Healthy Zucchini Lasagna is a lightened up version of the classic comfort food that has only 250 calories per serving and packs in extra veggies.
Healthy Zucchini Lasagna is the perfect blend of traditional lasagna and a veggie lasagna to please everyone in the family. It's a family favorite along with this Healthy Slow Cooker Lasagna Soup and Low Carb Zucchini Lasagna.
My son has never met a lasagna he didn't like. Sometimes I honestly think about Garfield when I think about him and his lasagna habit. He would eat an entire tray if we let him and usually I have to force him to eat salad in between helpings to make sure he doesn't go too far. This recipe was inspired by his love of lasagna and my desire to sneak in some veggies for a healthier, updated version of the classic dish.
But before we get into the recipe, let's back up a bit. A few weeks ago I tried making an all zucchini lasagna and it didn't fool anyone. My son was searching for noodles immediately and definitely wasn't a fan. Now to be fair, it was a bit watery since the zucchini released a lot of liquid while it was cooking. Next time I will cook it ahead of time to dry it out more. However, either way, all zucchini lasagna isn't going to fly with him.
This recipe combines traditional lasagna and sneaks in veggies as well as the perfect compromise that makes me feel good and makes everyone else excited about lasagna. He didn't even notice the sneaky lasagna layer when we ate it. Plus since it freezes well, I like to make two trays at a time and freeze one for later. It's so nice to be able to pull it out of the fridge for an easy meal when I don't feel like cooking.
How do you get the water out of zucchini lasagna?
Sometimes you may find that using zucchini in lasagna can make it a bit watery. This happens because zucchini releases a lot of water when it cooks and sometimes this can lead to some extra water in the lasagna pan. Here are some ways to combat that:
- Always let your lasagna sit for at least 10-15 minutes before cutting into it. This small trick can make all the difference. During this resting time, the sauce will thicken and many times, this is all you need to fix the "watery" zucchini lasagna problem.
- Another option is to cook your zucchini before adding it to the lasagna. Simply slice it and place it on some parchment paper on a baking sheet. Roast it for 8-10 minutes until just tender. This will help some of the moisture to cook out.
- You can also salt your zucchini before adding it to the lasagna. Start by slicing the zucchini into planks. Then sprinkle it generously with salt. Let it sit for 15 minutes. Then using a paper towel to press down on the zucchini and soak up the water that has been released. Salt pulls out the moisture before cooking it.
- The last trick is to buy smaller zucchini for your dishes. Smaller zucchini have slightly less water and moisture than the really large ones so they will release less water during the cooking process.
Recipe Ideas for Healthy Zucchini Lasagna
- Switch things up by using a combination of zucchini and summer squash. You could also add in cooked mushrooms, spinach, or butternut squash.
- Make sure to choose a marinara sauce with a really great flavor. We really love all the Rao's sauces and they have no added sugar, simple ingredients, and taste amazing.
- This can be made with regular lasagna noodles or whole wheat for some added nutrition.
- Top with some fresh basil to brighten up the dish.
- For extra flavor, consider adding some Italian seasoning or red pepper flakes to the ricotta mixture.
- If you want to add meat to this lasagna, simply brown some lean ground beef or turkey and add a layer of meat in your lasagna. Make sure to season the meat so that it has plenty of flavor.
- This recipe also works great with eggplant. Just make sure to salt it or roast it beforehand since eggplant releases a lot of water as it cooks.
Can I make zucchini lasagna in the slow cooker?
This recipe will also work in the slow cooker. Simply spray the crockpot with cooking spray and build the lasagna inside with layers of sauce, noodles, ricotta, and zucchini. Cook on low for 5-6 hours or high for 3-4 hours. It is important to check the lasagna along the way to make sure it doesn't overcook. Slow cookers vary greatly when it comes to temperature and you want to stop the cooking process before the noodles get mushy. Also, make sure to let the lasagna rest at least 15-20 minutes before serving so that it can firm up.
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- 15 oz. part skim ricotta cheese
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 large egg
- 25 oz. tomato sauce (no cheese or sugar added, such as marinara sauce)
- 14.5 oz. canned diced fire roasted tomatoes, undrained
- 1 large zucchini, sliced lengthwise into 7 or 8 slices
- 6 no boil lasagna noodles
- 1 cup shredded part skim mozzarella cheese
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* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
The Nutritional Values provided are estimates only and may vary based on the preparation method.
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