Kara and I have been wanting to make Lasagna Rolls since day uno of this blog. We talked about it all the time, but never followed through on the idea. I don’t know why. As I write this post I’m thinking back to the early days of our blog. We made list after list of recipes we wanted to try. Lasagna Rolls were always on those lists! Why did it take us so long to make them?To be honest I had never had a Lasagna Roll before, but I have had my fair share of lasagna. My mom makes it pretty often, especially for holidays. All I have to say is thank God we finally tried Lasagna Rolls! They were just as delicious as I had imagined. Kara, Cliff and I each scarfed down a Lasagna Roll straight outta the oven and I can assure you we licked our plates clean.
I don’t like mushrooms (actually hate is a better word) so I topped mine with spinach and broccoli only, but Kara and Cliff went with spinach, mushrooms and broccoli. You could use other vegetables too-red pepper, green pepper, onion, etc. Or you could skip the veggies and just do the cheese filling…although I suggest using veggies. If you’re a meat lover you can add chicken, ground beef, pancetta…the list goes on and on.
Note: I’ve noticed that many lasagna and lasagna roll recipes include both a red sauce and a bechamel sauce. We wanted to keep things simple so we skipped the bechamel sauce and instead used our Quickie Sauce which is posted in our Meatball Slider post. It’s a very basic red sauce, it’s good though, a definite go-to in our kitchen. The only thing we changed was adding some mascarpone cheese at the end. I think the addition of the mascarpone gave the creamy element that you’d expect from a bechamel sauce.
1 15-ounce container whole milk ricotta cheese
1 10-ounce package fresh baby spinach
2 cups fresh broccoli, finely chopped
1 cup mushrooms, sliced
1 cup Parmesan cheese
1 large egg, beaten
¾ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
½ tablespoon parskley flakes
1-2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for the pasta water
8 uncooked lasagna noodles
2 cups Quickie Sauce, plus more for serving
½ cup mascarpone cheese
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Meanwhile, start cooking the vegetables. In a large sauté pan, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil. Saute the mushrooms and broccoli just until softened. Add the baby spinach and cook spinach until wilted. Transfer vegetables to a bowl and set aside.
In a large bowl, whisk the ricotta cheese, Parmesan cheese, egg, salt, pepper and parsley flakes in a medium bowl. Once it is blended, set aside.
When the water reaches a boil, generously salt the water and add 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil. Boil the lasagna noodles just until tender. Drain the noodles and carefully lay them out in a single layer on a towel-lined baking sheet.
Working with 1 lasagna noodle at a time, spread about 3 tablespoons of the ricotta mixture evenly across the noodle. Add some veggies on top of the cheese. Roll the noodle up and place it seam side down in the baking dish. Repeat this process with the remaining lasagna noodles. Cover the lasagna rolls with the remaining cup of Quickie Sauce. Sprinkle mozzarella cheese on top of the lasagna rolls. Bake until heated through, about 20 minutes. Serve with extra sauce alongside the lasagna rolls.
Source: Inspired by Giada de Laurentiis