Vegan Butternut Squash and Kale Lasagna
Vegan Butternut Squash and Kale Lasagna- layered with cashew ricotta and roasted butternut squash, this lasagna is sure to make for a memorable meal!
It wouldn’t be the holidays without lasagna! Or at least some kind of Italian food.
We always eat Italian cuisine for Christmas and I’m fairly certain we always will. It’s a tradition I never want to break. The usual rotation includes stuffed shells, vegetable bolognese, some kind of eggplant dish, and a hearty vegetable lasagna. You just can’t go wrong with tomato sauce and pasta, you know?
While I usually stick to the basics with lasagna, I thought it would be fun to mix things up with a winter vegetable inspired version featuring roasted butternut squash and kale. Always a good combo, in my humble opinion.
To replace the cheese I used my go-to cashew ricotta (based on the recipe for my stuffed shells) which is a blend of raw cashews, lemon juice, garlic and salt. Super simple and so delicious.
Between roasting the squash, cooking the kale, boiling the lasagna noodles, and blending up pine nut parmesan, this recipe isn’t a quick one. That why I used store bought marinara. Sometimes you have to cut corners where you can to keep your sanity.
Even though it takes a little bit of time to make, I promise it’s worth the trouble. The nutty squash pairs so well with the creamy cashew ricotta and the kale is sure to make you feel good about getting some green in the mix.
You can also prep it head of time if you’d like to make it for the holidays. Just assemble then cover and wait to cook until everyone is about ready to eat.
Vegan Butternut Squash and Kale Lasagna
For the lasagna
- 2 cups (1-inch) cubed butternut squash
- 1 tablespoon high heat oil
- 2 cups raw cashews, soaked*
- juice of 2 lemons (1/3 cup)
- 2 garlic cloves
- 1 teaspoon salt + 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 2 teaspoons oregano
- 2 teaspoons basil
- 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast (optional)
- 1 small onion, finely chopped
- 1 bunch kale, stems removed and chopped into bite-size pieces
- 28 ounces marinara
- 6 lasagna noodles
- fresh basil for garnish (optional)
For the pinenut parmesan
- 3/4 cup toasted pinenuts
- 1-2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
Preheat the oven to 400°F then line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone mat. Arrange the cubed butternut squash on top and toss with high heat oil. Bake in the oven for about 20-30 minutes, or until tender to pierce with a fork. Remove from oven then reduce heat to 350°F.
Meanwhile prepare the cashew ricotta by combining the soaked and rinsed cashews with the lemon juice, garlic, nutritional yeast and salt in a high speed blender with 1/4 cup water. Blend until smooth. You will likely have to scrape down the sides in between blending. Add a tablespoon or so of water at a time if needed to help blend. Careful not to add too much water. It should be thick but able to spread.
In a skillet over medium heat, warm the olive oil then add the onion and cook for about 3 minutes, until translucent. Add the kale, salt & pepper, and oregano, then cover with a lid and continue to cook until wilted, stirring intermittently. Set aside.
Prepare the lasagna noodles as directed then rinse with cold water to keep from sticking together. In a 9×9” baking dish, spread 1/2 cup of the marinara along the bottom.
Place 2 of the noodles over the marinara then layer roughly 1/2 cup of the cashew ricotta on top. Arrange 1/2 of the butternut squash on top of the ricotta, layer with another 1/2 cup marinara then top with 2 more lasagna noodles.
Spread 1/2 cup of the cashew ricotta on top of the noodles then arrange cooked kale over the top. Add another 1/2 cup marinara then finish with remaining 2 lasagna noodles.
Spread the remaining cashew ricotta on the noodles and arrange the remaining butternut squash on top. Finish with remaining marinara then bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes, until heated through.
Meanwhile, prepare the pine nut parmesan by combining the toasted pinenuts with nutritional yeast, garlic powder and salt in a food processor or blender. Pulse until a somewhat chunky powder forms.
Remove warm lasagna from the oven and allow to cool for at least 5-10 minutes. Sprinkle pinenut parmesan on top of lasagna and garnish with fresh basil. Serve warm and enjoy!
Did you try this recipe? Please let me know how it turned out by leaving a comment below or sharing a picture on Instagram with the hashtag #makingthymeforhealth. I love hearing your feedback!
Hey Sarah, I am drooling over this recipe. I think I will try this recipe very soon. Thanks for sharing.
This looks so healthy and wholesome! I just stuffed my face at our office luncheon, so I could use some kale in my life right now lol.
Ohhh girl I am LOVING these flavors! I absolutely adore Italian food, and this take on lasagna looks just amazing! Can’t wait to try!
