This zucchini lasagna is layers of thinly sliced zucchini with three types of cheese and a hearty meat sauce, all baked to golden brown perfection. A hearty low carb meal option that’s perfect for feeding a crowd!
I love a cheesy lasagna, but I don’t necessarily love the heavy carb count. This zucchini lasagna has all the flavors of the classic dish, but with less carbs, and an extra serving of veggies too! It’s super easy to make and is a great way to use up zucchini from the garden.
How do you make zucchini lasagna?
This recipe starts with the sauce, which is made with ground beef, garlic, onions and a jar of marinara. The sauce is layered in a baking dish along with thinly sliced zucchini, ricotta and mozzarella cheeses. The finishing touch is a final layer of shredded cheese, then everything goes into the oven to bake. Add a sprinkling of parsley, then serve and enjoy!
Tips for zucchini lasagna
- Use a mandoline to slice zucchini into even noodle like strips.
- The zucchini is salted before it goes into the lasagna to draw out any excess water from the vegetables and prevent the finished dish from being watery.
- You can build the lasagna ahead of time and bake the lasagna when you are ready to serve it. The unbaked lasagna will stay fresh in the refrigerator for 24 hours.
- For softer lasagna “noodles” you can boil, grill or bake the zucchini strips for 5 minutes. I tend to enjoy the texture of the zucchini when it’s a little bit firmer, which is why this recipe does not require you to pre-cook the zucchini.
- I prefer to grate my own cheese for this recipe. Pre-shredded cheese often contains stabilizers and anti caking agents and doesn’t melt as well.
Zucchini lasagna variations
This zucchini lasagna is lower carb and packed with flavor, but you can still customize it to your palate with a variety of different ingredients.
- Vegetables: Try thinly sliced eggplant or summer squash instead of zucchini.
- Meat: Use ground beef, sausage or grilled chicken instead of ground beef in the sauce.
- Sauce: Try a creamy Alfredo style sauce instead of marinara sauce.
- Add Ins: You can add other ingredients such as cooked mushrooms, spinach or artichoke hearts.
how to reheat lasagna
To reheat a whole lasagna from the refrigerator, heat it covered on a center rack in the oven at 375 degrees F for about 35-40 minutes.
To reheat a single slice of lasagna in the microwave, simply drizzle about 1/2 teaspoon of water over the lasagna and heat it on high for about 2minutes. Try slicing into the middle of the lasagna to see if it needs more heat. If it needs more heat, cook it a little longer in the microwave in 30 second increments.
Who needs carb laden noodles when you can use zucchini instead? No one will miss the pasta, I promise!
More low carb recipes
- 3 large zucchini
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- 1 pound ground beef I use 90% lean
- 1/2 cup onion finely chopped
- 2 teaspoons garlic minced
- 24 ounce jar marinara sauce
- 16 ounces ricotta cheese
- 1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning
- 1 egg
- 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
- 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
- 1 tablespoon parsley chopped
- salt and pepper to taste
- cooking spray
- Trim both ends off the zucchini.
- Use a mandoline to cut the zucchini into 1/8 inch slices. Sprinkle salt over the zucchini slices, then lay them out on a layer of paper towels to drain. Let sit for at least 10 minutes.
- Pat the tops of the zucchini slices with paper towels until dry.
- While the zucchini is resting, prepare the sauce. Heat the olive oil in a large pan over medium heat.
- Add the ground beef and season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Cook for 5-6 minutes, breaking the meat up with a spatula, until beef is browned and cooked through.
- Add the onion and cook for another 3-4 minutes or until softened. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds.
- Add the marinara sauce and bring to a simmer; cook for 5 minutes.
- Place the ricotta cheese, Italian seasoning, egg, parmesan cheese, salt and pepper in a bowl. Mix until well combined.
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Coat a 2 or 3 quart baking dish with cooking spray.
- Place 1/4 of the sauce in the bottom of the dish. Add 1/3 of the zucchini slices on top. Spread 1/3 of the ricotta mixture over the zucchini then top with 1/3 of the mozzarella cheese. Repeat the layers, ending with the mozzarella cheese.
- Cover and bake for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake for an additional 20 minutes. Sprinkle with parsley, then let stand for 5-7 minutes. Cut into slices, then serve.