Raw Vegan Zucchini & Sun Dried Tomato “Lasagna”

By: Jody Paglia Tanzman, RD,LDN,CLC

I see this dish served in many juice bars and vegan cafes, but never found one with just the right taste. So I thought I’d try my hand at it, and the results were great! The fun thing about this dish is that you can put in different spreads or any fresh, thinly sliced vegetable based on your taste preference or fresh produce availability. I like zucchini here because raw zucchini has a bit of crunch on the outside yet is soft and easily cut. Zucchini also has a very light flavor on its own and picks up other flavors quite easily, letting them shine. A bonus is that zucchini contain 95% water, making them wonderfully hydrating during these hot summer months!  The cashew spread mimics the  creamy richness of ricotta cheese, and provides a healthy dose of polyunsaturated fats, B vitamins (from the nutritional yeast), and minerals such as iron and magnesium. Sundried tomatoes add a brightness to this dish and a concentrated form of the antioxidant lycopene. Never was eating lasagna so good for you!

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2 medium sized zucchinis (courgettes)

For the Cashew Spread:

1 cup (150 g) raw cashew nuts
1/3 cup (90 ml) cold filtered water (plus more for soaking)
1/4 cup (12 g) nutritional yeast flakes
1 large garlic clove, chopped
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1-2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
1/4 tsp ground mustard
1/4 tsp kosher or sea salt
2 dashes fresh ground black pepper
2 tbsp fresh chopped parsley

For the Sun Dried Tomato Spread:

1/2 cup (60 g) dry packed sun dried tomatoes
1/4 cup (60 ml) + 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 cloves fresh garlic, smashed
1/2 cup packed basil leaves (about 1 good handful)
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1/2 tbsp lemon juice
1/8 tsp dried oregano
1/8 tsp kosher or sea salt (or more to taste)


  1. Place the cashews in a bowl and cover by 1” with water. Let soak for 1 hour.
  2. Place the sun dried tomatoes, smashed garlic and olive oil in a small pot. Gently heat the olive oil until warm, then take off of the heat. This will allow the garlic to infuse into the oil and rehydrate the tomatoes. Let cool.
  3. Meanwhile, wash the zucchini well. Slice each zucchini in half cross-wise. You will have 4 pieces of zucchini. Now slice each piece lengthwise into 1/4” slices. A mandolin works great to make even slices, but slicing by hand is fine too! Set aside.
  4. To make the sun dried tomato spread: Place the cooled sun dried tomato mixture in a food processor (a high speed blender such as a Vitamix will also work). Add the basil, balsamic vinegar, lemon juice, oregano and salt. Puree. Set aside.
  5. To make the cashew spread: Drain the cashews. Place the cashews, water, nutritional yeast, garlic, olive oil, ground mustard, salt, pepper and 1 T of the lemon juice into the food processor. Process until silky smooth (it will have the consistency of hummus). Taste the spread and add another tablespoon of lemon if needed. Add the chopped parsley and process for 5 seconds.
  6. To assemble the lasagna: On a small plate or casserole dish, place two zucchini slices vertically next to one another, edges touching. Using the back of a spoon or an offset spatula, spread 1 T of the sundried tomato spread over the zucchini. Lay two more slices of the zucchini on top. Then spread 2 tbsp of the cashew spread on top. Repeat with another layer of zucchini, sundried tomato spread, zucchini and cashew spread. Garnish with a small basil leaf. Serve immediately, or chill in the refrigerator and use within two days. Enjoy!

Prep time: 45 minutes

Cook time: 15 minutes

Total time: 60 minutes

Servings: 4

  • Nutrition per serving:
  • Calories390
  • Fat34g
  • Saturated Fat5g
  • Cholesterol0mg
  • Sodium100mg
  • Carbohydrates17g
  • Fiber4g
  • Sugars6g
  • Protein 10g

Yields and nutritional information are estimated and will vary depending on produce size and equipment used.

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Jody Paglia Tanzman, RD,LDN,CLC

Jody is a Registered Dietitian and trained professional chef. She is a graduate of Boston University and received her post-baccalaureate degree in dietetics at Hunter College. She also attended the Institute of Culinary Education in Manhattan. Jody has cooked for numerous well-known restaurants and catering companies throughout NYC, including Gramercy Tavern and the green, sustainable catering company, The Cleaver Co. Jody is a frequent recipe contributor to several online blogs. Her articles on gluten and celiac disease have been referenced on numerous websites, and she is currently at work on a gluten-free cookbook. Jody also works as a Culinary Advisor for Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, creating new, high quality menu items that meet strict parameters for nutrition and wellness. Her most favorite job, however, is being a mom to two boys.

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