World’s Greatest Vegetable Lasagna!

Ok, maybe we overdid the headline a little bit this time. It is just that normally we are really lousy lasagna-makers. Every time we try to make it we have these visions on how our lasagna should be like, and the last 6-7 couple of tries the results have been … disappointing, to say the least. Too dry, too moisty, tasteless, too flat … and the list goes on.
This time we read almost all the vegetarian lasagna recipes we could find at Foodgawker. At Ezra Pound Cake we found a recipe that caught our attention. We added lemon to the ricotta, chili to the tomato sauce, used whole wheat lasagna noodles and changed bell peppers for mushrooms and kale – and like that – we had made our own first successful lasagna. Sure, it might look a bit complicated when you scroll down the long list of ingredients but remember that this actually just might be one of the Best Lasagnas In The World!

Lasagna With Grilled Vegetables
Serves 4-6

Tomato sauce (scroll down for recipe)
1 package of whole wheat (or gluten free) lasagna noodles
Lemon-ricotta (scroll down for recipe)
Grilled vegetables (scroll down for recipe)
1 package of mozzarella cheese (250 g)

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Start with a thin layer of tomato sauce, cover with a layer of lasagna noodles, a layer of lemon-ricotta, a layer of grilled vegetables, a layer of kale and a layer of tomato sauce. Repeat 2-3 times, top the last layer with the rest of the vegetables, the tomato sauce, the lemon-ricotta and the grated mozarella cheese. Bake it in the oven for 40-50 minutes.

Tomato sauce (arrabiata)
3 tbsp olive oil
1 medium size onion (finely chopped)
3 cloves garlic (minced)
1 fresh chili (medium strong, finely chopped)
25-30 kalamata olives (pitted)
2 tbsp capers (drained)
4 large tomatoes (cut in quarters)
2 cans plum tomatoes
half a pot fresh basil
salt & pepper

Heat olive oil in a large pot. Add onion, garlic, and chili and saute  for 2-3 minutes. Add olives, capers and fresh tomatoes and cook it a couple of minutes more before adding the rest of the ingredients. Cook for 10 minutes, lower the heat and let it simmer for half an hour more under a lid.

Grilled Vegetables
2 tbsp olive oil
2 zucchini (sliced)
1 eggplant (sliced)
300 g mushrooms,
300 g fresh kale or spinach
1 clove garlic

Dash the zucchini and eggplant with olive oil and salt and grill them in the oven at 400°F for about 10 minutes. Stir fry the mushrooms and the kale in a pan for 5 minutes with olive oil, salt and garlic. You could also grill the zucchini and eggplant in a broiler pan, the important thing is that the vegetables release some of their moist before putting them in the lasagna.

Lemon- ricotta
500 g ricotta cheese
1 organic mediun size lemon (juice & zest)
1 small handful of fresh basil (chopped)
a pinch of sea salt
a pinch of lemon pepper

Place ricotta cheese in a bowl, grate the lemon zest and sqeeze the lemon, add zest and juice to the bowl. Add basil, salt and lemon pepper and mix it together.

See the instructions on how to put the lasagna together in the beginning of the recipe.

Enjoy World’s Greatest Vegetable Lasagna!


