My dad makes the most beautiful lasagna you’ll ever lay your eyes on. With layers of noodles, ground beef, homemade marinara, homemade bechamel, and cheese, it’s a sight to behold. It’s also usually a multi-day process to make. Maybe if I was newly retired like he is or a full time food blogger I’d make it myself, but as a working woman trying to stay active, have a social life, and somehow keep up with this blog, ain’t got no time for that.
Enter my easy peasy healthy vegetarian lasagna rolls that can be whipped up in under an hour! I skip the homemade bechamel in lieu of ricotta and cottage cheese. You could use entirely ricotta cheese, but I like swapping in some cottage cheese to beef up the protein in this meatless meal. I also use (gasp) jarred marinara sauce. I know I often advocate for cooking from scratch, but sometimes convenience trumps that. Look for a jarred sauce with no added sugar in the ingredients and as little sodium as possible. Under 5% DV for sodium per serving is the ideal, but the lowest I’ve been able to find is 7% DV in Mediterranean Gardens marinara sauce (not sponsored, I just like this brand!). Still not too shabby when them norm for pasta sauce is often double that!
The result is a fast dinner that’s as convenient as it is healthy. I’ve made this numerous times for John and recently for a class on family meals at work, where it got the thumbs up from parents and kids alike. Pair it with a side salad to make half your plate vegetables and enjoy its cheesy goodness!
- 9 whole wheat lasagna noodles
- 10 oz full fat ricotta cheese
- 6 oz cottage cheese (or more ricotta cheese)
- 2 oz shredded Mozzarella cheese
- 6 oz frozen spinach, defrosted with excess water squeezed out
- 1 large egg
- ¼ tsp salt
- ⅛ tsp pepper
- 2 cups marinara sauce (I love Mediterranean Gardens marinara)
- 4 oz mozzarella cheese
- Preheat the oven to 350F.
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil and cook your lasagna noodles according to the package directions (note: you may need to cook them in two batches).
- Meanwhile, combine the ricotta, cottage cheese, 2 oz mozzarella cheese, spinach, egg, salt, and pepper in a bowl and mix thoroughly.
- Once your noodles are finished cooking, lay them out on a wire rack. Once cool enough to touch, divide the cheese mixture amongst the noodles, spreading it across their entire length.
- Roll up the noodles and place in a baking dish (I used a 9x9 dish and managed to squeeze them all in) with ½ cup marinara sauce spread over the bottom. Spoon the other 1.5 cups marinara on top of the rolls then top with the shredded mozzarella.
- Bake for 15-20 minutes and finish them off for 1-2 minutes under the broiler to brown the cheese (keep a close eye on them when broiling!).
What are your best tricks for making speedy weeknight dinners?