Since I got a little heavy in yesterday’s post about body weight, image and happiness, I figured I’d keep it light and short today.
And don’t tell yesterday’s recipe, but: this one is much more exciting!
Going vegan this month has so far, been much easier and much more intuitive than omnivorous eating is for me.
However, last week, I was craving something really hearty. As a stress eater, I’m liable to cook up a triple decker grilled cheese if I’m feeling anxious and overwhelmed.
So, I decided to “vegan-ize” my favorite comfort food: lasagna.
This lasagna is simple, easy to make, and has the exact consistency of traditional lasagna.
What replaces the cheese? Cashew cheese! Cashew cheese is a vegan’s savior. It’s easy to make (once you’ve let your cashews soak, of course) and can be substituted into so many cheese dishes. This cashew cheese is seasoned with Italian herbs, so it works fabulously in this traditional Italian-American dish.
This lasagna has that rich tomato taste with a lovely butteriness that comes in from the roasted rutabaga slices.
It’s kind of a spin on my ever-so-popular sausage and kale butternut squash lasagna. It’s just a lightened up version.
I actually popped it into the freezer after I made it last week so that when I got home from Florida (yesterday), I could reheat it and have it for dinner.
If you’re meal planning for the week, this is a great option – and it lasts in the refrigerator for a bit longer than a meat dish would, since it’s vegan!
And here are some process shots to show how it’s layered and comes together easily:
The final result, pre-oven:
Nutritional Information & Recipe
Weight Watchers SmartPoints*: 12 points
*These points were calculated using the official Weight Watchers SmartPoints calculator. We are in no way affiliated with Weight Watchers, we are providing this information based on popular demand.
- 1 large rutabaga or 2 small rutabagas, peeled
- 3.5 cups tomato basil sauce
- ½ tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 8 cups chopped kale
- 3 cloves of garlic, minced
- ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1 large shallot, minced
- salt and pepper, to taste
- For the cashew cheese:
- 1.5 cups cashews, soaked in water for at least 2 hours (preferably overnight) and drained
- 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
- ½ teaspoon dried oregano
- ½ teaspoon dried basil
- ½ teaspoon dried parsley
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
- salt and pepper, to taste
- ½ cup vegetable broth
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
- Slice halfway through the rutabaga, just to the center (careful not to go further.) Spiralize the rutabaga, using Blade A.
- Place a medium pot over medium-high heat, add in the tomato sauce and bring to a simmer. Once simmering, lower heat to low to keep warm on the stovetop.
- Place all of the ingredients for the cheese into a high-speed blender or food processor and process until creamy. Taste and adjust with more salt, if needed. Set aside.
- Place a large skillet over medium heat and add in the olive oil. Once oil is shimmering, add in the kale, garlic, red pepper flakes, shallots and season with salt and pepper. Cook the mixture for 2-3 minutes or until kale is wilted.
- Gather all of your prepared ingredients to build the lasagna. Take out a casserole dish (I use 4.2 quart) and add about ½ cup of the tomato sauce on the bottom. Then, add a layer of the rutabaga on top. Then, add a layer of the cheese mixture. Then, add in a layer of the kale mixture. Top with tomato basil sauce and spread it around with the back of a spatula or otherwise. Top with a layer of rutabaga. Then, add the cashew cheese. Then, add a layer of kale mixture. Then, add in a layer of the tomato basil sauce. Top with a layer of the rutabaga and then, top with the remaining tomato sauce.
- Cover the casserole dish and bake in the oven for 40-45 minutes. After 40 minutes, poke the top layer and if you can easily pierce through the rutabaga, it’s done. If you can’t, bake another 5 minutes.
- Once the lasagna is done, carefully cut into 4 very large pieces or 6 medium pieces.