Portabella and Spinach Lasagna Roll-Ups

Portabella and Spinach Lasagna Roll-Ups
There are things in life that simply match. Beer and pizza. Soup and grilled cheese. Wine and chocolate. Winter and lasagna. In a perfect world, there would be never-ending casserole dishes of lasagna all winter long, fresh out of the oven on all the chilly evenings.

We all crave comforting meals in the heart of winter. Something to warm our bellies, feed our hunger, and nourish our need for rich flavor. For me, lasagna is the ultimate comfort food. It is the perfect meal to serve to your family or guests.

Portabella and Spinach Lasagna Roll-Ups
Growing up in a big family, my favorite meal was lasagna, hands down. I would eagerly await dinner while the house filled with the warm smell of herby tomato sauce and cheese baking in the oven. The downside to lasagna is the patience required both while it’s baking and cooling. There was never a time that I didn’t burn the roof of my mouth on molten lasagna cheese, as I couldn’t possibly wait another moment to dive in.

Nowadays, I limit my intake of gluten, and I tend to resort to spaghetti squash when I’m craving something pasta-eque, but lasagna continues to be my favorite comfort food. I love making it meatless with hearty portabella mushrooms, spinach, fresh herbs, and homemade tomato sauce while I pretend like I’m cooking in an authentic Italian kitchen.

Portabella and Spinach Lasagna Roll-Ups
If you have never tried making lasagna roll-ups, I recommend it! You get to play with wet noodles to your heart’s delight and there’s nothing weird about it at all. Plus, there’s the rolling. There’s just something about rolling up a cheesy noodle that really tickles me pink.

These lasagna roll-ups are filling, delicious, fun to prepare and they’re easier to serve than traditional lasagna. Plus, the leftovers are always better than the initial meal. Simply pop a few of these roll-ups in the oven to reheat them, and your meals are set for days!

Badda bing, badda boom, lasagna!

Portabella and Spinach Lasagna Roll-Ups

Cook Time: 50 minutes

Total Time: 60 minutes

Yield: 4-6 servings

Portabella and Spinach Lasagna Roll-Ups

Meatless lasagna roll-ups made with portabella mushrooms and fresh spinach.

Ingredients

  • 12 lasagna noodles, cooked according to package directions (see note)
  • For the filling:
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 large portabella mushrooms, chopped
  • 1 jalapeno, seeded and chopped
  • 6 ounces baby spinach
  • 1 egg
  • 1 (15-ounce) container ricotta cheese
  • 2 1/2 cups grated mozzarella cheese, divided
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • For the sauce:
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 yellow onion, chopped
  • 8 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

Instructions

    To Prepare the Filling:
  1. In a large skillet, heat the oil to medium and add the onion. Sauté until very soft and translucent, about 8 minutes.
  2. Add the portabella mushrooms and jalapeno and continue to sauté, stirring frequently, until the mushrooms have softened, browned, and cooked down, about another 8 to 10 minutes.
  3. Add the spinach and cover the skillet, allowing the leaves to steam and wilt, about 3 to 5 minutes (lift the lid periodically to stir everything together). Remove the skillet from heat and allow the veggies to cool.
  4. In a large mixing bowl, lightly beat the egg. Add the ricotta, 1 1/2 cups of mozzarella cheese (saving the rest for later), and salt and mix everything together. Add in the cooled veggies and mix together well. Set aside.
  5. To Prepare the Sauce:
  6. Note: you can prepare the sauce ahead of time, or use your favorite store-bought sauce. I made this sauce while I was cooking the veggies.
  7. In a skillet, heat the oil to medium and add the onion. Sauté until the onion is beginning to brown, about 12 to 15 minutes. Add the garlic and cook an additional 2 minutes.
  8. Add the remaining ingredients, stir the sauce together well, and allow it to cook until it comes to a gentle simmer. If you have time, allow the sauce to simmer for 30 minutes. If not, simply keep it on the burner until you’re ready to use it.
  9. To Assemble the Roll-Ups:
  10. Preheat the oven to 350ºF.
  11. Pour 1/2 cup of the sauce into a 9” x 13” casserole dish to coat the bottom.
  12. Take one of the lasagna noodles and lay it flat on a plate. Spread a layer of the cheese/vegetable mixture evenly over the length of the noodle. Roll the noodle up and place it in the casserole dish.
  13. Repeat for the rest of the noodles & cheese mixture. Once all noodles are in the casserole dish, pour the sauce evenly over the noodles. Sprinkle the remaining mozzarella cheese over the roll ups.
  14. Cover the casserole dish with foil and bake for 35 minutes, then remove the foil and bake an additional 5 to 10 minutes, or until the sauce is bubbling and the cheese is just beginning to brown. Allow the roll-ups to cool about 5 to 10 minutes after removing them from the oven before serving.

