Lentil, spinach and ricotta lasagne

Lentils are a great source of fibre and protein. Whether you’re vegetarian or cutting out meat for a while, you’ll love this lentil, spinach and ricotta lasagne recipe.

Lentils are not only a delicious protein alternative, they also have many health benefits. The B vitamin in lentils helps the body build new cells, which has been shown to help prevent some types of cancer and is an essential task for pregnant women. The fibre, folic acid and potassium in lentils make them a heart-healthy choice.

Ingredients

Filling

  • 2 cups cooked Pouyoukas or Lion green lentils
  • 200g ricotta cheese, crumbled
  • 500g baby spinach, wilted
  • Juice of 3 limes
  • Zest of 2 limes
  • ½ tsp dried red chilli flakes
  • Pinch of sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 cups home-made tomato sauce
  • 500g dried wholewheat lasagne sheets
  • 500g smooth fat-free cottage cheese or ready-made cheese sauce
  • 50g Parmesan cheese, grated

Home-made tomato sauce

  • Olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 x 400g can chopped tomatoes or 680ml tomato purée
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • Pinch of sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 small handful of fresh basil, chopped

Method

  1. For the filling: In a large bowl, combine the cooked lentils, ricotta cheese, spinach, lime juice, lime zest and dried chilli flakes. Mix well and set aside.
  2. For the tomato sauce: Heat a frying pan, add 1-2 tsp olive oil. Fry the onions and garlic until soft. Add the tomatoes or purée, sugar and salt and pepper. Once the sauce starts to bubble, turn down the heat and simmer for 5 minutes. Remove from the heat, add the basil and season further if necessary.
  3. Place a layer of tomato sauce at the bottom of a large baking dish.
  4. Add a layer of lasagne sheets, followed by a layer of lentil filling and a few dollops of cottage cheese or cheese sauce.
  5. Repeat the layers, ending with a layer of lentils topped with cottage cheese or cheese sauce.
  6. Scatter over the grated Parmesan cheese.
  7. Bake in a preheated 180°C oven for 20-25 minutes, or until the lasagne is cooked through and bubbling.

 

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