Is Amy’s vegetable lasagna healthy?

Lasagna is a popular Italian dish that typically consists of layers of pasta, cheese, meat, and tomato sauce. While traditional lasagna recipes often call for ingredients like ground beef and ricotta cheese, vegetable lasagnas made with spinach, mushrooms, zucchini, and other veggies are becoming increasingly common for those looking to make a healthier version of this classic comfort food.

One popular brand of vegetable lasagna is Amy’s Vegetable Lasagna. Amy’s advertises their lasagna as being high in protein and fiber, gluten-free, dairy-free, and made with organic vegetables. But is Amy’s vegetable lasagna actually a nutritious choice? Or is it just clever marketing?

To determine if Amy’s vegetable lasagna is truly healthy, we need to take a close look at the ingredients and nutrition facts. We’ll compare Amy’s to a more traditional beef lasagna to see how it stacks up on calories, fat, protein, and other nutrients. We’ll also examine the pros and cons of some of the specific ingredients in Amy’s vegetable lasagna.

By the end of this article, you’ll know whether Amy’s vegetable lasagna is a smart pick or one that you’re better off skipping when you’re in the mood for lasagna. Let’s dig in!

Nutrition Facts Comparison

First, let’s look at how the nutrition facts for Amy’s vegetable lasagna compare to those of a typical beef lasagna.

Here’s a nutrition label for Amy’s vegetable lasagna (1/6th of a 26 oz. package):

Nutrition Facts Amy’s Vegetable Lasagna (1/6 package)
Calories 260
Fat 5g
Saturated Fat 1g
Trans Fat 0g
Cholesterol 0mg
Sodium 480mg
Carbohydrates 41g
Fiber 5g
Sugar 8g
Protein 12g

And here are the nutrition facts for a typical beef lasagna (1/8th of an 8″ x 8″ pan):

Nutrition Facts Beef Lasagna (1/8 pan)
Calories 345
Fat 15g
Saturated Fat 9g
Trans Fat 0.4g
Cholesterol 65mg
Sodium 720mg
Carbohydrates 33g
Fiber 3g
Sugar 7g
Protein 19g

Looking at these nutrition labels side-by-side, we can see some clear differences between Amy’s vegetable lasagna and a typical beef lasagna.

Amy’s has significantly fewer calories per serving, at just 260 calories versus 345 calories in the beef lasagna. It’s much lower in fat as well, with only 5 grams of fat compared to 15 grams in the beef version. Amy’s vegetable lasagna also has no cholesterol, since it contains no meat or dairy ingredients.

The vegetable lasagna is higher in fiber – 5 grams versus 3 grams in the beef lasagna – which is beneficial for digestion and heart health. It’s also lower in saturated fat and sodium.

However, the beef lasagna contains more protein than Amy’s vegetable version – 19 grams versus 12 grams. The beef also provides more iron and other nutrients contained in meat.

So from a pure nutrition standpoint, Amy’s vegetable lasagna emerges as the healthier choice over traditional beef and cheese lasagna, since it’s lower in calories, fat, and sodium. But the beef lasagna could have some advantages for those looking to increase protein intake or iron.

Ingredients in Amy’s Vegetable Lasagna

Now let’s take a closer look at the ingredients that go into Amy’s vegetable lasagna to see how healthy they really are:

– Pasta sheets – The lasagna noodles are made from rice and water. Going with a gluten-free pasta makes this dish safe for those with celiac disease or gluten intolerance. From a nutrition standpoint, rice pasta is comparable to wheat pasta.

– Vegetables – The lasagna contains spinach, mushrooms, carrots, zucchini, and bell peppers. These provide important vitamins, minerals, and fiber. One downside is the vegetables appear to be canned, which may lower the vitamin content versus fresh veggies.

– Dairy-free cheese – The cheese replacement is made from tapioca and pea protein. This makes it suitable for those avoiding dairy due to allergies or lactose intolerance. However, it lacks some of the protein and nutrients found in real dairy cheese.

– Tofu ricotta – Silken tofu blended with spices makes up the ricotta substitute. Tofu is a good plant-based protein, but doesn’t mimic the texture and flavor of true ricotta cheese.

