Return to top
featured in… The Huffington Post Cooking Light Reader's Digest Women's Health BuzzFeed Glamour Whole Foods Oprah Winfrey Network CNN Food Network

Hello! I’m Anjali. I’m a board certified health coach, author, wife, mom and food lover from the SF Bay area (now living in Seattle, WA!); with a passion for delicious food and a desire to make healthy eating easy, tasty and fun! Learn more about me here and stay for a while!

Hearty, Healthy Veggie Lasagna

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure.
Share This:

This super satisfying veggie lasagna is a hearty, healthy version of the classic Italian recipe. Made with whole wheat noodles, fresh herbs, packed with veggies and a mixture of cheeses, this is a one dish meal that will soon become a favorite among your family and friends. 

Healthy veggie lasagna served on a white plate

My whole family absolutely loves lasagna, I think it might be their favorite Italian meal. But we rarely order it at restaurants because most veggie lasagna recipes are made with white pasta (no fiber, refined carbs), way too much cheese and extra oil (too much fat/calories), and barely any veggies (which makes it even more dense!) So I decided to re-make veggie lasagna to be healthier than the original with all of the flavor and heartiness you’d expect from a traditional lasagna recipe. And I have to say: it was a hit! Every time I’ve made this: for parties, for meat-eaters, for the holidays, for my family — everyone loves this recipe!

Kitchen Tools and Equipment You’ll Need to Make Veggie Lasagna

Top shot of a healthy veggie lasagna served on a white plate with a knife and fork

What makes this Veggie Lasagna healthy?

With just a few healthy substitutions – this vegetarian lasagna is much more nutritious than the traditional version, but still tasty and full of flavor. Here are the swaps I made for this veggie lasagna recipe:

  • Whole Wheat Noodles instead of white: Adds fiber and a healthy dose of whole grains which will keep you fuller longer.
  • Less Cheese, and lower fat ricotta: I used a mix of low fat and full fat cheeses in this recipe. I also used less cheese overall to keep the decadence of lasagna while lowering the total calories and fat. This lasagna is still very cheesy even with those changes!
  • Lots more veggies! This recipe is stuffed with veggies, Spinach, bell peppers, zucchini, and red onion increase the fiber and nutrient density of this dish.
  • Vitamins and Minerals: Spinach is a superfood that has calcium, vitamins A and C, fiber, iron, and folic acid. It helps fight against cancer and protect against heart disease. Zucchini improves digestion and helps lower blood sugar levels, peppers give us B6 and folate and tomatoes provide both antioxidants and Vitamin C.
Ingredients to make healthy veggie lasagna

How to make Hearty, Healthy Vegetarian Lasagna

Directions – Noodles

Cook the lasagna noodles according to the package directions (leave them al dente). Once they’re done, lay them flat on foil and set aside.

Directions – Vegetables

Quarter all 4 zucchini and thinly slice. Dice all 3 bell peppers and mince 3 cloves of garlic

Chopped onion, pepper and garlic in a pan

Heat olive oil in a pan over medium heat, saute the garlic, half the diced onion, all of the zucchini and all of the bell peppers together.

zucchini and red peppers added to the pan

Add the baby spinach at the end (when the zucchini/red pepper are almost done cooking), saute another 3 minutes until spinach is wilted.

spinach added to the pan

Sprinkle Italian seasoning, salt, and crushed red pepper to taste on top, stir, and let it cook a couple more minutes. Then remove from heat.

Herbs added to the pan

Directions – Sauce

  1. Mince 3 cloves of garlic.
  2. Spray a medium sized saucepan with cooking spray and lightly saute the garlic and remaining red onion until the onion is translucent.
  3. Add the crushed tomatoes.
  4. Add Italian seasoning to taste, if your crushed tomatoes don’t have that already added.
  5. Once the sauce is heated through, turn the heat down on low.
Herbs being shaken into the tomatoes

Directions – Cheese

Combine 1.5 cups of the ricotta cheese and 1 cup of the mozzarella in a bowl. Keep the Parmesan cheese (or Italian blend, if using) separate.

