RUSTIC ZUCCHINI LASAGNA

RUSTIC ZUCCHINI LASAGNA

You can still eat your favorite foods, just in a different form!

2 medium zucchini (or one very large zucchini)

1 sweet onion, chopped

3-4 cloves garlic

1½ lbs ground sirloin

1 (28 ounce) can crushed tomatoes

2 (6 ounce) cans tomato paste

1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce

1½ teaspoons dried basil

2 teaspoons dried oregano

½ teaspoon fennel seeds

1½ teaspoons salt

2 tablespoons your favorite sugar alternative

15 ounces light or low-fat ricotta cheese

1 egg

1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese, plus more

1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped

10 ounces frozen spinach, thawed and well drained

2 cups part skim shredded mozzarella cheese

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. Using a mandolin or a sharp knife, carefully slice the zucchini into 1/4 inch thick slices lengthwise. (If your zucchini is really large, slicing it horizontally is fine!) Set aside.
  3. In a large pot sprayed with nonstick cooking spray, add onion and grate in 2-3 cloves of the garlic. Sauté until onion is translucent. Add beef, and cook until browned. Stir in crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, tomato sauce, basil, oregano, fennel, salt, and sugar substitute. Simmer while assembling the rest of your lasagna.
  4. In a bowl mix ricotta, egg, Parmesan cheese and parsley. Grate one clove of garlic in and stir until combined.

To assemble:

Spread 1½ the amount of the meat sauce in the bottom of a 9×13 inch baking dish. Arrange half of the zucchini slices over the sauce so they are in a single layer. Then layer ½ ricotta mixture, all of the drained spinach, and ½ of the shredded mozzarella. Then repeat layers with the rest of the meat sauce, a layer of zucchini, the rest of the ricotta mixture, and top with the last of the mozzarella cheese. Sprinkle additional Parmesan cheese on top. Bake covered with foil for 35 minutes. Remove foil and bake another 20 minutes. Remove lasagna from oven and let cool 15 minutes before serving. Add 26 shredded fresh basil on top if you have it. Enjoy the best lasagna you’ll ever eat!

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