Vegan Lasagna Soup is an easier, plant-based version of the comforting Italian baked pasta dish we all know and love. White beans, mushrooms, and spinach are gently cooked in an herby tomato broth with lasagna noodles and creamy (dairy-free) macadamia nut ricotta cheese.
Traditional Italian lasagna (especially in the northern region) is often made with meaty bolognese and white bechamel sauce layered with pasta. Conversely, this soup is more reminiscent of the lasagna many of us grew up eating here in the U.S. The kind of Americanized lasagna with dried pasta, tomato sauce, ricotta cheese, and mozzarella.
This version is rich, satisfying, comforting, and relatively convenient. Still, cooking lasagna is no joke. Even our simplified recipe can take two or three hours from start to finish. Because of the time commitment, it can be a challenging meal to make during the week, but that, my friend, is where lasagna soup comes into play.
This Vegan Lasagna Soup is a lazy (or busy!) cook's dream. As long as you remember to soak the nuts ahead of time, you can prep and cook the entire recipe in under an hour.
Ready to hit the store for ingredients? Here's what you'll need to make this Vegan Lasagna Soup recipe at home.
- Dry lasagna noodles
- Grapeseed oil (or cooking oil of choice)
- Sliced baby bella mushrooms
- Dry oregano, rosemary, and thyme
- Canned crushed tomatoes (28 ounces)
- Tomato paste
- Vegetable broth
- White beans (also called cannellini beans) - Cook dry beans in advance or use one 15-ounce can
- Frozen spinach
Macadamia Nut Ricotta Ingredients:
- Macadamia nuts (natural/raw); 1 ½ cups
- Lemon juice
- Nutritional yeast
- Garlic powder
- Onion powder
Optional Ingredients for Garnish:
- Fresh basil leaves
- Fresh parsley
- Crushed red pepper flakes
How to Cook Lasagna Noodles
When I make lasagna soup, I first cook the noodles in the same pot that I use to make the soup later on. This cuts back on the dirty dishes, but you can also cook the noodles and soup in separate pots at the same time if you prefer. Cooking both elements in separate pots will shave a few minutes of the total cooking time since you don't have to wait for the noodles to cook before you start the soup.
To start, fill an 8-quart (or larger) pot with water and bring to a boil. Add salt to the pot. Stir in the dry lasagna noodles and cook for 12 minutes, or until the pasta is al dente. Stir the noodles occasionally to prevent them from sticking together. Once the noodles are al dente (tender with a firm bite), drain the pot and set the cooked pasta aside for later.
How to Make Lasagna Soup
Once the lasagna noodles are drained, return the pot to the stovetop and reduce the heat to medium. Add oil and stir in the onion and cook until the onion is softened and translucent.
Then, stir in the sliced mushrooms and minced about garlic and cook for 3 minutes, or until the mushrooms darken and the garlic is fragrant. Next, stir in oregano, rosemary, and thyme and cook for a couple more minutes.
Once the vegetables are sautéed, stir in the crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, vegetable broth, and water.
Increase the heat to high and bring the mixture to a boil. Once the soup is boiling, reduce the heat to low and stir in the cooked white beans and a frozen block of spinach. Continue cooking the soup gently, stirring occasionally and using a wooden spoon to break apart the spinach as it thaws.
When the spinach is thawed and the flavors of the soup have melded together (after about 10 minutes), turn off the heat and stir in the cooked lasagna noodles. (If the noodles are sticking to each other, use your fingers to pull them apart before adding them to the pot.) Add salt and pepper to taste and give the soup a final stir to ensure everything is evenly mixed.
How to Make Vegan Ricotta Cheese
The other component of this lasagna soup recipe is the dairy-free macadamia nut ricotta cheese, which you can either prep in advance or blend while the soup is simmering on the stovetop.
First you will need to soak the nuts to soften them. Pour the macadamia nuts into a medium bowl and cover with water. Place a paper towel or clean dishcloth on top of the bowl and allow the nuts to soak at room temperature for 2-4 hours.
Then, drain the macadamia nuts from the soaking liquid and transfer them to a blender. Add lemon juice, nutritional yeast, salt, garlic powder, and onion powder. Cover and blend on high for about two minutes, or until the nuts are fully pureed and creamy. Pause to scrape the edges of the blender with a spatula as needed.
