If you are looking for the best vegetarian lasagna recipe then this is it! This delicious and healthier butternut squash lasagna with spinach is packed with incredible fall flavors like butternut squash, parmesan, ricotta, sage, and garlicky spinach all baked until golden and bubbly. It makes the perfect family meal that is the ultimate comfort food!
We are obsessed with this butternut squash lasagna that is healthy, easily made gluten free and is a meatless meal everyone will enjoy. It is just the best cozy fall recipe that even kids go crazy for. I originally made this recipe for a family Sunday supper and everyone went nuts over it, so I just had to share it!
Mostly because it is so creamy and loaded with incredible flavor but it is also a healthier lasagna recipe that uses less dairy and replaces some of the noodle layers with yummy roasted butternut squash. Plus it is a vegetarian lasagna that is so satisfying that nobody will ever miss the meat.
In this spianch lasagna recipe, we peel and slice the butternut squash, season it then roast it to use for noodles. It does still have lasagna noodles in the recipe but fewer to make it a little bit lighter and healthier. You can also use mashed squash or roasted butternut squash cubes in this recipe as well.
Why you’ll love this lasagna with butternut squash
- It is the best warm and comforting fall recipe!
- Loaded with flavor and nutrition.
- Vegetarian and easily made gluten-free!
- Cheesy, buttery, herby, all the things!
- You can make it ahead, freeze it, or serve it right away!
Ingredients in butternut squash lasagna
- Butternut squash – 1 whole butternut squash about 3 pounds. You want to choose a squash that has a thicker, longer neck that is even all around.
- Olive oil – extra virgin olive oil or you can also use avocado oil as well.
- Salt and pepper – to enhance all of the flavors.
- Lasagna noodles – I opted for no-boil lasagna noodles, you can use regular or gluten-free. I have tested this recipe using both and it worked great both ways! If you prefer to use cooked lasagna noodles then you can also do that.
- Flour – all-purpose flour, gluten-free all-purpose flour, or whole wheat flour will all work fine.
- Spinach – fresh spinach will work best, as frozen spinach will make the lasagna more watery.
- Garlic – fresh garlic or you can use garlic paste.
- Parmesan cheese – make sure to use shredded parmesan so it melts well.
- Ricotta cheese – I used part-skim ricotta cheese but any ricotta will work, you can also use cottage cheese.
- Butter – unsalted or regular butter.
- Milk – unsweetened almond milk or regular milk will work too.
- Mozzarella cheese – shredded mozzarella cheese, or any shredded cheese but mozzarella works best.
- Rosemary and sage – fresh rosemary and sage add some incredible herby flavor to the lasagna.
- Nutmeg – just a hint that makes all the difference.
- Lemon – fresh lemon to add some bright notes to the lasagna.
- Make it gluten-free. To make this recipe gluten-free, use gluten-free lasagna noodles.
- Make it vegan. You can use vegan ricotta cheese, vegan cheese sauce, and vegan mozzarella cheese to make this a vegan lasagna.
- Add more veggies. You can add mushrooms, onions, zucchini, or even kale to this recipe along with the spinach. Sautéed red bell peppers would also be great and add a nice punch of color to this recipe.
- Add in some meat. If you prefer meat in your lasagna (but trust me this recipe is so good on its own), you can add in some cooked sausage or cooked ground turkey. My family loved it with cooked sausage.
How to make vegetarian Butternut Squash Lasagna with spinach
Step one: Prep the squash: Peel the squash, remove the seeds, and slice it into planks. Lay it onto a baking sheet, brush it with olive oil, and season with salt and pepper. Roast it in the oven at 425° F for about 15 minutes until it is tender. Pro tip: Ensuring the squash is cut into uniform ¼-inch thick planks is crucial for this recipe. For ease and precision, use a sharp kitchen knife or mandolin.
Step two: Cook the spinach: Heat a pan with olive oil to medium heat, add in the garlic, cook for 1 minute then add in the spinach and cook until wilted. Remove and set aside to cool.
Step three: Make the creamy, cheesy filling: Heat a pan to medium heat, melt the butter then stir in the flour and whisk in the milk to make a roux. Add in the nutmeg and bay leaf and simmer for a few minutes until the sauce thickens. Set aside.
Step four: Mix the ricotta filling: Combine the ricotta with lemon zest, freshly chopped sage, rosemary, parmesan, mozzarella, salt, and pepper, and mix.
Step five: Assemble the lasagna: Spread some of the cream sauce on the bottom of a 9×13 pan. Next layer some of the lasagna noodles. Then layer some of the butternut squash. Then add some of the sautéed spinach and top that with a layer of the ricotta mixture. Pour some more of the creamy white sauce all over everything then repeat with one more layer. Finish the final layer with lasagna noodles, the remaining creamy white sauce, the remaining cooked spinach, and a generous sprinkle of parmesan cheese.
Step six: Bake and serve: Bake the lasagna for 35-40 minutes at 400°F then let it rest for 30 minutes before cutting and serving. It’s so good!
Tips for success
- Choose a squash with a longer thicker neck since you want long “plank” pieces to layer in the lasagna. You can also just cut large slices of squash if you cannot find one with a long neck.
- Use no-boil lasagna noodles, lentil lasagna noodles, or store-bought lasagna sheets all work well in this recipe. You can also use whole-wheat lasagna noodles, but those would need to be boiled first. See variations in the post for gluten-free recommendations.
- Bake the lasagna uncovered, this allows it to get nice and golden brown on top and all around the edges.
- Let the lasagna cool for at least 30 minutes before slicing and serving. Letting it cool allows the slices to be lifted from the pan easier as well as results in perfectly square pieces of lasagna (see picture below).
Make Ahead and Storage
- To make ahead: Assemble the butternut squash lasagna as directed in the recipe. Cover and refrigerate for up to one day. When ready to bake, remove it from the refrigerator, uncover it, preheat the oven, and bake it until cooked through and golden and bubbly, about 40-45 minutes.
- You can also peel, cut, and roast the squash and cook the spinach one day before assembling and cooking the lasagna. Just make sure to let it cool and store it in separate airtight containers in the refrigerator.
- Store in the refrigerator in an airtight container after you bake it for up to 3 days. Reheat portions in the microwave. You can also bake the whole dish, let it cool then cover it and reheat the whole thing in the oven at 350 degrees F until warmed through.
- To freeze butternut squash lasagna: Assemble and bake as directed in this recipe. Cut into slices, and store in airtight containers in the freezer for up to 2 months.
- Reheating from frozen: Place the lasagna in the refrigerator overnight then reheat it in the microwave.
More butternut squash recipes
- Butternut Squash Noodles Bowl
- Instant Pot Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese
- Butternut Squash Soup
- Roasted Beets and Butternut Squash Salad
- Maple Roasted Butternut Squash
- The Best Mashed Butternut Squash
- Easy Roasted Butternut Squash
Did you try this butternut squash lasagna recipe? if you did then please leave a rating and comment below and let me know how it turned out!Print