Recipe corner: spicy sweet potato hummus and spinach artichoke lasagna
A balanced diet should include a variety of colorful plant-based foods. This delicious hummus recipe features wholesome ingredients such as sweet potatoes, which are rich in vitamins C and B6, and chickpeas, a rich source of of protein. The lasagna recipe is full of spinach, a superfood loaded with tons of nutrients, and artichokes, which are packed with antioxidants.
Spicy Sweet Potato Hummus
- 2 medium sweet potatoes
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 cups cooked chickpeas (or one can of chickpeas, rinsed, and drained)
- 3 tablespoons tahini
- 3 cloves garlic, peeled
- 1 lime, juiced
- ½ lime, zest
- Ground sea salt to taste
- 1½ teaspoon cayenne pepper (less if you prefer mild temp)
- ½ teaspoon paprika
- ¼ teaspoon cumin
Preheat oven to 400°F. Bake sweet potatoes on the middle oven rack or in a baking dish for 45 minutes to an hour. Sweet potatoes will be done baking when soft to touch. While the sweet potatoes are cooling, toss all of the other ingredients into a food processor. Once the sweet potatoes have cooled, use a knife or your fingers to peel off the skin. Add the sweet potatoes to the food processor. Blend well, and serve. You can garnish with a light sprinkle of cayenne pepper.
Spinach artichoke lasagna
- 2 cups marinara sauce
- 9 whole-wheat, no-boil lasagna noodles
Spinach and artichoke mixture:
- 2 cups (16 ounces) low-fat ricotta cheese
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 cup chopped red onion
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 4 cloves garlic, pressed or minced
- 1 cup jarred artichokes, drained
- 12 ounces baby spinach
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 2 cups (5 ounces) shredded mozzarella
- Chopped fresh basil as a garnish
Preheat your oven to 425°F. Warm 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add chopped onion and ½ teaspoon salt. Cook, stirring frequently, until the onion is tender and translucent, 4 to 5 minutes. Add the garlic and continue to stir, about 30 seconds. Add the artichoke to the skillet and a few large handfuls of spinach. Cook, stirring and tossing until the spinach has wilted. Repeat with remaining spinach. Continue cooking for about 12 minutes, stirring until the spinach has dramatically reduced in volume and little moisture remains in the bottom of the pan. Transfer the spinach artichoke mixture to your food processor and pulse until the contents are finely chopped, not puréed. Transfer the mixture to a bowl and add ricotta cheese; mix well. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Assemble your lasagna: Spread ½ cup tomato sauce evenly over the bottom of an 8 by 8-inch square baking dish. Layer three lasagna noodles on top, overlapping their edges as necessary. Spread half of the spinach mixture evenly over the noodles. Top with ½ cup tomato sauce, then sprinkle ½ cup shredded cheese on top. Top with three more noodles, followed by the remaining spinach mixture. Sprinkle evenly with 1 cup shredded cheese. Cover your dish with aluminum foil, but don’t let the foil touch the cheese. Bake for 18 minutes, then remove foil cover, bake for an additional 12 minutes. Let cool for about 15 minutes, sprinkle with chopped basil, and serve warm.
Recipes prepared by Allie Farley, M.S., R.D., L.D., registered dietitian at VCU Health. Visit Allie's blog on Diet and Nutrition for more recipes and information about the role that diet plays in cancer.