Hello Monday! How are ya friends!? I hope you had a great weekend and are ready to take on another another great week!
I had a weekend FULL of cooking. The hub is headed out on another long road trip so prepped him as many yummy eats as possible to fuel his long days at the baseball field; and I also made some delicious eats with my mom including today’s post (as seen below!) to stay here.
From left to right…Black Bean Burritos pressed in the George Foreman, Double Chocolate Protein Bars (recipe to come soon!), Roasted Balsamic Broccoli, my mom’s Butternut Squash Soup, Crockpot Lasagna (recipe below), and homemade Vegan Apple Cinnamon Rolls (recipe adapted from Katie over at Honeystuck with a few substitutions) which were supposed to go with to to an early morning Falcons tailgate. Not pictured grilled BBQ Chicken, Rosemary White Beans, Mashed Potatoes, and I think that might be all. Wow! Just typing all of that exhausted me!
But on to today!
It’s the 21st which means it’s time for another Recipe Redux post (which perfectly falls on Meatless Monday too!)! In case you’ve missed the past two Recipe Redux posts be sure to check them out. Both were absolutely delicious: Garden Harvest Pickled Okra and Mini Peanut Butter Pies!
The challenge we were given for October was as follows:
The No-Casserole Crock Pot: Some of us grew up on casseroles out of a slow cooker – but now home cooks are using that same slow cooker to roast a chicken, bake bread, make homemade yogurt and for other creative dishes. Show us how you are using the slow cooker to craft a new healthy recipe.
When I started thinking about what I wanted to do for this months challenge dishes like Crockpot Applesauce, Rosemary White Beans and Overnight Crockpot Oats came to mind.
And then something else happened.
Last week, while on the road with Dustin, we sat down at the lobby bar for a glass of wine after dinner. After talking to the bartender for a few minutes, she went on to tell me how tired she was: she’s returning to school in the morning, working during the day, and bar tending at night, all with three children at home. She was telling me that the hardest part about her jam packed schedule was making sure that her children have a warm meal to come home to in the evenings (Does it come to any surprise to you that our conversation ended up on food?).
I could see the compassion in her eyes. She was doing everything she possibly could to better not only her but her children’s life too. She said she tries to plan ahead and uses her crockpot as often as possible. Smart lady.
And then she mentioned Crockpot Lasagna (and spaghetti sandwiches? new to me!).
I’ve told you all before that my husband is the guy that says, “Hey Ash, do you think you could make “Healthy Sausage Balls?”
Really, Dustin? Sausage + massive amounts of cheese + white flour + egg? (Just typing that out gets my wheels spinning although… maybe “Healthier Chicken Sausage Balls?” Humm… we’ll see about that.)
What I am trying to say is that he wants his old favorite, unhealthy foods made healthy, and rightfully so! Healthy food should taste delicious, as shown through the Recipe Redux.
But back to Crockpot Lasagna.
When the bartender mentioned Crockpot Lasagna, I knew my next challenge was upon me.
Enter this Gluten-free, Veggie-packed Crockpot Lasagna.
An easy, yet delicious take on an old favorite!
- 1/2 cup dried lentils
- 1.5 cups water
- 24 oz. jar marinara sauce (Classico’s Tomato Basil is a good option – or you can make your own!)
- 1 tbsp organic canola oil
- 1 small onion, diced
- 2 tbsp minced garlic
- 1 10 oz. carton white mushrooms, chopped
- 1 zucchini, diced
- 1 red bell pepper, diced
- 15 oz. fat-free plain Greek yogurt
- 2 cups vegan Mozzarella cheese, separated
- 2 cups spinach, chopped into shreds
- 1 tbsp Italian seasoning
- 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
- 10 oz package gluten-free brown rice lasagna noodles
- In a medium sauce pan, combine the lentils and the water and cook until just al dente (~20 minutes). Pour the jar of marinara sauce into the pot of lentils and stir gently to combine and set aside (pour about 1/2 cup of water into the empty jar and swirl around to collect the remaining tomato sauce and set the jar aside for later use) .
- Meanwhile, in a skillet, heat the oil over medium high heat. Add the onions and sauté for ~2-3 minutes. Add the garlic, mushrooms, zucchini, and bell pepper and sauté for 3-4 more minutes, just browning the vegetables.
- Add the vegetables to the lentil sauce, again, stirring to combine.
- In a large bowl, combine the Greek yogurt, 1 cup of mozzarella, chopped spinach, and Italian seasoning.
- Pour 1/3 cup of the veggie marinara lentil sauce in the bottom of the crockpot. Add a layer of lasagna noodles (breaking accordingly to fit into your crockpot).
- Spread 1/2 of the cheese mixture across the top of the noodles.
- Repeat: 1/3 veggie lentil sauce, noodles, 1/2 cheese, and then one more layer of the noodles and the remaining sauce.
- Sprinkle with the remaining 1 cup of Mozzarella cheese.
- Pour the 1/2 cup water from the sauce jar around the edges of the crockpot evenly.
- Cook on low for ~4-6 hours.
- Remove the lid and allow your family to oooo and ahhhh over the delicious smell and yummy taste! Serve and enjoy!
I hope your family enjoys this dish as much as mine! Have a great day!