Mexican pepper-and-bean lasagna


  • Prep Time30 mins
  • Total Time30 mins
  • Makes8 to 10 servings
*PLUS Cooking time: 6 minutes, Standing Time: 10 minutes, Baking Time: 45 minutes


  • 2 red bell peppers

  • 2 yellow or green bell peppers

  • 1 large onion

  • 540-mL can black beans

  • 540-mL can kidney or romano beans

  • olive oil

  • 3 cups tomato sauce

  • 475-g container extra-smooth ricotta

  • 2 tsp ground cumin

  • 2 tsp dried thyme leaves

  • 1 tsp hot red-chili flakes

  • 1/2 tsp salt

  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper

  • 12 to 14 oven-ready lasagna noodle pasta

  • 3 cups grated Monterey Jack or cheddar

  • 1/3 cup coarsely chopped fresh cilantro, optional


  • Preheat oven to 350F (180C). Core and seed peppers, then coarsely chop. Slice onion in half. Place cut-side down on board. Thinly slice. Drain and rinse beans.

  • Lightly coat a large wide saucepan with oil and set over medium heat. Add peppers and onion. Stir often until softened, 5 to 6 minutes. Stir in beans and pasta sauce. Bring to a boil, stirring often. Remove from heat. In a large bowl stir ricotta with cumin, thyme, chili flakes, salt and pepper.

  • Spread enough sauce to barely cover bottom of a 9x13-inch (3-L) baking dish. Cover with 4 or 5 noodles. Don't overlap. Spoon half the ricotta mixture in dollops overtop, then gently spread as best you can toward edges. Pour half of sauce overtop, then smooth surface. Sprinkle with 1 cup (250 mL) grated cheese. Top with 4 or 5 noodles, remaining ricotta mixture and 1 cup (250 mL) cheese. Finish with noodles, gently pressing them down. Cover with remaining sauce and sprinkle with remaining cheese.

  • Bake, uncovered, in centre of 350F (180C) oven until a knife tip inserted in centre of lasagna feels warm, 45 to 50 minutes. Remove from oven and sprinkle with coriander. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

Nutrition (per serving)

Calories 463, Protein 24.2g, Carbohydrates 49.3g, Fat 19.1g, Fibre 9.3g, Sodium 927mg.

Frozen lasagna is one of the top-selling meals in grocery stores. You won't find this healthy, high-fibre meatless version in any store freezer. Use oven-ready noodles to keep prep time short. Prepare a double batch, then stash in dinner-size portions in your freezer for fast weeknight meals.