index.html
      I especially like it because its just pectin and calcium, no artificial additives or preservatives. It’s really worth making cashew cheez yourself since it’s such a healthy alternative to other vegan cheeses. Did I mention it melts?!?

      1. My dad is coming to visit in November. I’ll send him some to bring. I hope I can wait this long to try it. :) Thanks for the info.

  5. That looks phenomenal! I can’t wait to make it…. I’ve never made lasagna with a cheezy sauce right in it! And I can’t wait to try the cheese recipe ~ I have loved Daiya but really want to get away from all the oils they use. Homemade vegan cheese always seems so time consuming, but I guess it’s really not for what it gives.

    1. Oh yes, it’s the cheez sauce that puts it over the top. Pre-Vegan I made a bechamel white sauce for my lasagnas. This is just a low fat vegan version. I waited so long to try vegan cheese after changing my diet that when I finally tasted daiya it tasted hugely artificial to me. I also didn’t like the way it melted, then never firmed back up. It just stayed in a gooey mass that stuck to your teeth :/

      This cheez recipe seriously takes 5 minutes hands on time. The longest waiting time is for it to set in the fridge. Also, I did the calorie and nutritional profile, 45 calories per oz. with only 3 fat grams. That’s like half of Daiya’s stats and all the calories and fats are from whole foods and not processed ones. One more thing, if I buy the pomona’s pectin at whole foods and if I can get my cashews for less than 6 bucks a pound, then cashew cheez costs around $3.50 a pound to make. Take that Daiya (around $12 a pound)!

  6. This looks so decadent! I love me some cheezy-creamy lasagna and this looks like it fits the bill perfectly. I am a big fan of vegan cheese made using nooch as opposed to the store bought stuff…though the store bought stuff is good for when I’m lazy ;-P

    1. Sometimes we just need comfort food, it’s awesome that you use the nutritional yeast too. I only discovered it after I went vegan. I was like “where has this stuff been all my life”!!!

  7. Wow, Somer that looks soooo delicious!! My husband misses lasagna soooo much but he can’t eat tofu and is allergic to cashews! :( Guess I will just have to eat it all myself! I agree with you, never had Daiya but I can’t get past the fakeness of it at all. I’m totally into REAL FOOD!

    1. Oh wow, that is a challenge! You could still make a nice thick white sauce with more cornstarch, almond milk and nutritional yeast, but it wouldn’t be quite as melty or gooey ;) And yes, real food is the way to go!

      p.s. Your new gravatar photo is adorable!

    1. Thanks Kristy! I’m totally a comfort food sort of girl, I’m glad I’ve found much healthier ways to enjoy my old favorites. Oh and we love the cheez sauce on lots of things, cuts the fat content even more while still being a bit creamy and melty :)

  8. Wowza, what a LOVELY lasagna! Wish you lived closer, we could use you on our business staff as a food stylist. : ) Can’t wait to try this one! And – congrats on the blog, it looks super!

    1. Haha, Thanks! I’m still learning about food photography, I’ve got a really amazing camera, but I still don’t really know how to use the dang thing. Thanks for coming over to check it out! Hugs- Somer

  9. looks great :) I have made my lasagna the night before to let all of the flavour soak through then cooked it for dinner the day afterwards..tastes even better……. thanks for posting your recipe…..

    1. That’s a brilliant idea to prepare it the day before, probably makes for a much less sloppy lasagna on day 1 and I can only imagine the flavors would permeate and be wonderful!

  10. I need more Andrew friendly recipes, I have a small list of stuff he will eat, I need to add to it. Help me Somer, you are my only hope. To give you an idea of what he will eat, His favorites include:
    –Cheese bread with AJ’s faux parmesean and a little garlic
    –Mac N Cheese
    –Disappearing Lasagna (chef AJ, but going to try this recipe next time)
    –Mushroom Stroganoff (we are having this for lunch Thur and I will bring you the recipe, this is his new favorite)
    –Hot dogs
    –Grilled Cheese
    –Ranch Potato Soup (tweaked my cheesy, smokey, creamy Potato Soup recipe and he told me I had out done myself)
    –Ham sandwiches
    He doesn’t like: Vegetables
    so he likes creamy and cheesy, by the way since becoming vegan he has branched out. LOL! Seriously if you have any ideas please send them my way.

  11. Recently I made vegetarian cannelloni without ricotta. I used white beans to add substance to the filling and a light sprinking of cheese on top. I guess the vegan version could use the cheese sauce. If you are interested you can check out the cannelloni recipe on my blog.

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