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Plate with a slice of Lentil & Eggplant Lasagna topped with fresh basil
4.89 from 78 votes

Lentil & Eggplant Lasagna

Satisfying, healthy eggplant lasagna with lentil marinara. Made with just 10 ingredients, this is the perfect plant-based, gluten-free entrée!
Author: Minimalist Baker
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings: 9 (slices)
Category: Entree
Cuisine: Gluten-Free, Italian-Inspired, Vegan
Freezer Friendly 1 month
Does it keep? 3-4 Days

Ingredients

EGGPLANT

  • 2 medium eggplants (sliced into 1/4-inch slices lengthwise // or 12 lasagna noodles, boiled)
  • Sea salt (for sweating)
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil

SAUCE + LENTILS

  • 1 28-ounce jar favorite marinara sauce* (I like Trader Joe’s Basil Marinara)
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 3/4 cup rinsed and drained red lentils (can sub green, but will increase cooking time)

TOFU RICOTTA

  • 1 12-ounce block extra firm tofu (drained and pressed dry for 10 minutes)
  • 1 1/2 medium lemons, juiced (1 1/2 lemons yield ~1/4 cup or 60 ml)
  • 3 Tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1/2 cup fresh basil (finely chopped // plus more for serving)
  • 1 Tbsp dried oregano
  • 1/2 tsp each sea salt + black pepper
  • 1-2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1/4 cup vegan parmesan cheese (optional // plus more for serving)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (218 C). Also set out two baking sheets and one large (9x13-inch or similar) baking dish (sizes/amounts as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size).

  2. Generously salt eggplant slices on both sides and arrange in a colander in the sink to remove excess water/bitterness for 15 minutes. (If using lasagna noodles, boil, drain and set aside.)
  3. Rinse salted eggplant slices well and dry thoroughly between two clean absorbent towels. Lay a baking sheet on top and place something heavy on top to absorb excess moisture.
  4. Arrange slices on 1-2 baking sheets in an even layer and drizzle with a little olive or grape seed oil. Bake in a 425 degree F oven for 13-15 minutes. Remove from oven and reduce oven heat to 375 degrees F (190 C).
  5. While eggplant is baking, add marinara sauce and water to a large saucepan and bring to a low boil over medium heat. Then add rinsed lentils and lower heat to a simmer (low) and cook loosely covered (to prevent splattering), stirring occasionally, for about 15-20 minutes or until lentils are tender.
  6. In the meantime, make tofu ricotta. Add all ricotta ingredients to a food processor or blender and pulse to combine, scraping down sides as needed. You want a semi-puréed mixture with bits of basil still intact.
  7. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed, adding more salt and pepper for flavor, nutritional yeast for cheesiness, or lemon juice for brightness. I usually add a bit more of all three.
  8. Spread a thin layer of lentil marinara sauce into your baking dish. Then layer on a few pieces of eggplant (see photo).
  9. Spoon half of the ricotta filling over the eggplant slices and spread into an even layer. Then top with another layer of marinara sauce. Repeat until you have used up all the ricotta. NOTE: The top layers should be: Marinara, eggplant noodles, marinara.
  10. Sprinkle the top with vegan parmesan cheese (optional) and cover with foil. Bake at 375 F (190 C) for 30 minutes, then remove foil and bake for 10-15 minutes more, or until the sauce is bubbly and warm and the top layer is very slightly browned (see photo).
  11. Let rest for 10-15 minutes. Then slice with a serrated or very sharp knife, and serve with additional vegan parmesan cheese and fresh basil (optional).
  12. Leftovers keep covered in the refrigerator for 3-4 days. Reheat in the oven or the microwave until warm. You can freeze the dish up to 1 month: Prepare up until baking and then thaw slightly before baking at 375 F (190 C) until warmed through.

Notes

*Make your red sauce from scratch using this recipe.
*If you have a soy allergy or prefer not to use tofu, sub this macadamia nut ricotta instead!
*Adapted from my Eggplant Lasagna Rolls.
*Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated without vegan parmesan cheese.

Nutrition Per Serving (1 of 9 slices)