Ricotta and parmesan cheeses in bowls
Cheeses mixed together in a glass bowl

Assembly

Spray the bottom of a large casserole dish with cooking spray. Put a layer of sauce at the bottom of the dish (For every layer of sauce, I used 1/2 the self-made sauce and 1/2 the pre-made sauce.

Sauce in the bottom of a glass casserole to start laying the healthy veggie lasagna

Put a layer of the lasagna noodles.

Put another layer of the sauce (1/2 pre-made, 1/2 self made).

Lasagna and sauce layered
  • Put a layer of the veggies.
  • Take the cheese mixture, and put little crumbles of the cheese mixture all over the veggie layer (don’t try to spread it out, the little crumbles seemed to work well).  
  • Put another layer of the lasagna noodles.
  • Layer of sauce
  • Layer of veggies.
  • Cheese mixture crumbles.
Vegetables and cheese crumbled on top of the noodles and sauce
  • Layer of lasagna noodles.  
  • Layer of sauce
  • Sprinkle 1 cup of the Parmesan cheese (or Italian cheese blend) all over the top.
Parmesan grated on top of the unbaked healthy veggie lasagna

Cover with foil and bake at 350 degrees for 30 min. Uncover and bake for 5 min. longer until the cheese has melted.

Baked healthy veggie lasagna in a glass casserole

Will kids enjoy this healthy Veggie Lasagna recipe? 

Absolutely! Both of my kids (aged 2 and 5) devour this recipe every time I make it. It’s a great way to get some extra veggies into your kids since they’re wrapped in a cheesy-carby-lasagna-bow. If you have especially picky eaters, I’d recommend chopping up the veggies super fine and mixing them into the sauce. For SUPER picky eaters, you can puree the entire veggie mixture after sauteeing it, and mix that with the sauce.

What vegetables go well in lasagna?

Spinach, zucchini, and bell peppers all work well in a veggie lasagna. Kale, mushrooms, summer squash, asparagus, broccoli, cauliflower, and even carrots would work well in a veggie loaded lasagna. 

A healthy veggie lasagna garnished with fresh thyme

Can you freeze veggie lasagna?

Yes, you can freeze veggie lasagna. There are two methods depending on if you’re freezing leftovers, or you’re freezing the lasagna before it’s baked. You might want to prepare the lasagna whole and freeze it for a busy weeknight meal, or you might have already served the lasagna and just have a few leftovers to freeze for individual meals to eat later.

Method 1: Pre-Baked Lasagna

Prepare lasagna in an airtight container. Assemble and allow the warm ingredients to cool completely before storing in an airtight container in the freezer. This method helps retain the freshness of the dish than if you freeze after it is baked. Will last for 2-3 months in the freezer. When it’s time to bake it, pull it out of the freezer and pop it into the oven directly, following the baking instructions in this recipe.

Method 2: Baked Lasagna

Store in airtight container. Will be best if you store in individual servings to retain freshness and use as a quick go-to weeknight meal. WIll last for 2-3 months in the freezer.

What do you serve with Veggie Lasagna?

  • Whole Wheat Garlic Bread
  • Sauteed Spinach with Garlic
  • Roasted Vegetables such as Broccoli or Asparagus
  • A side salad with crunchy greens (like a ceasar or mixed greens salad)
A portion of healthy veggie lasagna cut out of the casserole dish

