My Mom used to make Zucchini Lasagna when I was a kid. I always loved the flavors and now I love it because it is gluten free!
Three layers of zucchini slices take the place of traditional lasagna noodles.
I reworked Mom’s meat sauce a little bit and added a lot more mushrooms and some grated carrot to balance out the acid from the canned tomatoes.
Mom’s recipe also had a layer of cheese in it- I took that out and don’t miss it a bit. I sprinkle a little bit of grated reggiano on the top right before I bake it.
This is a great recipe to make when you have an abundance of zucchini.
The blue ceramic dish that I bake this in is 9″x12″ and is 3 inches deep. If your dish is not as deep you will probably only be able to use 2 layers of zucchini. You could always make 2 smaller pans and give one away to a friend! I gave some to our neighbors and they loved it and also appreciated not having to cook that night.
This time when I made it, I lightly sauteed the zucchini slices with some onion, garlic, basil and oregano before I added them to the lasagna. I think it gave them a lot more flavor and I will continue doing it in the future. If you are in a hurry, you can skip this step and the lasagna will still be yummy.
I only cooked this lasagna for 30 minutes because we don’t like the zucchini to get too soft. Some people might prefer it to be done a little more. If you are making this with only 2 layers of zucchini you will want to test it with a fork at about 20-25 minutes.
Leftover lasagna is great reheated for several days after you make it. You can heat a slice in the microwave, or do what I do and heat it in a frying pan. It doesn’t stay together in the layers but I don’t like using my microwave for vegies because scientists say it takes the nutrition out in the cooking process.
I shared the link to this recipe at the Hearth and Soul Hop on A Moderate Life, Homemaker Monday at 11th Heaven’s Homemaking Haven, Finer Things Friday at The Finer Things In Life, This Weeks Cravings at From My Tiny Kitchen, Tasty Tuesdays at 33 Shades Of Green, Gluten Free Wednesdays at The Gluten Free Homemaker, Real Food Wednesday at Kelly The Kitchen Kop, Full Plate Thursdays at Miz Helen’s Country Cottage, Frugal Food Thursday at Frugal Follies, This Weeks Cravings at Mom’s Crazy Cooking
I am entering this recipe in the Iron Chef Challenge at the blog A Latte’ With Ott, A. The challenge for this month is sponsored by Red Gold Tomatoes which is a company based in Indiana. Indiana ranks 2nd in tomatoes grown for processing. Linda Wallace has been working for Red Gold creating recipes since 1998. Here is a link to the extensive recipe section on Red Gold’s website.
Saute the onion, garlic, carrots and mushrooms for 3-4 minutes until limp then remove from pan and set aside (including the liquid from the pan).
1 Tblsp olive oil
2 cups onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced (about 1- 1/2 Tblsp)
1/2 cup carrot, shredded
24 oz mushrooms, sliced
Don’t clean the pan after the vegies.
Brown in pan:
2 pounds ground round (I use 87% lean)
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
3/4 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried basil
1/4 teaspoon dry thyme
dash of nutmeg (just a teeny bit because the flavor is strong)
dash of cayenne pepper
1 bay leaf
When meat is browned, drain off all of the fat. Return the cooked mushroom mixture to the pan with the meat.
1 can tomato paste- 6 oz size (approx 10 Tblsp)
1 can San Marzano tomatoes- 28 oz size that have been chopped small
You could roast your own Roma tomatoes if you prefer. Many people are able to tolerate freshly roasted tomatoes better than canned tomatoes.
1 cup of red wine (full bodied like a Zin or a Cab)
3 Tblsp grated Reggiano cheese
Stir all together and simmer for about 30 minutes to let the flavors develop. Taste the sauce and adjust seasoning if necessary.
Towards the end of the 30 minutes, add 1/3 cup of fresh parsley, chopped fine.
When the sauce is done it should be pretty thick and will yield about 9 cups. You will be adding the sauce to the lasagna in 3 layers.
Remove the bay leaf from the sauce. I put the sauce in a bowl and used the same pan to sautee the zucchini slices without cleaning it.
Slice 2- 1/2 pounds of medium sized zucchini into rounds that are about 3/8 of an inch thick. Add to saute pan along with:
2/3 cup finely chopped onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon dry basil
1/4 teaspoon dry oregano
1/4 teaspoon salt 1/4 teaspoon pepper
I added 1/4 cup of water to moisten the zucchini mixture.
Sautee for 2-3 minutes. Keep stirring so herbs make contact with all of the zucchini. You don’t want the zucchini to cook too much because it is going to bake for 30 minutes after this.
In a 9″ x12′ or 13″ pan, place a full layer of zucchini slices on the bottom.
Spoon 1/3 of the meat sauce over the zucchini and smooth out evenly.
Repeat with another layer of zucchini and another 1/3 of the meat sauce.
Place the 3rd layer of zucchini and the final 1/3 of the meat sauce on top of that. Smooth the top and then grate a little bit of Reggiano cheese evenly over the top.
Place lasagna in your oven that is preheated to 350 degrees. Be careful- it’s heavy!
Bake for approximately 30 minutes but check on it with a fork a few minutes before. We like the zucchini to be slightly firm but you might want it done a little more.
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