Notes

Cook the lasagna noodles until they're soft but still al dente. Pour most of the hot water out of the pot, then fill it with enough cold water to cover the noodles. This is the trick I use to make sure the lasagna noodles don’t dry out while I’m waiting to use them. This way, the noodles don’t continue to cook and they will be cool enough to handle once I’m ready to assemble the roll-ups.

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About Julia

Julia Mueller writes the food blog, The Roasted Root, and is the author of Delicious Probiotic Drinks and Let Them Eat Kale!. A Lake Tahoe native, Julia loves to play outdoors, and enjoys developing recipes that are nutrient-dense and approachable to make any night of the week.   Read more from Julia →

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Comments

    • Julia Mueller says

      Chili flakes sound awesome, too! There’s something about adding spice that gives the recipe a little je ne sais quoi ;) Let us know if you try the jalapeno action! :)

  1. says

    Wow, these look yummy Kiersten! The Mr. has been ON me since I made lasagna for him when we first started dating, but traditional lasagna takes so long! I’m going to try these; looks way easier but just as tasty!

    • Julia Mueller says

      Prior to making these, I was all, “what’s the big deal with the roll up?” Post making them, I’m sold on the roll up. Lots of fun!

    • Julia Mueller says

      Thanks so much, Kalyn! I try to avoid eating heavy winter meals on the reg, too so these are definitely an every-once-in-a-while treat. :)

    • Julia Mueller says

      Thanks, lady! I love the portabellas because they add a meatiness to the meal and make the filling SOOOOO full of flava!!

  2. Brittany says

    Oh my goodness, this looks AMAZING! I really, really wish I had regular lasagna noodles instead of those “no boil” weird ones. :/ Looks like I’ll be making another trip out to the store today.

    Btw, I feel like I have your blog to thank for gearing me towards a more vegetable based life. I’ve always been trying to cut out meat but man, do I lack imagination! So thank you so much for all the wonderful inspiration!

  3. Jacquline says

    I made these last night and all I can say is …I almost put myself in a food coma! Deeeeeee lish! I did add some finely chopped carrot to both the filling and the sauce. I also added some garlic and herbs to the sauce. I wish that I could tell just how good in words, but alas, I cannot! I can say that I ate one and knew that as good as that was, two was going to taste even better. Here’s where I confess … that about an hour later as I was checking to see if the leftovers were cool enough to wrap….ate #3! yep, I’m not proud to say that my pants are just a wee bit tighter today, but oh was it worth it!

    • Julia Mueller says

      I’m so glad you enjoyed them, Jacquline! There really is nothing like a hearty hunk of lasagna. Great thinking with adding finely chopped carrot – love it! To lasagna roll-ups being sinfully addicting and oh so satisfying! ;)

  4. says

    This looks great and would make a great dinner for one of my friends who husband is deployed and is at home with 4 kids (!!), the youngest of which are twins not yet 18 months old. I can make it and she can heat it up when she needs it. Thank you!! I need more help-out-a-friend recipes like this! Or maybe that can be a future compilation?!! ;D

  5. says

    “You get to play with wet noodles to your heart’s delight.”

    Lol. Thank you for that. :D

    This looks SO good! I love that you can kind of personalize them, too. Like for me, I’d skip all the veggies but if I have normal veggie-eating people over, I can toss some in theirs. Brilliant! :)

  6. Holly says

    I made these two days ago for my niece and myself -delicious! When my parents dropped by yesterday I threw the leftovers in the oven and served it with a simple arugula salad. My dad said the meal was “restaurant quality.” Thanks for the fantastic recipe!

    • Julia Mueller says

      You’re welcome, Holly and thank you so much for your feedback! I’m glad your family enjoyed the recipe. Lasagna lovers, unite!! :)

  7. says

    It’s been forever since I’ve made lasagna roll-ups, and looking at these has given me a craving. In some ways I prefer them to traditional lasagna — those layers never seemed to stay together in the traditional version when you first cut into them, though they’re sturdy enough the next day. And I like how each roll-up is its own portion (well, a couple of roll-ups, anyway). Must make soon, and it’ll be great comfort food for the coming snow.

    • Julia Mueller says

      Hi Stephanie – you could definitely freeze half of the recipe and there’s no need to bake twice, so the half you freeze you can leave un-baked until you’re ready to heat it :) Hope you enjoy!

  8. Shelley Marshall says

    Julia,
    I tried this recipe tonight! It was easy, healthy, and delicious! It is definitely a “keeper.” Thanks so much for sharing this!
    Shelley

    • Julia Mueller says

      Yaaaay! Great!! It’s definitely perfect for feeding a crowd and awesome to pack up for work lunches. So glad you enjoyed the recipe!

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