Last weekend I had the worst craving for lasagna. Then on Monday I saw all over facebook that it was National Lasagna Day—really? Sometimes it seems like every day is National Something Day. But with the extra nudge from Facebook I decided to work on a lasagna this week. I really wanted something that came close to the flavors that I remembered from a classic non-vegan lasagna. I decided to use my tomato basil sauce and the cashew spread that I had used to fill some zucchini blossoms a few weeks ago. Awesome combination!
The night I served this lasagna my parents joined us for dinner. My mom is avoiding gluten right now so I sought out some gluten free lasagna noodles. The brand I used is De Boles—which you already know if you’re following me on Instagram. They were fantastic! Not cardboard like or anything! They were also “no boil” noodles which made prep a cinch!
Choose whichever veggies you like to stuff between the layers—I used zucchini that I shredded with my julienne peeler—love this thing! I think you could use carrots, eggplant, mushrooms, or summer squash and have great results! Adjust it to fit your preferences!
Lest you think things are all fancy and glamorous over here—behind the scenes of a photo shoot….
This lasagna is so flavorful because of the tomato basil sauce and the cashew cream. I know it looks a little intimidating to make all of the components of the lasagna from scratch, but it really isn’t difficult. If you want, you can always make the sauce the day before—make a double batch, because trust me, you’ll want more!
Keep the rest of your meal simple—a salad or some quickly sautéed veggies like green beans or asparagus would be awesome! I fried up a couple of quick zucchini blossoms with mine too!
½ c cashews
½ c brazil nuts
juice of 1 lemon
1 clove garlic
1 T fresh basil, oregano, rosemary
1 T olive oil
½ t salt
few cracks of pepper
1 T nutritional yeast
¼ c almond milk, unsweetened
1/3 c pine nuts
1 t nutritional yeast
Tomato Basil Sauce, made with 5 pounds of tomatoes, which should yield 4-5 cups of sauce
Extra veggies for filling, sliced finely
Lasagna noodles (I like De Boles Gluten Free No Boil Rice Noodles—cooking instructions are based on these noodles, but adjust if you use something else)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In a high speed blender or food processor, blend all cashew cream ingredients except for the almond milk. Slowly add the almond milk until you like the consistency (I find that until you add the almond milk to the cream is like a sticky dry paste, but if you add too much milk the sauce might be too soft. ¼ c seems perfect!).
Place a small amount (1/2 cup) of tomato sauce on the bottom of a 9 x 13” oven safe pan—you want to cover the bottom but don’t use too much sauce here! Place the noodles across the pan, breaking to fit. Spread 1/3 of the cashew cream sauce over the noodles. Add ½ of your veggies, and about 1/3 of the remaining red sauce. Cover with another layer of noodles and repeat. After the third layer of lasagna noodles spread with the remaining third of the cashew cream and then cover with the remaining red sauce, making sure to cover all of the noodles (you need the liquid to cook the no boil noodles).
Note: If you think you may be low on sauce, err on leaving more for the top layer, as it is needed to keep the top noodles moist in order to cook properly. If you don’t get everything coated well with sauce (cashew and tomato) the no bake noodles may end up crispy. Alternately, you can use boiled noodles to ensure that they will be nice and soft!
Place pine nuts and nutritional yeast in your food processor and pulse until they are a small crumb. Sprinkle over top of lasagna.
Cover the entire pan tightly with foil (to keep steam in) and bake in the oven for 1 hour. Allow to cool for a few minutes and serve!