Vegetarian Casserole: Irish Lasagna
Less carbs than regular lasagna with a healtier twist---what's not to love?
This dish combines a little bit of Italian know-how and some lucky Irish cabbage.
If you are looking to reduce your carbohydrates intake or looking for something healthy that the whole family will love, try this!
With cabbage as the main ingredient, it is also cheap.
If you like cabbage rolls but are looking for something different, give this a try.
- 1 Cabbage
- 1 Cup Rice
- 12 ounces Meat Substitute
- 4 Whole Carrots
- 4 Stalks Celery
- 28 ounces Canned Tomato Puree
- 28 ounces Canned Crushed Tomato
- 6 ounces Tomato Paste
- 1.5 teaspoon Salt
- 2 teaspoon Ground Black Pepper
- 2 teaspoon Thyme
- 4 Cups Shredded Cheese
- 1-2 Tablespoons Cooking Oil
- 1 Cup Water
- Peel cabbage leaves as carefully as you can off the head of cabbage. The larger the leaves, the better as these will be your "lasagna noodles." Boil for five minutes. Remove, drain and set aside to let it cool.
- Add cooking oil to large pan or skillet and warm on medium to medium high.
- Clean and chop celery and carrots into small pieces or dices. Add to hot oil. Cook until just beginning to turn tender.
- Add meat sustitute, thyme, salt and pepper. Cook for 5 minutes.
- Add tomatoes, tomato paste, rice and water. Allow to simmer until rice is soft (about 20 minutes).
- Continue cooking until mixture is a thick sauce consistency.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees while you put together the lasagna.
- Add a bit of oil or non-stick cooking spray to the bottow of a 9 X 13 glass casserole dish.
- Place one layer of cabbage leaves down so that it covers the bottom of the dish.
- Spoon about 1/3 of your sauce over the cabbage leaves, sprinkle shredded cheese on top of that.
- Then repeat. Layer cabbage leaves over the cheese. Add sauce mixture and then cheese.
- Keep doing this until you have used all the sauce mixture. Place a final layer of cabbage leaves on top and sprinkle with the remaining shredded cheese.
- Bake covered for 45 minutes.
- Remove cover and bake an additional 15 minutes.
- Allow to set for 10-15 minutes. Cut into squares and serve.
|Serving size: 1 Square|
|Calories from Fat||117|
|% Daily Value *|
|Fat 13 g||20%|
|Saturated fat 7 g||35%|
|Unsaturated fat 2 g|
|Carbohydrates 41 g||14%|
|Sugar 15 g|
|Fiber 7 g||28%|
|Protein 21 g||42%|
|Cholesterol 36 mg||12%|
|Sodium 916 mg||38%|
|* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.|
Want to make it a little more Irish?
- Substitute two peeled and diced potatoes instead of rice
Don't care if it is vegetarian?
- Substitute ground beef instead of meat substitute
Want to add more fiber?
- Add 3 cups cooked, dried beans instead of meat or meat substitute.
Want to cut some more calories?
- Choose reduced fat or fat free shredded cheese.
Have fresh tomatoes?
- Peel and cook 6 to 8 whole tomatoes. Add 2 tsp. salt or to taste. Use in place of canned tomatoes.
Want to reduce the carbs even more?
- Leave out the rice or potatoes.
Want to try something different?
- Experiment with different cabbages when they are in-season.
The Irish lasagna freezes well. Cut the leftovers into individual servings and place into freezer appropriate containers.
Grab one out of the freezer on your way to work and then microwave at lunch time. You'll have a healthy and tasty lunch that you can eat on the go!
Why Is Cabbage Associated With Ireland?
Cabbage has been domesticated for thousands of years. It generally needs a cooler climate to grow and thrive.
As cabbage spread through Europe, the climate in Ireland proved very compatible for growing the vegetable staple.
The thriving cabbage also kept well for many months and often fed farmers and their families through the winter.
Today, many choose to eat cabbage in celebration of St. Patrick's day.
Cabbage's Health Benefits
Cabbage is one of those wonder vegetables that is good for you.
It has fiber, Vitamin C and cancer-fighting antioxidants.
According to How Stuff Works, studies about the phytochemicals found in cabbage have shown promising results in the fight against breast cancer.
Cabbage is always cheap at the store as well.
Healthy, good-for-you, and a cancer fighter. It's time to add cabbage to your diet today.
Where Did Lasagna Come From?
The word lasagna may have been borrowed from the Greek word lasagne which translates as "flat bread."
The eating of layered dishes like lasagna goes back to the ancient days of the Italians. But the dish may not have even had its origin in Italy.
The history is muddled and no consensus has been reached.
Modern lasagna is versatile and a wonderful comfort food.
Irish Lasagna can be made all year round but is especially yummy on a rainy or snowy day.
Enjoy this wonderful recipe that combines the traditions of Italy and the traditions of Ireland.
Play around with the ingredients, have fun and eat well!
References and More Information on Cabbages and Lasagna
- HowStuffWorks "Health Benefits of Cabbage"
Cabbage is popular for its versatility and strong flavor -- and it’s good for you. Learn about the health benefits of this versatile vegetable.
- Lasagna has rich history as comfort food
Now that fall is fast approaching, it’s time to think about comfort foods.
- Thrifty Foods - A Brief History of Lasagna
Lasagna is believed to be one of the earliest types of pasta. These thin and wide noodles are most frequently layered in a dish with other savoury ingredients and baked to create a dish called - you guessed it - lasagna.
- History of Cabbage in Ireland and America | Suite101
Cabbage soup and corned beef & cabbage are commonly consumed in celebration of St Patrick's Day. Why is green cabbage so intimately connected with the food of Ireland?