Zucchini “Lasagna” Roll-Ups

Since going low-carb I’ve really missed some classics. I do love Italian food, especially lasagna! I’ve been wondering a good way to make it, without just using “gluten free” pasta, or corn pasta, or whatever. I found this recipe on pinterest: Zucchini Lasagna Rolls . I, of course, changed a few things and made my own version… but it was SO good and satisfying!!! Plus, you get  your veggies, meat AND dairy all in 1 meal!!! Low carb, but I would save some calories for this one… lots of DELICIOUS cheese in this one!!

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Ingredients:
Cheesy Filling
    • 8 ounces ricotta cheese (I used 2%)
    • 4 ounces low fat cottage cheese
    • 3 tablespoons shredded fresh parmesan cheese
    • 2 tablespoons fresh flat leaf parsley roughly chopped
    • 1 tablespoon fresh basil roughly chopped
    • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
    • 1/4 teaspoon minced garlic
    • 1 tsp italian seasoning
    • 1/4 tsp oregano
    • Black pepper to taste
Other Ingredients:
  • 3 large zucchini cut lengthwise into 8 (1/4 inch thick) slices
  • 1 lb lean (I used grass fed) ground beef
  • 1 jar marinara sauce (I used Newman’s Own… use your favorite!)
  • 3/4 to  1 cup shredded mozzarella

 

 

Instructions

Cheesy Ricotta Filling
    1. Add all of the ingredients into a small bowl and stir until well blended.
    2. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
Grilled Zucchini
    1. Heat a grill or grill pan to medium high heat. (Lightly salt grill pan if you use one)
    2. While the grill is heating, slice the zucchini lengthwise into 1/4 inch thick planks. (Try to get no thicker than this, and try to get all similar. Use a mandolin if you have one)
    3. Brush with extra virgin olive oil (I used some garlic infused olive oil!! YUM!) on both sides of the zucchini planks, then sprinkle with salt and pepper.
    4. Place the zucchini on the hot grill and cook for about 2 minutes on each side or until the zucchini is soft and pliable. (So that when you roll them they don’t break… but you also don’t want them mushy)
    5. Remove from the grill and cool on a plate with a paper towel (to catch excess liquid) until they can be handled.

Meat Sauce
1. Brown your 1 lb ground beef in a large skillet until cooked through.
2. Drain and remove fat from pan.
3. Add jar of (or homemade) marinara sauce and let simmer on LOW.
4. Remove from heat and set aside.

Assembling the Zucchini Lasagna Rolls
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Line a 9 x 15 (Or similar) casserole dish with parchment paper (or spray with cooking spray).
  3. Spread a 1/4 cup of the meat sauce evenly over the bottom of the dish.
  4. Blot any excess liquid off of the cooled planks of zucchini with paper towels.
  5. Spoon about a tablespoon of the ricotta filling onto one side of the zucchini and spread it into an even layer.
  6. Roll up the zucchini and place them seam side down in the casserole dish.
  7. Top the zucchini rolls with the remaining meat sauce , shredded mozzarella cheese, some parmesan, fresh black pepper and some chopped basil.
  8. Bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes or until the cheese is melted and bubbly.

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And… THIS is what it looks like!!! It will be a hit! Even the kids loved it!!! YUM!

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And now, for the song of the day: I’m sorry… it’s seriously my FAVORITE song right now!!!!!

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Skillet Lasagna

This is an easy one! I love this recipe because I used a jar of organic spicy tomato basil sauce from Trader Joes (I’ve also really loved it with Spicy Tomato Pesto sauce from Classico… a bit of a kick! 🙂  ) So, pre-made sauce just makes it quick and easy!!!

Ingredients:

1 pound lean ground beef
1 small onion (chopped)
1 cloves garlic (minced)
1 jar Spaghetti sauce
1 tsp salt
2 1/2 cups Fusili pasta ( Or broken up lasagna noodles… any larger pasta is really good)
1 cup fat-free cottage cheese (I prefer large curd)
1/4 cup fat-free grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil

Shredded fat-free mozzarella cheese for garnish

You could also add zucchini for a little extra veggies!

Image

I didn’t take a picture when I made it completely by accident, but I originally took the recipe from http://recipes.sparkpeople.com/recipe-detail.asp?recipe=20856 which I have adapted to the above. But the picture shows the yumminess! 🙂

Directions:

While the hamburger is cooking, make sure you have the pasta cooking. It will take the approximately same amount of time.I

In a large skillet, brown beef with onions and garlic. Drain.
Add jar of spaghetti sauce, salt and a tsp of sugar to cut the acidity.
Stir in cooked pasta.
Bring to a simmer, stirring occasionally.
Combine cottage and Parmesan cheeses and a dash of salt and pepper to taste.
Sprinkle in basil to taste.
Drop cheese mixture by rounded tablespoons onto pasta mixture.
Cover and cook for 5 minutes more.
Sprinkle with shredded mozzarella and serve.