Vegetable Lasagna aka Carb Loading

20190727_200109I recently completed a sprint triathlon, even though I hate running (and exercise in general). One of the only things that gets me through the training is the ability to eat whatever I want because I know I’ll burn the calories off later. This lasagna, which I made for carb loading the night before the race, is the cherry on top.

The details:

Jump to recipe

Thought process:

20190727_115655I love lasagna, and I think it’s one of those special dishes where eliminating meat does not leave you feeling unsatisfied in the least. I based this recipe off a great baked penne recipe from Giada De Laurentis combined with another random lasagna recipe that I had in my arsenal. My general feeling about lasagna is that you can never have too much filling, as long as the pieces of vegetable (or whatever) are not cut too large. However, when adding vegetables to a noodle casserole, it’s critical to consider the amount of water that is contained within the vegetables and that will leak out when they’re cooked. For that reason, both Giada and I roast the vegetables before combining them with the other ingredients, so that most of the liquid is already out and doesn’t make the lasagna wet.

Below, the recipe:

Vegetable Lasagna
Makes 6-8 servings

  • 1 red bell pepper, cut into 1 inch squares
  • 3 (2 pounds) zucchini, cut into 1 inch cubes
  • 3/4 pounds eggplant, cut into 1 inch cubes
  • 1 pound mixed mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
  • 3/4 pounds fennel, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 yellow onion, thickly sliced
  • 1 Tbsp herbs de Provence
  • 1/2 cup + 1/2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1.5 tsp kosher salt, divided
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 28 oz tomato sauce
  • 1 pound lasagna noodles, cooked according to package directions
  • 1 cup ricotta cheese
  • 1 egg white
  • 3/4 cup grated Parmesan, divided
  • 16 oz mozzarella, ¼ inch slices
  1. Preheat the oven to 450°F
  2. Put the bell pepper, zucchini, eggplant, mushrooms, fennel, and onion in a large bowl and toss with 1/2 cup olive oil, 1 tsp kosher salt, 1/2 tsp pepper, and herbs de Provence
  3. Spread on a baking sheet and roast for 15 min. Reduce heat to 400°F
  4. To make the sauce, in a medium sauce pan heat 1/2 Tbsp olive oil over medium heat then add garlic and red pepper flakes and cook 1 minute until fragrant
  5. Add tomato sauce and 1/2 tsp kosher salt and bring to a simmer, then cook 10 min
  6. In a small bowl, combine ricotta, egg, and ¼ cup grated Parm and mix with a fork
  7. Grease a 13×9 baking dish with cooking spray
  8. Spread ¼ cup of the sauce over the bottom, then layer on noodles, vegetables,  sauce, ricotta, and mozzarella in 3 layers, then finish with a final layer of noodles, sauce, and cheese
  9. Sprinkle on ½ cup grated Parm, cover with foil and bake for 40 min until cheese is melty
  10. Remove foil and bake another 10-20 min until browned


3/5 stars.3 stars

On the plus side, this vegetable mix goes really nicely with lasagna and makes it feel hearty without the meat. In this particular iteration, I did not make enough sauce or enough ricotta mix. I would do at least 50% more sauce next time and double the ricotta. However, the dish’s main suffering was that it was very under salted. I would start by doubling the salt at every level and tasting especially the cooked vegetables and the sauce to salt to taste. Without the salt, the whole dish just tasted a little flat.



2 thoughts on “Vegetable Lasagna aka Carb Loading

  1. Pingback: Vegetable Lasagna aka Carb Loading — Results Not Guaranteed | My Meals are on Wheels

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