Crunchy, cheesy and intensely savoury this Aubergine Lasagne with lentils & walnuts is an attractive alternative to the traditional meat-laden lasagne. Complete with a crunchy golden mozzarella topping.

We’ll start with a little nugget of information. My sister informed me that this dish is “delicious, but not really a lasagne”. Her reasoning? Because it was round?! How’s that for some ridiculousness, as least she enjoyed eating it.

Person taking a scoop of lasagne out of a round cast iron pan. Stringy mozzarella attached to the rest of the aubergine lasagne.

It’s been a little while since I’ve popped up a recipe for an outstanding (if I may say so myself, which I DO) vegetarian take on a meat dish. The recipes for my whole roasted cauliflower and vegan doner kebab are my two most popular by far, so I’m glad to be adding this Aubergine Lasagne to the collection. This recipe is probably my favourite recipe of the lot on The Accidental Chef so far.

I’m gearing up for three recipes a week throughout September, having finally sufficiently planned my time after returning to work at the beginning of August. I’m super excited to dedicate a substantial amount of time to this little blog and have some super delicious recipes coming your way.

On we go with this Aubergine Lasagne, shall we?

Ingredients

This Aubergine Lasagne is full of flavours that firstly, I love and secondly work wonderfully together. Of course, it’s not a meaty beef lasagne, and there’s not bechamel insight, but this take on the lasagne is absolutely fabulous. To make it, you’ll need:

Ingredients for Aubergine Lasagne laid out on a worn wooden surface

From the fridge:

  • 2 aubergines
  • half a lemon
  • 125g mozzarella
  • 200g cheddar

From the pantry:

  • 3 finely chopped garlic cloves
  • 1 finely chopped onion
  • half a tablespoon chilli flakes
  • 1 tablespoon dried thyme (see note below about this),
  • 2 tins plum tomatoes
  • 280g packet of ready-cooked puy lentils (I use, and highly recommend Merchant Gourmet* brand. I’ve included an affiliate link meaning I will earn a small commission if you choose to purchase these lentils, at no additional cost to you)
  • 6 lasagne sheets (although that will really depend on the size of your dish)

This recipe is QUITE thyme-y, but I think it works really well. If you’re less of a fan of thyme than I, then you could replace half a tablespoon of the dried thyme, with dried oregano or basil.

This Aubergine Lasagne is high in protein, calcium and zinc. It’s pretty low in fat too, considering we’re layering cheese. This recipe serves six people and will come in around 492 calories per portion. Cost-wise you’re looking at about £1.12 per portion if shopping at Tesco (prices correct at time of publishing).

Round cast iron pan full of Aubergine Lasagne on a worn wooden surface, below a packet of Merchant Gourmet brand puy lentils

Top Tips + FAQ

STEAM THE AUBERGINE: Steam the Aubergines for 25 minutes before you get on with the rest of the recipe. Suppose you don’t have a steamer place a colander or sieve over a pan of boiling water and rest a pan lid on top to trap the steam. Allow them to cool slightly before slicing in half lengthways and scooping out the flesh.

Finely chopped Aubergine, onions, garlic and chilli flakes in a pan - the lentils have just been added and form a pile on top

NO NEED FOR BECHAMEL: Listen, you can make a bechamel sauce if you really want, but layers of cheddar work wonderfully in this, and it saves on the washing up.

Cast iron pan with scoop containing the recipe- in the background is a blurred bowl containing the food

CHOOSING YOUR LENTILS: Pre-cooked puy lentils make this recipe an absolute breeze. Of course, you could cook your own ahead of time and use those for this recipe instead.

CAN I USE DRIED PASTA?: I love PASTA (as mentioned over in my recent Prawn Linguine recipe), but there’s no need to be a pasta snob. If you have fresh lasagne sheets kicking around, use them, they will make layering much prettier. Having said that, dried lasagne sheets work perfectly here. There is no need to pre-cook them, snap and layer up you Aubergine Lasagne.

WHAT ORDER DO THE LAYERS GO?: The best way to layer is aubergine/ lentil mix, cheddar, lasagne sheets and then back to aubergine. When you reach the top, arrange any remaining cheddar and then all of the mozzarella. The mozzarella will go golden and delicious.

CAN I MAKE IT IN ADVANCE? In short, yes. You can assemble this a day or two in advance, and it will keep fine. It will also keep well after cooked; the flavours really meld together well as it cools – so you can cook a day in advance and reheat. Just make sure it’s hot all the way through before serving.

Enjoy this recipe? Pin IT.

If you would like to save this recipe, I’ve made this pin just for YOU! Pin it to your vegetarian, pasta or Meat-free Monday boards.

Pinterest Pin

Please please rate, and comment on this recipe – I love reading all the feedback, positive or constructive criticism, it’s all part of this super fun blogging journey.

You can get me over on Instagram too – you tend to get a sneaky peek of what’s coming up on the blog before I’ve typed the recipes up. I get carried away with the pictures. It’s such a fun part of the process, and I love sharing them.

