Take it from a meat eater - this is one of the best lasagne I have ever eaten! This delicious vegetable lasagne is quicker to make than your typical beef lasagne and is packed with so much flavour and earthy notes from the mushrooms that you don't miss the beef one bit!
Why I Love This Recipe
- quick lasagne to make
- flavour flavour flavour
- the kids will love it - at least my picky one did
- it feels healthier than your classic lasagne
- cheaper to make than beef lasagne
I am a HUGE fan of vegetables; I could sit and eat bowls of roasted veggies all day! But, the truth is they tend to play second fiddle to the protein when most people and I cook. Well, with this vegetable lasagne, they are singing their own tune!
There is so much flavour from the earthy mushrooms, herbs, creamy ricotta, cheesy topping and that nice slight sweetness from the sweet potato. It cooks quicker than your classic lasagne and is lighter on the wallet too!
There are many layers to making vegetable lasagne - pardon the pun! If you decide to do everything at home/homemade, it can take a little longer, but it's often worth it when you have the time! These are my steps in making sweet potato puree, fried mushrooms and bechamel sauce!
A classic sauce that every home cook should have up their sleeve. It's the base for many different sauces. You can use it for white pizza, lasagne, chowder and a good bowl of mac n cheese too.
All you need is flour, butter, salt & milk, You can add spices, herbs, garlic etc, to it, but the base is just those 4 ingredients! For mine, I added garlic, so I didn't need to add it elsewhere.
The trick to making this sauce is low heat, constantly whisking so you have no lumps. If you do get lumps, then add a drop of ice cold water and whisk like you life depends upon it 😉
Sweet Potato Puree
This simple puree is made using water (or stock), sweet potatoes, butter & salt. The key to success here lies in chopping the sweet potato into even-sized pieces so that they all cook evenly. Boil them in salted water and then into the food processor/blender they go with some butter and a little cooking liquid!
The truth is you can use any kind of mushrooms for the vegetable lasagne. I used portobello as I like using portobello mushrooms as I find them a little earthier, and given we aren't using meat, they have a little more bite to them, making them "meatier".
Simply peel & slice the mushrooms and cook them in oil in a hot pan - it'll get smokey! Once the liquid is released, and they start to brown, add a knob of butter to finish them. Don't add the butter at the start, as it will burn.
TOP TIP - don't crowd the pan as you will just steam the mushrooms, which draws out the liquid and makes them mushier in texture
Layering The Lasagne
So, we have all made a classic beef lasagne where we pile it high with tomato/beef sauce and too much cheese (said nobody ever!), right?
Well, having made this numerous times now, I've gotten the balance right (I think) for mushroom, sweet potato, ricotta & bechamel balance
- start with a layer of sweet potato puree - just enough to cover the casserole dish you are using. The key is an even thin layer
- next, add your sauteed mushrooms and a sprinkling of fresh thyme - it makes all the difference!
- a couple tbsps of smooth ricotta goes next. Once again, just a nice thin layer
- top this with your lasagne sheets and a very thin layer of bechamel
- repeat 3 times and top with cheese - you can go fancy or just use some good old shredded 4 cheese 😉
All you need to do is let it cool for a minute, cut a nice square and pour yourself a glass of wine 😉
De iuliis Winery
As you can probably see from the photo above, I have paired this delicious vegetable lasagne with a wine from the stunning De iuliis range. These guys were recently crowned Cellar Door Of The Year for the Hunter Valley, and that's no mean feat with over 150 cellar doors to visit in the region!
Not only do they have this epic title, but they are also a Halliday 5 red star winery - this not only means their wines are highly rated, it means they are consistent as you only get the red rating if you have done it for 4+ consecutive years.
Aside from this - they have a difficult name to pronounce, own their own vineyards so it's all theirs from start to finish and most importantly, make some GREAT wines and really affordable prices too. If ever there was a Hunter Valley winery you should get to know - it's this one!
The wine in the glass today is the De iuliis 2019 Steven Vineyard Shiraz. This vineyard was originally planted by the Penfolds back in the 60s. The De iuliis family started using the fruit in 2003 to make their 'Charlie Shiraz' named after Mike's grandfather. In 2009 they leased the vineyard, and then in 2013 went the whole way and purchased it as they loved the fruit so much!
The Stevens Vineyard wine is a single vineyard wine that is only produced in exceptional vintages and made in small quantities. This wine has the legs to go 10-15 years in the cellar, but after a quick visit to the decanter will drink beautifully young too.
For me - I get mulberries, black cherries and plums. There is plenty of fruit going on but body and structure too. Firm, almost a little gritty at first tannins, nice herbaceous notes, nutmeg, a little woodiness and great length. It's a well-made wine that is showing the hallmarks of being a cracker in years to come.
Alternative Vegetarian Dishes
So, you have made my vegetable lasagne or have simply been inspired to make for vegetable dishes. Check out these guys below to get you started!
Happy Cooking & Happy Eating Friends
- 6-9 lasagne sheets
- 200 g ricotta
- 100 g shredded cheese
Sweet Potato Puree
- 500 g sweet potato
- 1 knob butter
- 700 g portobello mushrooms
- 50 g butter
- 75 ml oil
- 2 tbsp flour heaped
- 40 g butter
- 500 ml milk
- 1 clove garlic crushed
- Chef Knives
- Chopping board
- 2 saucepan
- frying pan
- measuring/weighing utensils
- casserole dish – mine was a 2.5L pyrex dish
Sweet Potato Puree
- Peel and dice the sweet potato into bite sized pieces
- Boil them in salted water approx. 12-15mins
- Once soft, strain reserving 60-80ml water
- Blend, adding a knob of butter and 50ml water – if too thick add more until smooth but not runny
- Slice mushrooms finely
- Fry in batches in oil until soft, finish with a knob of butter in the pan *see tips*
- Salt mushrooms at the end as during the process it will release more water
- Heat butter and crushed garlic in saucepan
- Add flour and stir to combine
- Gradually add the milk, whisking all the time so no lumps form
- Place a thin layer of sweet potato on bottom of casserole dish
- Add a layer of mushrooms and sprinkle of thyme or dried herbs
- Add a few blobs of ricotta – it doesn’t need to be a perfect smooth layer
- Use 2-3 pieces of lasagne sheets – depending upon the size of your casserole dish
- Spread a thin layer of bechamel on top
- Repeat until you have 3 layers
- Sprinkle cheese on top
- Bake @ 180c for 20-25mins
- each component can be made in advance and cooked later in the day if doing for a dinner party
- once the mushrooms are cooked they will release a little more juice/liquid so just strain this off before making the lasagne
- don’t crowd the frying pan when cooking mushrooms – this will just steam them and make them soggy and release more liquid. Cook in batches and add the butter at the end to finish
- this dish can be reheated and will keep for a couple days in the fridge or alternatively can be frozen too