A hearty red ragu sauce and a creamy white bechamel make this vegan lasagna the BEST ever. We made this recipe with different ground beef alternatives (this time with lentils) and it came out delicious all the time.
Soak cashews in hot water for 20 minutes, then drain it.
Making lentil bolognese sauce
Peel and chop the onion and cook it lightly in olive oil until it turns glossy. Add peeled and chopped garlic and cook for 1-2 minutes.
Add the chopped tomatoes, the tomato sauce and the seasoning (sweet paprika powder, basil, oregano, salt, and pepper) and cook for 5 minutes.
Add the cooked or canned lentils and cook for 1-2 minutes.
Making vegan bechamel sauce
Use a regular blender, a hand blender, or a food processor, whichever gives you a creamier result.
Add the soaked cashews, 1 clove of garlic in whole, dairy-free milk and seasoning (nutmeg, nutritional yeast, salt, and pepper) and blend them until creamy.
Layering the Vegan Lasagna
To ensure that the pasta sheets do not stick to the bottom, we place a thin layer of lentil bolognese ragu at the bottom.
After that, the layers should look like the following: pasta sheets, bolognese sauce, white sauce.
And repeat... We needed the above combination 6 times to fill a 9 x 7 x 3 inch (23 x 18 x 8 cm) oven-safe dish. The last layer should be white sauce which you can sprinkle with vegan grated cheese or vegan parmesan or more nutritional yeast.
We made 6 layers of pasta, 7 layers of ragu and 7 layers of white sauce. You can use less pasta and more sauce in-between the sheets, it is totally up to you. (In the photos we used spinach lasagna pasta sheets, that's why they are green.)
Pre-heat oven for 400 F (200 degrees) and bake your lasagna for 30 minutes.
Other vegan ground beef alternatives
Here are some other suggestions. Feel free to choose whichever you like per your taste.
TVP (textured vegetable protein) is the closest you can get to the real ground beef texture and taste without the fatty and greasy part nonetheless. We used TVP in our Vegan Cabbage Lasagnarecipe. We show you there how to prepare it through step-by-step photos and instructions including a quick video.
Cauliflower and walnut mince is a seemingly weird combination but works cauliflower gives the minced texture, while walnut adds meaty richness. If you eat soy-free or prefer a whole foods substitute, we have step-by-step instructions for you to make it within our Vegan Spaghetti Bolognese recipe.
Mushroom bolognese would be most people's first choice as they are easy to work with, cheap and familiar ingredients. Although we think that mushroom does not deliver on texture perfectly. It remains too spongy. We only use them in combination with cauliflower and walnut mince and prepare it similarly.
Tofu could be another alternative, although most people bit hesitant to use it. It is not easy to make tofu crunchy and you can easily end up something too gooey. We rarely use it.
Quinoa or millet gives a minced texture, but they are so tiny compared to ground beef. We use it in our Best Damn Vegan Chili recipe in combination with other veggies.