Enjoy your Aubergine Lasagne, and don’t forget to subscribe to my newsletter, the link is up the top on the right.

Happy cooking!

Print
clock clock icon cutlery cutlery icon flag flag icon folder folder icon instagram instagram icon pinterest pinterest icon print print icon squares squares icon
Person taking a scoop of lasagne out of a round cast iron pan. Stringy mozzarella attached to the rest of the aubergine lasagne.

Aubergine Lasagne


  • Author: JPLongland
  • Prep Time: 25
  • Cook Time: 65
  • Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 6 1x
  • Diet: Vegetarian

Description

Crunchy, cheesy and intensely savoury this Aubergine Lasagne with lentils & walnuts is an attractive alternative to the traditional meat-laden lasagne. Complete with a crunchy golden mozzarella topping.


Scale

Ingredients

  • 2 Aubergines
  • 4 tablespoons oil
  • 3 garlic cloves (finely chopped)
  • 1 onion (finely chopped)
  • 1/2 tablespoon chilli flakes 
  • 1 tablespoon dried thyme
  • 2 cans plum tomatoes
  • 280g puy lentils (already cooked)
  • 1/2 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • 50g walnuts
  • 6 dried lasagne sheets*
  • 125g Mozzarella 
  • 200g Cheddar (grated)

Instructions

  1. Bring a large pan of water to the boil. Put the aubergines in a colander, place a pan lid on top, and place the colander over the water. Steam the aubergines for 25 minutes, turning halfway through.
  2. Pre-heat oven to 180 degrees.
  3. Allow the aubergines to cool slightly, cut in half lengthways and scoop out the flesh. Finely chop the flesh and set aside. 
  4. Heat oil over medium heat, add finely chopped garlic, onion and aubergine, add thyme** and chilli flakes. Cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. 
  5. Add plum tomatoes and break up with a spoon. Add lentils, balsamic vinegar, juice of half a lemon and chopped walnuts. 
  6. Stir and let simmer for 15 minutes. 
  7. While the sauce is simmering grate the cheddar and slice mozzarella.
  8. In an ovenproof dish layer sauce, grated cheese and then lasagne sheets. Repeat until you’re out of the sauce.
  9. Scatter mozzarella on top, and cook for 25 – 30 minutes until the mozzarella is melted and golden. 
  10. Remove from the oven, scatter over a few more chilli flakes and let stand for 10 minutes before serving.

Notes

* Fresh lasagne sheets will work fine too. If you have dried sheets, just break and layer roughly, no need to pre boil them. 

** This recipe is intensely Thyme-y which I think works really well in this super savoury dish. However, if you’re not a massive fan of Thyme, replace half with either dried basil or oregano. 

  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: Vegetarian

Keywords: aubergine lasagne, aubergine, lentils, walnut, vegetarian

8 Comments

  1. Barney 10 September 2020 at 1:08 pm

    Not a massive fan of aubergine but lasagne looked good so I gave it a try. Absolutely deeeelish.

    I was hesitant about the amount of thyme so I subbed half of it for 1/4 basil and 1/4 oregano and worked a treat.

    I added a bit of honey to balance the acidity of the tomatoes and I would recommend adding in cottage cheese to the cheese layer – easy and beaut substitute for bechamel. Worked a treat and will be making this again 👌🏼

    Reply
    1. JPLongland 10 September 2020 at 2:29 pm

      I’m so glad you enjoyed it!

      I was so on the fence with the thyme because I LOVE the stuff, but a good choice with the subs! Good shout on the cottage cheese too! That sound’s DIVINE.

      Reply
  2. Jen 11 September 2020 at 5:44 pm

    Delicious! Substituted half of the thyme for oregano as we aren’t big fans of thyme, it worked a treat! Another roaring success with the kids and the hubby! I usually tear mozerella but slicing is a great idea resulting in evenly layered cheesy goodness! Can’t believe I didn’t think of it before…doh!

    Reply
  3. Shell 12 September 2020 at 5:06 pm

    Loved this – switched out some Thyme for Oregano as suggested and thought the balance was super! Will make this again (and again!)

    Reply
  4. Ian McCarroll 1 October 2020 at 11:37 pm

    This is one of the best meat-free lasagna recipes I’ve tried 👏🏼 It went down extremely well at home – we’ve been trying for some time to find a decent vegetarian lasagna recipe – a resounding success.

    Reply
  5. Shailaja DESAI 6 October 2020 at 2:58 pm

    This aubergine lasagne looks scrumptious..saving this as we all love aubergines at home.

    Reply
    1. JPLongland 6 October 2020 at 3:31 pm

      I hope you enjoy it as much as we do, Shailaja!
      Let me know how you get on! 🙂

      Reply
  6. Gemma 23 October 2020 at 9:07 pm

    Delicious! One of the best meat free lasagnas I have tried and so easy to make. Didn’t make any substitutions. Will be recommending it to all my friends.

    Reply

Leave A Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *