Last month was a crazy crazy month. Kyle and I got married, I graduated, we went on our honeymoon, and then moved to Minnesota. The previous month, April, was just as busy with selling our house, having our wedding party, and moving back to our parents house. (Sorry for all the links- but if you missed any of those life events and are super bored, you can catch up!)
With all that going on, I had little time to cook and even if I did have time to make a meal, I found myself using random odds and ends because I was either trying to eat up all the food left in our house before we moved, or I just didn’t have time to piece together an actual dish.
Now that we’re settled in our new house in Rochester, I have all the time in the world to cook! And it’s glorious! I missed the kitchen so so much. Not only am I excited to explore my culinary creativity and try new recipes, but I’m also craving some of my favorite dishes I’ve made over and over. One of those is lasagna. Lasagna is one of those meals for me that I rarely get sick of, and don’t seem to make as frequently as I should! Another thing I love about lasagna is how easy it is to make healthy. You can sub out zucchini for the pasta, you can pack it full of veggies, you can swap turkey or chicken for the beef, and you can decide how much and what kind of cheese to use.
I’ve made multiple versions of lasagna- some with only veggies, some with grilled chicken, rotisserie chicken, or ground turkey- you can’t go wrong!
This week, I decided to make a veggie-packed lasagna with ground turkey. I contemplated using only zucchini instead of pasta, but the times I’ve done that before, I’ve found that the lasagna is too watery and doesn’t hold it’s shape. So, I figured I could use pasta and zucchini. The zucchini would allow me to use less pasta, and therefore make the dish healthier, but the pasta would keep the shape and texture of traditional lasagna- win win!
Health Lasagna with Ground Turkey and Veggies
- 2 zucchinis, peeled into long strips
- no-boil lasagna noodles
- 1 jar of marinara sauce
- 1 15oz container of part-skim ricotta
- shredded mozzarella (I used a mozzarella and provolone mix that was excellent)
- 2/3 cup grated parmesan
- sliced mushrooms
- fresh spinach
- 1 yellow onion, chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 TBS fresh basil, chopped
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1 egg
- 1 lb ground turkey
- 1 TBS olive oil
- Salt and pepper
Preheat oven to 375F. Heat olive oil over medium heat in a large skillet. Add garlic and sauté until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add chopped onion. Salt onion to help bring out the onion’s moisture while cooking.
Add oregano. Sauté until onion is translucent, about 7 minutes. Add in ground turkey and cook until most of the pink is gone from the turkey (the turkey will continue to cook in the oven, and therefore doesn’t have to be completely cooked).
Add in mushrooms and sauté 3 minutes.
Finally, add spinach to pan and cover. Let spinach wilt under the covered pan for 2-3 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.
In a mixing bowl, combine ricotta, egg, 1/3 cup parmesan, basil, and a pinch of salt and pepper.
Use a vegetable peeler to slice zucchini length wise into thin strips.
In a large baking dish, spread a thin layer of marinara sauce along the bottom. Layer lasagna noodles to cover the bottom of the dish.
Spread ricotta mixture, marinara sauce, and ground turkey and vegetable mixture.
Alternate using zucchini noodles and pasta; you should have 3 layers of noodles and 2 zucchini layers.
Cover the last zucchini layer with pasta, a thin layer of marinara sauce, and then liberally cover the top with cheese.
Cover the lasagna with aluminum foil and bake for 45 min. First, get your husband to take a picture of you with your masterpiece:
Then, make him try again because he is terrible at taking pictures:
We’re going to practice some more 😉
After 45 minutes, remove the aluminum foil and bake for another 10 minutes uncovered, until the cheese is golden brown.
Look at those layers!