Vegan Baked Ziti

by Steph Sunshine at StephSunshine.com

Yield14 servings

Prep Time40 minutes

Cook Time70 minutes

Total Time110 minutes

Ingredients

  • 2 batches vegan mozzarella cheese, grated or thinly sliced
  • 1 batch tofu ricotta
  • 1 cup dry green or brown lentils
  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced (about 2 cups)
  • 2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tbsp. garlic, minced (about 6 cloves)
  • 3 3/4 cup marinara sauce (36 oz.; about 1.5 24-oz jars)
  • 1 1/2 tbsp. maple syrup
  • 1 1/2 cup water
  • 16 oz. ziti

Instructions

  1. Before you begin, be sure that your cashew mozzarella and tofu ricotta are ready to use. The mozzarella will need time to cool before it can be sliced or grated. I recommend preparing the mozzarella the day before making the baked ziti.
  2. Cook your lentils according to package instructions; drain and set aside.
  3. Add olive oil to a medium saucepan and heat over medium heat. Add your yellow onion and cook for about 7-10 minutes, until translucent. Add garlic and cook an additional one minute. Then, add your marinara sauce, maple syrup, and water and continue to cook for another 10 minutes. Stir in lentils and set aside.
  4. Boil your ziti for about 8 minutes (or 2 minutes less than the package recommendation; your ziti will soften as it bakes). Drain and combine the ziti with the sauce and lentils in a large mixing bowl.
  5. Preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C). Assemble your baked ziti in a 3- to 4-quart casserole dish. Spread half of your ziti-sauce-lentil mixture across the bottom, then top with half of your tofu ricotta and half of your cashew mozzarella. Repeat your layers with the remaining half of ziti, ricotta, and mozzarella. Bake for 35-40 minutes (no need to cover), then let cool for 10 minutes before serving.

Notes & Hints

For the best flavor, be sure to use a high-quality sauce such as Rao's, or use your own homemade sauce, if desired.

If you want to grate your mozzarella, you will need time for it to harden, so plan ahead!

Store in the refrigerator for up to a week. Reheat in the oven at 350°F for 15 minutes.

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