Gluten-Free Vegetarian Lasagna

Gluten free vegetarian lasagna is light and healthy
Gluten-free vegetarian lasagna - Italian comfort food.

This a hearty vegetarian lasagna recipe spiked with a touch of hot pepper heat and unexpected dots of sweetness from the golden raisins. And the best part? It tastes even better the next day. So plan ahead.

It is wild and windy here by the mesa. Spring has sprung. The skies are thick with sheets of rain, gray and pitted with bursts of hail that hammer our flat casita roof then disappear beyond the mesa as quickly as it came. Low churning clouds obscure the distant peaks of the Jemez. The young jack rabbits are hiding. Even the ravens are tucked away from sight today.

We have been kindling fires in the kiva to warm us. And I have been conjuring comfort. In the form of vegetarian lasagna.

Brown rice noodles make this vegetarian lasagna gluten free
This lasagna is super delicious, or molto bene, as they say in Italy.

Karina's Gluten-Free Lasagna Vegetariana

Recipe originally posted April 2007.

Layer brown rice lasagna noodles with meaty portobello mushrooms, sun-dried tomatoes, roasted peppers and spinach- with nutmeg, chili pepper and garlic and you have a crowd pleasing vegetarian lasagna.


1 box brown rice lasagna noodles [10 to 12 noodles]

For the veggie filling:

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
6 cloves garlic, chopped
5-6 portobello mushrooms, trimmed, sliced
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 lb. chopped spinach - fresh, or frozen, thawed
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
Sea salt and fresh ground pepper
1/2 teaspoon red chile pepper flakes, or to taste
2 rounded tablespoons golden raisins
1/2 cup oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, drained, chopped
1 cup jarred red and yellow roasted peppers, drained, chopped

For the cheese filling, combine and set aside:

1 1lb. container part skim ricotta or small curd cottage cheese
1 cup shredded Parmesan
Dash of nutmeg

For the sauce:

Combine in a large food processor and pulse until smooth:

1 28-oz. can Italian tomatoes with juice
1 cup roasted red peppers, drained
4 cloves garlic
1/4 cup oil packed sun-dried tomatoes, drained
1 tablespoon brown sugar or molasses
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon rubbed sage
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon basil
Sea Salt and ground pepper, to taste

For the topping:

4 to 6 oz. marinated or fresh mozzarella
chopped fresh Italian parsley


Bring a large pot of fresh salted water to a rolling boil and place the noodles in the pot, gently bending them into the simmering water as they soften. Cook for few minutes until softened but not quite done. You want them slightly tender and al dente. They will continue to cook when you bake the lasagna. Drain well and separate.

Meanwhile make your vegetable filling. Heat the olive oil over medium heat in a large skillet and add the garlic; cook for one minute. Add the mushrooms and stir-fry gently for five to seven minutes. Reserve eight of the prettiest slices of the lightly cooked mushrooms and set aside for the topping.

Add in the balsamic vinegar and toss lightly; add the spinach and stir to cook for a minute or two. Season with nutmeg, sea salt and pepper and red chile flakes. Add the raisins, sun-dried tomatoes and roasted peppers and stir to combine. Simmer gently until the excess liquid reduces and evaporates. Set aside.

Preheat the oven to 350ºF.

To assemble:

Pour 1 cup of the sauce into the bottom of a large lasagna dish and spread evenly. Lay three noodles flat in the bottom of the pan.

Spoon the veggie mixture evenly over the noodles and press flat. Top with three more noodles.

Spoon the cheese mixture onto the noodles and spread evenly. Add more shredded cheese if you need it. Top with three or four noodles. Press gently to flatten. Cover with the sauce and allow it seep in and around the edges.

Slice 4 to 6 oz. of marinated mozzarella and arrange the slices on the top. Top with the remaining portobello slices.

Garnish with fresh chopped Italian parsley. Cover loosely with foil.

Bake in the center of a pre-heated oven for 35 to 40 minutes. Remove the foil and continue to bake for 50 to 60 minutes until the noodles are fork tender and the filing is piping hot in the center. Allow the lasagna to rest for five minutes before slicing and serving.

Makes 6 to 8 servings.

This vegetarian lasagna was so good (it might even be our favorite). 

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Natalie said...

Beautiful presentation! I am going to put in on the list of foods to make to impress company.


Slacker Mom said...


Great minds think alike...last night I made my first gluten free lasagna, just a basic one.

It was my first foray into gluten free pasta.

It was so good!! When I make a vegetarian one, I will have to try this one!

juusan said...

This looks amazing!

What sort of camera do you use for your photos?

