Vegetable Lasagna With Eggplant and Spinach
Here's a vegetable lasagna that goes together quickly and neatly, ready to serve in just over an hour start to finish. The flavors of the eggplant and spinach blend beautifully with the spaghetti sauce and the mixture of cheddar and mozzarella cheeses. If the kids don't look too carefully, you'll be able to able to sneak both the spinach and the eggplant past their lips and into their tummies for a very nutritious meal full of fiber, vitamins, and minerals.
To make preparation fast and easy, use the shortcut method to soften the lasagna noodles in a 9x13 pan rather than taking time to cook them in a large pot of boiling water. There's enough liquid in the ingredients so that the noodles finish cooking perfectly as they bake inside the lasagna.
If you use a container of prepared spaghetti sauce (homemade or store-bought), there's no cooking necessary during preparation of this delicious dish. Use a bag of baby spinach that's already washed and dried, wash and slice the eggplant, and open a pizza-blend bag of shredded cheese and you'll have this ready to go into the oven in a hurry with very little clean-up.
I make this in a 9 x 13-inch Pyrex pan and it fits perfectly. If you prefer to use a wider or deeper lasagna pan, you might need to add a few noodles and/or adjust the ingredients accordingly.
Here's the recipe:
Vegetable Lasagna with Eggplant and Spinach (Vegetarian recipe)
12 lasagna noodles
1 can or jar (approx, 24 ounces) of your favorite spaghetti sauce
1 large eggplant, sliced into 1/2 to 3/4-inch slices
6 to 8 cups fresh baby spinach (from a 6-ounce bag)
3 cups shredded cheese, mozzarella-cheddar pizza blend or your favorite
salt and pepper to taste
Prepare the lasagna noodles the quick way by placing them in a 9 x 13 pan and pouring hot water over them to cover. Start this first, as you gather the other ingredients and preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
Spread about a tablespoon of olive oil to cover the bottom of a 9 x 13 pan or lasagna pan. Then add a small amount of spaghetti sauce. Start layering by adding 3 of the softened lasagna noodles on top, followed by eggplant slices, about 1/4 of the remaining spaghetti sauce, then about 1/4 of the cheese. Salt and pepper the layers as you go, if you like.
Follow with another layer of 3 noodles, more sauce, plenty of spinach (press it down), and cheese.
Next, layer 3 more noodles, sauce, and the remaining eggplant and spinach, followed by cheese.
Top it all off with the last 3 noodles, the rest of the sauce, and the rest of the cheese.
Tear off a large piece of aluminum foil, enough to cover the pan. Spray with cooking spray or spread olive oil onto the foil to keep it from sticking, then loosely cover the pan with the foil.
Place into the preheated 375 degree oven and bake covered for 30-35 minutes, covered. Remove the foil (set aside) and bake for 10-15 minutes more (don't let the cheese burn). When the lasagna is nice and hot and bubbly, remove from oven then cover again with the foil. Let the lasagna set for about 15 minutes before serving.
Makes 8 generous servings. Reheats beautifully and tastes even better the second day.
Sound good? If you try it, I'd love to know. Don't forget to "Yum" (at the top of the article) or pin (below) the recipe so you don't lose it. Thanks for sharing!