We have been using ground bison in place of ground beef for some time now. Bison is a highly nutrient dense food due to it’s proportion of protein, fat, minerals and fatty acids to its caloric value. Grass-fed bison spend their lives on grass as they always have and they aren’t subjected to questionable drugs, chemicals or hormones like the factory farming of cattle and pigs. Ground bison has a higher protein value and is leaner than ground beef. Check out this comparison.
The recipe I’m sharing today is one that I make pretty regularly. There are so many varieties of lasagna; this one is a traditional type made with pasta, meat, cheese and tomato sauce. As with most recipes, this one was mastered through many years of tweaks and modifications.
Bison and Vegetable Lasagna
1/2 lb. ground bison
9 lasagna noodles
16 oz. part skim ricotta cheese
8 oz. shredded mozzarella cheese
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
24 oz. your choice pasta sauce (I use Rinaldi Mushroom and Pepper)
1/4 of a medium zucchini, diced (contains vitamins A, C and K, manganese, magnesium, potassium, folate and phenols)
4 slices of an eggplant, diced (contains fiber, manganese, cancer fighting phytochemicals)
2-3 mushrooms, diced (contains vitamins C, B6 and B12, which boost the immune system)
1/4 medium onion, diced
1 Tbsp. minced garlic
handful of spinach leaves (contains iron, vitamins A, B6, C and K, lutein, zea-xanthin and beta-carotene, folate, potassium, manganese and omega 3 fatty acids!)
Pinch of italian seasoning, red pepper flakes and black pepper
Begin by boiling the water for pasta. Cook according to the package. Brown the ground bison. Dice up your vegetables.
Add the vegetables to the bison.
Add the tomato sauce to the mix and cook on low. Preheat the oven to 350F.
In a medium bowl, combine ricotta, egg (helps to bind the ingredients), parmesan and seasonings and whisk until the mixture is fluffy.
Layer 3 sheets of pasta in a 9×13 baking dish. Spoon half the ricotta mixture evenly on top of pasta. Add half the meat/veggie mixture on top of the cheese.
Repeat with remainder of pasta, cheese and meat/veggie mixtures.
Spread mozzarella evenly over the last pasta layer.
I cut about an inch off of the last three sheets because you will get those crunchy pasta pieces that no one seems to like.
Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes. Remove the foil carefully (the melty cheese tends to stick to the foil) and bake for another 15 minutes until golden brown.