Rona's Home Page said...

Your lasagna looks fabulous! Oh, your blog is BerryMorins Bits and Tips Weekly Recommended Blog this week!

Steamy Kitchen said...

I'm so happy that I found your site! I cook for the family of a little 4 yr old girl who has incurable brain cancer. Her only hope now is her diet. She is on a gluten free, soy free, sugar free and all organic diet. Its difficult cooking for a little tiny kid whose picky about what she eats! She also has 2 other sisters - the whole family is on the diet to support her. I'm always in search of creative recipes so that she will eat and so that her family doesn't feel deprived!

Kelli said...

My husband and I both loved the lasagna; in fact, we both agreed it's the best lasagna, GF or not, that we've ever had.

The sauce is my new favorite all-purpose tomato sauce (we're having it tonight over turkey sausage and roasted bell peppers with Tinkyada linguini).

Thank you, thank you, for this excellent recipe.

Karina said...

Thanks, Natalie, and Slacker Mom. I think the brown rice noodles actually make a better lasagna than their wheat-laden brethren. They're lighter and allow the filling flavors to shine.


Mostly, I just use a simple Canon Power Shot. Tips: Don't use a flash - go for natural light.

Hey - Rona! Cool. I am honored. Thank you!

Steamy Kitchen - Glad you found GFG.

Karina said...

Heya Kelli!

Great! Thanks, mucho, and glad you liked the recipe. This sauce is my favorite quick sauce, too. So easy [and you can customize it - I don't eat onions, and there is not a pasta sauce out there that doesn't contain onions!]...


hgreysongaito said...

I organised a surprise 50th birthday party for my Mum yesterday and made this for all the guests. It was a hit!!! So much so that by the time I got to it there was none left and everyone was asking for the recipe! I am going to send them all your url, I hope you don't mind. Thank you very much for a delicious recipe. I am looking forward to making it for myself next time! :-)

Karina said...


Wow- so you didn't get even a small slice? Ack! ;)

I hope you get to make it again- and have plenty of leftovers (it reheats so well).

Take care!


Manda said...

This looks so yummy! But being one person, I know I can only have so much and I hate leftovers. (I'm weird like that.)

I was wondering if you think this lasagna or GF lasagna noodles in general would freeze well? I tried Quinoa pasta but it became a little mushy when I microwaved it.

What about rice pasta? Do you think that may be a better choice? Some stores actually sell frozen rice after all.

I would love to hear your suggestions and opinions.

Karina said...

Hi Manda! I find that brown rice noodles work best, hands down. I par-boil them, meaning- I boil them only long enough to make them slightly softened, but do not cook them all the way through. This keeps them from getting mushy when you bake the lasagna.

If I deliberately wanted to make enough for future meals, I would use this "par-boil" method; and assemble the lasagna in single size or small foil pans and freeze the uncooked lasagna.

Then I would bake them the traditional way, not microwave them.

Use plenty of sauce when you assemble the layers (to help cook the partially cooked noodles).

Hope that helps- good luck! :)


Robyn said...

Hello Karina!!!

What a FABULOUS recipe, thank you SO MUCH! This was the very first lasagna I ever made, it turned out beautifully and my non-vegetarian half-non-gluten-free in-laws loved it too!

I have everything set to make it again for another house guest who arrives late tonight, but I have a question for you. You mentioned that it tastes better the next day, did you mean it tastes better if assembled and then baked the next day or assembled and baked same day and then reheated?

I'd love to be able to make it tonight, put it in the fridge and have it ready to bake whenever our guest gets hungry but I don't want the pasta to get weird on me from sitting too long.

Let me know when you get a chance, thanks so much!!!


Karina Allrich said...

Hi Robyn- I think this lasagna tastes even better the day after, as in leftovers. If you assemble it ahead of time, I wouldn't leave it too long- maybe 12 hours tops- before baking it. And I would use raw noodles.

You could also try par-baking it- for like half an hour; then cool, cover and chill it; bake it again for 30 to 35 minutes.

ic12ducks said...

My dear friend/ pastor is in the ICU in critical condition. His daughters are the pride and joy of his life, and the only thing we can do right now is support those girls... one of whom is on a strictly gluten-free & vegetarian diet. This lasagna recipe was the first thing to come up in my google search... I don't know how it tastes, but it looks magnificent and I can guarantee it will make all the difference to this poor girl in a time of need. Thanks so much for posting this recipe.

ronica said...

I do not suffer from Celiac disease. I was looking for a recipe for a friend, and now I come simply to read. I love they way you put words together. It's like music!

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