Butternut Squash Lasagna (Vegan, GF Optional)

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Close up shot of a slice of butternut squash lasagna topped with vegan parmesan and fresh basil

One of our all-time favorite fall vegetables is the ever-versatile butternut squash! And after you try this lasagna, you’ll see why. What started as an attempt at gluten-free ravioli turned into something even more AMAZING! This new twist on classic lasagna swaps tomato sauce for a savory, creamy, butternut squash cashew sauce that pairs perfectly with lasagna noodles and sautéed kale and mushrooms. 

This plant-based (and gluten-free optional) entreé is undeniably comforting and crowd-pleasing and will make an excellent addition to holiday dinner tables or as meal prep for the week’s lunches! Did we mention just 10 ingredients are required? Let us show you how it’s done!

Kale, mushrooms, butternut squash, garlic, salt, pepper, nutritional yeast, lemon, water, lasagna noodles, cashews, and olive oil

Origins of Lasagna

Perhaps like many of you, we were under the impression that lasagna originated in Italy. Turns out, its origins are a bit more complicated!

Some say the concept originated in ancient Greece where layered dough sheets (called laganon) were cut into strips and baked. Others claim it resembles a Roman dish recorded in a cookbook from the 1st century AD. And still others place its origin in England or Italy in the 14th century, where cookbooks describe the concept of layering cheese and pasta in a dish and baking it. (Source)

The following is a plant-based twist on the soul-satisfying concept of layering “cheese” and pasta and baking in a casserole dish.

How to Make Butternut Squash Lasagna

The butternut squash component of this lasagna is the sauce! Butternut squash is roasted with garlic until both become tender and caramelized, then they’re blended with creamy cashews, lemon juice, salt, nutritional yeast (optional), and water.

Pouring water into a blender with roasted squash, garlic, cashews, nutritional yeast, and salt

The result is a smooth, balanced, rich sauce that takes the place of both the “cheese” and “sauce” layers of a classic lasagna.

Butternut squash sauce in a baking dish

For the noodles, you can go with any type you enjoy — regular, whole wheat, gluten-free (we like Tinkyada), grain-free. Or, if you’re feeling extra trendy and adventurous, we hear there are even chickpea lasagna noodles out there these days (let us know how they are in the comments if you try them)!

Butternut squash sauce topped with lasagna noodles

The final component is the sautéed onion, mushroom, and kale filling seasoned simply with salt, pepper, and (optional) dried thyme.

Skillet of sautéed kale, mushrooms, and onions

Layer it between comforting noodles and creamy sauce.

Layering mushroom kale filling over lasagna noodles

Then bake to bubbly perfection and garnish with vegan parmesan cheese and fresh basil for even more flavor!

Fork and slice of butternut squash lasagna on a plate

We hope you LOVE this butternut squash lasagna! It’s:

& Crowd-pleasing!

It’s the perfect entrée for your holiday table, feeding a crowd, meal prep, and enjoying all fall and winter long! While plenty worthy as a standalone meal, it would also be delicious served with our Lemon & Herb Roasted Chicken, Easy 1-Pot Tomato Soup, or Lemony Arugula Salad with Crispy Shallot.

More Delicious Lasagna Recipes

If you try this recipe, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo #minimalistbaker on Instagram. Cheers, friends!

Fork holding up a bite of butternut squash, kale, and mushroom lasagna

Butternut Squash Lasagna (Vegan, GF Optional)

Creamy butternut squash sauce meets pasta, kale, and mushrooms in a delicious twist on classic lasagna. Bursting with fall flavor and just 10 ingredients required!
Author Minimalist Baker
Slice of butternut squash lasagna topped with vegan parmesan and fresh basil
4.91 from 145 votes
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Servings 6 (Slices)
Course Dinner, Entrée
Cuisine Gluten-Free (optional), Greek-Inspired, Italian-Inspired, Vegan
Freezer Friendly 1 month
Does it keep? 3-4 Days



  • 1 small butternut squash (1 small squash yields ~2 cups or 480 g purée)
  • 10-12 cloves garlic, peeled and left whole
  • 1 ¼ cup raw cashews
  • 3 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt (plus more to taste)
  • 1 Tbsp nutritional yeast (optional)
  • 1 ½ cups water (plus more as needed to blend)


  • 10 ounces dry lasagna noodles (gluten-free as needed // we used Tinkyada)
  • 1 Tbsp salt (for salting pasta water)
  • 1/2 tsp olive oil