Top tips for making Healthy Vegetarian Lasagna

  • Salt water and cook lasagna noodles al dente (maybe about 4-5 minutes). They will continue to cook when you bake the lasagna in the oven – and that way you won’t have mushy noodles!
  • Lay the noodles flat on aluminum foil to prevent the noodles from sticking together. You can even spray the foil with olive oil spray to really make sure the noodles remain separated.
  • Thinly slice the bell pepper and then cut in half so your pieces are about the same size as your zucchini. 
  • Cook the zucchini, peppers, onion, and garlic until almost done before adding spinach.
  • A mix of fresh and dried herbs gives a bright and slow cooked flavor.
  • Make the sauce in a separate pan from the veggies.
  • Mix the cheeses in a medium mixing bowl.
  • Spray or grease the casserole dish to prevent sticking.
  • Use a combination of self-made and pre-made sauce for the layers. 
  • Start with a layer of sauce using a combination of pre-made and self-made sauce.
  • Don’t try to spread the cheese layer. Crumble the cheese on top of the veggies.
  • Let the lasagna rest for 10-15 minutes before slicing it, that way it will hold together once you do slice and serve it.
Top shot of the healthy veggie lasagna in a casserole and a portion served on a white plate

Be sure to try these other healthy pasta dishes!

Side view of healthy veggie lasagna served on a plate

While this is not a quick weeknight meal (it takes about 2 hours including the baking/cooking time), it’s so worth it in the end! Despite the cooking time, it is a straight-forward and easy recipe. It makes for great leftovers, and is super freezer-friendly as well. I hope you enjoy this veggie lasagna as much as we did!

If you have tried this hearty and healthy veggie lasagna recipe, or any other recipe on my blog, then please rate it and let me know how it turned out in the comments below! You can also FOLLOW ME on FACEBOOKTWITTERINSTAGRAM and PINTEREST to see more delicious, healthy, family friendly food!

Baked healthy vegetarian lasagna in a glass casserole
Print Recipe
4.67 from 6 votes

Hearty, Healthy Veggie Lasagna

This super satisfying veggie lasagna is a hearty, healthy version of the classic Italian recipe. Made with whole wheat noodles, fresh herbs, packed with veggies and a mixture of cheeses, this is a one dish meal that will soon become a favorite among your family and friends. 
Prep Time1 hr
Cook Time1 hr
Total Time2 hrs
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Italian
Servings: 12 servings
Calories: 260kcal
Author: Anjali Shah

Ingredients

  • 2 tsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1 box Whole wheat lasagna noodles uncooked
  • 4 Zucchini
  • 3 Yellow, Red or Orange Bell Peppers diced
  • 6 oz Baby Spinach roughly chopped
  • 1 Red Onion diced
  • 6 cloves Garlic minced
  • 1 tbsp Dried Italian Seasoning more to taste
  • 1/8 tsp Crushed Red Pepper adjust to taste
  • 3/4 tsp Salt adjust to taste
  • 28 oz Can of Crushed Tomatoes with Italian spices added–like basil, oregano, etc. if you can find that
  • 28 oz Jar of Pasta Sauce
  • 1 1/2 cups low fat ricotta cheese
  • 1 cup part-skim shredded mozzarella
  • 1 cup Shredded Parmesan or Italian Four Cheese Blend
  • olive oil cooking spray

Instructions

Noodles:

  • Cook the lasagna noodles according to the package directions (leave them al dente).
  • Once they’re done, lay them flat on foil and set aside.

Vegetables:

  • Quarter all 4 zucchini and thinly slice.
  • Dice all 3 bell peppers and mince 3 cloves of garlic
  • Heat olive oil in a pan over medium heat, saute the garlic, half the diced onion, all of the zucchini and all of the bell peppers together.
  • Add the baby spinach at the end (when the zucchini/red pepper are almost done cooking), saute another 3 minutes until spinach is wilted.
  • Sprinkle Italian seasoning, salt, and crushed red pepper to taste on top, stir, and let it cook a couple more minutes. Then remove from heat.

Sauce:

  • Mince 3 cloves of garlic.
  • Spray a medium sized saucepan with cooking spray and lightly saute the garlic and remaining red onion until the onion is translucent.
  • Add the crushed tomatoes.
  • Add Italian seasoning to taste, if your crushed tomatoes don't have that already added.
  • Once the sauce is heated through, turn the heat down on low.

