Let the lasagna-palooza begin….

I have sooooo many different lasagna recipes. I was sitting here scratching my head trying to decide which recipe to post today. Hmmm….. decisions, decisions, decisions. The Roasted Vegetable lasagna or the Old World Italian Sausage lasagna or the Southwestern Chicken Lasagna…..hmmm. Then, a brilliant idea struck me….how about I post all of my lasagna recipes over the next month? Screw bathing suit season. Let the LASAGNA-PALOOZA begin.

I will start with a completely different spin on traditional lasagna…..a white and creamy chicken spinach lasagna. I don’t even want to know how many calories are in this baby…I just pretend it’s healthy because it has chicken and spinach in it. Oh, and this sucker takes some time….but is well worth the effort. I believe this was my very first attempt at making a white sauce all on my own that didn’t come in a bottle named Alfredo Sauce. I was so darn proud of myself. I could almost cry thinking about it. Sniff sniff.

RECIPE: Creamy Chicken Spinach Lasagna

Servings 9

Ingredients:

1/2 cup butter

1/2 cup onion, chopped

1/2 teaspoon minced garlic

1/2 cup flour

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 cups chicken broth

1-1/2 cup milk

4 cups mozzarella cheese (note: will be split, read directions carefully)

1-1/4  cup parmesan cheese (note: will be split, read directions carefully)

2 teaspoons Italian seasoning

1/2 teaspoon white pepper

1 pinch cayenne pepper

2 cups ricotta cheese

2 cups chicken, cooked and shredded

20 ounces frozen spinach, thawed and drained

9 each lasagna noodles, cooked

1 tablespoon fresh  parsley, chopped

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Melt butter in a large sauce pan over medium heat. Add onion and garlic and cook until tender.

2. Stir in flour and salt and simmer until bubbly.

3. Slowly mix in chicken broth and milk  stirring constantly until mixture comes to a boil.

4. Add 2 cups mozzarella cheese, 1/2 cup parmesan and stir well until cheese is melted.

5. Stir in italian seasoning, white pepper, and cayenne. Remove from heat.

To assemble lasagna:

1. Spray 9×13 baking dish with cooking spray. Place 1/3 cup sauce on bottom of pan.

2. Top with 3 noodles, 1 cup of ricotta, 1/2 of spinach, 1 cup of chicken, and 1 cup mozzarella.

3. Top with 3 more noodles, 1 cup of ricotta, remaining spinach, remaining chicken, 1/3 cup sauce, 1/2 cup parmesan,  1 cup mozzarella.

4. Top with 3 more noodles, and remaining sauce. Sprinkle with chopped parsley and 1/4 cup parmesan.

Bake at 350 degrees for approximately 45 minutes.

 The great thing with this recipe is you can play around with it.  Add less spinach, more chicken. Replace spinach with broccoli or zucchini. Add romano cheese or asiago cheese.  Maybe add a pinch of nutmeg to the white sauce. Have fun!

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