This recipe comes to you straight from the pages of the March 2013 Cooking Light magazine. We loved it! It's super tasty thanks to the spicy turkey sausage, which packs so much flavor, you almost don't need any other seasonings.
I admit, I did tweak the recipe a bit:
- I chose to make a bigger lasagna, because the original recipe called for an 11" x 7" pan, and I used a more standard, 13" x 9". By using this size pan, I increased the servings to 8.
- I plumped up the ricotta layer with an egg and added Parmesan cheese to it, because if you use straight part-skim ricotta like the recipe called for, it turns out a bit rubbery once it bakes.
- I increased the amount of turkey sausage in order to use up the entire package. ( I used Honeysuckle White Hot Italian Turkey Sausage. An entire package has 5-4oz. links.)
- I did use fresh baby spinach as called for in the recipe, but I could not imagine why frozen spinach, which has been defrosted, couldn't work just as well here. (Frozen spinach tends to be a bit more economical than fresh)
- I increased the sauce so I had enough for my bigger pan.
- I used Barilla Oven Ready Lasagna noodles.
Don't be afraid of how "saucy" this dish looks prior to baking. If you have ever cooked with "no boil" lasagna noodles before, you will know it's all about the moisture in order for them to cook up well. They will soak up a lot of the sauce as they cook.
A good tip I can share with you when browning up the sausage links sans casing is use your potato masher to break up the sausage pieces. This method works so well! Give it a try sometime!
Make sure you let this dish sit for at least 10 minutes after you remove it from the oven before you serve up slices. It will hold together so much better.
I will definitely be making this dish again! The preparation, like any lasagna, is a bit time consuming, but it is all worth it in the end. I mean, sausage, pasta, cheese? How can it be wrong?! :)
Turkey Sausage and Spinach Lasagna
adapted from Cooking Light
Servings - 8 Serving size - 1/8 of recipe Points Plus per serving - 9 Points+
Calories - 348, Total Fat - 15.5g, Carb. - 26g, Protein - 26.7g, Fiber - 1.6g
1/4 cup all purpose flour
1 1/2 cups skim milk
2 cups fat-free, low sodium, chicken stock (broth)
1 bay leaf
1 TBS canola oil
salt and pepper, to taste
2 TBS water
1-10 oz. package of fresh, organic baby spinach
1 - 20oz. package of Lean Honeysuckle White Hot Italian Sausage Links
1/2 cup chopped shallots
1 TBS minced garlic
9 no-boil lasagna noodles (Barilla)
1-15oz. tub of part-skim ricotta cheese
1 large egg
1/4 cup fresh grated Parmesan cheese
1 cup shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Spray a 13" x 9" baking dish with cooking spray. Set aside.
2. In med sauce pan, combine the flour, milk, chicken stock, bay leaf, and canola oil. Whisk to combine and heat slowly over medium heat until thickened and bubbly. ( about 8 minutes) Add salt and pepper, to taste. Remove bay leaf. Take 1 cup of sauce and coat the bottom of the 13" x 9" pan.
3. While sauce mixture is cooking, in a large non-stick skillet, heat 2 TBS water and add all the spinach. Cook until it is mostly wilted. Remove and strain out any excess liquid. Set aside.
4. To same skillet you cooked spinach in, add sausage, with casings removed. Cook until browned, breaking it up as it cooks. Add in the shallots and garlic and cook until shallots are somewhat transparent. Turn off heat. Add back in the spinach and the remainder of the sauce.
5. In large bowl, combine the ricotta, egg and Parmesan cheese. Set aside.
6. Arrange 3 lasagna noodles on top of sauce in 13"x9" pan. Spread 1/3 of the ricotta mixture on top of noodles. Top with 1/3 of the spinach/sausage sauce mixture. Repeat layers two more times, ending with spinach/sausage sauce mixture. Top with 1 cup mozzarella cheese. Cover with foil and bake for 40 minutes. Remove foil and allow cheese to brown under broiler for about 4 minutes if desired.
7. Allow the lasagna to sit for a minimum of 10 minutes before serving.
I. WILL. MAKE. THIS. AGAIN! It was excellent and really, it is company worthy in my book. I love that you get a nice hearty serving of lasagna with three cheeses and tasty sausage for under 400 calories!!
Really looking forward to some spring weather, should it ever choose to get here. So tired of the cold and snow. Isn't everybody at this point? lol I had a brief vacation from the snow this past weekend, traveling to NYC to see my daughter. It was COLD...but no snow. Highlight of the weekend was getting to see Wicked 10 rows back from the stage in the middle section. Oh my word! Amazing is all I can say! We had plenty of excellent eats, as always, too!
I hope spring is springing somewhere! Maybe in your neck of the woods!