You always know how to make me hungry, Sarah! The flavor combination is fabulous and I adore the pinenut parm – FTW! Indeed, store bought pasta sauce is something I always buy when I run out of previously frozen farmers market sauce from summer. There are some high quality ones on the market too! You know, we never have traditional fare for Christmas either…. we usually go Mexican food with enchaladas or tacos, or do Italian! A hearty lasagna is always welcome. This year, we’re celebrating with Family on Friday.. homemade pizza is in the works, then for Christmas, I’m thinking tacos, but still haven’t decided. Delicious work Sarah!!
It looks so delicious and yummy that I’m sure that it taste the same way. Beautiful decorated on a plate.
Huge yes to Italian food for christmas! That’s our tradition too (and was my family’s growing up!). This lasagna looks FANTASTIC. And Merry Christmas to you and your family Sarah!! Hope you have a wonderful holiday!! PS Emma wishes Lucy a merry christmas too haha I’m such a nerd.
I made the lasagna and it was absolutely delicious. I’ve since made it two more times (3 times in total) and have shared it my vegan co-workers who loved it too. My family also loves it and I’m the only vegan!
I’m so glad to hear that! Thank you for sharing the recipe :)
Oh yes, Italian food is my favorite cuisine – hands down. Hope that you had a nice Christmas lady!! I made a few of your recipes :) Everyone loved your vegan Wellington! I have lefties that I’ll be eating later on… woohoo!
Yay! I’m so happy it was a hit. I hope you had a nice Christmas too!!
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I noticed oregano is listed in the ingredients list but couldn’t find where to use it in your instructions?
So sorry I left that out! I added it to the kale in the skillet. You can find it updated in the instructions now. :)
Thank you! Prepping this right now for dinner this week!!
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This looks delicious! Do you think it would be freezable?
Hey Amber! I think it would be okay to freeze, probably prior to baking. Let me know if you give a try!
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This recipe is gorgeoussssss! Sing it like I do! Like Rachael Ray! Ha! Maybe just my sis & I think that’s funny! Twin humor. Anyway, I never have cooked butternut squash. I will definitely be trying this very, very soon! I just love cooking & trying new recipes! You have great taste Sarah‼️ I love to keep up with what ur cooking! Fun! :)
Aw thanks Diana! :)
This is the best!!
Made it two times now.
Second time, I increased the kale amount.
Want to make this delicious sounding recipe BUT am confused with one of the ingredients “28 ounces marinara!!”
??? Do I have to make this ?? I am assuming it means Marinara Sauce – if so- how do you recommend I make this?????and how long will it take & what ingredients ???
REFERENCE:-VEGAN BUTTERNUT SQUASH AND KALE LASAGNA
I usually just buy marinara sauce at the store. It comes in 28-ounce jars here in the U.S.
Second time making this. So flavorful and fresh. If I didn’t cook, I’d eat junk. Thanks a million.
Can kale be substituted with spinach?
I subbing kale with spinach
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I tried the recipe IT WAS AMAZING!!!!, I really enjoyed making it.
Thank you for sharing..
I’m so glad you enjoyed it! Thank you for the review!
Excellent flavour and recipe. I’m a relatively new vegan and always looking for new family recipes…. this one was again, excellent !
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This lasagna is absolutely incredible. Chef tested/tasted and approved. And even at an Italian family Christmas dinner, I might add! Just personal preference, but I add fine chopped fresh basil, fresh oregano and a little fennel to the kale mixture, but as is, this recipe is very good. I have tried many of your dishes and have always been very pleased. Many thanks for all the effort you put into your site. Keep doing what you’re doing!
Amazing flavors! So worth the effort.
One question, where do I use the first (optional) nutritional yeast! I improvised and added it to the ricotta but I missed where it was listed in the recipe. Thanks!
That’s correct! :)
Pretty lame that there is no notation for the asterisk after “soak cashews”… I looked it up at the time I began making this, to discover they need to soak for HOURS. Went the boiling shortcut, but still…
I made this dish for vegan and vegetarian guests this Christmas I soaked the cashews overnight Dec 23, made the cashew cream and the lasagna Dec 24 and baked and served Dec 25. Yes it takes planning and preparation before hand but gives little work the day of the event. It was delicious! This recipe does not taste vegan the cashew cream is so good. I did half the lemon juice in the cashew cream and left out the basil because the recipe didn’t say when to add it. Don’t leave out the nutritional yeast. It adds to the cheesiness. The leftovers were also great! Loved by everyone!
How many people does this serve? Can it be made in a larger pan like a standard lasagna 9×13 pan?
Yes it should work in a larger pan. You will likely need to use more lasagna noodles but the rest should be the same. The smaller pan makes about 9 servings, although that really depends on the individual as some people need larger servings to feel full.