Shortcut Chicken And Spinach Lasagna Recipe

Creamy chicken and spinach lasagna is warm, hearty, and surprisingly easy. That's right: Recipe developer Leah Maroney found many ways to take the labor out of lasagna, starting with the protein. Unlike a meat sauce that cooks for hours, shredded rotisserie chicken is a perfect shortcut, though any pre-cooked chicken (think last night's leftovers) is a great addition. 

Next, a very simple cheese sauce is used in place of red sauce and ricotta, which means less layering and less time! Gouda and Parmesan cheese are the stars of the cream sauce, but there are so many possibilities — try using creamy fontina or Gruyere if you like a nice, nutty bite. To lighten things up, Maroney adds frozen spinach, which is already cooked down and saves you the trouble of adding messy handfuls of fresh spinach leaves to your pot of sauce. 

To make things even more convenient, this recipe replies on no-boil lasagna noodles, so there's no need to fumble with hot pasta while assembling your layers. However, you can totally make this recipe with boil-ahead noodles, which won't require as much sauce in the baking dish. For an approachable lasagna you can make on a weeknight, add this recipe to your household's rotation.

Gather your ingredients for spinach and chicken lasagna

The star of this lasagna is the creamy spinach and cheese sauce, and it all starts with garlic that's roasted in the oven with olive oil. You'll then combine this with chicken broth, heavy cream, and salt and black pepper. Gouda cheese and Parmesan cheese, as well as frozen spinach (which you can substitute for cooked broccoli, zucchini, or carrots), join the mix to create a cheesy base for the dish. Finally, the sauce is layered with no-boil noodles, shredded rotisserie chicken, and freshly shredded mozzarella cheese.

Step 1: Preheat the oven

Preheat oven to 375 F.

Step 2: Prep the garlic for roasting

Place garlic cloves on a sheet of aluminum foil, top with olive oil, and close the foil into a tight pouch.

Step 3: Roast the garlic

Roast garlic in the oven for 20 minutes, until softened and browned.

Step 4: Cook the cream sauce

Add roasted garlic to a large saucepan with salt, heavy cream, chicken broth, and black pepper. Bring to a slow rolling boil over medium-high heat.

Step 5: Whisk in the cheeses

Reduce heat to low and slowly add Gouda and Parmesan, whisking until incorporated.

Step 6: Add spinach

Add spinach and cook for another 3-5 minutes, until sauce has thickened. Remove sauce from heat.

Step 7: Layer the sauce and noodles in a baking dish

Evenly spread a ladleful of sauce over the bottom of a 9x13-inch baking dish. Top with a layer of lasagna noodles.

Step 8: Add more sauce, chicken, and mozzarella

Top noodles with another ladle of sauce, followed by a layer of shredded chicken and a layer of shredded mozzarella.

Step 9: Continue layering, and top with cheese

Repeat layers in the same order until the pan is full, ending with a final layer of mozzarella.

Step 10: Cover and bake the lasagna

Cover baking dish with foil and bake for 25 minutes.

Step 11: Bake the lasagna uncovered

Remove foil and bake for another 20 minutes, or until the top is golden brown.

Step 12: Slice and serve

Allow lasagna to rest for 10 minutes, then slice and serve hot.

What side dishes can I serve with lasagna?

Lasagna is a complete meal within itself — especially this hearty spinach and chicken version. It's packed full of protein from the rotisserie chicken, and it even contains veggies! But, we know most people want a little something to go alongside a helping of creamy lasagna. In that case, you can't go wrong with a side salad. Caesar salad is always a hit, as would be any leafy green salad with an acidic vinaigrette to cut through the rich cream sauce. Or, rethink the leaves and go with a different format, such as a shaved Brussels sprouts salad.  

Prefer a cooked side dish? Sheet pan roasted broccoli with garlic, lemon, and chile is another way to add more veggies to the meal without creating too many extra dishes. At the very least, you're going to want some type of bread to soak up all the delicious sauce remnants off your plate. We love the classically cheesy homemade garlic bread, but sliced sourdough, focaccia, or breadsticks are also a great fit. 

How can I make lasagna single-serve?

Making a huge lasagna is a big commitment. Between buying all the ingredients, making the individual components, assembling, and baking, it's a lot of work. But what are you to do if you want lasagna but are only cooking for yourself or a very small group? Maroney tell us that the best way to make single-serve lasagna — using this recipe as an example — is to precook lasagna noodles, then lay each noodle flat and spread on a layer of sauce, cheese, and chicken. Roll up the noodles into pinwheels, then freeze the roll-ups individually on a sheet tray. Once they're frozen solid, add them to a plastic bag and freeze for up to 6 months, or until you're ready to bake (or microwave).

You can also bake the roll-ups with additional sauce on top and then freeze them once they have cooled. In either format, they are the perfect little serving when you're craving lasagna but don't want to make a full tray.

Shortcut Chicken And Spinach Lasagna Recipe
4.9 from 11 ratings
Thanks to rotisserie spinach, frozen chicken, and no-boil noodles, this easy, cheesy, comforting lasagna comes together with more speed and less fuss.
Prep Time
20
minutes
Cook Time
1
hour
Servings
6
servings
spinach and chicken lasagna sliced from baking dish
Total time: 1 hour, 20 minutes
Ingredients
  • 6 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 ½ cups heavy cream
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 8 ounces (½ pounds) shredded Gouda cheese
  • ¾ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 ½ cups frozen spinach
  • 1 pound shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1 pound no-boil lasagna noodles
  • 2 cups shredded rotisserie chicken
Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 375 F.
  2. Place garlic cloves on a sheet of aluminum foil, top with olive oil, and close the foil into a tight pouch.
  3. Roast garlic in the oven for 20 minutes, until softened and browned.
  4. Add roasted garlic to a large saucepan with salt, heavy cream, chicken broth, and black pepper. Bring to a slow rolling boil over medium-high heat.
  5. Reduce heat to low and slowly add Gouda and Parmesan, whisking until incorporated.
  6. Add spinach and cook for another 3-5 minutes, until sauce has thickened. Remove sauce from heat.
  7. Evenly spread a ladleful of sauce over the bottom of a 9x13-inch baking dish. Top with a layer of lasagna noodles.
  8. Top noodles with another ladle of sauce, followed by a layer of shredded chicken and a layer of shredded mozzarella.
  9. Repeat layers in the same order until the pan is full, ending with a final layer of mozzarella.
  10. Cover baking dish with foil and bake for 25 minutes.
  11. Remove foil and bake for another 20 minutes, or until the top is golden brown.
  12. Allow lasagna to rest for 10 minutes, then slice and serve hot.
Nutrition
Calories per Serving 1,107
Total Fat 68.8 g
Saturated Fat 38.0 g
Trans Fat 0.8 g
Cholesterol 227.6 mg
Total Carbohydrates 65.8 g
Dietary Fiber 2.7 g
Total Sugars 6.7 g
Sodium 1,239.9 mg
Protein 55.1 g
The information shown is Edamam’s estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
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