Low-Carb Zucchini Lasagna

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  • Prep Time
    45 min
  • Cook Time
    30 min
  • Total Time
    75 min
  • Yield
    8 servings

This low-carb lasagna uses zucchini "noodles" instead of lasagna noodles.  In my first experiments, the whole thing turned kind of soupy when the water came out of the zucchini during baking. It turns out that the trick to making zucchini work as noodles is to take some of the water out of the zucchini first by salting it. Then the "noodles" firm up and are more noodle-like, instead of mushy.

This recipe can be made with or without the meat.


  • 1¼ - 1½ pounds of zucchini
  • salt - enough to lightly salt the zucchini - around ¼ to ½ teaspoon
  • 1 lb. ground beef (can be made without the meat)
  • 1 lb. ricotta cheese - whole milk preferred
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ cup of chopped fresh basil or 1/3 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 cups of tomato-based pasta sauce (from a jar is fine - use any variety with no added sugars)
  • 8 oz mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • 1/3 cup of Parmesan cheese, shredded (not dried/powdered)


Prepare the Zucchini "Noodles"

1. Slice the zucchini into strips, length-wise. The strips should be about 1/8 inch thick. I find the best way to do this is with a mandoline-type slicer. See a vegetable being sliced with a mandoline and find out more about them. Discard any pieces that are mostly peel.

2. Put the zucchini strips into a colander and sprinkle the salt on them. Toss together to coat. Put the colander over a bowl to catch the juice.

After 10-15 minutes, toss the strips again so that the brine will more-or-less evenly coat the strips. Drain for at least an hour.

3. While the zucchini is dripping, cook the meat. Then, combine the ricotta, eggs, and basil or parsley.

4. Spread the zucchini strips on paper toweling or a cotton tea towel to take away most of the surface liquid.

Lasagna Assembly

Heat the oven to 350 degrees F.

1. Put ½ cup of the pasta sauce into the bottom of a 9 X 13 pan, and combine the meat with the rest of the sauce.

2. Begin making  layers by covering the sauce with a layer of zucchini. Then cover the zucchini with about one third of the ricotta mixture, one third of the remaining sauce, and one third of the mozzarella cheese. Repeat, only arrange the zucchini strips in the other direction, e.g. if in the first layer the strips are lined up along the length of the pan, for the next layer line them up across the width of the pan.

Alternate again for the third layer. After the third layer, finish with the Parmesan cheese.

3. Bake the lasagna until the cheese is golden brown, about 30 minutes. (Note: if you refrigerate the lasagna before baking, cover it with foil and bake for 15 minutes covered, then remove the foil and cook an additional 30 minutes, or until the cheese is golden brown.)

Makes 8 Servings

Nutritional Information: Each of eight servings has 8 grams of effective carbohydrate plus 2 grams of fiber (10 grams total carbohydrate), 25 grams of protein, and 408 calories.

For the Meatless Version: Each serving has 8 grams of effective carbohydrate plus 2 of grams fiber (10 grams total carbohydrate), 17 grams of protein, and 242 calories.

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