This is the easiest vegetarian lasagne you will ever make. Full of flavour and texture, plus that luscious rich and creamy sauce. But with no meat and oh so quick and easy to make. It’s fuss-free vegetable lasagna at it’s best.
Why you’ll love this recipe
- I only use two pans, one for the cheese sauce and an oven tray for everything else.
- No layering and faffing about, this is my lazy lasagne and so easy to pull together any night of the week.
- Meat free but just as delicious as the ‘real thing’. My mix of mushrooms and chickpeas gives the perfect mince-like texture to this vegetarian lasagne.
Lasagne/lasagna however you want to spell it, is one of the most popular dishes the world over. And there are so many versions of this classic Italian pasta dish.
The inspiration for this vegetable lasagne
While I adore lasagne I can’t be bothered with all the layering and pots and pans for meat, tomato sauce and cheese sauce, then an oven dish too. Who can be bothered with all that washing-up! Anyway with my Lazy Midweek Lasagne I just throw it together and this has proved one of the most popular recipes on Larder Love.
Another highly popular recipe here is my Vegetarian Moussaka. So I thought I would take the best ideas from both of my recipes and create this delicious super easy vegetarian lasagne.
In the vegetarian moussaka I used a mix of mushrooms and chickpeas to replace the usual minced beef/ground beef. I have gone for the same combo here but used a cunning trick to get a really mince-like texture that I feel is so important in a good lasagne.
Okay so the combo of mushrooms and chickpeas is the base here but as the saying goes, it’s not what you do, it’s the way that you do it.
I have roughly chopped half of the mushrooms and put the rest through my food processor. But very importantly I just pulsed them. I didn’t want them to end up as mush so just pulsed the processor a few times to get afiner chop than the ones I did by hand.
As for the chickpeas they too met the pulsing of the food processor. I didn’t want them whole but I certainly didn’t want them to end up as a paste verging on the hummus! Three pulses was all it took to get the texture I wanted.
Ingredients for Easy Lazy Vegetarian Lasagne
- Onion, garlic, carrot and celery make up the classic Italian Sofrito sauce base.
- Chickpeas and mushrooms make up the body of the ‘mince’
- Tinned tomatoes (I’m loving these tinned cherry tomatoes that the supermarkets have nowadays, so much more flavour than the usual tinned tomatoes.
- Dried oregano, thyme and rosemary and a bay leaf make up the herbal additions and balsamic vinegar and salt and pepper top things off in the flavour department.
- Half a pack (250g in pack) of ready-to-use lasagne sheets. If you use dried lasagne sheets you will have to prepare them yourself. Just follow manufacturer’s instructions.
Any lasagne has to have a seriously rich and creamy cheesy sauce. So here’s what I used for my vegetable lasagne. Vegetarian versions of cheeses are available in so many stores and of course use any type of milk that you like.
- Three cheeses, all Italian of course! – ricotta, mozzarella and parmesan.
- Milk and a little butter
- Cornflour to thicken things up plus salt and white pepper and some nutmeg for flavour.
I love using ricotta in sauces, it’s light, fully texture breaks down beautifully. If you don’t actually have any Ricotta cheese in the fridge you can very easily make your own using my How To Make Homemade Ricotta recipe.
If you don’t have any lasagne sheets then just use any type of pasta shapes that you like and turn this into a vegetarian pasta bake.
Not a fan of chickpeas? Then try using canned green lentils instead, no need to blitz these in the food processor.
How to make vegetarian lasagne
I use the oven tray that I’m going to actaully bake the lasagne in to make the sauce too. It’s a 27 x 18cm enamel baking dish that can be used on both hob and oven.
First, make the Sofrito, that’s just sauteing the onion along with the celery and carrot for a couple of minutes then adding the garlic for a minute. This is your base.
Now blitz half the mushrooms and chop the rest. And blitz the chickpeas too. See my notes on making this ‘mince’.
Add the mince mix to the dish and stir through the sofrito and keep cooking for 5 minutes adding the herbs, balsamic vinegar and seasoning as well as the tinned tomatoes.
Let this lot simmer for 15 minutes while you make the cheese sauce.
Melt a tablespoon of butter in a small pan and stir in the cornflour. Add the cheeses and mik and stir till it all comes together in a gorgeous creamy sauce. Add the nutmeg plus some salt and white pepper to taste. i like to use white pepper in acheese sauce (or any white sauce) so that you don’t get black pepper speckles in it.
Tear up your lasagne sheets and squish them into the vegetarian mince and sauce mixture in your oven tray. Now pour on that creamy cheese sauce.
Sprinkle with more parmesan (yes, you can never have too much cheese!) and some more dried oregano and pop it in the oven for 20-25 minutes till golden and bubbly.
How to serve vegetarian lasagne
I like to just serve mine with a green salad on the side.
You can always add chips or a baked potato if you feel the urge to add more carbs.
This vegetarian lasagne will keep in the fridge for up to 4 days. You can easily freeze it for up to 3 months. Defrost thoroughly before reheating till piping hot.
Looking for more easy vegetarian dishes to try at home? Then check these out before you go;
Easy Lazy Vegetarian Lasagne
- oven tray you can use on hob as well, mine measures 27 x 18cm
- 1 onion diced
- 1 celery stick diced
- 1 carrot diced
- 2 garlic cloves minced
- 400 g mushrooms
- 400 g can of chickpeas drained
- 1 tsp balsamic vinegar
- 1/2 tsp oregano dried
- 1/2 tsp thyme dried
- 1/2 tsp rosemary dried
- 1 bay leaf
- 400 g tinned tomatoes
- 125 g lasagne sheets
- 1 tbsp butter
- 2 tbsp cornflour
- 125 g mozzarella
- 200 g ricotta
- 3 tbsp parmesan grated
- 150 ml milk
- pinch nutmeg
- salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 180C
- Chop half the mushrooms into small pieces and pulse the remainder in food processor
- pulse the chickpeas in food processor till rough pieces
- Saute the onion in oven-proof dish along with the carrot and celery for 3 minutes then add the garlic and continue cooking for 2 minutes
- Add the mushrooms and chickpeas and stir well adding the herbs, balsamic vinegar, seasoning and tinned tomatoes.
- Simmer this for 15 minutes while you make the cheese sauce
- Melt the butter in a small pan and stir in the cornflour to make a roux
- Add the milk and cheeses plus grated nutmeg and seasoning and stir till you have a rich creamy sauce, about 5 minutes
- Tear up the pasta sheets and tuck them randomly into the mince sauce mixture then pour over the cheese sauce, sprinkle with a little more parmesan and dried oregano
- Bake for 20-25 minutes