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Lasagne

Garfield isn’t the only one who loves lasagne! We eat loads of it in the UK, and despite its reputation, it doesn’t have to be difficult to make, depending on what shortcuts you take. We have some simple, affordable steps to tweak your lasagne to help it become healthier, cheaper and higher in veg!

Why is lasagne so great?

Lasagne is creamy, tomato-ey, and filling.

It contains protein, carbs and veg all in one dish making it a balanced meal.

Lasagne has a reputation for being hard work and using up a lot of pans, but in reality it can be as hard or easy as you choose to make it. Whether you are at the “heat through a ready meal” stage or making your own sauces or anywhere in between, we have some simple steps to make it better while keeping it simple and affordable.

With all its layers and depth of flavour, lasagne is an easy vehicle for veg – it’s a really simple recipe to add more veg and pulses, and less meat, to without compromising on cost and flavour. This makes it a great recipe to gently tweak for a family who want to eat more veg but are struggling with the process.

So find where you stand with your current favourite lasagne and see if our simple steps and tips can help you make it even better with little effort!

How are your lasagne skills?

Getting
started

I’m just starting out.

Next
Level

I’m ready to take it to the next level.

Engaging
Kids

How can I get my kids involved and interested?

Getting Started

Lasagne is creamy, tomato-ey, and filling. It contains protein, carbs and veg all in one dish making it a balanced meal.

Here is a simple recipe for lasagne which you can use as a base and build on over time…

Lasagne

Claire Wright

Effort:
Complexity:
Cost:

Ingredients:

Jar of tomato sauce

Mince or veggie alternative (fresh or frozen)

Jar of white sauce

Lasagne sheets

Optional grated cheese

Share:

Method:

  1. Cook the mince according to package instructions (usually with a little oil in a pan for 5-10 mins until browned and cooked through).

  2. Layer in a casserole dish (⅓ to ½ of each layer to make 2-3 layers): a layer of meat with tomato sauce, then a layer of pasta sheets, then a layer of white sauce. Keep layering until out of ingredients. Top with a little grated cheese if you like.

  3. Bake in a hot oven (200C/gas 6) for 30-45 mins, until the top is golden and bubbling around the sides.

There is no need to go any further with this recipe until you are confident with it and feel up for the next step.

Feeling ready? Let’s see how you can get your next small victory without battles…

  1.  
Engaging Kids

Engaging Kids

Kids who engage regularly with veg through veg-themed activities, such as arts and crafts, sensory experiences, growing and cooking are shown to be more likely to eat the veg they engage with. Encouraging kids to engage and play with veg is the handy first step to them developing a good relationship with veg and life-long healthy eating.

Kids in the kitchen

Kids in the kitchen

The eventual aim, if possible, is to get kids in the kitchen. Don’t worry, this doesn’t have to mean they are with you from start-to-end creating mess and rising stress levels! It can be as simple as giving them one small job (stirring, measuring, pouring, grating, chopping…) ideally involving veg. They can come in to do their little bit, and have fun with you for a few minutes. Getting them involved, making it playful and praising them plenty for their involvement, perhaps even serving it as dinner they “made”, makes it much more likely they will eat the food offered, not to mention teaching them important life skills. Find ideas, safety tips, videos and even a free chart in our Kids in the Kitchen section here.

Activities

Activities

While getting kids to interact with veggies for real and using their senses to explore them is best, encouraging hands off activities like arts & crafts, puzzles & games or at-home science experiments can be a great start, particularly for those who are fussier eaters or struggle with anything too sensory. Use these veg-themed activities as a stepping stone to interacting with the veg themselves. We have loads of crafty downloads here, puzzles here, and quirky science with veg here.

Sensory

Sensory

Once you feel your child is ready to engage a little more, you can show them how to explore the veg you have on hand with their senses, coming up with playful silly descriptions of how a veg smells, feels, looks, sounds and perhaps even tastes. Find ideas, videos and some simple sensory education session ideas to get you started here.

Serving

Serving

The moments before food is offered can be a perfect opportunity for engagement that can help make it more likely a child will eat it! Giving children a sense of ownership in the meal can make a big difference to their feelings going into it and the pride they take in it. You know your child best, but if you aren’t sure where to start, we have some fun and simple ideas for easy roles you can give them in the serving process over here.

NEXT LEVEL

I Want To Improve My Lasagne

If you are feeling confident with your favourite lasagne recipe, but you’re wondering if there are some small tweaks you could make for the better, this is for you.

We’ve outlined some simple stages for continually improving on a basic lasagne recipe to get you from good to great. Find where you feel your current recipe sits and see if the next step is something you could aim for. You don’t have to go any further, but if you choose to, make sure you are feeling confident with this new stage before you try the next one.

And remember, the MOST important thing is that the family enjoys the meal! These changes and swaps can take as long as is needed if your family isn’t ready for big changes all in one go. Small simple improvements over time may not even be noticed.

engaging kids

Play is essential!

Think of children helping in the kitchen as a role play game with plenty of fun for maximum effect. One of the best ways to develop a love of veg in kids is to get them involved in the prep of the veg. Not only is cooking an essential life skill for kids to learn, but it’s a great, fun way to get them engaging with healthy foods!

DO you have a question you’d like one of our experts to help you with?
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