Lasagna was one of my favourite childhood dishes. Since my mother has quite the flair for Italian cookery it appeared often and was always amazing. 10 years ago, when I stopped being able to eat gluten, red meat and heavy dairy, lasagna was sorely missed.
There are a number of gluten-free lasagna versions, most involving ‘gluten free pasta’… I’m putting that into quote marks because gluten free versions of pasta are not pasta! They are either solid stodge or an inedible mush once cooked. That is not the joyous pasta of my memories!
Adorably, the first meal my darling wife ever cooked for me was lasagna. Although we later agreed that since it was purely layered vegetables with cheese and a bit of mince it wasn’t really ‘lasagna’… We’ve tried again since but nothing really hit the spot- until this recipe!
As everyone with a special diet knows, it’s a massive bloody hassle! I love cooking but sometimes I’m ill or tired and I just want the convenience of a dish that’s ready made. It was whilst searching for just such a grain free, low carb ready meal (ha ha) in Sainsbury’s that we came upon butternut squash ‘pasta sheets’! Genius!
I’m not normally a big Sainsbury’s fan since I think their food is way over priced- often matching Waitrose prices but without the quality. But this idea is really rather brilliant.
I’ve taken the concept and run with it, adapting from their pork and ready-made sauce version.
Whilst the readymade sauce was okay for me I know it won’t be for some so I’ve added two homemade versions to the ingredients list, one of which is lactose free.
I’ve used turkey mince because it’s tasty, low fat and easy to digest. Obviously you don’t need to buy the pre-sliced butternut squash sheets from Sainsburys but if you’re looking for something quick and easy they’re a great option. If you’re slicing up your own squash then you’ll need 400g worth of flat sheets. Make sure they’re thin! Due to the muscle wastage in my hands I personally don’t have the strength to slice squash thinly- please send me pictures if you do because I will be incredibly impressed!
Let me know if you make this dish and what you thought of it, also if you’d like to see more ‘easy, low carb and gluten free’ dinners.
The Best Gluten Free Lasagna
1 tbsp olive oil
500g turkey mince
250g chestnut mushrooms, sliced
100g baby leaf spinach
1 pack butternut squash lasagna sheets (400g)
50g parmesan cheese OR lacto-free cheese
350g tomato and mascarpone sauce
OR tin of tomato passata, chopped garlic, chopped onion and 3 tablespoons mascarpone
OR tin of tomato passata, chopped garlic, chopped onion, 200g lacto-free cheese, dash lacto-free milk
- Preheat the oven to 200 C.
- Heat oil in a large frying pan and cook the diced onions for 5 minutes until softened. Add the turkey mince and fry for a further 5 minutes until seared on the outside. Stir in the mushrooms and cook for 4 minutes until softened.
- Pour in ¾ of the tomato and mascarpone sauce then mix well. Add the spinach and cook until wilted.
- Layer the lasagna in an ovenproof baking dish. Start with a layer of the butternut squash sheets then cover with turkey mixture and repeat. Ensure squash is the final layer
- Top with the remaining tomato and mascarpone sauce and a generous topping of parmesan cheese.
- Bake in the oven for 40 minutes until a golden brown crust has formed
- Take out of the oven and allow to sit loosely covered with foil for 15 minutes.
- Serve with salad.
All that’s needed to make this recipe entirely FODMAP friendly is to remove the shallots and any garlic you throw in. If you’re using frozen spinach like me then give it a quick defrost in the microwave first!