I love the combination of spinach and artichoke in a creamy dip, and it's also a perfect pairing as a pasta filling! When I saw a fantastic recipe for spinach and artichoke stuffed shells at Barbara Bakes, I knew I had to try them. But, strangely enough, my grocery store didn't have any shells! Don't know who dropped the ball there, but since I had all the other ingredients in my basket, I figured the dish would work just as well as a lasagna. In fact, the assembly is even easier, since you don't have to stuff individual shells.
This makes a seriously hefty lasagna - the filling is delicious, but there's a lot of it and thus the lasagna ends up with lots of layers. If you want a somewhat lighter dish, I'd suggest making just half the filling and using less noodles.
Spinach-Artichoke Lasagna (adapted from Barbara Bakes, original recipe here)
Makes 1 ginormous lasagna
3 cups fat free or low fat ricotta cheese
3 cups shredded part skim mozzarella, divided
1/2 cup shaved Parmesan cheese
2 cups frozen spinach, thawed
14 or 15 ounce can artichoke hearts, drained, rinsed, and minced
1-1/2 tsp Italian herb blend
Generous pinch red pepper flakes
Salt and pepper
26 ounce jar marinara sauce
Half of a 15 ounce can diced tomatoes, drained
1-1/2 boxes Trader Joe's lasagna noodles (or your favorite no-bake lasagna noodles)
1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
2. Mix together the ricotta, 1-1/2 cups of the mozzarella, the Parmesan, eggs, spinach, artichoke hearts, Italian herbs, and red pepper flakes. Season generously with salt and pepper. Make sure everything is well combined.
3. Set out a 9x13 pan. Pour in a little marinara sauce and spread around the bottom. Place a layer of noodles over the sauce (I found that 3-1/2 of the Trader Joe's lasagna noodles fit well, but your mileage may vary depending on the noodles you use.) Scoop on about a quarter of the cheese mixture and pat down with a spoon or wet fingers into a relatively even layer. Scatter over about a quarter of the diced tomatoes, and drizzle on some tomato sauce. Spread around with the back of a spoon until everything is relatively evenly distributed.
4. Repeat until you have four layers of filling and five layers of noodles. Pour over the remaining sauce and spread to coat the top layer of noodles. Sprinkle with the remaining 1-1/2 cups mozzarella cheese.
5. Get a large piece of aluminum foil (big enough to cover the pan. Spray it with oil, and then cover the lasagna, oil side down. Bake 40 minutes. Remove the foil, and bake another 10 minutes, until the cheese is browned and the lasagna is bubbling. Let sit at least 10 minutes before serving.