Cheese:

  • Combine 1.5 cups of the ricotta cheese and 1 cup of the mozzarella in a bowl. Keep the Parmesan cheese (or Italian blend, if using) separate.

Assembly:

  • Spray the bottom of a large casserole dish with cooking spray.
  • Put a layer of sauce at the bottom of the dish (For every layer of sauce, I used 1/2 the self-made sauce and 1/2 the pre-made sauce)
  • Put a layer of the lasagna noodles.
  • Put another layer of the sauce (1/2 pre-made, 1/2 self made).
  • Put a layer of the veggies.
  • Take the cheese mixture, and put little crumbles of the cheese mixture all over the veggie layer (don’t try to spread it out, the little crumbles seemed to work well).
  • Put another layer of the lasagna noodles.
  • Layer of sauce.
  • Layer of veggies.
  • Cheese mixture crumbles.
  • Layer of lasagna noodles.
  • Layer of sauce.
  • Sprinkle 1 cup of the Parmesan cheese (Or Italian Cheese blend) all over the top.
  • Cover with foil and bake at 350 degrees for 30 min.
  • Uncover and bake for 5 min. longer until the cheese has melted.

Notes

Top tips for making Healthy Vegetarian Lasagna
  • Salt water and cook lasagna noodles al dente (maybe about 4-5 minutes). They will continue to cook when you bake the lasagna in the oven – and that way you won’t have mushy noodles!
  • Lay the noodles flat on aluminum foil to prevent the noodles from sticking together. You can even spray the foil with olive oil spray to really make sure the noodles remain separated.
  • Thinly slice the bell pepper and then cut in half so your pieces are about the same size as your zucchini. 
  • Cook the zucchini, peppers, onion, and garlic until almost done before adding spinach.
  • A mix of fresh and dried herbs gives a bright and slow cooked flavor.
  • Make the sauce in a separate pan from the veggies.
  • Mix the cheeses in a medium mixing bowl.
  • Spray or grease the casserole dish to prevent sticking.
  • Use a combination of self-made and pre-made sauce for the layers. 
  • Start with a layer of sauce using a combination of pre-made and self-made sauce.
  • Don’t try to spread the cheese layer. Crumble the cheese on top of the veggies.
  • Let the lasagna rest for 10-15 minutes before slicing it, that way it will hold together once you do slice and serve it.

Nutrition

Calories: 260kcal | Carbohydrates: 28.1g | Protein: 17.4g | Fat: 9.3g | Sodium: 421mg | Fiber: 5.7g | Sugar: 6g

Posted In…

Entrees ·

From healthy versions of favorites to cozy curries, these main courses are sure to bring some new recipes to your family’s table.

81 responses to “Hearty, Healthy Veggie Lasagna”

  1. Hi! We loved your lasagna recipe. Just had one question. It came out a bit watery & didn’t stay together when cut. Any suggestions on how to improve that? Thanks 🙂5 stars

    • Hi Vita! So happy to hear that!! Regarding the water — sometimes zucchini can be a little watery (just depends on that particular vegetable that day). So one thing you can do is — before sauteeing the zucchini with the rest of the veggies, salt it first and set it aside for 20 minutes to let the water drain out. Then dab the zucchini dry with a paper towel before adding it to the rest of the veggies when you’re sauteeing them. One other tip: make sure you let the lasagna rest for a good amount of time (10-15 minutes) before cutting and serving it! Both of those things should help tremendously! 🙂

  2. This was so wonderful! My husband and I made this for dinner tonight, served it with a red wine and some slices of Italian bread. The three alterations to the recipe I made were to eliminate the ricotta cheese (it just doesn’t agree with me), and add in one can of cannellini beans to the veggie mix for protein, and since zucchini are kind of expensive right now I only used two instead of four. It was so good! Thank you for this wonderful meal idea!

