This crowd-pleaser by our GF friend Heather Crosby is so rich and satisfying, it’s hard to believe it’s dairy-free and loaded with healthy goodness. This gluten free meal takes some time to prepare, but it is a stunner for both holiday celebrations and anytime meals and freezes well.
Kale and Butternut Squash Lasagna with Sweet Tomato Sauce and Sage Cream Gluten-Free Recipe
- Avocado oil
- 1 small white onion, chopped
- 2 medium carrots, peeled and chopped
- 2 celery stalks, chopped
- 12 large Roma tomatoes, blanched, peeled, and chopped
- Kosher salt or fine sea salt and freshly ground pepper
- 2-1/2 cups raw, unsalted cashews, soaked for 4 to 6 hours, drained, and rinsed
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 6 fresh sage leaves
- 1 (10-ounce) package gluten-free lasagna noodles, (we like Tinkayada brand)
- 6 cups peeled, seeded, and shredded butternut squash (from about 1 medium squash)
- 1 large bunch Tuscan kale, thick center stems discarded and leaves chopped
- 12 cherry tomatoes, on the vine, if desired (optional)
Make the tomato sauce: Heat a large skillet over medium heat until hot. Add 1 tablespoon avocado oil and the onion, carrots, and celery. Sauté, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables start to soften and caramelize, 7 to 10 minutes. Stir in the Roma tomatoes and cook, stirring occasionally, until the tomatoes break up, 10 to 15 minutes. Transfer to a blender and blend until smooth, adding water 2 tablespoons at a time, as needed, to reach a thick tomato sauce consistency. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Set aside.
Make the sage cream: In a blender, combine the soaked cashews, the lemon juice, and sage leaves with 1-1/2 cups water and 1 teaspoon salt. Blend until silky smooth, adding water 1 tablespoon at a time, as needed, to reach a thick consistency (like melted ice cream), 2 to 5 minutes. Set aside.
Preheat the oven to 400°F. Boil a large pot of water, then cook the noodles according to the package directions. Drain and place in a single layer on sheets of parchment paper.
Meanwhile, in a skillet over medium heat, warm 1 tablespoon avocado oil. Add the shredded squash and 1/2 teaspoon salt and a grinding of pepper and sauté until softened but still al dente, about 3 minutes. Remove and set aside.
In the same skillet over medium-high heat, add the kale and a pinch of salt and cook until the kale wilts and is reduced by half, 2 to 3 minutes. Set aside.
In the bottom of a 13 by 9-inch baking pan, spread 1/2 cup tomato sauce. Top with a layer of 3 noodles. Spread 1/2 cup tomato sauce and 1/2 cup sage cream over the noodles. Sprinkle with a large handful of butternut squash and a small handful of the kale, season with a pinch of salt and a grinding of pepper, then top with another layer of 3 noodles. Repeat these steps, seasoning each layer with a pinch of salt and a grinding of pepper to use all the noodles, sauces, and veggies in a 4-layer lasagna, finishing with a layer of sauces. Top with cherry tomatoes, drizzle with 1 tablespoon oil, and add a pinch of salt and a grinding of pepper. Cover with parchment paper and bake for 25 minutes. Remove the parchment and bake until bubbling, about 20 minutes longer. Let cool for 5 to 10 minutes, sprinkle with salt, slice, and serve.
Photography Heather Crosby