  • 1 ½ Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 large onion, diced (1 onion yields ~3 cups chopped)
  • 6 cups roughly chopped cremini mushrooms
  • 8 cups finely chopped kale (1 bundle yields ~8 cups)
  • 1/2 tsp each sea salt and black pepper
  • 1 tsp dried thyme (optional)

FOR SERVING optional


  • Preheat oven to 425 F (218 C) and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Slice your squash in half lengthwise and remove the seeds, but leave the skin on. Rub squash flesh with a bit of oil. Place garlic cloves on the prepared baking sheet and top with squash cut side down (the scooped-out squash should cover the garlic so it doesn’t burn). Bake for 30-40 minutes, or until the skin is blistered and golden brown and a knife inserted into the squash comes out very easily.
  • While the squash is cooking, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook the lasagna noodles in the salted water according to package instructions or until al dente. Then drain, set aside, and gently toss with a little olive oil to prevent the noodles from sticking together.
  • Heat a large rimmed skillet over medium heat. Once hot, add the olive oil and onion and sauté for 3-4 minutes or until softened, then add the mushrooms and sauté another 5-7 minutes or until lightly browned. Then add kale, salt, pepper, and thyme (optional) and sauté for another 5-7 minutes or until tender.
  • Once the squash is tender and cool enough to handle, scoop 2 cups (~480 g) roasted squash (adjust amount if altering number of servings) into a high-speed blender. Add roasted garlic cloves, cashews, lemon juice, salt, nutritional yeast (optional), and water and blend until smooth, adding more water and scraping down the sides of the blender as needed. It should be thick, creamy, and scoopable. Taste and adjust as needed, adding more salt for overall flavor, lemon for brightness, garlic for savory flavor, or nutritional yeast for cheesiness.
  • Reduce oven temperature to 350 F (177 C).
  • Assemble the lasagna in a 9 x 13 (or similar size) glass or ceramic baking dish. Add 1/2 cup (120 ml) sauce to the bottom of the pan and spread it evenly. Then add a layer of noodles followed by 1/3 of the filling. Repeat with two more layers of sauce, noodles, and filling. Then finish with a layer of noodles and the remaining sauce as the top layer (it should be a thicker layer fully coating the noodles).
  • Bake lasagna at 350 F (177 C) for 30 minutes or until the top layer is slightly dry and a little darker in color.
  • Carefully remove from the oven and let cool 5-10 minutes before serving. Then slice, serve, and enjoy. We recommend garnishing with freshly chopped basil and vegan parmesan cheese. See notes below for freezing instructions.



*To make this recipe freezer friendly, prepare as instructed. Once assembled, cover well and freeze up to 1 month. To bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees F (176 C), cover with foil, and bake for 25 minutes (if thawed) or up to 45 minutes – 1 hour (if frozen). Then remove foil and bake for another 5-10 minutes or until sauce is bubbly and hot.
*Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated with 1/4 tsp of the salt in the pasta water (since the full tablespoon isn’t absorbed into the pasta) and without optional ingredients.

Nutrition (1 of 6 servings)

Serving: 1 serving Calories: 436 Carbohydrates: 61.9 g Protein: 13 g Fat: 18 g Saturated Fat: 3 g Polyunsaturated Fat: 3.4 g Monounsaturated Fat: 9.7 g Trans Fat: 0 g Cholesterol: 0 mg Sodium: 519 mg Potassium: 878 mg Fiber: 8.6 g Sugar: 6.7 g Vitamin A: 10530 IU Vitamin C: 51 mg Calcium: 147 mg Iron: 4.1 mg

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  1. Jennifer says

    I really appreciate your recipes. I was wondering if the Butternut Squash Lasagna work well if I added vegan ricotta (made from Okara)?

    • Kirsten DiGiorgio says

      I always add layers of vegan ricotta when I make this. Always a crowd pleaser even with the non-vegans! I make my vegan ricotta by mashing tofu with garlic powder, salt, lemon juice and nutritional yeast. And there’s usually some leftover sauce to freeze to throw with some noodles for an easy weeknight dinner too. Delish!

  2. jane says

    Beautiful! I used fresh lasagne sheets and spinach instead of kale – just had to double the amount of spinach as 8 cups shrunk to nothing. This is on rotation for sure.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Yes to both! For best flavor/texture, we would suggest assembling the day before and baking the day of, but it will work either way. Reheating in the oven is best if baking ahead.

        • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

          Hmm, good question! Maybe a little extra water in the sauce so it doesn’t dry out too much from the lasagna sheets soaking up extra moisture. Especially if you’ll be reheating it the next day.


    Really good base dish as well. Made this with sliced brussel sprouts, I don’t even like b sprouts, Big crowd loved it. I can imagine a whole range of greenery.