    • Yay!! So glad you liked this recipe Sarah!! And I absolutely LOVE your addition of the cannellini beans – that’s a great idea! I bet, if you pureed the cannellini beans you could spread them like ricotta in the lasagna and it would give the same texture. Just an idea to try for next time! Thanks for letting me know how this turned out for you! 🙂

  3. Going to give this a go, but I will have to substitute the ricotta for cottage cheese, this shouldn’t change the flavor too much from your recipe right?

    • Cottage cheese should work well in lasagna – I don’t think it’ll change the flavor of the dish too much – just make sure to get a cottage cheese that isn’t too watery so that the dish stays together! Hope that helps!

  4. OMG – yes, this was a bit of work, but oh so good. I substituted fresh bella mushrooms in the sauce for the pepper, and I cooked and added some lentils for the illusion of meat (husband), and it was very good. I also used veggie mozzarella cheese. It made enough for 10 people. Toasted some sprouted grain bread, and this was a fabulous dinner.

    • That is so wonderful Suzie! Love the idea of adding lentils for a more meaty texture. And yes, this is a bit of work, but the payoff is totally worth it! So happy you had such a nice dinner with this dish! 🙂

  5. This does look like a tasty alternative to many of the other, heavier lasagna recipes. I love lasagna so sometimes I can end up eating so much of it, that I feel weighed down afterwards. Thanks for this recipe.

    • No problem Julia!! This recipe definitely won’t make you feel weighed down 🙂 Can’t wait to hear how you like it!

  6. I’m heading to the store to buy the ingredients. I’ll buy the fresh thyme. However, I don’t see in your directions where/when to add the fresh thyme. Might it be under Vegetables at Number 6 (thyme instead of oregano)? Or…?
    Thanks – looking forward to both cooking and eating the meal!

    • Hi! Thank you so much for asking and great catch! Yes – add the fresh thyme when you add the other herbs — at Step 6 in the directions (add it along with the oregano and basil). I’ve updated the recipe to indicate that. Thanks again and let me know how the lasagna turns out – I’m sure you will love it!!

  7. This lasagna looks delicious! As do a lot of ure other recipes..I follow skinnytaste.com and stumbled across your sweet baked potato recipe on her site. So glad I did :0)

    • Thank you so much Shefali!! It’s so nice to meet you! 🙂 I can’t wait to hear how my recipes turn out for you once you try them! Thanks again!

      • Aw yay!! I’m so glad you liked it! Sorry again for the delay in answering your original question!!

    • Hi Lisa! No questions are dumb questions 🙂 Sorry it took me a few days to reply to you – it’s been a busy week!! But I’m glad you figured it out 🙂 Just in case anyone else has the same question – I used a 12×12 casserole dish. Thanks again for asking!

  8. Made this last week for dinner- have recently started cooking vegetarian (new to living with one) and had also never made a lasagna!
    This was easy, and delicious 🙂 I am already scoping your site out for what to have next! Thank you.

    • Hi Kristen! Thanks so much for sharing your experience with this recipe! I’m so glad you liked it 🙂 And congrats on making your first lasagna!!

  9. My Husband and I are vegetarians too and I was searching so long for a lasagna recipe that “sounds great”. This one fits my picky recipes, thanks so much for sharing your recipe. I’m going to make this today on my sunday and eat it away until monday! yay

    • Yaay! I’m so glad – I hope you enjoyed this lasagna! It makes great leftovers too – it will keep in the fridge for at least a couple days after you make it! For a reheating tip – warm it up in the oven vs. the microwave – it’ll feel like it was made fresh that day 🙂

      • Came out fine. The corners were little crispy though , may be because I used a large pan and so the corners dried out as the lasagna was baking. But, taste was awesome! My Husban has already insisted that this weekend it will be lasagna again! Thanks to your recipe

      • Awesome!! I’m so glad you and your husband liked it! For the corners – if you make sure the sauce reaches all the way to the edges of the pan – and make sure the lasagna is fully covered in sauce, you won’t get crispy corners. So try that next time and let me know if it works!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Subscribe to newsletter

Copyright 2019 The Picky Eater. All rights reserved.