This quick and easy Vegetable Lasagna recipe is a simple and cozy casserole that comes together with just 20 minutes of prep! Loaded with fresh veggies and plenty of gooey, melty cheese, the healthy dinner is a delicious comfort food classic that the whole family will love!
How to Make Vegetable Lasagna | 1-Minute Video
Easy Vegetable Lasagna
A warm and hearty vegetable lasagna is the best way to get your family to eat their veggies! While my kids (and husband) have certain vegetables that they enjoy, it can often be a challenge to encourage new or different options. If there's one thing that I've learned after raising three boys, it's that combining vegetables with pasta or a cheesy casserole is always more appealing than plain, raw produce on a plate.
My mother-in-law makes a great beef and sausage lasagna that she serves every year at Christmas. My boys go crazy for her decadent dish, but you know what? They also devour this lighter, healthier, veggie-packed version! I promise, if my house full of hungry guys loves this meal, then you won't miss the meat, either.
What Vegetables are Good in Lasagna?
Lasagna is a classic Italian casserole. While a traditional recipe includes layers of lasagna noodles, red sauce, cheese and meat, you can also switch it up with a vegetable-packed meat-free recipe, Italian sausage, chicken, or white sauces such as Alfredo. The options are truly endless!
For our favorite healthy vegetable lasagna recipe, I bulk up the marinara sauce with a combination of sweet bell pepper, sliced mushrooms, diced onion, diced zucchini and minced garlic. The good news is that you can mix it up and modify the recipe to include any of your family's favorites. Corn, diced eggplant, or spinach would all be great additions. In the fall, I'll probably go with some butternut squash and kale!
This is a quick overview of the ingredients that you'll need for this easy vegetable lasagna. As always, the full list of measurements and specific instructions are included in the recipe box at the bottom of the post.
- Olive oil: just a little bit to sauté the vegetables
- Mushrooms: I like the "meaty" flavor of baby portabella mushrooms, which give the vegetarian casserole a hearty texture. Look for pre-sliced baby bella mushrooms for a nice shortcut. You can substitute with any other variety of mushroom available.
- Zucchini: a mild vegetable that adds bulk and nutrition to the sauce. Dice it finely and your family won't even know it's there! You can also substitute with yellow summer squash.
- Sweet bell pepper: red bell peppers tend to be sweeter, while green bell peppers are a bit zestier. Pick your favorite!
- Onion and garlic: add great flavor to the dish.
- Egg: helps bind the ricotta cheese layer so that it doesn't ooze out when you slice the casserole.
- Ricotta cheese: adds a thick, creamy, cheesy layer to the dish. You can substitute with cottage cheese for a lighter option.
- Mozzarella cheese and Parmesan cheese: these additional cheeses add flavor to the casserole and hold it all together. The more cheese the better, right?!
- Marinara sauce: pick a high-quality store-bought jar (such as Rao's marinara) or make your own at home with this easy recipe.
- No-boil ("oven-ready") lasagna noodles: these par-boiled noodles do not require boiling before you assemble the casserole. They cut the prep time in half, making this vegetable lasagna quick and easy!
How To Make Easy Vegetable Lasagna
A light and fresh garden vegetable lasagna comes together with about 20 minutes of prep.
- Sauté vegetables in a large skillet or Dutch oven.
- Add marinara sauce to the skillet and stir to combine.
- Prepare the ricotta mixture by stirring together egg, parsley, basil, ricotta, mozzarella and Parmesan.
- Assemble the casserole by layering the sauce, noodles and cheese.
- Cover and bake in a 400° F oven for 35 minutes. Remove the cover and continue baking for about 5-10 more minutes.
What to Serve with Vegetable Lasagna
This hearty lasagna is delicious when paired with a Caesar salad or a simple green salad dressed in Italian Balsamic Vinaigrette. You might also like to offer a side of garlic bread or homemade focaccia bread.
How to Make Healthy Vegetable Lasagna for a Lighter Choice
If you're looking to lighten up the dish and make it even healthier, there are a few swaps that you can easily make:
- Whole Wheat Pasta: you can purchase whole wheat no-boil lasagna noodles. If using the whole wheat noodles, check the cooking instructions on your package. Most whole wheat pasta requires a slightly different cooking temperature and time (usually about 450° F for 40 minutes covered, then 5-10 more minutes uncovered).