  4. Tmoo says

    Just made this… Delicious! I was out of onion (!) But it didn’t matter. Added a little sage to the veg. Didn’t have mushrooms so I added cauliflower and vegan meat crumbles to the kale. Will make this again!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      We’re so glad you enjoyed it! Thank you for the lovely review and for sharing your modifications! xo

  5. Sherry Considine says

    Can I use no boil lasagna noodles for this recipe?? My damage this for me for my birthday and it was DELICIOUS ‼️ I want to make it but only have no boil noodles.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Sherry, we haven’t tested with no boil noodles, but other readers have reported success using no boil noodles by adding an extra cup of water to the sauce. Hope that helps!

  6. Shannon says

    I love this recipe, I bring it every year for the plant bas d option at our big family holiday dinner. Even my meat eating cousins beg me to bring it.

    Can you offer ideas what to do with the remaining roasted butternut squash that didn’t get used in the sauce? I have slightly over a half of roasted squash left.

  7. Ellie says

    I made this last night using the no-boil noodles. I think this was a mistake as there was not much moisture in the fillings. I ended up with a very dry lasagna. The flavors were great though! I love the butternut sauce amped up with a touch of white miso paste.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Sorry it didn’t turn out right, Ellie. We haven’t tested this recipe with no-boil noodles and do recommend cooking for best success. Other readers have had success using no boil noodles by adding an extra cup of water to the sauce, so perhaps that’s the trick?

  8. Tina Dimitrion says

    I just made this and my kale is not as bright green as in the picture. Should I next time saute the kale separate from the mushrooms? Looks like the recipe says to add to the same pan.

    Looking forward to tasting this!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Tina, it’s fine if it’s not bright green! If you want it to be more bright in color, you can cook it for less time next time.

  9. theresa says

    To clarify based on your note about making this freezer friendly: should i bake it before i freeze it? Or freeze unbaked? What have you tested? hosting a meat-lovers-meet-herbivore thanskgiving dinner, and looking for one less thing to prep day of… thanks!

  10. Sarah says

    I made this recently for a Friendsgiving and overall I’d say it was a hit! I followed the recipe with the exception of not having Thyme at home and it turned out pretty well. If I made this recipe again (which I’m totally saving because it was a great vegan meal) I would likely add some crushed red pepper to the sauce, and add some vegan parm cheese to the veggies like another person suggested. I used oven ready noodles and added a bit more water to the sauce as suggested and it turned out just fine.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Marni, we haven’t tested that, but think it should work well. Let us know if you try it!

  11. Chana Krevsky says

    This was so delicious. I used a bit less lemon juice. Otherwise it was perfect. I used a square dish and liked that there was lots of sauce. Definitely worth the time to make it. Thank you!

  12. Brittany says

    This was super delicious and worth the time it took to make. I made a few alterations, but overall I can tell without them it would still be a hit! I added some fresh Sage and miso to the sauce, plus a bit of nutmeg as one user suggested. I also whipped up some tofu ricotta to add some extra depth and protein, it blended perfect with the sauce. I wasn’t sure if I should cover it with foil, so I did for about 20 minutes of the cooking and did 15 minutes uncovered. Everything was the perfect taste and texture, can’t wait for the leftovers!

      • Caroline says

        I love this recipe! It turned out great and tasted so good. I didn’t change a thing. My non vegan friend loved it as well! I will be making it again. Thank you for another great recipe.

  13. Melissa says

    Made this in a smaller tray, using no mushrooms and heart of palm lasagna. Really good! I need a better blender for cashews!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Lovely! Thank you for sharing, Melissa! A high-speed blender is definitely helpful for getting cashews to be super creamy.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Colleen, Other readers have had success using no boil noodles by adding an extra cup of water to the sauce, but we haven’t tried it. Let us know if you do!

  14. Bethany says

    Without cashews in the pantry, I subbed cooked chickpeas in the squash sauce which thickened it wonderfully. Didn’t need to adjust any of the other ingredient amounts to taste but did add about 1/4 tsp nutmeg to the squash sauce. We mixed parmesan into the veggie filling and topped the lasagna with it before cooking. This is a cozy fall treat, thank you for the recipe!

  15. Connie Lamberes says

    I just made and ate all of this! This recipe was phenomenal! Loved it! I am single and have been eating this every morning for breakfast. It’s perfect and wouldn’t change a thing!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      AMAZING! We’re so glad you enjoyed it, Connie. And we love that you’ve been having it for breakfast! Thank you for sharing! xo