Hello friends! We are starting this week off with a rich and creamy Roasted Butternut Squash Lasagne with béchamel sauce. For me, this recipe was a clean-out-the-pantry type of dish. I had a butternut that I needed to use, half a bag of spinach, leftover ricotta and a mixture of mozzarella, asiago and Romano cheeses. So I found a recipe from Half Baked Harvest that looked interesting. I made mine in a small 8″ x 8″ casserole dish, but it works in a full-size casserole too. Let’s get started!
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees and peel your butternut. Then, cut it into cubes. We will toss the butternut cubes in a couple tablespoons of olive oil, salt and I used white pepper but you can use black pepper too. Toss in a generous sprinkle of dried thyme.
Roast the squash for about 25 minutes, or until it’s golden. When it’s ready, set it out to cool. While it’s roasting and cooling, you can prep for the béchamel sauce. This cheesy béchamel recipe will make enough for a full size lasagne. I ended up with quite a bit leftover, and this was after having a very heavy hand with it in the lasagne.
The Cheesy Béchamel
Begin by melting the butter with the garlic, fresh sage and rosemary. Cook the butter until it’s foamy and begins to brown. Then remove the fresh herbs, you can reserve them to use as garnish if you like.
Whisk in the flour and cook for about one minute, then slowly add the milk and broth. I used chicken broth, but you can use veggie broth to make this vegetarian. I think mushroom broth would be a delicious way to go.
Let this come up to a boil and simmer while stirring, until it’s thickened up a bit. Then add the cheese and the spinach. I used grated asiago cheese. Stir until all the cheese is melted. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
By now the butternut should be cool enough to handle. I mashed it with my hand. I didn’t want it to get too smooth, as I wanted there to still be chunks of squash.
Stir the ricotta into the smashed butternut. Then prep your assembly station with your grated mozzarella, lasagne noodles, butternut mixture and béchamel. I found these fresh lasagne sheets at my local Publix and I was curious to try them. You can use dried noodles too; I always use the dried lasagne noodles without boiling them first. The béchamel sauce should provide enough moisture to cook the noodles.
Start with a layer of the béchamel. Then noodles, then butternut and more béchamel and a big handful of shredded cheese. I have mozzarella and a Pecorino Romano Parmesan mix. Keep going with the layers until you reach the top, finish with a good layer of cheese. Bake for 45 minutes or until it’s brown and bubbly. Top with the reserved fried herbs.
As I mentioned earlier, I used way more béchamel than I should have. This didn’t make it bad, it just didn’t hold a shape when cut and my layers were not distinct. I also should have squeezed in one more layer of pasta under the top cheese layer. The first slice was a bit of a mess! So while I might file this one under “ugly delicious”, flavor-wise, it was a definite hit.
Thank you for joining me today. I hope you give this Roasted Butternut Squash Lasagne a try! If you’re looking for a salad to go with this, try my Fall Harvest Salad and double your dose of roasted squash! If you’re having a quiet Christmas, I think this would be a great dish to have on Christmas Eve. You can always find me on Instagram, facebook and Pinterest – so drop me line, say hello! Take care and be well, everyone. xo Kelly
Roasted Butternut Squash Lasagne
Layers of béchamel, pasta, cheese, butternut squash and ricotta are just the ticket for a different take on lasagne.
- 1 medium Butternut Squash (about 6 cups), peeled and cut into cubes
- 2 tbsp. Olive Oil
- Kosher Salt and Pepper to taste
- 2 tsp. Fresh or Dried Thyme
- 3 cloves Garlic, minced
- 12 Fresh Sage Leaves
- 2 Sprigs Fresh Rosemary
- 1/4 cup All-Purpose Flour
- 2 cups Whole Milk
- 2 cups Chicken or Vegetable Broth
- 1/4 tsp. fresh grated nutmeg
- 1 cup Shredded Asiago Cheese
- 2 cups Shredded Mozzarella (or combination of Mozz, Parmesan and Pecorino Romano)
- 2 cups Ricotta
- 4 cups Fresh Baby Spinach
- 1 box No-boil Lasagna Noodles
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Peel and cube butternut squash. Toss in a bowl with olive oil, salt, pepper and thyme. Spread in a single layer on a sheet tray and bake for 20-25 minutes, until golden. Set aside to cool.
In a large saucepan or pot, melt the butter with the garlic, rosemary and sage. Once the butter is foamy and beginning to brown, remove and save the herbs. whisk in flour and stir while cooking for about 1 minute and a paste forms.
Slowly add the milk and the broth. Bring to a boil and let simmer while stirring until it thickens a bit.
Add Asiago cheese and spinach, stir to melt cheese. Season with Kosher salt and pepper to taste.
Mash the butternut with a fork or your hands. Stir in ricotta.
Assemble the lasagne: Start with a layer of béchamel, then pasta, then butternut mixture and more béchamel, then mozzarella. Repeat layering until you reach to top and then top with mozzarella.
This recipe is for a full size (9" x 13") lasagne. If you make a half size one, like I did, you'll will only want to use 1/4 to half of the béchamel sauce.