If you are looking for a grain and dairy free lasagna, I don’t think it can get any better then this recipe, bold statement right? I stand by it because these lasagna is SO GOOD.
There are layers of crumbly meat and tomato sauce, a deliciously creamy “ricotta” layer and thin sheets of butternut squash.
I don’t think I have been this excited about a new recipe in awhile. This lasagna is legit. I have been wanting to make a grain and dairy free lasagna for ages but the many attempts I made with slices of zucchini as noodles just didn’t seem to cut it.
I found precut butternut squash sheet at the grocery store here in London, which inspired me to create this dish. They act perfectly as noodles, holding their shape and keeping the layers separated once baked.
Don’t worry if you can’t find the butternut squash sheets, you can easily make them at home with a large butternut squash. Ideally try to find a squash with a long shaft, peel off the outer skin and then using a vegetable peeler, cut long rectangular, thin slices. The thinner you can cut the sheets of butternut squash the better, otherwise they will take quite a long time to bake and become tender.
I used a combination of beef and pork in the meat sauce, but you can stick to just one or the other if you prefer. Just make sure when cooking the meat that you really break it up into a crumbly texture.
The cashew cream is heavenly. I was so happy with how well it worked in this recipe, and decided to stir in some basil for an extra burst of fresh flavour.
When assembling the lasagna, I recommend putting meat sauce on the bottom and then a layer of the butternut squash, as the sauce will help the sheets of squash to cook quicker, because there is nothing worse than crunchy butternut squash.
I froze portions of the lasagna and am happy to report that it actually freezes really well too! So you could double the recipe and then freeze one for another time. I suspect that freezing it after cooking might work better but either way should be fine.
If you make this recipe let me know in the comment section below, I would love to hear what you think or take a photo and tag me (@everylastbite_) on Instagram, I love seeing your photos!
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 medium onion finely diced
- 2 cloves garlic
- 500 grams ground pork
- 500 grams ground beef
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 tbsp fresh oregano
- 1/2 tbsp chili flakes
- 3 cups tomato sauce (or 600 grams canned tomatoes)
- 2 tbsp tomato paste
- 1 cup cashews soaked in boiling water for min 10 minutes
- 2 cloves garlic
- 2/3 cup almond milk
- 2 tbsp roughly chopped fresh basil
- 10-12 butternut squash sheets
Preheat the oven to 190 degrees Celsius (375 degrees Fahrenheit)
In a large pot saute the diced onion and garlic in olive oil for a few minutes until the onion begins to soften.
Add in the ground meat, sprinkle with salt and using a wooden spoon break the meat up into a fine crumble. Cook for approximately 10 minutes until the meat begins to brown.
Once the meat is completely cooked through stir in the oregano, chili flakes, tomato paste and tomato sauce. Leave to simmer for 10 minutes.
In a high speed blender combine the drained cashews, garlic and almond milk and blend until completely smooth, there should be no small bits. Transfer the mixture to a bowl and stir through the fresh basil.
In a 9 x 5 inch baking dish start by spooning in a layer of the tomato meat sauce. Place the butternut squash sheets overtop of the sauce, followed by another layer of tomato meat sauce and then a thin layer of the cashew cream. Repeat layering 2 more times and finish with a layer of cashew cheese on top.
Bake in the oven for 45-50 minutes until a golden brown crust has formed and the butternut squash sheets are tender. Keep an eye on the lasagna while it bakes to ensure it doesn't brown too quickly on top (if it does, loosely cover it with a sheet of tin foil). Sprinkle with fresh parsley before serving.
If you cant buy the sheets precut, you can make them yourself by peeling off the outer skin of two butternut squash. Next use a vegetable peeler to cut long rectangular, thin slices (the thinner you can cut the sheets of butternut squash the better)