This easy vegan lentil lasagna is gluten free, nut free and packed with protein. Great if you're looking for a healthy weeknight dinner that makes loads of portions!
There's something about Autumn (or Fall as my American and Canadian friends say!) that just makes me want to eat carbs. Particularly pasta bakes and lasagna.
Whether it's a creamy mushroom pasta dish or a hearty protein-packed lasagna, I am there for all things carby and love that cosy feeling that comes when you snuggle up with an oven-baked warming dinner.
And this Vegan Lentil Lasagna recipe is just that! Made with red lentils, Mediterranean vegetables, herby tomatoes and a homemade creamy cheese sauce (that takes less than 15 mins to make), this gluten free dish is the ideal warming dinner. Plus, you'll have a portion or two left for lunch the next day.
My favourite thing about this recipe? Hands down, its high protein and iron content from the lentils. I'm a big fan of red lentils and love using them in lasagna because they're so cheap!
If you're looking for a vegan weeknight dinner on a budget, this recipe is for you!.
VEGAN LENTIL LASAGNA - RECIPE NOTES
Allergen Free - I also love that this lasagna can be gluten free if you use brown rice or corn pasta (or any other gluten free pasat), nut free and of course totally dairy free.
Don't have lasagna noodles? No problem! You can use 2 cups of your favourite pasta instead by just mixing it into the tomato/lentil sauce and it will cook in the oven.
Need to Make it Quicker? - If you're short on time and this recipe still looks a little long to you, use pre-cooked lentils to cut down your stovetop cooking time by 10 minutes (just simmer the tomato/lentil mixture for 10 minutes instead of 20 as the veggies will finish cooking in the oven).
Soaking Lentils - To cut down on cooking time and to make the red lentils easier to digest, soak them for a few hours prior to cooking (as little as 2 hours). This will reduce their cooking time on the stovetop.
Lasagna noodles are just a type of pasta use to make lasagna. Contrary to their name, they're not noodles! They're long, flat sheets that usually have slightly fluted or ribboned sides.
Lasagna typically has at least two layers, but it's up to you. In this recipe I've shown you how to make two layers, but you could make less if you wish (and if you're using pasta instead of lasagna sheets - see notes).
There are loads of brands of vegan cheese - some of my favourites include Daiya, Chao and Violife. Whichever you decide to use, it's best to go for a cheese that stretches and melts - both of the above brands do this.
You absolutely don't have to. Personally, I find I digest lentils a lot better if I soak them for 2 hours or more prior to cooking (and it cuts down on their cooking time dramatically) so I like to, but it's definitely not essential to the recipe.
LOOKING FOR SIDE DISHES TO EAT WITH THIS?
Vegan Lentil Lasagna
- 2 cups unsweetened soy or coconut milk
- ¼ cup tapioca flour
- ¼ cup nutritional yeast
- 1 tablespoon onion powder
- 2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 2 teaspoon olive oil
- 1 medium onion, finely diced
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed
- 1 large zucchini/courgette, chopped into 1cm cubes (about 2 cups)
- 1 large red bell pepper, chopped into 1cm cubes (about 1½ cups)
- 3 cups crushed tomatoes (just under one 800ml can)
- 1 cup uncooked red lentils
- 1½ cup vegetable stock (1 stock cube dissolved in 1½ cups boiling water)
- 2 tablespoon dried mixed Italian herbs
- 6 (approx.) gluten free or regular lasagna sheets/noodles as needed (or you can use pasta - see notes)
- 1 cup vegan cheese shreds or slices
To make the cheese sauce
- In a medium saucepan on a low heat, combine all sauce ingredients (using a metal whisk to remove any lumps if needed).
- Heat the mixture for about 10 minutes, stirring frequently, until it thickens and resembles cheese sauce.
- Remove from the heat and set aside.
To make the filling
- Preheat your oven to 350°F/175°C.
- Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan on a medium heat. Add the diced onion and sauté for 5 minutes until soft, stirring regularly.
- Add garlic, zucchini and red pepper and sauté for a further 5 minutes, continuing to stir.
- Pour in the tomatoes, lentils, stock and dried herbs. Increase the heat to bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat and cover with a lid.
- Simmer for about 20 minutes, or until the lentils are completely soft.
- Pour the tomato/lentil filling into a deep ovenproof dish (just enough to cover the bottom of the dish).
- Cover this with 3 of the lasagna sheets/noodles, and pour half the cheese sauce over these evenly. (If your cheese sauce has become too thick while you've been making the tomato/lentil filling, simply reheat it very gently or thin it out with a small amount of water.)
- Repeat the process, using all the remaining tomato/lentil filling, the remaining 3 lasagna sheets and the remaining cheese sauce.
- Sprinkle cheese shreds over the top, and cover the dish in foil.
- Bake for 15 minutes in the oven, remove the foil and bake for a further 15 minutes until cheese/cheese sauce is golden.
- Serve with your favourite salad for a hearty, protein-packed dinner!
If you’ve tried this recipe, please leave a comment or tip for others below. I'd love to know how you’ve made it your own!