Dairy-Free Lasagna – Gluten Free

Published on Jan 16, 2023

  by   Kristina Stosek

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Prep Time: 15 minutes Cook Time: 60 minutes Serves: 8
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This creamy dairy-free lasagna dish will surprise you with how delicious a gluten free lasagna can taste even without real cheese! This Italian dish will satisfy even the pickiest taste buds with layers of rich meaty sauce, spinach, and the creamiest sauce flavored with garlic and a pinch of nutmeg.

overview of baked dairy free and gluten free lasagna in a baking dish

Lasagna has long been a comfort food staple for families around the world. It’s hearty, delicious, and can feed a crowd. However, an Italian lasagna may not seem like an option for those with dietary restrictions such as dairy allergies or gluten sensitivity. 

But don’t worry – today, you will learn how to make a delicious, dairy-free lasagna that’s just as tasty as the classic version and keep it gluten free. 

Dairy-Free VS Lactose Intolerant.

Dairy-free products contain no milk or milk products like those used in this dairy-free lasagna recipe. However, lactose-free ingredients are made from real dairy and may still contain milk but without the lactose.

This dairy-free lasagna is a delicious and nutritious alternative to traditional lasagna that is perfect for those with lactose intolerance or other dairy allergies. 

a slice of lasagna on a plate with arugula

Does dairy-free lasagna taste the same as the classic version?

Many versions of dairy-free lasagna recipes don’t taste anything like the ones made with real cheese. This is why it is important to choose a good melting dairy-free cheese such as the one we have used the Violife Mozzarella Shreds in this recipe. This cheese is also soy free.

Yes, it is all about the cheese, dairy-free or not.

Additionally, dairy-free cheeses often have a different flavor than their dairy counterparts. For example, they may be slightly sweeter or nuttier in taste, so you may have to experiment with different cheeses if you can’t get the one we have recommended.

dried Italian spices in a white bowl

Spices for dairy-free lasagna 

Since we are not using real cheese in this recipe, we must make up for flavor. To do this, we need a good blend of spices because they will turn a basic dairy-free lasagna into one that will leave you going for seconds and thirds.

The must-have spices in this dish are oregano, basil, bay leaves, rosemary, and red pepper flakes. And you don’t need to add onion or garlic powder because we are using fresh onions and fresh garlic.

Check out our complete list of gluten free lasagna recipes including our famous brownie ice cream lasagna for inspiration.

Assembling dairy-free lasagna

overview of unbaked lasagna in a baking dish

Lasagna is all about the layers. They must be in the correct order to get that creamy, meaty lasagna that will melt in your mouth!

Here are the layers:

  • 1/2 cup meat sauce to coat the baking dish
  • 4 lasagna noodles
  • 1/3 of meat sauce
  • 4 lasagna noodles
  • 1/3 of meat sauce
  • fresh chopped spinach
  • 1/2 of white sauce
  • 1/2 of dairy-free shredded mozzarella
  • 4 lasagna noodles
  • Remaining meat sauce
  • Remaining white sauce
  • Top with remaining dairy-free shredded mozzarella

What are oven-ready gluten free lasagna sheets?

Oven-ready lasagna sheets are a type of pasta that does not need to be boiled before it is baked. This makes the recipe simpler because you skip the step of first cooking the pasta.

If you choose to use pasta that needs to be boiled first, there are a couple of things to keep in mind in this dairy-free lasagna recipe.  

First, don’t overcook gluten free pasta. It should remain fairly firm to bite because it will continue cooking in the lasagna. If you overcook the pasta, it will give the lasagna a mushy texture.

And second, oven-ready pasta requires more liquids. So, if you are using pasta that needs to be boiled first, reduce the amount of water added to the meat sauce to 3 cups.

overview of baked lasagna in a baking dish topped with dairy free cheese and greens

What can I substitute pasta with in gluten free lasagna?

You may want to cut back on carbs or are looking to make a grain-free lasagna. This is not a problem. You can use eggplant, zucchini, collard greens or portobello mushrooms.

To use veggies to replace pasta, slice them thinly and season with salt. Place the slices on a tray and cover them with plastic wrap for about 30 minutes. The veggies will release moisture. Dry them using a paper towel, and use them as pasta noodles. If you skip this step, the lasagna may become watery with soggy veggies throughout.

a slice of baked gluten free Italian lasagna on a plate

Is a dairy-free diet healthier?

There are a few health benefits of going dairy free. One is that it can help you lose weight. Dairy products are high in calories, fat and sodium, so eliminating them from your diet can lead to weight loss. Dairy-free diets have also been shown to lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels and reduce the risk of heart disease and diabetes.

What is dairy-free cheese made from?

Dairy-free cheese is made from various plant-based ingredients, including soy milk, nuts, seeds, food starch, olive extract or coconut oil. The most popular types of dairy-free cheese are made from soy milk, as it is the most similar to cow’s milk in terms of texture and taste.

tools you will need to make dairy-free lasagna 

  1. 2 medium size pots
  2. cutting board
  3. 1 large sharp knife
  4. grater
  5. measuring cups and spoons
  6. whisk
  7. wooden spatula
  8. laddle
  9. 8 x 11-inch baking dish
  10. foil paper

Can you freeze gluten free lasagna?

Not all gluten free pasta can be frozen because it can become mushy after it has been frozen. However, you can freeze gluten free and dairy-free lasagna. Just be sure to wrap it tightly in plastic wrap or aluminum foil. To reheat, thaw the lasagna in the refrigerator overnight and then bake it in a 350 F oven until heated.

baked dairy free lasagna topped with arugula in a baking dish

Key things to remember when making dairy-free lasagna without gluten.

First, be sure to use gluten free lasagna noodles. Second, substitute dairy-free cheese for traditional mozzarella cheese, use dairy free milk in the sauce and plenty of Italian seasoning. By following these simple tips, you can easily make a delicious, nutritious dairy-free lasagna that is also gluten free.

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Many thanks!

Kristina xx

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Kristina

I am sorry to hear that Laurie, our recipes are triple tested. The only thing that I can think of that would change the consistency, is the oven-ready pasta. Just curious, which brand did you use? Thank you for your input.

Laurie

I was very excited to see this recipe but think it needs some work. I gave the 3 start rating because it was so runny. The flavour was very nice but it was very runny. Even once refrigerated, it would not properly hold its shape. I did not cook the lasagne noodles before using and I used a few extra sheets but there was still too much liquid. The next time I make it, I will omit the zucchini and use mushrooms but will sauté them to reduce the moisture. I will reduce the liquid in the meat sauce to 2 cups and will increase the amount of tapioca starch. The recommended pan size was far too small, I recommend using a 9" x13" pan.

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