Butternut Squash Lasagna

Recipes

I love fall. It is the time of year you truly appreciate the beauty of nature; the spectrum of colors in contrast with the brilliant blue sky, as the leaves depart their trees to form a mesmerizing bundle of color on the ground. It is the time of year running is the most enjoyable; the temperatures are pleasant, the sun is shining, and after the humidity in the summer finally leaves, it is easy to breathe.

One of my favorite things about fall, is the produce that is in season. Starting with peaches at the end of August, followed by a wonderful apple season, and finally winter squash season. I absolutely love squash! Fall brings out the vegetables that are enjoyable on their own, without any flavors or seasonings. Of course you can make squash stand out by matching it with other ingredients, but I find I cannot get enough of it during its short season. Butternut squash is my favorite of all; the nutty, sweet bite that it brings, and its golden color puts you one step closer to eating the rainbow.

Last year while I was at home during Christmas break, I decided to make this Butternut Squash Lasagna for my family. My dad offered to help cook, but went on to complain THE ENTIRE time we were making it; “there’s no meat in this”, “there are too many vegetables”, “this is taking too long” What a moaner! 😉

As I placed the Lasagna on the table with my looking mighty fine for a hearty dinner, we it waited for judgment. My family looked at the Lasagna with skepticism. As the first mouthfuls went down, I watched for their body language changes (all those hours of watching Lie to Me had to come in handy somehow right?) I knew they would all say “lovely” even if they didn’t enjoy it (family loves you after all). A wide smile crept across my face as they registered surprise, followed by satisfaction. Everyone LOVED IT, helping themselves to seconds, and my sister who devoured the leftovers the next day was surprised to find out it wasn’t from a store!

Long story short; that butternut squash lasagna was delicious, and I made some modifications to make it even better AND healthier. This is one of my favorite meals of the year, I definitely recommend you try it!

UPDATE- I have even since improved this recipe further, check out my Butternut Squash Lasagna 2.0!

This butternut squash lasagne is a healthier take on traditional, with lots of nutritious ingredients to help you towards your daily intake of fruits and vegetables. I replaced ricotta with cottage cheese to increase the nutrition, without losing flavor. I also used fresh tomatoes instead of tomato sauce to add freshness along with the many health benefits of tomatoes.
#FuelYourFuture
  • Butternut squash is known for its regulation of blood sugar to prevent crashes before bedtime, but it is also given a badge of merit for helping you get your A, B, Cs…..vitamins that is!
  • Cottage cheese gives an admirable 4g of protein per serving, along with a good boost of calcium and Vitamin D
  • Spinach is a superfood that does it all;regulates digestion, reduces inflammation, promotes healthy vision, skin health, nervous system health, and it is a great source of iron to prevent anemia
  • Mozzarella and Parmesan both bring you close to your recommended intake of bone strengthening calcium, and add lots of filling protein to this meatless dish
  • Paprika is packed with more than 100% of your daily Vitamin A requirements, and helps with healthy cell development

Healthy Dinners: Butternut squash lasagne. Perfect fall meal; full of nutrition and taste. Yummy!

Butternut Squash Lasagne
 
Serves 4
 
Ingredients
½ large butternut squash, peeled and cut into rings ¼ inch thick
2 medium tomatoes, sliced ¼ inch thick
1 medium onion, diced
3 cups (90g) spinach
1 tbsp oil
1 cup (145g) cottage cheese
1 cup (113g) mozzarella, grated/shredded
½ cup (50g) parmesan
1 egg
¼ cup fresh parsley, chopped
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp pepper
6-8 lasagne sheets (depending on the size of your dish)
1 tsp paprika
 
Instructions
Preheat the oven to 350F (175C)
 
Place the butternut squash slices in a microwave safe bowl with a small amount of water. Cook in the microwave for 5 minutes, until the squash is tender. Put aside.
 
Heat the oil in a saute/frying pan, add the onions and cook until lightly browned. Add the spinach and cook until wilted. Put Aside.
 
Boil a large saucepan of water, cook the lasagne sheets until al dente. Be careful not to overcook or they will break. Remove the sheets from the water, and place on foil.
 
In a medium bowl, mix the cottage cheese, ¾ mozzarella (reserving ¼ for top), parmesan, egg, parsley, salt, pepper.
 
In a greased baking dish, put 1/3 of the lasagne sheets down. Cover with ½ of the cheese mixture. Place a layer of butternut squash rings on top, followed by ½ tomato slices, ½ tsp paprika, and ½ onions and spinach mix.
 
Follow with another layer of lasagne sheets, and another layer of cheese mixture, squash rings, tomatoes, 1/2 tsp paprika, spinach, and onions.
 
Cover with the remaining 1/3 of lasagne sheets and the remaining mozzarella cheese and an extra sprinkle of paprika.
 
Cover with foil, and place in the oven for 30 minutes. Remove the foil and cook until cheese is bubbly and golden brown.
 
Serve with a lovely fresh salad.
Nutritional Information
415 calories, 14g fat, 1360mg sodium, 43g Carbohydrates, 7g Fiber, 26g Protein
Like what you see, check out Butternut Squash Lasagna 2.0 for my new and improved recipe. Or how about Butternut Squash Quesadillas?
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