Dairy-Free Gluten-Free Lasagna made with few basic ingredients! This simple lasagna recipe results in rich and creamy lasagna, perfect for serving family or guests.
Yes, it’s possible. 😉
A lasagna recipe that is gluten-free and dairy-free, involves all straightforward and simple ingredients and is not just edible, it is simply magical!
Don’t get me wrong, I am obsessed with cheesy lasagna, but as I mentioned in my Gluten-Free Dairy-Free Baked Ziti post, I’m selective about my dairy intake.
I know many of my readers are lactose intolerant or must limit their dairy intake for one reason or another (hormonal balance and gut microbiome are big ones), which is why I find this recipe to be particularly useful.
A couple of weeks ago, I reached out to my Instagram following to see what everyone makes for Christmas dinner and I had multiple people tell me their family always makes lasagna.
So if you’re a lasagna for Christmas family, this recipe is well-timed! And if not, I’m sure you can file this one away for the next time the lasagna craving strikes.
Instead of cheese, I make a creamy cauliflower sauce, which adds that mouth-watering creaminess to offset the acidic tomato sauce.
One of the reasons I love the cauliflower sauce, in addition to its creaminess, is it is lower in fat than the cheesy counterpart.
Don’t get me wrong, I love me some fat, but for those of you who keep track of your macronutrients, it may be helpful to know that this is a lower-fat option for you, especially if you use lean ground beef (90% lean or higher).
My biggest tip in preparing this recipe is to read all of the instructions fully before starting (especially if you’ve never made lasagna), as it does require a chunk of time.
Both the meat sauce and the creamy cauliflower sauce can be made in advance, so feel free to make either one or both of them if you’re looking to minimize your prep time on a single day.
The cauliflower sauce is best when served fresh, so make it up to 2 days ahead of time, but the meat sauce can be made up to 5 days in advance.
Let’s chat about the ingredients!
Ingredients for Dairy-Free Gluten-Free Lasagna:
For the Creamy Cauliflower Sauce:
Cauliflower, chicken broth, onion powder, garlic powder, and sea salt. The cauliflower gets cooked and everything gets blended together to make the sauce.
If you have time, sauté one yellow onion to blend in with the sauce (I like to sauté mine until it’s nearly caramelized), or you can roast a bulb of garlic. This step isn’t mandatory, but it sure adds richness to the sauce!
Love cooking with nutritional yeast? If you have it on hand, add 2 to 3 tablespoons to the cauliflower sauce. Nutritional yeast adds a cheesy flavor to the sauce, but if you don’t keep it on hand, feel free to skip it. It’s nice to have but the sauce will still be great without it.
As a side note, if you love creamy cauliflower sauce and want there to be a lot of it, feel free to double the cauliflower sauce recipe, as the way it is written does not yield a huge amount of sauce.
For the Meat Sauce:
Avocado oil, onion, garlic, ground beef (or ground pork, turkey or ground Italian sausage), and two jars of good-quality tomato-based pasta sauce.
This combination yields a magically flavorful sauce without the need for many ingredients, and very little fuss.
I use a leaner ground beef (93% lean), but you can use any fat percentage you like.
You can use ground pork, turkey or Italian sausage in place of ground beef if you’d like. In addition, if you love meatier meat sauces, use 1 ½ to 2 pounds of ground meat instead of 1 pound.
Be sure to use a tomato-based pasta sauce that you’ve tried before, as it is what will be providing the majority of the flavor in the sauce. I like using premade sauce because it cuts down on the ingredients and prep time. If you have a homemade tomato sauce you prefer over store-bought, feel free to use it!
In addition, if you’d like to add more seasoning, you absolutely can! 1 tablespoon of Italian seasoning and ¼ cup of fresh parsley is great but certainly not mandatory.
The Lasagna Noodles:
Choose your favorite lasagna noodles. I keep mine gluten-free using Jovial Gluten-Free Brown Rice Lasagna Noodles (not sponsored, just love).
I love that the noodles are made out of nothing but organic brown rice flour. You also don’t have to cook them ahead of time, but I boil them for about 3 minutes before compiling the lasagna.
How to Make Dairy-Free Gluten-Free Lasagna:
Prepare the Meat Sauce:
Heat the avocado oil in a large thick-bottomed pot (I use my Dutch oven) over medium-high heat.
Add the onion and sauté, stirring occasionally, until it begins to brown, about 8 minutes. Stir in the garlic and sauté for another 2 minutes.
Transfer the ground beef to the pot and break it apart using a spatula to incorporate it in with the onion.
Allow the meat to brown for a few minutes, stirring occasionally, before adding the pasta sauce and sea salt.
Cover and bring the sauce to a full boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and continue cooking, stirring occasionally.
Allow the sauce to cook while you’re making the rest of the recipe (about 30 to 50 minutes). Taste the salt for flavor and add more sea salt to taste.
The longer the sauce cooks, the more flavorful it will become. For this reason, you can make the sauce up to 5 days in advance if you’d like.
