August 18, 2020•
by Alyssa Rimmer
Vegan Zucchini Lasagna
This vegan zucchini lasagna is incredible!! It tastes just like the “real” thing, but it uses no noodles, is low carb, gluten-free and isn”t watery at all!
Lasagna is a major comfort food. It’s cheesy, it’s saucy, it’s carby. It’s also heavy. And honestly? It’s not something I personally would want to eat every day.
So why not try our hand at making something a bit healthier? Something that’s low carb, vegan, and gluten-free. A recipe that still gives you that same cozy lasagna feel, but won’t leave you feeling sluggish.
Enter my new favorite way to use zucchini: Vegan Zucchini Lasagna! Everything you love about lasagna, just lightened up a bit!
Ingredients for Vegan Zucchini Lasagna
Similar to traditional lasagna, you really don’t need much to make zucchini lasagna. We’re only using 5 simple ingredients:
- Zucchini: we’re using this as our lasagna noodles – more on how to slice them in a moment.
- Tomato sauce: use any of your favorite jarred sauce!
- Vegan ricotta cheese: you can use store-bought or tofu ricotta.
- Italian seasoning: I like to stir some into the ricotta to boost the flavor, but you could totally leave this out!
- Vegan shredded cheese: this is optional, but it really gives you that traditional lasagna feel.
If you don’t want to make it vegan, feel free to swap the cheeses with traditional. But really…yes, that’s it! Just 5 ingredients, so easy to make and seriously GOOD.
How to Cut Zucchini for Lasagna
First things first, let’s talk noodles. The zucchini needs to be sliced into thin strips and the easiest way that I’ve found to do this is using a mandolin slicer. If you don’t have one of those, you can carefully cut the zucchini into thin strips using a knife.
How to make Zucchini Lasagna Not Watery
The first time I made zucchini lasagna it tasted amazing but was essentially a puddle of moisture. If you don’t care about there being a bit of liquid on the bottom, then you can skip this next part. BUT if you are someone who is like, “oh heck no!” to watery zucchini lasagna, here’s what you need to do: get that moisture out!
Tips for Getting Moisture Out of Zucchini Slices
After doing a bit of searching online and reading other recipes for zucchini lasagna, I got two tips for getting moisture out of zucchini slices:
Salting: the beauty of salt is that it naturally draws moisture out of things. To use this method, lay the zucchini slices on a baking sheet that you line with paper towels. Then sprinkle on some salt. Wait about 10 minutes, then you’ll start to see moisture droplets. Pat them dry and you’re ready to bake!
Grilling: alternatively, you can grill the zucchini slices to remove the moisture. Simple put your slices directly onto the grill and cook them for a few minutes per side. This method will give you a charred flavor to your zucchini, but I’m sure it would be scrumptious! I don’t have a grill at home, so couldn’t test it out.
How to make this Vegan Zucchini Lasagna
Making this lasagna is super duper easy. It’s basically all about the layers!
You’ll start by spreading some tomato sauce onto the bottom of your baking dish. Then lay the dried out zucchini down. Top that with some ricotta and spread it out as evenly as you can.
Follow those three layers with another layer of sauce, more zucchini, more ricotta, etc., until you’ve filled your pan.
Your last layers will be different. You’ll just do zucchini, tomato sauce, and then finish it off with some shredded (vegan) cheese!
A Zucchini Lasagna That Isn’t Watery!
I can honestly tell you this lasagna is INCREDIBLE. It slices like traditional lasagna, you can see each distinct layer and you would never know it was made with zucchini.
No joke, we ate the WHOLE PAN. In one sitting. It was that good. And since it’s so light, you’ll never feel overly stuffed or heavy.
This is hands down one of my new favorite ways to use zucchini. Feel free to add in additional veggies like sauteed mushrooms or spinach, just make sure that you remove as much moisture as possible. Other than that, enjoy!!
More Delicious & Healthy Zucchini Recipes
Vegan Zucchini Lasagna
This vegan zucchini lasagna is incredible!! It tastes just like the “real” thing, but it uses no noodles, is low carb and isn’t watery at all!
Preheat the oven to 375ºF.
If using store-bought ricotta, transfer to a bowl. Add the Italian seasoning and stir to combine. If using tofu ricotta (recipe below), skip this step as the tofu ricotta already has the seasoning. Set aside in fridge.
Using a mandolin slicer, thinly slice the zucchini into long strips. You can also do this with a knife, but it’s more difficult and tricky to get an even thickness.
Line a baking sheet with paper towels then lay the zucchini on top of the paper towel. Do this with two sheets (or until you’ve laid out all the zucchini strips). Sprinkle with sea salt and allow to sit for at least 15 minutes.
After 15 minutes, the zucchini should have released a lot of moisture. Pat them dry.
Now it’s time to assemble the lasagna. In a baking dish (9×13 works well), add 1/2 cup sauce. Spread evenly with a spoon.
Add a layer of zucchini, completely covering the base of the pan. Next, add some ricotta (about 1/3- 1/2 cup) and smooth it over the zucchini with a spoon or your hands (hands are easier!). Next, add a thin layer of sauce (about 1/4 cup).
Repeat with the same layer pattern until you’ve used all your ingredients or you’ve filled the pan.
For your final layer, do a layer of zucchini, then top with 1/3 cup – 1/2 cup sauce. Spread evenly across the top. If using, sprinkle with vegan cheese.
Bake on the center rack for 40 – 45 minutes until the zucchini is cooked through.
Allow to cool for 10 – 15 minutes, then slice into 6 portions and serve.
Serving: 1square | Calories: 210kcal | Carbohydrates: 17g | Protein: 10g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 29mg | Sodium: 833mg | Potassium: 783mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 8g | Vitamin A: 1014IU | Vitamin C: 31mg | Calcium: 180mg | Iron: 2mg
How to Make Vegan Ricotta
If you’d rather not buy vegan ricotta or can’t find it locally, it’s SUPER easy to make at home! You just need a few simple ingredients and the texture and taste is perfection.
Bonus: it would also add a lot more protein to the zucchini lasagna recipe since it’s made from tofu!
Easy Tofu Ricotta
This easy tofu ricotta recipe is the perfect plant-based alternative to use in vegan lasagna, vegan ravioli and vegan manicotti!
Place the tofu on a paper towel-lined plate. With another paper towel or clean dish towel, press the tofu to remove some of the water.
Crumble the tofu into a food processor and pulse together until crumbly. Add the remaining ricotta ingredients and pulse until mostly smooth.
Use immediately or transfer to sealed container to use for future recipes!
Serving: 0.25cup | Calories: 53kcal | Carbohydrates: 2g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 2g | Sodium: 325mg | Potassium: 118mg | Vitamin A: 30IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 26mg | Iron: 0.7mg