Garden Vegetable Lasagna Roll Ups

As I was packing up my pantry in preparation for home renovations, I realized I had tons of dry lasagna noodles. Why I bought so many, and why I haven’t been using them up, I don’t really know. Mainly I suppose because I watch my weight and the main dish I know how to make is lasagna. 

Lasagna is a heavy, calorie laden dish.  And as it is just Glen and I now, if I make a panful, we would be eating it for weeks. However, I had a flash of genius. Why not try some rollups. Originally I was thinking of something lighter, like a salad roll up. But I also had some jars of spaghetti sauce, so a batch lasagna rollups made the most sense. 

After looking at several choices, I decided to go with this vegetable version I found on a site called Budget Bytes. I enjoy vegetarian meals but most of my family are carnivores. With rollups, I decided I could serve meat on the side for those who wanted it, and those who didn’t could eat them alone with sides.

The prep took me about 30 minutes. Then I let it all set while the vegetables cooled. It took about another 10 minutes to assemble the rolls, and 40 minutes to bake (Note - I found my rolls not fully hot). If time is an issue, you could cook the veggies and mix up the cheeses in the morning. Then about an hour before dinner, assemble them and pop your pan in the oven.

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Garden Vegetable Lasagna Roll Ups
6 servings of 2 rollups each

Ingredients -
12                       Lasagna Noodles
1 T                      Oil
2 cloves              Garlic, minced
1                         Sweet onion, diced
8 oz.                   Mushroomsm chopped
                        Med. Zucchini, grated
2                         Med. Carrots, grated
1 tsp                   Dried oregano
Salt and Pepper
15 oz.                 Ricotta cheese
1 C                     Shredded mozzarella plus extra for topping the cooked rolls
1/4 C                  Grated Parmesan
24oz.                  Spaghetti sauce

Instructions -

Boil a large pot of water. Once the water is boiling, add a small amount of salt and the lasagna noodles. Boil just until tender. Place in colander, rinse with cold water, and drain. Set aside. 

While the lasagna noodles are boiling, prepare the vegetable mix. Add the oil to large a frying pan and sauté the onion and garlic over medium heat until they are starting to get soft.  Add the mushrooms and carrots and continue so sauté until mushrooms start to shrink. Add the zucchini, oregano, 1/4 tsp salt and pepper to taste. Continue cooking until most of the moisture has evaporated. Turn off the heat and let set until the vegetable cool. 

Next, prepare the cheese mix. In a large bowl, combine the ricotta, mozzarella, Parmesan, and 1/4 tsp salt. Stir until they are evenly combined. Add the cooled sautéed vegetables and stir to combine again. Taste and adjust the salt or pepper if needed.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Carefully lay out 3-4 noodles on a flat surface. Add approximately 1/3 cup of the vegetable and cheese mixture to each noodle, then spread the mixture from end to end, leaving about a 1/2 inch bare at each end of the noodle. Once covered in the filling, roll the noodles up. You should get approximately finished 12 roll ups (I ended up with 13 rolls, but depending on the size of your zucchinis and carrots it could be 11).

Coat a 9x9 casserole dish with non-stick spray (I found this really really tight and hard to get hot all the way through. You might need a 9 x 13 pan). Spread about 1/4 of the pasta sauce in the bottom of the casserole dish, then arrange the roll ups on top. Pour the remaining sauce over top. Bake for 40 minutes, or until heated through. Serve them 2 per plate with some extra shredded mozzarella on top. 

Note - To freeze the roll ups, Place two roll ups each in a freezer and microwave safe container, then pour sauce over top. Freeze for up to three months. Reheat in the microwave when ready to eat.