Prepare the Cauliflower Sauce:
Boil or steam the cauliflower for 8 to 10 minutes or until it is very tender.
Strain the water then transfer the cauliflower to a blender along with the rest of the ingredients for the creamy sauce. You’ll need to stop the blender a few times to stir things around in order for the ingredients to blend fully.
If need be, add more broth if your blender is having trouble blending the cauliflower, but try to keep the sauce as thick as possible for best results.
Cook the Noodles:
Prepare the noodles according to the package instructions. Perform this step just before compiling the lasagna to avoid the risk of having the noodles stick together after cooking.
Make the Lasagna:
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
Spread one cup of the sauce over the bottom of a 9” x 13” casserole dish evenly.
Add one layer of lasagna noodles (my noodles are short, so I did four noodles crosswise instead of lengthwise).
Layer one third of the meat sauce over the noodles and spread it evenly. Spread less than one third of the cauliflower sauce over the meat sauce (it’s fine if the two sauces become combined).
Repeat this process for two more layers, ending on a thick layer of cauliflower sauce (I reserve about half of the cauliflower sauce for the top layer).
Place the casserole dish on the center rack of the preheated oven and bake for 50 minutes to 1 hour, or until the sauce is bubbly and everything appears set up.
Remove the lasagna from the oven and allow it to sit for at least 15 minutes before slicing and serving.
Store leftovers covered in plastic wrap in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
Truthfully, I think this may just be the most accidental healthiest lasagna recipe in existence. It’s certainly the most health-minded one I’ve made. 😉
Love lasagna but want to keep it even more simple and quicker? Whip up my Instant Pot Lasagna Soup!
If you’re looking for more dairy-free alternatives, check out my Lemon Garlic Chicken, Creamy Crock Pot Pork Chops, and Crispy Skillet Salmon with Lemon Dill Caper Sauce.
I hope you love this lasagna fest as much as I do!
Dairy-Free Gluten-Free Lasagna
The dreamiest comfort food made gluten-free and dairy-free, this simple lasagna recipe is designed to please!
- 1 large head cauliflower, steamed
- 2/3 cups chicken broth or water
- 2 tsp onion powder
- 2 tsp garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 2 Tbsp nutritional yeast, optional
- 2 Tbsp avocado oil or olive oil
- 1 medium-sized yellow onion, finely chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 pound ground beef
- 2 (28-ounce) jars tomato pasta sauce**
- ½ tsp sea salt, to taste
Prepare the Cauliflower Sauce:
- Boil or steam the cauliflower for 8 to 10 minutes or until it is very tender. Strain the water then transfer the cauliflower to a blender along with the rest of the ingredients for the creamy sauce. You’ll need to stop the blender a few times to stir things around in order for the ingredients to blend fully.
Cook the Noodles:
- Prepare the noodles according to the package instructions. Perform this step just before compiling the lasagna to avoid the risk of having the noodles stick together after cooking.
Make the Lasagna:
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
- Spread one cup of the sauce over the bottom of a 9” x 13” casserole dish evenly.
- Add one layer of lasagna noodles (my noodles are short, so I did four noodles crosswise instead of lengthwise).
- Layer one third of the meat sauce over the noodles and spread it evenly. Spread about one quarter of the cauliflower sauce over the meat sauce (it’s fine if the two sauces become combined).
- Repeat this process for two more layers, ending on a thick layer of cauliflower sauce (I reserve about half of the cauliflower sauce for the top layer).
- Place the casserole dish on the center rack of the preheated oven and bake for 50 minutes to 1 hour, or until the sauce is bubbly and everything appears set up.
- Remove the lasagna from the oven and allow it to sit for at least 15 minutes before slicing and serving.
- Store leftovers covered in plastic wrap in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
*You can also use ground pork, turkey, or sausage
**I use organic Tomato Basil Sauce, but pick your favorite flavor! If you love your lasagna extra saucy, use 2.5 to 3 jars of pasta sauce or add 1 16-oz can of diced or crushed tomatoes.
If you'd like, you can add 2 to 3 tablespoons of nutritional yeast to the creamy cauliflower sauce to give it some cheesy flavor. You can also sauté one yellow onion and 5 cloves of garlic to add to the sauce (replacing the garlic powder and onion powder) if you have some time.
Nutrition InformationYield 15 Serving Size 1 of 15
Amount Per Serving Calories 284Total Fat 11gCarbohydrates 32gNet Carbohydrates 29gFiber 3gSugar 7gProtein 16g
Tuesday 21st of December 2021
Ok this is Delicious with a capital D! I followed the recipe with 2 additions. A handful of pine nuts in the cauliflower sauce adding to blender. Also added Italian blend dry herbs to meat sauce. I prefer ground turkey to beef. I used Raos marinara and Granoro gluten free lasagna noodles. Came together easily. In the end such a tender flavorful result. Thank you my family enjoyed so much
Wednesday 22nd of December 2021
I'm so happy you like it, Lynne! I LOVE the idea of adding pine nuts...I must try this myself! Thanks so much for swinging back around to give your feedback! xoxo