It’s hard to turn down a hot plate of lasagna, but when you’re trying to be mindful of certain foods and how they affect your specific health, all that ooey gooey cheesy pasta deliciousness can make you feel tortured. This recipe swaps out refined wheat flour pasta with whole-wheat lasagna noodles and ricotta cheese with crumbled tofu. No guilt here!
If you’re curious about the difference between whole wheat pasta and white pasta, here’s the scoop. Whole wheat pasta consists of 3 parts of the grain: the outer layer of the grain (the bran), the sprouting part of the grain (the germ), and the center part of the grain (the endosperm). All three of these parts add up to more nutritional value, including antioxidants, fiber, healthy fats, major B vitamins, protein, and vitamin E. With white pasta, during the refining process, both the outer layer and sprouting part of the grain get lost, which in turn means less nutrients.
Healthier Lasagna Rolls
- 12 whole-wheat lasagna noodles
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 3 cups chopped spinach
- 1 14-ounce package extra-firm water-packed tofu, drained, rinsed and crumbled
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped Kalamata olives
- ½ cup shredded Parmesan cheese
- 1 25-ounce jar marinara sauce, preferably lower-sodium, divided
- ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
Cook lasagna noodles according to package directions. Drain, rinse, return to the pot and cover with cold water until ready to use. Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add garlic to skillet; cook and stir for about 30 seconds, until garlic is fragrant. Add spinach and tofu; cook and stir for about 3 minutes or until spinach wilts and the mixture is heated through. Transfer to a bowl; stir in olives, Parmesan, 2/3 cup marinara sauce, crushed red pepper, and salt. Wipe out the skillet and spread 1 cup of the remaining marinara sauce in the bottom. Place one lasagna noodle on a work surface; spread ¼ cup of the spinach filling down the length of the noodle. Roll up the noodle and place the roll, seam-side down, in the pan. Repeat process. Note: The lasagna rolls will be snug in the pan. Spoon the remaining marinara sauce over the rolls. Place the pan over high heat, cover, and bring to a simmer. Reduce heat to medium; simmer for 3 minutes. Sprinkle mozzarella over rolls and cook, covered, for an additional 1 to 2 minutes, until the cheese is melted. SERVES 6, 2 ROLLS EACH