My sister has been raving about Rachel Ray’s Mexican Lasagna recipe for months now so I figured I had to give it a try. It’s a great weeknight dinner…simple ingredients, easy to make and really satisfying…also makes great leftovers! Definitely make this your own by adding your favorite toppings…trying to be healthy, I added greek yogurt and hot sauce
- 2 lbs ground chicken
- 2 tbsps chili powder
- 2 tsps ground cumin
- 1/2 red onion, chopped
- 1 can black beans, drained
- 1 cup medium heat taco sauce
- 1 (14-oz) can stewed or fire roasted tomatoes
- 1 cup frozen corn kernels
- 8 (8 inch) flour tortillas, I used wheat
- 2 1/2 cups shredded cheddar or mexican blend cheese
- 2 green onions, finely chopped
1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees
2. Preheat a large skillet over medium high heat. Add olive oil to the pan. Add chicken and season with chili powder, cumin, and red onion. Brown the meat, 5 minutes. Add taco sauce and stewed or fire roasted tomatoes. Add black beans and corn. Heat the mixture through, 2 to 3 minutes then season with salt, to taste.
3. Coat a shallow baking dish with olive oil, about 1 tablespoon. Cut the tortillas in half or quarters to make them easy to layer with. Build lasagna in layers of meat and beans, then tortillas (double this up per my sisters’ recommendation :)), then cheese. Repeat: meat, tortilla, cheese again.
4. Bake lasagna 12 to 15 minutes until cheese is brown and bubbly. Top with the scallions and serve.
I spotted this recipe in my Bon Appetit magazine…the basil crunch with the gooey mozzerralla caught my eye immediately. I decided to try it out for our October cooking club. Although there are alot of steps involved, its a pretty easy recipe and the outcome is amazing…the dish was clean by the end of the night!
- 1 unpeeled large eggplant (1 1/2 to 1 3/4 pounds), cut into 1/2-inch cubes
- 2 medium yellow bell peppers, cut into 1/2-inch squares
- 2 cups grape tomatoes
- 3 large garlic cloves, divided
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 2 cups (firmly packed) fresh basil leaves, divided
- 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese, divided
- 1/4 cup pine nuts
- 1 28-oz can whole tomatoes in juice
- 1 cup heavy whipping cream
- 1 lb rigatoni
- 1 lb whole-milk mozzarella cheese, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1. Preheat oven to 425°F. Spray large rimmed baking sheet with nonstick spray; add eggplant and peppers. Cut tomatoes in half lengthwise; add to sheet. Sprinkle 1 crushed garlic clove onto vegetables. Drizzle vegetables with oil; toss. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast vegetables until tender, stirring often, 35 to 45 minutes.
2. Combine 2/3 cup basil, 1/2 cup Parmesan, pine nuts, and 1 garlic clove in mini processor. Blend until crumbly. Season topping with salt.
3. Blend tomatoes with juice, cream, 1 1/3 cups basil, and 1 garlic clove in processor until smooth. Season sauce with salt and pepper.
4. Cook pasta in pot of boiling salted water until just tender but still firm to bite, stirring occasionally; drain. Return to pot. Toss with vegetables, sauce, and 1/2 cup Parmesan. Transfer to 13x9x2-inch baking dish. Sprinkle with mozzarella and pine nut topping.
5. Bake pasta until heated through, 25 to 35 minutes. Let stand 10 minutes and serve.
There is something about food baking in the oven until it gets golden brown that is always so appealing to me. I knew that was where I wanted to start in my search for the next recipe to try out. I came across Giada’s recipe for Individual Vegetable Lasagnas and couldnt resist trying it out! Not only do these little guys bake in the oven BUT I was also able to try out my new oven safe pots! I’ve made a few different types of lasagnas before and this is by far the tastiest! I went the extra mile with this recipe and made homemade marinara sauce…super easy and made a big difference in the taste department Also although the recipe is for individual guys, you can also make one big one. I made one individual and with the rest of the ingredients was able to make a big one as well. There is alot of room to make this recipe “your own”, as you’ll see below, I didnt follow this to a “T”. I changed around the types of veggies and also opted to not use beans and go with more cheese instead.
Individual Veggie Lasagna
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 medium onion, finely chopped
- 1 medium carrot, finely chopped
- 1 medium zucchini, finely chopped
- 1 medium summer squash, finely chopped
- 8 asparagus spears, cut into 1/4-inch slices (I dont love asparagus, so I used crimini mushrooms instead)
- 1 pound lasagna sheets
- 2 cups marinara sauce, recipe follows
- 1 1/2 cups canned white beans, rinsed and drained (the beans weirded me out so instead of using these, I mixed the spinach with ricotta cheese)
- 2 (10-ounce) packages frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry (I used fresh spinach – quickly steamed them and then squeezed the excess water out)
- 3 cups shredded mozzarella
- 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, halved
- Salt and pepper
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. In the meantime, place lasagna sheets in salted, boiling water and cook for 8-10 minutes (al dente).
2. In a saute pan over medium heat, add extra-virgin olive oil. Add the onion and cook until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the carrot and cook for 3 minutes. Add the zucchini, squash & any additional veggies, cook for 5 minutes. Remove from heat when all vegetables are completely cooked but still have a good crunch. Allow to cool.
3. Using a 6-inch round cookie cutter, cut circles out of the lasagna sheets. You will need 18 circles. Coat the bottom of 6 (6-inch) gratin dishes with a teaspoon of tomato sauce in each. Place a circle of pasta on the bottom of each ramekin.
4. (if using beans) Rinse the beans with water and season with salt and pepper. Divide the beans between each ramekin. Next, divide the spinach between the ramekins. (if not using beans) Mix the spinach with ricotta cheese, divide the mixture between the ramekins
5. Place a second layer of pasta on top and gently press down. Divide the vegetables among the ramekins and top with tomato sauce in each.
6. Place the third layer of pasta in each ramekin and coat with tomato sauce. Sprinkle ramekins with the mozzarella and Parmesan cheeses, and top each with 1/2 tablespoon of butter.
7. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and place gratin dishes on top. Bake in oven for 25-30 minutes or until brown and bubbling.
*If using an 8×8 or 9×10 pan, layer the lasagna until all ingredients are gone. Bake for 25-30 minutes until brown and bubbling.
Homemade Marinara Sauce (I halved the recipe and it was more than enough sauce for the lasagna)
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 2 small onion, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, chopped
- 2 stalks celery, chopped
- 2 carrots, chopped
- Salt & pepper
- 2 (32-ounce) cans crushed tomatoes
- 2 dried bay leaves
1. In a large pot, heat oil over medium high heat. Add onion and garlic and saute until soft and translucent, about 5 to 10 minutes. Add celery and carrots and season with salt and pepper. Saute until all the vegetables are soft, about 5 to 10 minutes.
2. Add tomatoes and bay leaves and simmer uncovered on low heat for 1 hour or until thick.
3. Remove bay leaves and season the sauce with more salt and pepper, to taste.