– Tomato sauce – Amy’s uses tomato puree, tomato paste, and basil for flavor. The tomato sauce provides beneficial nutrients like lycopene. It’s low in fat, sugar, and calories.

– Olive oil – Olive oil is used sparingly to sauté the vegetables. It adds some healthy fats.

– Sea salt – The lasagna contains 480 milligrams of sodium, which is moderate compared to some frozen lasagnas. The salt helps enhance the flavor.

Overall, most of the ingredients in Amy’s vegetable lasagna are healthy, nutrient-dense foods. The use of gluten-free pasta, lots of vegetables, tomato sauce, and minimal olive oil is admirable. Unlike a beef lasagna loaded with ground meat, cheese, and cream, Amy’s takes a lighter approach.

However, the reliance on dairy-free cheese alternatives and canned vegetables may turn off those used to a more traditional lasagna with gooey, full-fat ricotta and mozzarella. And some may find the taste of tofu off-putting as a cheese substitute.

Benefits of Choosing Amy’s Vegetable Lasagna

Based on the nutrition facts and ingredients, here are some potential benefits of choosing Amy’s vegetable lasagna over other frozen lasagna options:

– Fewer calories and less fat – With just 260 calories and 5 grams of fat per serving, Amy’s has about 85 fewer calories and 10 fewer grams of fat than a comparable serving of meat lasagna. This makes it a better option if watching your weight.

– No cholesterol – The total lack of cholesterol is a major advantage compared to meat-based lasagnas, which can have over 50mg of cholesterol per serving. Amy’s is a cholesterol-free food.

– Higher in fiber – Amy’s has 5 grams of fiber per serving, which is important for digestive health, stabilizing blood sugar, and controlling appetite. Most beef lasagnas have only 2-3 grams of fiber.

– More vitamins and minerals – The mix of spinach, mushrooms, carrots, zucchini and bell peppers provides more diverse vitamins and minerals compared to a meat lasagna.

– Gluten-free – Those avoiding gluten can enjoy Amy’s lasagna, since it uses rice pasta instead of wheat. People with celiac disease or gluten sensitivity often have few frozen meal options.

– Dairy-free – Amy’s caters to those with dairy allergies or lactose intolerance by using plant-based cheeses and no milk products. Many frozen lasagnas rely heavily on cheese.

– Organic vegetables – The veggies used in Amy’s lasagna are certified organic, meaning they were grown without synthetic pesticides and fertilizers. This appeals to people looking to avoid these chemicals in produce.

So for anyone watching their weight, limiting cholesterol, or following a gluten-free, dairy-free, or organic diet, Amy’s vegetable lasagna can potentially fit into their lifestyle and nutrition goals. Compared to typical beef or cheese-loaded lasagnas, it has some advantages.

Downsides of Choosing Amy’s Lasagna

However, Amy’s vegetable lasagna isn’t necessarily perfect from a nutrition standpoint. Here are some of the downsides to consider:

– Lower in protein – With only 12 grams of protein per serving, Amy’s has less than half the protein of a beef lasagna. Those looking to increase protein intake may want to pair it with a side protein source.

– Lacks flavor of real cheese – To many lasagna aficionados, the taste of real melted mozzarella, parmesan, and ricotta is irreplaceable. The dairy-free cheese alternatives may seem bland or unfamiliar.

– Heavily processed – Although made from real food ingredients, Amy’s lasagna relies on a lot of prepared sauces, canned vegetables, and manufactured cheese substitutes. It’s not freshly homemade.

– Higher in sodium – With 480 milligrams of sodium per serving, Amy’s is moderately high in salt content. Those restricting sodium may want to watch portions.

– Not organic pasta – Amy’s uses conventional rice flour for the pasta, rather than organic. So the pasta itself lacks organic certification even though the vegetables are organic.

– Price – Amy’s lasagna costs $8-$10 per package retail, notably more than generic frozen lasagnas. The higher cost may deter some budget-focused shoppers.

So people who are trying to build muscle with higher protein intake, limit sodium, or simply prefer the nostalgic flavors of traditional lasagna may be underwhelmed by Amy’s vegetarian take. And the higher price tag may also be an obstacle for some.