If the nuts aren’t blending properly, you may need to add a small amount of liquid to your blender. Pour in about a tablespoon of water, cover, and blend again. Repeat this step as needed, using as little water as possible to get the nuts moving in the blender. (A high-speed blender works best for this recipe.)
How to Serve
To serve, ladle the lasagna soup into bowls and spoon the macadamia nut ricotta on top of each. Garnish with fresh basil and parsley and crushed red pepper flakes if desired and serve with the remaining macadamia nut ricotta on the side.
Meal Prep and Storage
If you are making this recipe in advance, do not add the cooked lasagna noodles to the soup until you are ready to serve. This helps retain the al dente texture of the pasta.
Store the soup, lasagna noodles, and macadamia nut ricotta in separate, airtight containers in the refrigerator for up to one week.
- If you can't find macadamia nuts, substitute blanched slivered almonds.
- Instead of homemade macadamia nut cheese, swap in store-bought vegan nut cheese (or dairy ricotta if the recipe doesn't have to be vegan).
- Use any type of sliced mushroom you have on hand for this recipe.
- If you don't have white beans, substitute chickpeas. The 1 ½ cups of beans needed are roughly equivalent to one 15-ounce can (drained and rinsed), and you can use either dry or canned beans for this recipe.
- Substitute 1 ½ cups fresh, chopped spinach for the frozen block of spinach if desired. You can also make this soup with kale, collards, or any other type of fresh greens you already have on hand.
Best Dishes to Serve With
Here are a few of my favorite recipes to serve with Vegan Lasagna Soup:
- Winter Citrus Salad
- Brussels Sprouts Orzo
- Honey Roasted Carrots and Parsnips
- Crispy Eggplant BLT
- Make-Ahead Cranberry Orange Kale Salad
- 8 ounces lasagna noodles, broken into pieces (about 9 noodles)
- 2 tablespoons grapeseed oil or cooking oil of choice
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 2 cups (8 ounces) sliced baby bella mushrooms
- 4 cloves garlic, minced or grated
- 2 teaspoons dried oregano
- 2 teaspoons crushed rosemary
- 2 teaspoons dried thyme
- 1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 4 cups vegetable broth
- 1 cup water
- 1 ½ cups cooked white beans (also called cannellini beans)
- 1 (9-ounce) block frozen spinach (not thawed)
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1 ½ cups macadamia nuts, soaked 2-4 hours (see note 1)
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
- ¼ teaspoon onion powder
- Fresh basil leaves
- Fresh parsley
- Crushed red pepper flakes
Boil lasagna noodles in an 8-quart (or larger) pot of salted water for 12 minutes, or until al dente, stirring occasionally. Drain noodles and set aside.
Return the pot to the stovetop and reduce the heat to medium. Stir in the oil and onion and cook for 4 minutes, or until translucent.
Stir in mushrooms and garlic and cook for 3 minutes, or until the mushrooms darken.
Stir in oregano, rosemary, and thyme and cook for 2 minutes, or until the herbs are fragrant.
Stir in crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, vegetable broth, and water. Increase the heat to high and bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce the heat to low and stir in white beans and spinach. Cook gently for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally and using a wooden spoon to break apart the spinach as it thaws.
Once the spinach is thawed and the flavors of the soup have melded together, turn off the heat and stir in the cooked lasagna noodles. (If the noodles are sticking, pull them apart before adding to the pot.) Add salt and pepper to taste and stir until the soup is evenly mixed.
Drain the macadamia nuts from the soaking liquid and transfer them to a blender. Add lemon juice, nutritional yeast, salt, garlic powder, and onion powder to the blender. Cover and blend on high for 2 minutes, or until the nuts are fully pureed and creamy. Pause to scrape the edges of the blender with a spatula as needed. (If the nuts aren’t blending, add a tablespoon of water and blend again. Repeat as needed, using as little water as possible. A high-speed blender works best for this recipe.)
Divide the lasagna soup between bowls and spoon the macadamia nut ricotta into each bowl. Garnish with fresh basil and parsley and crushed red pepper flakes if desired.
- To soak macadamia nuts, pour them into a medium bowl and cover with water. Place a paper towel or clean dishcloth on top of the bowl and allow the nuts to soak at room temperature for 2-4 hours.
- Meal Prep and Storage: If you are making this recipe in advance, do not add the cooked lasagna noodles to the soup until you are ready to serve. Store the soup, lasagna noodles, and macadamia nut ricotta in separate, airtight containers in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
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