Turkey and Butternut Squash Lasagna with Crispy Sage

Each layer of this next-level lasagna leans on Thanksgiving leftovers in a smart way to bring big flavor to the table. Leftover sautéed mushrooms jazz up the creamy béchamel, while mashed butternut squash provides a smooth contrast to the hearty turkey filling flavored with leftover gravy and Parmesan, and pan-fried sage leaves add an elegant twist. “I love Thanksgiving leftovers, so I still want my leftovers dishes to embody those Thanksgiving flavors,” says chef Sara Grueneberg, who shared this recipe. “I call for roasted butternut squash, but if you make a great roasted sweet potato dish for the big event, those leftovers would be perfect in this lasagna.”

Turkey and butternut squash lasagna with crispy sage
Photo: Photo by Victor Protasio / Food Styling by Torie Cox / Prop Styling by Claire Spollen
Active Time:
35 mins
Total Time:
2 hrs 20 mins



  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter

  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

  • 1/4 cup Marsala or dry white wine

  • 3 cups whole milk

  • 1 cup leftover sautéed mushrooms

  • 4 ounces fontina cheese, shredded (about 1 cup)

  • Pinch of ground nutmeg

  • Pinch of black pepper


  • 4 cups pulled leftover roast turkey, minced

  • 1 cup leftover turkey gravy

  • 8 ounces Parmesan cheese, grated (about 2 cups)

  • 2 tablespoons fresh sage leaves, minced


  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter

  • 2 cups mashed cooked butternut squash

  • 8 ounces Parmesan cheese, grated (about 2 cups)

  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg


  • Cooking spray

  • 1 pound uncooked dry lasagna noodles

  • 6 ounces fontina cheese, shredded (about 1 1/2 cups)

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter

  • 10 fresh sage leaves


Make the mushroom béchamel

  1. Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium. Stir in flour and salt, and cook, stirring often, until mixture begins to turn a light blond color, about 2 minutes. Whisk in Marsala until absorbed. Gradually whisk in milk until combined. Reduce heat to medium-low; cook, stirring occasionally, until mixture thickens and coats the back of a spoon, about 10 minutes. Stir in mushrooms; remove from heat. Add fontina, nutmeg, and pepper, and stir until cheese is melted. Set béchamel aside.

Make the turkey filling

  1. Stir together turkey, gravy, Parmesan, and sage in a large bowl until combined. Refrigerate until ready to use.

Make the butternut squash filling

  1. Melt butter in a small saucepan over medium. Cook, stirring occasionally, until butter begins to brown, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat, and stir in squash, Parmesan, and nutmeg. Transfer squash mixture to a food processor; process until smooth, about 2 minutes. Set filling aside.

  2. Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease a 13- x 9-inch baking dish with cooking spray. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high. Add lasagna noodles, and cook, stirring often, 6 minutes. Remove noodles from water, and let drain.

  3. Spoon half of the mushroom béchamel in an even layer on bottom of prepared dish. Top with a layer of cooked noodles; spread half of the turkey filling over noodles. Repeat noodle layer; top with all of the butternut squash filling. Repeat noodle layer; top with remaining turkey filling. Repeat noodle layer; top with remaining mushroom béchamel. Sprinkle with fontina. Spray a sheet of aluminum foil with cooking spray (to prevent sticking), and cover lasagna with foil; place on a large rimmed baking sheet.

  4. Bake in preheated oven 1 hour. Remove foil, and bake until bubbly and browned, about 15 minutes. Let stand 30 minutes. Just before serving, heat butter in a medium skillet over medium-high. Add sage leaves, and cook until crisp, 30 seconds to 1 minute. Sprinkle over lasagna.

Make Ahead

Lasagna can be assembled and refrigerated 1 day ahead. Let stand at room temperature 1 hour before baking.

Suggested Pairing

Rich, earthy California red.

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