There are very few things more comforting than a good lasagna and this one delivers not only on the comfort, but also the vegetables by serving up a great dose of spinach.
- 16 - 20 oz. frozen chopped spinach
- 1 lb. pork, turkey, chicken, or vegetarian sausage (use wheat/gluten-free, if needed) optional
- 3 cups low fat ricotta cheese (or use any variety)
- 1 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
- 1 egg
- 4 cups chunky red pasta sauce
- 9 no-boil lasagna noodles (use wheat/gluten-free, if needed), or cooked regular lasagna noodles
- 1 1/2 cups shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese (or use any variety),
- Thaw the spinach and drain it thoroughly (I put the spinach in a fine mesh strainer and press the water through the strainer with the bottom side of a flat bowl).
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9 x 13-inch baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.
- If you are using the sausage, remove it from its casing and brown it in a skillet over medium heat, breaking it up into smaller pieces while it cooks. Set it aside.
- In a medium bowl, thoroughly combine the ricotta and Parmesan cheese and the egg.
- Spread about 1 cup of the pasta sauce on the bottom of the baking dish, and top it with 3 noodles laid side by side. Spread 1/3 of the ricotta cheese mixture over the noodles. Top it with 1/3 of the spinach, (and all of the sausage, if you are using it), and then 1/3 of the remaining sauce.
- Repeat the layers two more times with the noodles, ricotta cheese mixture, spinach, and sauce.
- Top it with the mozzarella cheese, cover it tightly with aluminum foil (spray the foil with nonstick cooking spray so the cheese doesn’t stick to it), and bake it for 50 – 60 minutes until the sauce is bubbling. Let the lasagna cool for 10 – 15 minutes before cutting it into squares and serving, refrigerating it for up to 3 days, or freezing it for up to 3 months.
Slow Cooker Directions
- Thaw and drain the spinach, pre-cook the sausage (optional), and combine the ricotta, Parmesan, and egg as directed. Spread a thin layer of the pasta sauce in the bottom of the slow cooker, and top it with 3 noodles cut to fit and laid side by side. Spread 1/3 of the ricotta cheese mixture over the noodles. Top it with 1/3 of the spinach, (and all of the sausage, if you are using it), and then 1/3 of the remaining sauce. Repeat the layers two more times with the noodles, ricotta cheese mixture, spinach, and sauce. Cook on low 4 - 6 hours or until noodles are tender. Turn off the slow cooker, then top with the mozzarella cheese and let it sit, covered, 10 minutes before serving. (Slow cooker cooking times may vary—Get to know your slow cooker and, if necessary, adjust cooking times accordingly.)
Do Ahead or Delegate: Defrost the spinach, brown and refrigerate the sausage if you are using it, shred the Parmesan and mozzarella cheeses if necessary and refrigerate, make and refrigerate the cheese/egg mixture, or fully assemble and refrigerate the lasagna, or fully prepare and refrigerate or freeze it. Scramble Flavor Booster: Add some Italian seasonings such as garlic powder, oregano, and/or parsley to the Parmesan and ricotta mixture. Tip: Making lasagnas is a great project to do with kids. Because it requires sequencing and patterns, it’s a mini math and language lesson in a dish. Nutritional Information Per Serving (% based upon daily values): Calories 386, Total Fat: 15g, 23%; Saturated Fat: 8g, 39%; Cholesterol: 74mg, 24.5%; Sodium: 1122mg, 47%; Total Carbohydrate: 36g, 12%; Dietary Fiber: 2g, 7.5%; Sugar: 17g; Protein: 23g Like this recipe? Check out The Scramble's family-friendly meal plans to see just how simple getting dinner on the table can be!
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