Mexican Lasagna Rolls

It’s my mum’s birthday today–how cute is it that my ‘rents’ birthdays are only 11 days apart?!–so I wanted to do something nice for dinner. I racked my brains all of last night, and scoured the internet, until I settled on lasagna rolls, which I had been wanting to try for a while. The only problem was, the only ingredients I really had for a traditional lasagna were the noodles, so I had to figure out something different. I searched the internet for ricotta-less recipes, and mozzarella-less ones, or marinara sauce-less ones, to be honest, and I really couldn’t find any which I had all the ingredients for, and I didn’t want to ask either of my parents to go to the grocery (let’s not forget I’m not even 17 and don’t have or want a drivers licence yet), so I kind of came up with my own. The only thing I really took from other recipes were the amount of time to cook the rolls, and what temperature, so I’m proud to say this is my first completely original recipe. Yay for Riley! (Joking, I was hoping so hard these would turn out well and my mum wouldn’t end up eating a grilled cheese sandwich for supper on her birthday.)

You’ll notice in the pictures that I started out making just half of the recipe, and used a round pan. I later learned of more mouths turning up tonight, and doubled it, getting the recipe below.

Ingredients:

  • 10 lasagna noodles
  • 2 chicken breasts
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 4 tsp olive oil
  • 1 1/2 cups 0% Greek Yoghurt, divided
  • 1 1/2 cups medium or hot chunky salsa, divided
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp chilli powder
  • 3 cups grated cheddar cheese, divided
  • 1 cup grated parmesan

Some lasagna recipes say to use dry noodles (obviously not this one, because they need to be rolled), and some say to boil them to almost cooked, but I like to take the long route and soak mine. I’m a pain in the butt like that. Place your noodles in a large baking dish and cover them with cool (not ice cold, c’mon people) water.

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Leave them for about 1 hour until soft and pliable. I find this gives them a nicer texture, but you can boil them if you can’t get to your kitchen within 1 hour of your meal. I will warn you, though, that this is not a quick meal. I don’t like quick meals. I have a lot of time on my hands and cooking is therapeutic to me, so I like to draw it out. If you want to do these quickly sometime, make them a day ahead and place them in the fridge, covered in cling-film, and then pull them out when it’s time to cook ‘em.

While your pasta is soaking, you should cook your chicken. It’s gonna need to be shredded for this recipe, so you’ll need a little bit more time. Cut your chicken breasts into strips, and season with salt and pepper, then cook them in a pan with olive oil in it, on medium-high, for about 3 minutes per side, or until cooked through. You be the judge of the doneness of your poultry. When they’re finished, you can shred them with two forks, or you can do like me and wait for them cool for a couple minutes and then just pull them apart with your fingers. Set your shredded chicken aside until it’s needed.

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For this lasagna sauce, I went more Mexican than Italian, because I had more Mexican ingredients on hand. As I said, it wasn’t exactly last minute, but I don’t have a driving licence, and I didn’t want to ask my mum to take me to the grocery on her already busy birthday, so Mexican it was.

Now may be a good time to preheat your oven to 450 F.

Mix a cup of Greek yoghurt (or you could use sour cream, I suppose), and 1 cup of salsa in a medium bowl, then mix in your chilli powder and your cumin. I used hot salsa, and it wasn’t too spicy because the Greek yoghurt balanced it out nicely, but if you use medium, you might want to add maybe a 1/4 teaspoon more chilli powder and cumin, just to give the dish more umph. Or not. Whatever you feel comfortable with 🙂

Add your shredded chicken and 2 cups of cheddar cheese to the mixture, and stir to combine.

Lay your softened lasagna on paper towels, or a dish towel, and pat them dry, then get ready to rock n’ roll (I’m sorry, that was cheesy… no pun intended… I’ll be quiet now).

Mix your remaining Greek yoghurt and salsa, and make a bed for your roll ups in a casserole dish.

Spoon out your filling evenly onto the noodles, then carefully roll them up, avoiding spillage, and place them in the saucy bed, seam down. Sprinkle them with the remaining cup of cheddar cheese, parmesan, and a little bit of black pepper.

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If you’re doing these ahead of time, cover them with cling film and place them in the fridge, for no more than a day. If you’re doing them right away, tent with foil, then bake in the preheated oven for about 20 minutes, then remove the foil and cook for about 15 minutes, or just until the cheese on top browns. Remove the pan from the oven, and let the lasagna rest for about 5 minutes, then serve! A salad on the side would be great, and maybe some good bread, with garlic butter.

I 1000% forgot to take a picture of this when all ten came out of the oven (sorry!), but they looked great, and my family loved them! Very easy to half the recipe (as you can see) if you’re only making for a couple of people.

-Happy Cooking!

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