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Make ahead dinners: pumpkin lasagne

Great make-ahead dinner
Great make-ahead dinner

One of the common denominators in almost every list for helping your child have a successful school year is to prepare some make-ahead dinners so as to allow the family more time together around the dinner table. This is the first of a series of recipes which can help you do just that.

According to FoodNetworkRecipes, from whom BigOven received this recipe, there is no need to roast fresh pumpkin for this, although there’s nothing saying you can’t. However, using canned unseasoned pumpkin puree is much quicker – and it works just great.

Like most lasagnes, this pumpkin lasagna is easier to cut if left to set for ten minutes or so before serving.


  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 2 pounds Swiss chard; tough stems removed; leaves washed well and chopped
  • 2 ¼ teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dried sage
  • ½ teaspoon grated nutmeg
  • 3 cups canned pumpkin puree (one 28-ounce can)
  • 1 ½ cups heavy cream
  • 1 ½ cups grated Parmesan
  • ½ cup milk
  • 9 no-boil lasagna noodles (about 6 ounces)
  • 1 Tablespoon butter


  1. In a large nonstick frying pan, heat the oil moderately low heat.
  2. Add the onions cook, stirring occasionally, until translucent, about 5 minutes.
  3. Increase the heat to moderately high and add the chard, 1 teaspoon salt, ½ teaspoon pepper, ½ teaspoon sage and ¼ teaspoon nutmeg.
  4. Cook, stirring, until the chard is wilted and no liquid remains in the pan, 5 to 10 minutes.
  5. Preheat oven to 400°F.
  6. In a medium bowl, mix together 2 cups of the pumpkin, ¾ cups cream, ½ cup Parmesan and the remaining 1 ¼ teaspoons salt, ½ teaspoon pepper, ½ teaspoon sage and ¼ teaspoon nutmeg.
  7. Pour the milk into and 8” x 12”-inch baking dish.
  8. Top the milk with one third of the noodles, then spread half the pumpkin mixture over the noodles.
  9. Layer half the Swiss chard over the pumpkin and top with a second layer of noodles.
  10. Repeat with another layer of pumpkin, Swiss chard and noodles.
  11. Combine the remaining 1 cup of pumpkin and ¾ cup of cream.
  12. Spread the mixture evenly over the top of the lasagna, sprinkle with the remaining cup of Parmesan and dot with the butter.
  13. Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 20 minutes.
  14. Uncover and bake until golden, about 15 minutes more.

Serves 4

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