How Amy’s Lasagna Fits Into a Healthy Diet

At the end of the day, no single food alone constitutes a healthy diet. You have to look at Amy’s vegetable lasagna in the context of your total daily calorie needs and nutrient targets. Here is how Amy’s lasagna can potentially fit into a balanced, healthy diet:

– Occasional meal – For most healthy adults, Amy’s lasagna is fine to enjoy occasionally as part of an overall varied diet, just don’t eat it daily. Limit higher sodium frozen meals to a few times per week.

– Pair with salad or vegetables – Since Amy’s lasagna only has 5 grams of fiber per serving, get extra fiber and nutrients by pairing it with a side salad or steamed broccoli.

– Add plant-based protein – Top your Amy’s lasagna with chickpeas or white beans to increase plant-based protein and fiber for a well-rounded meal.

– Watch portion size – Stick to the recommended 1/6th package serving, or about 1 cup of lasagna, to keep calories around 250-300 for the meal. Don’t eat the whole 26 oz. package.

– Substitute for higher calorie meals – Amy’s makes a better option than choosing takeout, pizza delivery, or high-fat comfort foods. It can be part of your healthy frozen meal rotation.

– Kids’ meal – For kids who enjoy lasagna, Amy’s provides kid-friendly flavor and a serving of vegetables. Combine it with a glass of milk and piece of fruit for a nutritious kid’s meal.

Lasagna will always be a higher calorie choice compared to dishes like salads, lean proteins and steamed vegetables. But Amy’s provides a way to enjoy lasagna more often while limiting the downsides. When incorporated properly into your lifestyle, it can be part of healthy, well-rounded eating.

The Verdict on Amy’s Vegetable Lasagna

So what’s the final verdict on Amy’s organic vegetable lasagna? Is it truly a nutritious choice or simply clever marketing?

The answer is…it’s a mixed bag, but overall a healthier take on lasagna compared to versions loaded with beef and cheese.

The positives are that Amy’s vegetable lasagna is lower in calories, cholesterol, fat, and sodium compared to typical lasagnas. It provides a serving of organic vegetables and fiber, making it more nutritious. And it caters to gluten-free, dairy-free, and vegan diets.

On the flip side, it’s moderately high in sodium, low in protein, and lacks the indulgent taste of real cheese. It also relies on processed meat alternatives and canned vegetables rather than fresh produce. And the price is relatively high for a frozen entree.

In moderation, Amy’s makes an acceptable convenient meal for those trying to eat less meat and dairy. It’s certainly a better choice than lasagna takeout or delivery in terms of calories and sodium. But it shouldn’t be your only source of vegetables or protein.

At the end of the day, homemade vegetarian lasagna made with fresh pasta sheets, ricotta cheese, and seasonal vegetables is likely the healthiest option. But among frozen lasagnas, Amy’s ranks as a better choice for avoiding excessive calories, fat, and cholesterol.

If you enjoy the flavors of lasagna but want to lighten it up, Amy’s organic vegetable lasagna can be part of your healthy lifestyle when kept to a moderate part of your overall diet. Just don’t expect it to fully mimic a hearty, traditional lasagna.


Amy’s organic vegetable lasagna provides a convenient meatless and dairy-free take on the classic lasagna flavor. It’s made from simple, recognizable ingredients like pasta, veggies, and tomato sauce, but swaps in plant-based cheese alternatives to cut down on saturated fat and cholesterol.

When comparing nutrition labels, Amy’s has notably fewer calories, fat, and sodium than a typical beef and cheese lasagna. The use of gluten-free pasta makes it accommodating for those with food sensitivities.

However, the lower protein and processed cheese alternatives may turn off some looking for hearty nutrition and authentic indulgence. And the higher price tag may also deter more budget-focused shoppers.

In the context of an overall healthy diet, enjoying Amy’s vegetable lasagna occasionally can be a better choice than takeout or always relying on heavy calorie comfort foods. But it shouldn’t wholly replace balanced home cooked meals with fresh veggies and proteins.

At the end of the day, Amy’s vegetable lasagna tastes best when your expectations are aimed at a convenient meatless frozen meal rather than gourmet home cooking. Approach it for what it is – a quick veggie-based lasagna option for a busy night that fits reasonably well into a healthy lifestyle.

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