Vegan Pastelon (Plantain Lasagna)

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This flavorful Vegan Pastelon (Plantain Lasagna) is a must-have casserole, made with layers of sweet plantain slices, a tomato-based lentil stew, and vegan cheese, all together making an incredibly tasty combination of sweet and savory.

Vegan Pastelon (Plantain Lasagna)

If you are like me and love plantains, then you will love this delicious vegan plantain lasagna recipe. You will also enjoy my Baked Plantains, Mangu Recipe - Dominican Mashed Plantains, and Vegan Plantain Bread.

Vegan Pastelon (Plantain Lasagna)

I have been meaning to make a vegan pastelon recipe for a long time. I decided to prepare the filling using lentils. It  was tempting to use a storebought gluten-free vegan crumble, but decided to make the filling from scratch. 

Lentils are always a great vegan protein substitute, because they have an earthy flavor when cooked with herbs and spices, resulting in a delicious meaty taste. This recipe is very simple, economical, and easy to prepare. Vegan pastelon is also gluten-free. 

What Is Pastelon?

Pastelon, also known as Pastelón de Plátano Maduro, is a casserole that is popular in Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic. It is similar to an Italian lasagna, or shepherd's pie, but instead of pasta or mashed potatoes, layers of plantains are used. Traditional recipes include plantains, ground beef, and shredded cheese. My tasty vegan version substitutes lentil for the ground beef and uses vegan cheese. 

plantain slices cooked for vegan pastelon plantain lasagna

Vegan Pastelon Ingredients

  • Plantains - Select ripe plantains with yellow skin. Plantains are larger than bananas, starchier, and can be found in the produce aisle of major supermarkets with other uncommon produce or next to the bananas, and at any Caribbean, Asian, or Latin grocery stores. 
  • Coconut Oil - oil for lightly frying plantains. Use your favorite oil/oil spray or make my Baked Plantains recipe.
  • Lentil - Cooked brown or green lentils are perfect for this dish. Red lentils would also be great. 
  • Onion, Garlic, Bell Pepper - Added for flavor. 
  • Caribbean Green seasoning - Or sofrito. I used my homemade version of Caribbean Green Seasoning, which is basically the same seasoning ingredients as sofrito. You can also substitute 1/2 cup chopped cilantro for green seasoning.
  • Cumin - Added for flavor. 
  • Oregano - A popular herb used in Latino Caribbean cooking.
  • Vegan Bouillon - I used a vegan bouillon to add extra flavor. 
  • Tomato Sauce - Added to the lentils. You can use homemade or storebought tomato sauce.
  • Vegan Shredded Cheese - I love Violife or Follow Your Heart brands of shredded vegan cheese, or you can make your own homemade Vegan Pepper Jack Cheese or Vegan Cheddar Cheese

Lentils for vegan pastelon in a black skillet

How To Make Vegan Pastelon? 

  1. Preheat oven 350° F. Prepare a 9x13 casserole pan and set aside.
  2. Prepare the plantains - Peel plantains and cut them in lengthwise slices. 
  3. Prepare the filling - Heat 2 tablespoons of coconut oil in a large skillet, and lightly fry plantains until golden brown on both sides, then set aside. 
  4. Heat remaining oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add onion, garlic, bell pepper, and green seasoning, and cook stirring until onion is soft, for about 2 minutes.
  5. Stir in oregano and cumin, cook until fragrant, for about 1 minute. 
  6. Add lentils and tomato sauce, and stir. Cook for about 5 minutes, stirring so flavors can meld. 
  7. To Assemble - Divide the slices of plantains into two groups. Arrange half the slices of fried plantains in a single layer along the base of the pan. 
  8. Top with the cooked lentils and spread over the plantains. 
  9. Add half the vegan cheese and sprinkle over the cooked lentils. 
  10. Arrange the other half of plantains over the casserole. Top with the remaining vegan shreds. 
  11. Bake for 20-30 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool for about 10 minutes before serving.

vegan pastelon being assembled in layers in a white casserole pan

What To Serve With Vegan Pastelon (Plantain Lasagna)?

Overlay vegan pastelon plantain lasagna

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Categories

Categories: ,
Course:
Cuisine:

Nutrition

Energy:
387 kcal / 1618 kJ
Fat:
6 g
Protein:
19 g
Carbs:
65 g
Per serving

Cooking Time

Preparation:
20 min
Cooking:
30 min
Ready in:
50 min
For:
12 servings

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven 350° F. Prepare a 9x13 casserole pan and set aside.
  2. Peel plantains and cut them in lengthwise slices. 

For The Filling

  1. Heat 2 tablespoons of coconut oil in a large skillet, and lightly fry plantains until golden brown on both sides, then set aside. 
  2. Heat remaining oil in a skillet over medium-high heat, add onion, garlic, bell pepper, and green seasoning, and cook, while stirring, until onion is soft, for about 2 minutes.
  3. Stir in oregano and cumin, cook until fragrant, for about 1 minute. 
  4. Add lentils and tomato sauce, and stir. Cook for about 5 minutes, while stirring so flavors can meld. 

To Assemble Plantain Lasagna

  1. Divide the slices of plantains into two groups. Arrange half the slices of fried plantains in a single layer along the base of the pan. 
  2. Top with the cooked lentils and spread over the plantains. 
  3. Add half the vegan cheese and sprinkle over the cooked lentils. 
  4. Arrange the other half of plantains over the casserole. Top with the remaining vegan shreds. 
  5. Bake for 20-30 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cook for about 10 minutes before serving.

Michelle Blackwood, RN

Hi, I’m Michelle, I’m the voice, content creator and photographer behind Healthier Steps. I share vegan and gluten-free recipes because of past health issues. My goal is to help you make healthier choices and show you how healthy eating is easy and delicious.

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