Spinach Zucchini Noodle Lasagna

Spinach Zucchini Noodle Lasagna

Happy St. Patrick’s Day! Technically, this is festive, right? Green zucchini, green spinach? No? Well, I tried.

After countless months of putting off making this recipe, I’ve finally manned up and produced what I believe to be the world’s best zucchini noodle lasagna.

I mean, have you seen this opening image?

Spinach Zucchini Noodle Lasagna

At first, I didn’t want to do a zucchini lasagna because I thought, “That’s not creative – that’s been done before.” Then I realized that, sure, lasagna noodles have been replaced with slices of zucchini before. However, there’s never been a spiralized zucchini noodle version. And what kind of person would I be if I didn’t Inspiralize one of the best classic Italian casseroles: lasagna?

Every time I received an e-mail or note asking if I had a “spiralized lasagna recipe,” I cringed. I cringed because I knew you all wanted it and I wasn’t making it.

Spinach Zucchini Noodle Lasagna

I guess I’ve been focused on trying to reinvent the wheel with each recipe, when, sometimes the wheel just needs a new paint job. Okay, I might not be the best at extended metaphors.

But, I’m good at spiralizing and today, I’ve Inspiralized lasagna.

I had so much fun tasting, testing and photographing this recipe.

Spinach Zucchini Noodle Lasagna

Cheese is very photogenic.

My primary concern when building this recipe was the moisture factor. I didn’t want a sloppy zucchini mess. After a couple tries, I got it. There are two things you need to keep in mind when making this recipe:

1. After you take the lasagna out of the oven and let it rest for 5-10 minutes, it’s crucial to drain any excess liquid. You must do this carefully and slowly (you don’t want your lasagna falling into the sink!)

2. You must cut the lasagna into portions immediately. The longer the zucchini sits in the lasagna, the more mositure that will build up at the bottom.

Once you’ve taken these precautions, this lasagna will knock your socks off. Honestly, there’s something about having the zucchini in ribbons that changes the whole taste of the zucchini. The zucchini ribbons flatten when baked just like real lasagna noodles.

Spinach Zucchini Noodle Lasagna

I made this lasagna early in the morning and had to rush off to a full day of meetings in NYC. A few hours later, the lasagna tasted even better chilled! However, I do prefer cold pizza to hot pizza, so I’m an odd bird.

Spinach Zucchini Noodle Lasagna

Obviously, there’s a lot of cheese in lasagna. It’s total comfort food. But lasagna noodles can make you feel stuffed and uncomfortable! That’s why a zucchini noodle is the way to go – you get that same gooey, cheesy flavor without the heavy carbs, calories and bloated, lethargic feeling afterwards.

Spinach Zucchini Noodle Lasagna

Let’s talk assembly. This was extremely time consuming to do, but I put together a step by step lasagna assembly graphic. Directions are in the recipe, but heres the info-graphic for you:

Spinach Zucchini Noodle Lasagna

And check out the fresh ingredients, while you’re at it:

Spinach Zucchini Noodle Lasagna

Okay, I think if you’ve made it this far down this post, you’re ready for the recipe. I’ll leave you with one more picture:

Spinach Zucchini Noodle Lasagna

Spinach Zucchini Noodle Lasagna

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour

Servings: 6

1

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • ¼ tsp red pepper flakes
  • ¾ cup diced red onion
  • 2 (14oz) canned diced tomatoes, no salt added
  • 1 tsp dried oregano flakes
  • 8 basil leaves, chopped
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 3-4 cups of spinach
  • 3 medium zucchinis, Blade A
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese (grated not shredded!)
  • 1.5 cups ricotta cheese
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
  2. In a large skillet over medium heat, place in the olive oil. Then, add in the garlic and red pepper flakes. Let garlic cook for 30 seconds and then add in the red onions. Let onions cook for 2 minutes and then add in the canned tomatoes, oregano, basil and season with salt and pepper. Stir to combine and then let cook, stirring occasionally, until the sauce is fully reduced, about 15 minutes. The sauce should have no excess liquid, almost to the point where it sticks to the bottom of the pan. This is important to avoid a watery lasagna at the end.
  3. While the sauce reduces, place a large skillet over medium heat and add in the spinach. Cook until completely wilted and set aside in a plate. Then, cook the zucchini noodles for 2 minutes, tossing frequently. Place the cooked noodles in a colander and pat dry to remove as much moisture as possible. Set aside once done.
  4. While the sauce is still cooking, add the ricotta, parmesan and egg to a bowl. Whisk together and set aside.
  5. Once the sauce is done, gather all of your prepared ingredients. Take out a casserole dish (I use 4.2 quart) and add a layer of the tomato sauce to the bottom. Then, add a layer of zucchini noodles. Then, add a layer of the ricotta mixture. Then, add in a layer of
  6. tomato sauce. Then, add in a layer of spinach, using all of the spinach. Then, add a layer of the ricotta mixture. Then, add in a layer of zucchini noodles. Then, add in the last of the tomato sauce, in a layer. Then, top with all of the mozzarella cheese.
  7. Cover the casserole dish with tinfoil and bake in the oven for 40 minutes. After 40 minutes, take the dish out of the oven, remove the tinfoil top and let rest for 5-10 minutes. After resting, carefully and slowly pour out as much excess liquid as possible. Then, carefully cut the lasagna into 6 equal portions. Remove these portions and plate immediately or save in individual containers in the refrigerator (or freezer). This is very important to avoid excess moisture. Enjoy immediately!

