You know what they say: when life gives you butternut squash, make butternut squash lasagna roll-ups! As someone who is lucky enough to live at home with a Costco-going mom (love ya!), I am often the beneficiary of a lot of leftover pantry foods. And if there's one thing I've learned as a math teacher, it's the following equation: snow days + leftover ingredients = time for creative cooking! This recipe is especially great for such a situation, as the squash, pasta, and cheese combine to create a warm and hardy meal perfect for a winter's day.
Begin by boiling the lasagna noodles for two minutes less than is instructed by the directions on the package, as they will continue to cook in the oven. To make the filling, combine the ricotta, mozzarella, canned butternut squash, spinach, and spices.
While the noodles are boiling, make the cheese sauce. This is a relatively simple roux-based saucepan cheese sauce. The one thing to note is to make it a bit thinner than you normally would, as it will harden considerably while it is sitting.
To make each roll-up, lay the noodles out flat and parallel. Spread about 1 and 1/2 spoonfuls (a very exact measurement, I know) evenly up and down each noodle. Then, roll the noodle over on itself to form a delicious spiral of pasta and creamy squash and cheese.
The lasagnas are baked on a layer of cheese sauce, under a layer of cheese sauce, and sprinkled with parmesan. Yup.
One bite into this dish is all it takes to warm you up. But trust me, you'll take many more bites than that. Even better that this dish's through-the-roof tastiness is its versatility, as one could incorporate almost any flavor into the filling without really altering the overall recipe. My mouth is watering just thinking about it... with all this cheese, how can you go wrong?
Butternut Squash Lasagna Roll-ups
This fun dish is perfect for a cold and lazy day. The squash, ricotta, and cheese sauce work together to make each creamy roll-up like a mini lasagna pillow.
Makes: 14 roll-ups
- 2 15-oz cans of butternut squash
- 3 handfuls spinach
- 1 1/2 cups ricotta
- 2 cups shredded mozzarella
- 2 tbsps butter
- 2 tbsps flour
- 3 cups milk
- 14 lasagna noodles
- Shredded parmesan
- Pinch of salt
- Pinch of pepper
- Preheat the oven to 375ºF.
- Boil the lasagna noodles for 2 minutes less than instructed on the package.
- In a large bowl, combine the ricotta, butternut squash, spinach, 1 cup of the mozzarella, salt, and pepper.
- To make the cheese sauce, melt the butter in a saucepan. Add the flour and whisk until the mixture begins to brown. Pour in the milk and whisk in the remaining mozzarella, making sure the sauce is smooth and uniform. Season with salt and pepper.
- Lay the lasagna noodles out flat. Spread approximately 1 1/2 spoonfuls of filling evenly on each noodle. Roll each noodle over into itself.
- Spread some cheese sauce on the bottom of a baking dish. Lay each roll-up on this layer of sauce. Top with another helping of sauce and the shredded parmesan.
- Bake at 375ºF for 20 minutes, until the top begins to brown.