Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Tempeh and Baby Bella Lasagna (Vegetarian)

The New York Times recently published this article about "semi-veganism". I'll be honest, veganism is just not for me. I suppose I could be called a "semi-semi-vegan" if you consider eating a vegan meal once or twice a month being a "semi-semi-vegan". I really just couldn't live without a little cheese, yogurt, and egg in my life (unless I had to for medical reasons). I do, however, make many vegetarian dishes, which you can check out on my sidebar to the right (and yes, some of them are vegan). If you are vegan and you want to make the following vegetarian lasagna recipe vegan, use a vegan cheese such as Daiya (it melts really well).

NOTE: Sorry about the large print. Sometimes I really HATE Blog Spot!

Simple Tempeh and Baby Bella Lasagna

(Serves 4)

1-14.5 ounce can roasted tomatoes, partially drained
1-8 ounce package traditional tempeh

1-8 ounce package of baby portobellos, rinsed and sliced
3 long lasagna noodles (if you have the shorter ones use 6)
16 ounces cottage cheese (I used a lactose free variety)
1.5 cups mozzarella cheese
1-2 tsp. garlic-infused olive oil
1. Preheat the oven to 375

2. Grab a half-sized casserole dish (~4.5 inches x 7 inches). You can choose to double this recipe, if you'd like, and in that case you would use a full size casserole dish (9x13)

3. Chop the tempeh into small chunks. In a large saute pan, saute the tempeh and baby bellas with about 2 tsp. garlic-infused olive oil. As you are sauteing, chop the tempeh and mushrooms as much as possible (to resemble the texture and size of ground meat). Saute until the tempeh starts to brown.

4. Grab the casserole dish and add a layer of canned tomatoes (~1/3 can), followed by a layer (~1/3) of the tempeh and mushrooms, followed by a 2 lasagna noodles (if using large lasagna noodles, use one large, broken in half), followed by a layer (~1/3 of the container) of cottage cheese, followed by 1/2 cup mozzarella. Repeat the layers until you are out of ingredients. You want the top layer to be cheese!

5. Cover with two pieces of foil, then bake for 50 minutes.

6. Take the foil off and finish baking for another 15 minutes.

This is a side view. Not the best color, sorry.

Estimated Nutrition Facts
(Recipe makes 4
large servings)

I'm slightly skeptical about the protein in this recipe.... 46 grams?! I'm not so sure that's accurate (my estimate is more like 25-30 grams). But hey, I could be wrong (don't be fooled into thinking vegetarians and/or vegans can't get enough protein, check out this article!). I think the rest of the nutrition facts seem pretty accurate.

Nick gave this lasagna a rating of 7 out of 10, which I was pretty happy about because he was not excited about the idea of a vegetarian lasagna! I'll definitely be making this again (my score was an 8.5 out of 10. I need to master the spices a bit better, perhaps a bit more parsley, some pepper, and garlic oil!).

QUESTION: What's your favorite meat replacement to use in vegetarian lasagna?


  1. I love this idea- the lasagna looks fabulous! this is still a dish I have yet to make!

  2. Huh! Interesting about the protein! It looks delicious. I love baby bellas and the one time I had tempeh, I liked it :) I may give this a whirl!

  3. Yum-- I've cooked tempeh with a lot of things, but never as a lasagna filler. I like that idea!

  4. You're totally right, I would love this recipe! This sounds awesome, and I'm surprised at how few ingredients it requires. And look at those protein stats!

  5. I would use lentils - to me, they are the closest thing to ground beef...!

    If I made this, I would have to swap out the cottage cheese for ricotta - my husband would send me packing if I made a lasagna with cottage cheese!

  6. My mouth is watering...this looks SO good.

    I made a pumpkin spinach lasagna one time that didn't have meat in it. Ohmygoodness, it was SO good. Wish I could remember what I did with the recipe...

  7. Yum! I would have never thought to put tempeh in lasagna. That is quite a bit of protein!

  8. HOLY PROTEIN hahaha this dish has a massive amount of protein and i LOVE it. too bad i hate tempeh but i could get down with this with some other kind of protein.

    on another note THE BACHELOR SUCKS! he's so like weird and the girls suck i like the horse riding girl and that one baton twirler but it's just a silly season! where did the seasons go that seemed more 'real' and less like everything is staged :( and are you ready for emily to be the next bachelorette...because I'M NOT.

    how's the wedding planning going?!

  9. This looks good!

    Thanks for your comments on my post. I am also not a huge smoothie fan, especially if bought in a store, those things are deathly! But over the past few weeks these have replaced a nightly craving for ice cream in our home. It comes out more like sorbet and we actually eat it with spoons, as if it were ice cream. We use greek vanilla yogurt, some frozen raspberries, cherries, blueberries and strawberries, and from time to time a banana. Like I said, it comes out so thick that we eat it with a spoon. Before then, I would have said absolutely NO to smoothies!

  10. Will read the article. I don't need a ton of animal protein but I'm with you with eggs, cheese, fish and just the flexibility. I'm not such a fan of meat replacements unless legumes count. Homemade tempeh is great but I wouldn't go out of my way for it. Why not just veggies/cheese? Your lasagna looks great though.

  11. I am with you. Life without cheese is no fun ;) Honestly I am getting along pretty well with vegan month but I couldn't last forever without cheese. The lasagna looks tasty.

  12. Teri @ ManagedMacrosJanuary 14, 2012 at 6:28 AM

    My post this weekend is going to be will have to check it out, it was my first time cooking with it!! I LOVED it!
    LOL....semi-semi vegetarian?? I get it...I do. I did my vegetarian think in 2004ish. It didn't last too terrible long...I would have a hard time going to vegan for the reasons you listed. Cheese it too fun!
    Great recipe!!!

  13. As someone who is only 3.5 months into the vegetarian lifestyle I'm always happy to find a new dish to make to spice up my diet. I'm all for being a part-time vegan or vegetarian. I'm not a huge cheese fan but I know that is what stops many people from considering a vegan lifestyle. (I totally get that, I've yet to try a vegan cheese that I'd deem delicious.)

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