Notes

I used KitchenAid's 4.2 quart casserole dish.

http://inspiralized.com/spinach-zucchini-noodle-lasagna/

Spinach Zucchini Noodle Lasagna

Spinach Zucchini Noodle Lasagna

Spinach Zucchini Noodle Lasagna

Spinach Zucchini Noodle Lasagna

Spinach Zucchini Noodle Lasagna

Spinach Zucchini Noodle Lasagna

Comments

  1. Looks Delicious! Going to have to think on how I can make the cheese part a bit more WW / Paleo friendly. As I was reading I kept thinking.. Where’s the meat. But this would make a nice side dish. Thanks for the inspirations.

  2. Danielle at AgainstAllGrain.com has a way of drying out zucchini noodles by salting them, placing them on a baking sheet lined with paper towes and sticking them in a 200 F degree oven for 30 minutes. This dries the noodles out, but doesn’t cook them. Have you tried that for getting rid of the excess water in the zukes?

    Love your recipes!

  3. Mmmmmm….this looks amazing, Ali! I can’t wait to try this recipe!

  4. The pictures made my mouth water:-) Will have to try this one!

  5. Thank you for the step-by-step. This recipe is going on my “what’s for dinner” list right away!

  6. Alison Tribe :

    I made this the other night for dinner. I added in a couple layers of ground turkey and it was the most satisfying meal I have had in a long time!! I was so happy that your anti-water solution worked!! The slices perfectly held together and like you said were even better left over!!! Brilliant!!!!

  7. OMG! This looks wonderful, and I’ve been waiting months for you to figure out a lasagna recipe. I was thinking of even writing to you and requesting. I’m glad you figured this out, and I will be trying it soon! I can’t wait! Do you think a Pyrex 8×8 2 qt. would work? My other glass pyrex pans are the longer kinds that serve 8, Thanks!

  8. I really, really enjoyed making this! It was extremely simple and fun to put together. I did however, find the sauce super concentrated and acidic. The sauce took a much longer time to reduce than the recipe said so, I’m thinking that’s what contributed to the acidic level. Next time I will try with a different sauce…..and there will be a next time!!!!!!!

  9. You don’t happen to have the nutritional info for this do you? Looks delicious!

  10. Do you know the nutritional info values by chance?

  11. Laura Nugent :

    Thanks so much for this recipe! I can’t wait to try it next month when I’m done taking a break from dairy. So, I used it as a jumping off point. I made a “nut” cheese and added egg to that for the ricotta. I also added cooked chorizo to it as well and used kale in place of the spinach since that’s what I had. I topped it off with roasted cherry tomatoes I had left over with some nutritional yeast for a “cheesy” topping. So, so good. And I made my sauce very dry like you said and had no problem with too much water from the zucchini noodles! So fun to play with food. Love, love, love your site.

  12. Suzy Herrington :

    Just made this, I can’t think of a good enough adjective to describe just how delicious this is. Thank you so much for sharing your talent for creating spectacular recipes. Hat’s off to the chef.

  13. Just tried this last night and love it! My kids hate zucchini (I’ve cooked with it twice this week…) but the one who complained the most about having to eat it again asked for seconds! I look forward to trying more of your recipes!

  14. Love all your recipe pics, you’re the reason I bought a spiralizer. I used to make stuffed zucchini a lot, but I much prefer the zucchini noodles!

    I tried a zucchini noodle lasagna with your recipe as the base, but I salted my spiralized zucchini for 15 min then rinsed, and used cashew cheese. I think the cashews really made it stick together, no slippage!

    Also, one of my favorite meals is enchiladas but in a zucchini boat. It’s basically Mexican Lasagna, and amazing! Would love to see your take on it, even if yours isn’t vegan :).

  15. shaziaansari :

    Hi – I would like to try this – but I think I’m still confused on how to make the zucchini noodles… help!

  16. Looks amazing! I shared your recipe in my weekly meal plan and Real Food Recipe Link Up!

    http://sassymomsinthecity.com/real-food-recipe-round-up-weekly-meal-plan-december-22nd/

  17. I made this yesterday along with a traditional lasagna. I preferred this one. It tasted fantastic yet didn’t have that heavy feeling afterwards. Tasted kind of crisp and clean. I cooked it in a 2 quart round dish and that size was nice. Cooked it about 10 min longer due to the dish being so full. Serves 6 as promised.. Would be nice to get a calorie count with recipes but I guess if I’m eating lasagna I shouldn’t even go there!

  18. Made this for dinner last night and ate leftovers tonight. I only made a few small changes to fit what I had on hand. Husband and I loved it. It was amazing and made me not miss the noodles at all. Great recipe. Thanks for sharing g.

  19. My calculations are 241 per serving without Ground Turkey.
    394 per serving with.

  20. Ali, this is my all-time favorite Inspiralized recipe, and it is always a hit. Great for serving to guests, they always rave. Keep up the good work!
    But I have to tell you, the way the layering is listed is confusing to me. I have to keep reading the directions to check what comes next. I’ve finally made a copy with the layering instructions below, and now it’s a breeze.
    1/3 of tomato sauce
    half of the zucchini
    half of the ricotta mixture
    1/3 of tomato sauce
    all of the spinach
    the other half of the ricotta mixture
    the other half of the zucchini
    final 1/3 of the tomato sauce
    all of the mozzarella.

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