By Peggy Pot
- 4 Tb Fresh Harvest Tuscan Herb or Basil EVOO, divided
- 1 medium onion (chopped = 1 cup)
- 1 small red bell pepper (chopped = 1 cup)
- 2 small zucchini (chopped = approx. 2 cups)
- 1 small box white or cremini mushrooms, sliced
- 8 oz fresh baby spinach, stems removed, coarsely chopped
- 2 tsp minced fresh garlic
- 1 box oven ready lasagna noodles (I like flat, wider type)
- 1/2 tsp fresh ground Spice Boat salt and pepper of choice
- 1/2 tsp Spice Boat dried organic oregano
- 1 16 oz tub part-skim ricotta
- 1 8 oz pkg shredded 5 cheese Italian blend cheese
- 1 24 oz jar marinara of choice
- 1/4 (approx.) cup red wine (optional)
Heat nonstick skillet over medium heat and add 2 Tb of olive oil. Brown mushrooms and set aside. Add remaining olive oil to skillet and sweat onions and peppers until softened. Add zucchini and cook over medium heat, stirring often, until zucchini begins to soften. Add browned mushrooms, garlic and seasonings to pan and continue to cook until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Add wine and cook about 5 minutes longer. Remove from heat.
Spread 1/4 jar (6 oz) of marinara in bottom of crockpot. Cover with a layer of oven ready noodles, breaking to fit. (You will not notice that they have been broken when it is cooked!) It is ok to overlap a little.
Spread 1/2 of the ricotta over the noodles. Top with 1/2 of the spinach, and then spread 1/2 of the sautéed vegetables on top of the spinach. Cover with 1/3 of the grated cheese. Repeat a second layer by spreading 6 oz of marinara over grated cheese, topping with noodles, the remaining 8 oz of ricotta, remaining spinach, the rest of the cooked vegetables. Top with 1/3 of the cheese just as you did with first layer. Spread 6 oz of sauce over shredded cheese, add another layer of noodles and then cover them with the remaining 6 oz of sauce. Top with the rest of the shredded cheese.
** Cook on High for 2 hours. Let it stand about 10-15 minutes before cutting just as you would with oven lasagna.
** You can cover and refrigerate the prepped lasagna for up to 24 hours before cooking if you would like to make ahead during busy times. Just add about 30 minutes extra cooking time due to the cold starting temperature.**
If you would like a meat version, you can add 1 cup cooked Italian sausage or ground beef to the sautéed vegetables or simply use a marinara sauce with meat. This is a delicious lasagna and not terribly heavy or cheesy.