- Cottage Cheese: use small curd (or "whipped") cottage cheese in lieu of the ricotta. For this recipe, you will need a 16 ounce container of small-curd cottage cheese (about 2 cups).
- Reduced-Fat Mozzarella: look for a lighter shredded mozzarella to reduce fat and calories.
- Marinara Sauce without Added Sugar: look for a high-quality store-bought marinara sauce that doesn't include added sugar. We love Rao's brand, but any similar sauce will work.
Assemble the lasagna in advance, but do not bake. Wrap tightly and store in the refrigerator for up to 48 hours before baking, or freeze for up to 3 months.
When ready to bake, allow the refrigerated lasagna to sit on the counter and come to room temperature for at least 30-60 minutes before baking. If you're baking the casserole frozen (directly from the freezer), bake the dish covered in a 400° F oven for 1 hour. Then remove the cover and bake for an additional 10 minutes (or until the pasta is tender and the dish is heated through).
Leftover lasagna will keep in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3-4 days. You can also freeze the leftovers in an airtight container for up to 3 months.
Cover the lasagna loosely with foil. Warm the dish in a 350° F oven just until heated through, about 30 minutes. You can also reheat individual slices of lasagna in the microwave until warm, about 1 minute.
Tips for the Best Vegetable Lasagna Recipe
- Cooking for Two? Divide the full recipe between two smaller 8-inch square baking dishes. That way you get two meals with the same amount of effort, and you can freeze one for a later date. Alternatively, you can cut all of the ingredients in half and prepare one lasagna in an 8-inch square dish. The baking instructions remain the same.
- Add meat to the dish by stirring 1 pound of cooked ground beef or Italian sausage into the sauce.
- White Vegetarian Lasagna: substitute a jar of store-bought Alfredo sauce or 2 ½ cups of homemade Alfredo sauce for the marinara sauce.
- Sauté peeled, diced eggplant with the other vegetables for a hearty addition to the lasagna.
- Make vegetable lasagna with spinach by adding a few cups of fresh baby spinach leaves to the warm sauce, just until the leaves wilt. Alternatively, you can use a 10-ounce package of chopped, frozen spinach. Just thaw the spinach and squeeze it really dry before adding to the lasagna.
- Let the lasagna rest for at least 10 minutes before slicing. This will help the cheese set so that it slices cleanly and doesn't ooze out.
More Lasagna Recipes to Try
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 8 ounces sliced mushrooms
- 1 zucchini, diced
- 1 sweet bell pepper (any color), seeded and diced
- 1 onion, diced
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh garlic
- 1 egg, beaten
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley (or 2 teaspoons dried parsley flakes)
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil (or 2 teaspoons dried basil)
- 15 ounces ricotta cheese (or sub with 16 ounces small curd cottage cheese)
- 2 ¼ cups grated mozzarella cheese, divided
- ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese, divided
- 24 ounces (2 ½ cups) store-bought (or homemade) marinara sauce
- 9 oven-ready, no-boil lasagna noodles (or as many noodles as needed to fit your dish)
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Spray a 9 x 13-inch baking dish with cooking spray and set aside.
- In a large skillet or Dutch oven, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms, zucchini, bell pepper, onion, and garlic. Cook and stir the veggies just until tender (about 3-5 minutes).
- While the veggies cook, use a separate bowl to stir together egg, parsley, basil, ricotta cheese, 1 ¼ cups mozzarella, and ¼ cup Parmesan.
- When the vegetables are done cooking, stir the marinara sauce into the skillet.
- Spread ¼ of the marinara-vegetable sauce mixture in a thin layer in the bottom of the prepared baking dish. Top with 3 no-boil lasagna noodles (or as many as you need to cover a single layer in the dish), ⅓ of the ricotta mixture, and another ¼ of the sauce mixture.
- Repeat layers two more times. Finish with remaining 1 cup of mozzarella and ¼ cup of Parmesan cheese on top. Cover with a piece of greased foil.
- Bake for 35 minutes. Remove foil, and bake for another 5-10 minutes (or until heated through and cheese on top is browned). Let stand for about 10 minutes before slicing and serving.
This recipe was originally published in July, 2017. It was updated in January, 2021.