What if you could have a delicious keto zucchini lasagna WITHOUT soggy zucchini and a watery casserole experience???? Well you can with this great recipe! This is a simple, family friendly dish full of flavor, tender slices of zucchini, and lots of cheese, ricotta, sausage and sliced mushrooms. (Leftovers reheat REALLY well!)
What is a Keto Zucchini Lasagna?
Let’s have a real talk moment here. In NO WAY does zucchini taste like a good old fashioned noodle. But it does actually taste really amazing in this casserole!
I was strongly opposed to the entire idea of a keto zucchini lasagna until my husband asked me to make one. I thought it would be slimy and wet and well….not lasagna!
It turns out you can make an excellent version full of flavor that does taste delicious. This is a meal we both look forward to and have often! In our house I call it zucchini casserole because I think of it as a different dish than a true lasagna but let’s just say I’m kind of a purist 😉
Keto Zucchini Lasagna with Cottage Cheese or Ricotta?
I’ve baked up this keto zucchini lasagna with both and we like ricotta a bit better. Cottage cheese will add some additional liquid to the dish but still works fine.
If you are trying to stick to a true keto plan you will probably find that ricotta is slightly lower carb.
I’m a true dairy lover so I actually eat this casserole with a big scoop of cottage cheese on the side! Kinda crazy but delicious…
Keto Zucchini Lasagna with Italian Sausage
You get the best flavor out of this dish by using Italian sausage. That being said you can choose pork or turkey sausage.
You can use hamburger or turkey burger instead but my husband has a strong preference for Italian Sausage here.
I don’t drain the sausage when I make it – we are not fat averse. Remember – fat is FLAVOR! This is not intended to be a low fat dish.
I’m a big believer in dinner being hearty but choosing a portion size that fits your activity level and calorie needs. Remember – fat is not the enemy. It is simply a fuel source for your body.
How To Slice Zucchini for Lasagna
There are two easy methods for slicing zucchini.
Method #1: Use a good sharp knife and cut straight slices. I’ve been giving this chefs knife a try lately and it seems to be high quality while only costing about $33.
Keep your knife sharp and you will have no problem slicing the zucchini. (Remember a sharper knife is easier to use, is less strain on your hands, and is SAFER!)
Method #2: Use a mandolin. I love this method because the slicing machine does all the work of getting the correct thickness for me.
I’m using this mandolin right now and it is doing a great job (about $30). This is a kitchen tool worth buying since you can use it for multiple applications.
One word of caution! There is no easy way to use the finger guard for zucchini. I use a cut proof glove instead. It protects your hand from any slips and is easy to rinse off and hang dry for next time!
More Simple Healthy Dinners for You!
- Korean BBQ Beef Lettuce Cups
- Easy Fried Cabbage and Mushrooms
- Cheesy Hatch Chile Chicken Bake
- Easy Grilled Cod
Keto Zucchini Lasagna
- 1 Tbsp. Butter
- 8 oz cremini mushrooms sliced
- 1/8 tsp. salt
- 16 oz Italian Pork Sausage
- 24 oz jar pasta sauce I’m using Bertolli Tomato Basil sauce
- 4-5 zucchinis about the length of a banana
- Pan spray
- Fresh ground black pepper
- 15 oz ricotta 15 or 16 oz ricotta or cottage cheese is fine
- 1 lbs mozzarella
- 1 tbsp parsley for garnish optional
To Make the Sauce:
- Preheat the oven to 375 F and set out a 9"x 9" baking dish with tall sides.
- On a back burner add butter and sliced mushrooms to a medium sized frying pan. Cook over medium-high heat stirring occasionally for 1 minute. Add 1/8 tsp. of salt. (Pepper lovers grind in some fresh pepper here too – a few grinds or a lot!)
- Crumble in the sausage and continue to cook, stirring as needed until the sausage is browned. Drain fat if you want (I DON’T drain the fat).
- Stir in the pasta sauce and leave the pan to simmer while you cook the zucchini.
- Wash zucchini and use a knife or mandolin to slice the zucchini into 1/8” slices (the long way so they look kind of like lasagna noodles).
- Heat a non-stick skillet to medium-high heat. Spray with pan spray. Use a kitchen tongs to lay one layer of zucchini in the pan. Sprinkle on some salt and pepper. Cook until golden brown (1-2 minuteand then flip. Salt and pepper the cooked side and cook until side #2 is browned. The slice won’t be cooked through – it will finish cooking in the lasagna. Use tongs to set cooked slices on a plate. Repeat until all slices are cooked. (If I’m in a hurry I use two frying pans at the same time so I can cook more pieces at once.)
- You can assemble your lasagna in any way you want. These are the layers I use:
- Zucchini, one layer of slices (I use 4-6 slices for each of these layers)
- ½ the meat sauce
- ½ the mozzarella
- Zucchini, one layer of slices
- Ricotta or Cottage Cheese – all of it (pepper lovers grind in some more here)
- Rest of the meat sauce
- Zucchini, one layer of slices
- Rest of the mozzarella
- Bake at 375 F for 20-25 minutes until hot through and the cheese is melted and bubbly. (160 F on an digital instant read thermometer is hot through.)
- Allow the lasagna to sit and settle for about 10 to 15 minutes before slicing into it and serving. Garnish with a sprinkle of minced fresh parsley if desired.
So refreshing! An honest Keto recipe. It provides total carbs – not net carbs – and details the secrets to achieving a successful lasagna! I can’t wait to try this recipe. Thank you for noting that you don’t remove the fat from the sausage. Fat is an important component to Keto!
Hi Debbie! Thank you for the kind words 🙂 We don’t eat true Keto in our home nor am I a Keto expert! But we avoid trying to make standard food “low fat” and I’ve found that having a certain amount of meat fat in our diets is more satisfying for sure! In the interest of being clear I’m NOT a nutritionist and I use software to give the nutrition facts for the recipe. The software is far from perfect and is only intended to give you a basic idea of what is involved in the recipe. It is the best tool on the market for this right now. If you liked this make sure to sign up for my email list – I’ve got a free gift for new subscribers that is about cooking great chicken. Also this cabbage recipe would be a great fit for you: https://www.mirlandraskitchen.com/easy-fried-cabbage-mushrooms/ Pop in anytime and let me know what else I can do to help you on your cooking journey! Cook on 🙂
Thanks for the tip about browning the zukes first. I’m trying this today!
Ah yes, the mandoline: the home cook’s weapon of mass destruction. I had one years ago. After a couple of minor injuries, my husband threw that thing in the trash when he found me in a pool of tears and blood and had to patch me up with gauze and bandages. He put it in a cardboard box so the unsuspecting garbage collectors wouldn’t amputate anything. Whenever I’m tempted to buy another mandoline, I remember that episode. I probably should have gone to the ER, it was pretty ugly.
Oh friend! I hear you on the mandoline issue. My husband had a run in last year with one and the cut was serious. We bought a cut proof glove and have had no further injury. If you ever get tempted to add one to your kitchen again PLEASE get the glove! Cooking projects are not as fun when you have to get patched up after 🙁
What size pan do you use to assemble?
I use a 9″x9″ square pan but mine has tall sides. It is a CorningWear I think – taller than a square Pyrex usually is. Enjoy that lasagna!