  • Aneta
    I am new to your blog, and it is such a delight to read! i made the lasagna this weekend and it absolutely lives up to its title! loved the lemon in the ricotta. thank you for sharing!!
  • Athena
    Thank you, thank you, thank you for this recipe! I am new to lasagna making and this was my 2 attempt. I looked online for about an hour for the perfect veggie recipe and after sifting through many complicated and not all that delicious looking dishes, I finally (thankfully) stumbled upon yours. It turned out every bit as mouthwatering as it looks in your gorgeous picture. I was partly making lasagna to clean out my cupboards so, while it sounds just scrumptious, I did not go so far as to make my own arrabiata sauce, but opted for canned instead. Otherwise, I tried to stay true. The lemon ricotta was divine and the whole combination of flavors simply brilliant! I did not have eggplant on hand, but upped the zucchini quotient and also roasted some bell peppers and asparagus, which ended up fitting in amazingly well. I think my favorite thing about this recipe is how versatile it is. I will certainly use it for years to come. Thank you!!!
  • Dianne
    I made this for company for the first time and made it exactly as you have it written and it was a HUGE hit!! They raved about it! It wasn't that hard. I did make the sauce the day before. I also made it with brown rice lasagna noodles. I really couldn't taste the red chili pepper (I used a red jalapeno), so next time I make it (which will be soon!) I think I'll use a little crushed red peppers. Thanks for a fantastic recipe! Dianne
  • I made it last night and it was delicious. The lemon ricotta is lovely, although I thought the real star of the show was the arrabiata sauce. I also used it as an opportunity to try and make my own pasta, which worked out pretty great (if I do say so myself). I'll have to check out your other recipes.
  • Dianne
    This recipe looks great! I plan to fix it for the first time for company so I want to do it right. In the sauce, what would you recommend for the fresh chili? And in the lemon-ricotta, the recipe says peel and juice for the lemon, so do I just chop up the whole lemon? Thanks for your help!
    • Hi Dianne. If you make this for your first time, you probably want to take it easy with the chili. Use a small, medium strong, fresh red chili. Remove the seeds, and start by adding half of it to the sauce. Let it simmer for a while, taste it, and then add the rest if you want a little more. Regarding the lemon, DON'T chop up the whole lemon, you should only use the zest and the juice, sorry for being unclear about that in the recipe (we have changed it now). First use a grater to scrape off the thin yellow outer zest of the lemon. Then cut it in half and squeeze out the juice. This is one of our favorite recipes, so we bet you will make a good impression. Good luck!
  • Me and my sis made the lasagna today:) It was a hit:) loved it! :) thank you so much for sharing this wonderful recipe. xx Mimi
  • maggie
    Hi! A few questions about this recipe which I am planning to make tomorrow...first, for the tomato sauce, what size cans of tomatoes do you use? second, are the lasagna noodles you are using fresh or dry? if they are dry/crunchy/out of a box i would think you definitely need to boil them first? Thanks for your quick response, it looks delicious!
    • Hi Maggie! In sweden canned tomatoes contain about 1 cup, so in this recipe you need to use about 2 cups of canned plum tomatoes. Regarding the lasagna noodles, we actually used dry noodles, and they were not pre-boiled. They will be covered in tomato sauce and lemon ricotta, and be boiled that way as the lasagna is being baked for about 45 minutes in the oven. Good luck! /David
  • katieanne
    wow! this was wonderful! i substituted some of the veggies to include roasted red pepper & broccoli [we aren't too fond of eggplant]... and my meat-eating husband raved that he's never eaten a better lasagne! the arrabiata sauce would be delicious on its own with linguini or other pasta. yum! what a great first experience with your lovely site!
  • Monica
  • Thanks for the recipe. I am in love with the lemon ricotta, so in love... I wasn't such a fan of the eggplant, mushrooms and zucchini though, maybe I need to cook them a little bit more beforehand. They were a little too textured which took away from the all around deliciousness for me. I'll be dreaming of lemon ricotta though and all the things I might do with her. (A she because she's so delicious...)
  • Hi Luise and David, I just tried your Lasagne last night with fresh summer vegetables (bell peppers instead of mushrooms and kale). It was delicious and everybody was excited about the lemon ricotta! Besides... I love your blog! All the best from Vienna, Natascha
  • Hi, I'm going to make this this week and have a HUGE lemon...can you let me know how much lemon juice to use since I don't want to make it too tart. Thank you
    • If it's a HUGE lemon I would probably use half of it. Taste the lemon ricotta mix before adding it to the lasagna to make sure it's enough. Good luck! /David
  • Tasted delicious! I love this blog!
  • Hello, do you cook the lasagna noodles before you assemble the lasagna?
    • Hi Lisa, we don't cook them before. Everything is baked in the oven after the lasagna is assembled. Good luck! /David
  • Michaela
    This rocked! I supstituted Swiss Chard for the kale and grilled all the veggies (including the kale leaves and mushrooms) on the BBQ for added flavour and used Spelt noodles for a healthier addition. This is so good and worth the time spent to put it all together. The lemon ricotta is fantastic. Next time I might make the sauce a day ahead and also grill the veggies a day before. It took 3 hours to put everything together, but so worth it.
  • I need some help with "half a pot" of basil. Not a term I've heard before, and I have no idea how much that is. (What pot?) Can you give in terms of cups or leaves, etc.?
    • Yeah, maybe that was a bit unclear... In sweden we often buy a pot of basil from the supermarket. Half a pot is equal to a handful or 25-30 medium sized leaves. Good luck! /David
  • It's the lemon-ricotta and the kale that I'm in love with...
  • This is wonderful, love the rouch of the lemon and basil ricotta!
  • Julian: Fantastic, we're so happy that you liked it! It really is an amazing lasagna. We also made too much for one night and kept nagging on ours three days in a row. /Luise
    • Julian
      As far as i can tell i am going to nag on it for at least 5 days in a row, if my colleges won't rape me in the first place :D ( sometimes the really do! Then they stand behind me, look over my shoulders and try to snitch some bits. So every once in a wile i have to cook for approx. 25 people to calm them down a little bit and treat them with healthy food. The normally eat only McD and Co.)
  • Julian
    i am about to cook it tonight. never found lasagna that interesting until you replaced the bechamel with ricotta! as an obsessed pasta fan i am really looking forward to get the best out of it! :D
    • Julian
      Oh my god the lasagna was beyond delicious. The combination of ricotta and lemon, i knew of the existence but would never had guessed it would underscore the taste of the eggplant and zucchini that much! I am so happy i did not change the amount - so i am going to have something to eat for tomorrow and make my colleges jealous :D Really worth the try!
  • Meredith
    I made this today and it really is delicious. The lemon in the ricotta gives it a really interesting flavor.
  • Your lasagna looks indeed fantastic! Thanks for sharing :)
  • Thank you all for your comments! Hope none of us have to experience a bad lasagna ever again.
  • I havent even made this and it sounds like the best lasagna for sure! YUM!!!!
  • Rachel
    Oh man, I can totally relate with the lasagna "try all". Now with your success, I'll have to try this one! Thanks for posting, great pics!
  • Nothing like a disappointing lasagne, although this one looks far from it! Well done, I wish I could have a slice now!
  • Liss
    I need this in my life!
  • Very impressive! I like how you switched out ingredients to stuff that suited you.
    • Philipp
      We had it for our official Christmas Dinner together with our meat lovers (the spinach version). Everyone loved it - thanks for that! And thanks for all your great recipes!
    • Frenchtoast
      I have made this dish twice and it is AMAZING!!! Everyone has loved it! I want to make it again this week but won't have very much time so do you think I can make it all the day before and bake it the next day? Thank you for this amazing recipe!!!

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