Fat-Fighters Recipe: Vegetarian Mushroom & Spinach Lasagna

I received this recipe from my dear mother-in-law over a decade ago.  I’m assuming my stained 3 x 5 inch crinkle was from a newspaper or magazine, based on the peripheral hash marks and tiny scissors icon.  I do know this dish came from The National Cancer Institute, but I was unable to find the original recipe online.  It is detailed exactly below, with parenthetic notes of my few changes.  This one is not quick, but pretty easy (like I like it).  I find this dish uniquely delicious and a feast for the eyes as well, even before it’s baked.  I also depend on its convenience because the assembly (which isn’t brief) can be done ahead of time, so it’s great for entertaining.

Omnivorical Version:  Boil 1 chicken breast in low sodium chicken broth, salt, pepper and poultry seasoning for about 20 min.  Shred it and add to the spinach/mushroom mixture before assembly. Delicious!


Serves 8

  • 10 oz pkg whole wheat lasagna noodles cooked and drained (I don’t use them all.  To find out how much you’ll need, lay out 3 layers worth of uncooked pasta in your pan before you boil the noodles)  You may also use oven-ready pasta.  Target’s house brand, Archer Farms, has a lovely option in whole wheat, that’s also organic.
  • 1 tbl olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped (I’m weird so I leave this out)
  • 4 gloves garlic, minced
  • 8 oz mushrooms sliced
  • 10 oz pkg frozen, chopped spinach (thawed/microwaved and drained-see package)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg (key ingredient)
  • 15 oz container part-skim ricotta cheese
  • 2 egg whites (no yolks)
  • 1.5 cups grated, low-fat mozzarella
  • 1 cup tomato sauce (I find this too sparse, making the whole thing dry.  I use a 15 oz can of low sodium diced tomatoes combined with a 6 oz can of tomato paste.  It makes a little more than needed, but the taste, texture and added moisture make it far superior in my opinion)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.  Warm oil in large, non-stick skillet over low heat.  Add onion and garlic.  Cook until onion is soft, about 5 mins., stirring occasionally.  Add mushrooms and cook on medium until most liquid has evaporated.  Add spinach.  Increase the heat to high, and stir until most liquid has cooked away.  Stir in salt, pepper and nutmeg.  Add shredded chicken (optional).  Set mixture aside.  Stir egg into ricotta.

To assemble:  Set aside 1/2 cup mozzarella.  Spread half the tomato sauce onto the bottom of a 9 x 12 inch lasanga dish (I use a deeper 9 x 7 x 2.5 inch dish to help with moisture).  Follow with one-third of the pasta.  Spread half the ricotta over the pasta, then half the spinach mixture over the ricotta.  Sprinkle on 1/2 cup mozzarella.  Cover with another layer of pasta.  Repeat the ricotta, spinach and mozzarella layers.  Lay remaining pasta on top.  Top with the rest of the tomato sauce and sprinkle with 1/2 cup of mozzarella.  Bake 45 mins., until brown on top and bubbling.

Nutritional Information Per Serving: (without chicken)

Calories: 305, Carbohydrates 35g, Protein 18g, Total fat 6g, Dietary fiber 13g