Lasanga rolls are the perfect way to get all the taste of the traditional slices without the lengthy assembly or long bake time.
So, i had a taste for some really rich pasta that I wouldn’t have to stay in the kitchen for, plus I had a half package of lasagna noodles that needed to be used. thus the idea for lasagne rolls!
I am not a fan of most packaged italian sausage, so I decided to make my own using chicken thighs in the food processor (thank you kendall college for meats class). It tasted as rich as pork even though I watched myself make it with chicken. When I tell you fresh is best, I won’t be going back. In hindsight, i should’ve taken a step-by-step on how to make the sausage. The next time I do, I will be sure to bring you with me. Please stay tuned for the chicken Italian sausage recipe!
Back to the rolls: sautéed the sausage, threw in some caramelized onions, kale, cheese lemon zest, capers (for brightness). You can omit the capers, swap them for olives, or add whatever veggies you’d like to make this your own. I know traditional lasagne is made with ricotta, but i’ve never been a fan of the cheese. My aunt taught me how to make it with bechamel instead, and it’s now my go-to. Without deviating from this step, I made a quick béchamel to bind the sausage, vegetables, and cheese together.
After creating the filling, I simply blanched the noodles until soft, rinsed to cool, and divided my mix up between 10 noodles. please refer to my photos for further example on how to assemble the rolls I ended up topping the rolls with pasta sauce, extra onions, and cheese. The rolls baked in 15 minutes and my family devoured them. I will definitely be writing a recipe for this one!
Chicken & Vegetable Lasagna Rolls
- 10-12 lasagna noodles
- 4 tbsp olive oil divided
- 1 large onion half diced, half sliced
- garlic minced
- 2 tbsp flour
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1/2 cream cream
- 2 cups kale chopped
- 1/2 cup capers (optional)
- zest of 1/2 a lemon
- 1 lb quality chicken italian sausage (or pork)
- 1 28 oz jar pasta sauce
- 3/4 cup shredded mozzarella cheese divided
- 1/4 pecorino romano, or parmesan cheese
- tt salt and pepper
- Preheat oven to 350º. Bring a large pot of salted water to a rolling boil. Add lasagna noodles and par-cook until the noodles are flexible, but still slightly chewy, about 6-8 minutes. Do not overcrowd the pot, work in batches if necessary. after noodles have been partially cooked, strain and rinse with cold water to prevent overcooking. Drizzle drained and cooled noodles in 1 tablespoon of olive oil and set aside.
- In a medium pan, 1 tablespoon of olive oil, and bring to medium heat. Add diced half of the onion and garlic. Sautee until onion begins to caramelize, about 4 minutes. Add chopped kale to the pan and cook until leaves begin to wilt about 1 minute. Remove the vegetables from the heat, fold in capers, lemon zest, and season with salt and pepper. Place into a mixing bowl for future use. Repeat these steps again with sliced onion and set aside in a separate bowl.
- Return pan to medium-low heat, and cook sausage, breaking it up into bite-sized pieces. When the sausage has cooked, use a slotted spoon to remove it from the pan and add to reserved vegetables. Leave remaining oil in the pan and reduce heat to low. Sprinkle flour atop the reserved oil and whisk until the mixture resembles a smooth paste (roux). Whisk milk and cream into the roux until the mixture is completely combined. Continue to simmer until sauce has thickened, about 10 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and allow the sauce to cool slightly before proceeding to the next step.
- After the sauce is warm (not hot), add vegetable mixture, half of the mozzarella cheese, Italian sausage and fold together to combine. The cheese will begin to melt however, the mixture should hold it’s shape.
- To assemble Lasagne rolls, place par-cooked noodles onto a clean board, scoop 2 oz (1/4 cup) of chicken and vegetable mixture onto the end of the noodles. Gently roll the mixture up in the noodle, Being careful not to press the filling out the sides of the roll. Place each roll into a greased, high sided baking pan. repeat these steps until all the rolls have been filled. Pour pasta sauce over the rolls, and top with the preciously caramelized sliced onions, and reserved cheese. Cover with foil bake until noodles are cooked through, cheese is melted, about 15-20 minutes, removing the foil halfway into cooking time. Serve immediate with sautéed vegetables
- You will notice that in the recipe, you keep emptying and returning to the same pan to proceed to the next step. I do this to reduce the number of pots and pans needed to complete the dish and to build upon the flavors left in the pan. Everyone likes to eat, no one likes to clean up after the meal, ha! I have done this lasagna roll method with both traditional lasagna noodles and zucchini “noodles” both are great, and the zucchini brings the number of carbs down in this dish significantly. To make the recipe completely keto/gluten-free, swap out the flour in the recipe for arrowroot starch and proceed with the zucchini noodles. There’s no need to cook them before assembly and baking.
Meal Prep Tips
- These rolls can be assembled in advance for meal prep. Proceed with directions above, except the baking step. Cover in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 1 month. To bake, from the freezer, bake for 1 hour instead of 30-40 minutes and do not thaw.