BOLOGNESE PASTA BAKE

Vegan, healthy and made with basic pantry staples, which you probably already have in the cupboard. The perfect family favourite. Delicious.

This Bolognese Pasta Bake is perfect for a ravenous family dinner, packed, luches, meal prep – or what the heck – just about anything! It is sooo dang GOOD!! This recipe carries my tried and tested guarantee with fabulous tomatoey flavour, a creamy, dreamy texture and is packed with plant-based protein through the power of lentils (of course). 🙂

INSIGHT

This dish does not disappoint on powerful plant-based macros: fibre, protein and complex carbohydrates. This pasta bake is stuffed with them, unlike conventional store bought pasta bakes.

Fibre benefits the digestive system by feeding the good bacteria in your microbiome. These bacteria are important because they play a major role in our immune system, producing certain vitamins and hormones in the body. Fibre also aids in preventing chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes and colon cancer by lowering blood sugar and reducing LDL cholesterol.

Protein is important for: growth, repair and replacement in the body, but is also responsible for the feeling of satiation so is also important for a satisfying meal. Plant-based protein from lentils has a greater nutrient density compared to animal protein in addition to a decreased risk of weight gain, stoke and high blood pressure, better cellular respiration which can lead to an increase in energy levels.

Tomatoes (a big flavour role in this recipe) are rich in vitamin C, vitamin K, potassium folate and especially lycopene. Lycopene is a potent antioxidant which has been proven to reduce the risk of heart disease and cancer.

Sounds pretty good, huh?

I have always taken the highest pleasure from those store bought pasta bakes as a kid, delicious easy, put it in one dish and bang – it’s done. However when I returned to the concept of pasta bakes searching for nostalgic recipes online… What? I  have to cook the pasta BEFORE the pasta bake is actually cooked?! These were the instructions for every single recipe I found. Seriously? I hated it.

So, what was my solution? To get in the kitchen and whip up your perfect homemade pasta bake (which is not only actually baked) but healthy, simple, delicious and of course is large enough to easliy feed five hungry people. Yum.

This pasta bake, unlike most, has some extra additions of lentils and onion. I found that this majorly upped this texture to a bolognese-like pasta, which I thought was pretty awesome. Feel free to also add in diced carrot, celery, pepper, mushroom or even top it with some melty vegan cheese… Oh my!

I do hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I do, please tag me on instagram or pinterest under #nutsandbluebs so that I can see your delicious recreations! Also, feel free to drop me recipes you would love to see me post next! 🙂 Enjoy Xx

Bolognese Pasta Bke

Course Appetizer, Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine British
Keyword lentils, pasta, pasta bake, tomato
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Author Jamie Waters

Equipment

  • Large casserole dish
  • medium saucepan

Ingredients

  • 320 g wholewheat fusilli *
  • 1 can lentils 410g can
  • 1 large brown onion
  • 1 can chopped tomatoes ** 400g can
  • 2 cups vegetable stock
  • ½ cup soya milk
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 1 tsp mixed herbs
  • 1 tsp dried garlic
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp miso paste
  • 2 tbsp tomato puree

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 200°C (180°C Fan) or 400°F
  • Peel and dice the onion, placing it into a large casserole dish along with the tinned lentils (unstrained) and wholewheat fusilli.
  • Place all other ingredients in a medium saucepan, mix bringing to a boil.
  • Once the sauce reaches a boil, pour it over the ingredients in the casserole dish evenly distributing the sauce with the ingredients.
  • Cover with aluminium foil and bake for 60 minutes. Remove from oven and leave to cool for at least 10 minutes before serving.

Notes

* May substitute white or gluten-free pasta but I have not tested rice or legume based pasta so the same results cannot be guaranteed.
** Plumed tomatoes or passata are also suitable, but NOT fresh.

"Pasta brings joy to the soul "

Jamie Waters

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