This fall butternut squash lasagna swaps pasta for butternut squash and layered with chicken sausage, tomato sauce, ricotta, and mozzarella. It’s so delicious, you won’t miss the pasta!
Butternut Squash Lasagna
I’ve been making noodle-less zucchini lasagna for years, but now that fall is here, I wanted to try a variation with butternut. This butternut squash lasagna came out fabulous—perfect comfort food with more nutrients and veggies. I really love the flavor the Italian chicken sausage adds to the sauce. More of my favorite winter squash lasagna recipes are these Butternut Squash Lasagna Roll Ups, and Spaghetti Squash Lasagna.
Why This Butternut-Sausage Lasagna Works
- Healthy: This butternut squash lasagna with no pasta has more fiber and fewer carbs than most lasagna recipes. It’s also gluten-free.
- High Protein: It has 29 grams of protein!
- Meal Prep: Make this dish on a Sunday when you have more time, and then all you have to do the next day for dinner is pop it in the oven.
- Cheesy: Part-skim ricotta and mozzarella reduce the calories while keeping the lasagna cheesy and creamy.
- Freezer-Friendly: This no-noodle butternut squash lasagna is excellent for freezing baked or unbaked.
- Sausage: Remove the casings from 14 ounces of Italian chicken sausage. I like Al Fresco and Premio.
- Onion and Garlic: Chop half of a large onion and mince three cloves.
- Crushed Tomatoes: You’ll need a 28-ounce can of crushed tomatoes, like Tuttorosso.
- Herbs: Fresh, chopped basil and parsley
- Salt and Black Pepper to season the meat sauce
- Butternut Squash: Peel a large (three pounds or bigger) butternut.
- Cheese: Part-skim ricotta, grated Parmigiano Reggiano or parmesan, shredded part-skim mozzarella (My favorite is Polly-O.)
- Egg prevents the cheese mixture from running out of the lasagna when baked.
How to Make Butternut Squash Lasagna
- Meat Sauce: Brown the sausage in a large skillet. Add the onion and garlic, and after a couple of minutes, add the tomatoes, basil, salt, and pepper. Cover and simmer on low for 15 to 20 minutes.
- Butternut Squash Lasagna Noodles: Slice the squash into 1/8”-thick rounds with a spiralizer, mandolin, or sharp knife.
- Lasagna Filling: Combine the ricotta, parmesan, parsley, and egg.
- Layer the Lasagna: Spread sauce on the bottom of a 9” x 12” casserole or baking dish. Place 12 butternut slices over the sauce to cover the dish. Then continue layering in this order: ricotta mixture, mozzarella cheese, tomato sauce, butternut, ricotta, mozzarella, sauce, butternut, and sauce.
- Bake the lasagna covered with foil for 30 minutes. Remove the foil, which will help dry out excess liquid, and cook it for 30 minutes, until fork tender. Top the dish with the remaining cheese and bake until it’s melted and bubbling.
- Serving: Let the dish sit for five to 10 minutes before slicing it into eight pieces. If you cut it too soon, it’ll fall apart.
How to Make Butternut Squash Lasagna Noodles
Since butternut squash is such a large, hard vegetable, it can be difficult to handle. Below are some tips to make slicing it more manageable.
- Microwaving the squash for a minute or two can help make it easier to cut.
- Use the Whole Squash: When you get to the part of the butternut that has seeds, remove them with a fork and then continue to slice.
- The easiest way to cut the butternut into thin rounds is by using a good-quality spiralizer.
- Spiralizer Tips: First, I cut a slit lengthwise through the center so the pieces separate when spiralizing. Then, I used blade A on my spiralizer.
- Alternative Methods: A sharp knife or a good quality mandolin would also work (but be careful!). Mandolins can be dangerous, so I recommend wearing a cut-proof glove to avoid injuries.
- Spicy Lasagna: If you prefer some heat, use spicy Italian sausage or add crushed red pepper flakes.
- Sausage: Substitute Italian turkey sausage or pork for chicken.
- Vegetarian Butternut Squash Lasagna: Use a vegan sausage option or add more veggies like swiss chard or kale.
- Cheese: Swap ricotta for cottage cheese for extra protein.
- Egg Allergy? Omit the egg. The cheese mixture may be a bit runnier, but it’ll still taste good.
What to Serve with Butternut Sausage Lasagna
Here are some vegetable side dish ideas to serve with this healthy butternut squash lasagna.
How to Make Ahead
This lasagna is excellent for meal prep.
- Make it one day in advance. Cover it with foil and refrigerate.
- Place it on the counter for 30 minutes before baking to let it come to room temperature.
- Roast as instructed.
Leftover lasagna is great for lunch. It will last up to 4 days in the refrigerator in an airtight container or 3 months in the freezer and can be microwaved until warm. To prep and freeze ahead, cover with plastic wrap, then foil. Freeze up to 3 months. To bake, thaw overnight in the fridge and bake as directed.
More Butternut Squash Recipes You’ll Love
- Butternut Squash Ravioli with Sage Butter
- Spicy Butternut Squash Pasta
- Roasted Butternut Squash
- Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese
- Spaghetti with Butternut Squash Sauce
Noodleless Butternut Squash Lasagna Recipe
- 14 ounces Italian chicken sausage, casing removed (Al Fresco)
- 1 tsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1/2 large onion, chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 28-oz can crushed tomatoes, I like Tuttorosso
- 2 tbsp chopped fresh basil
- salt and black pepper, to taste
- 1 large butternut squash, peeled, at least 3 lbs
- 1 cup part-skim ricotta
- 1/4 cup Parmigiano Reggiano, or Parmesan cheese, grated
- 2 tbsp chopped parsley
- 1 large egg
- 16 oz shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese, 4 cups total
- In a large deep nonstick skillet, brown the sausage in olive oil, breaking the meat up with a wooden spoon until cooked, about 5 minutes. Add onions and garlic and cook until soft, about 2 minutes. Add tomatoes, basil, salt and black pepper, to taste. Simmer on low, covered 15 to 20 minutes.
- Meanwhile, slice butternut into 1/8″ thick rounds with a good quality spiralizer, or a mandolin (be careful) or a sharp knife. See notes.
- Preheat oven to 375°F.
- In a medium bowl combine ricotta cheese, Parmesan cheese, parsley and egg, mix.
- In a deep 9×12 casserole dish spread 3/4 cup of sauce on the bottom and layer 12 rounds of butternut slices to cover. Spread 3/4 cup of the ricotta cheese mixture, then top with 1 cup of the mozzarella cheese and 1 cup sauce. Second Layer: Lay 12 more rounds of butternut, 3/4 cup ricotta mixture, 1 cup mozzarella and 1 cup sauce. Third Layer: 12 slices butternut, 1 1/2 cups sauce and cover with foil.
- Bake covered 30 minutes.
- Remove foil, cook uncovered 30 minutes (this helps dry out excess moisture). Top with remaining cheese and bake until the cheese is melted and bubbling, 5 minutes.
- Let stand about 5 to 10 minutes before serving. Slice into 8 pieces.