It's always great to stash a few frozen main dishes in the freezer to serve on busy December days. Vegetable lasagna has always been one of my favorites to make ahead and freeze. It got even easier once the oven-ready lasagna noodles became available. I recently tweaked my recipe to use up some fresh baby spinach and a lovely red pepper before they went bad. I think I like this version even better.
1 1/2 cups chopped onion
1 large red pepper, chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
2 Tblsp. olive oil
1/2 tsp. salt-free garlic-herb seasoning blend
1 lb. part-skim ricotta cheese
1 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese (divided use)
3 Tblsp. grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
3/4 tsp. oregano OR Italian seasoning
1/4 tsp. pepper
1 quart spaghetti sauce or Alfredo sauce
9 lasagna noodles, UNCOOKED
1 cup water (maybe less)
Extra Parmesan, if desired
In large skillet, sauté onion and red pepper in olive oil until soft; add the garlic and cook another minute or two. Add the herb mix. Stir to combine, cover skillet, reduce heat, and simmer about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.
In medium bowl, combine ricotta, 1 cup mozzarella, egg, Parmesan, and seasonings. Set aside.
Spread 1 cup spaghetti sauce on bottom of a 13 x 9” baking dish. Layer on: 3 noodles, half of cheese mixture, half of vegetable mixture, and 1 cup sauce. Repeat layers. Top with remaining 3 noodles, 1 cup sauce, 1/2 cup mozzarella. Sprinkle with extra Parmesan if desired.
If using regular lasagna noodles, pour water around the edges of the baking dish. If using the no-boil, ready to bake lasagna noodles, you will not need the water. Cover baking dish tightly with foil.
Bake at 350º for 1 hour 15 minutes. Let stand 15 more minutes before serving. Makes 6 to 8 servings.
May be made ahead and frozen for future use. Simply thaw overnight in refrigerator and bake as directed.