Grilled Zucchini Lasagna (Video)
Grilled Zucchini Lasagna uses thick slices of barely-grilled zucchini instead of noodles for a low-carb and gluten-free version of lasagna! This is a favorite zucchini dish I look forward to every fall, and it can easily be vegetarian if you don’t add the sausage!
PIN Grilled Zucchini Low-Carb Lasagna to make it later!
This recipe for Grilled Zucchini Lasagna is for vegetable gardeners who might be wondering how to use those huge zucchinis that suddenly seem to appear overnight when the garden is winding down. For years I’ve been making “lasagna” using zucchini in place of the lasagna noodles, and this is one of my favorite uses for those monster zucchinis so I’m reminding you about it for Friday Favorites this week to entice you to try it!
Grilling the zucchini removes some of the liquid that might otherwise make the lasagna too watery, and if you don’t have an outdoor grill you could certainly do this step on a stove-top grill pan (affiliate link). Of course, using zucchini instead of pasta makes a delicious version of lasagna that’s low in carbs, gluten-free, and South Beach Diet friendly, and it can also be vegetarian if you don’t add sausage to the sauce!
What ingredients do you need?
- large zucchini, cut into lengthwise slices
- Olive Oil (affiliate link)
- Italian Herb Seasoning (affiliate link)
- Rao’s Pasta Sauce (affiliate link)
- Italian Sausage and chopped fresh basil to add to the sauce (optional)
- cottage cheese
- grated Mozzarella cheese
- coarsely grated Romano or Parmesan cheese
Can you make this recipe with smaller zucchini?
I created this low-carb lasagna recipe to use up those extra-large zucchini that pop up in the garden every year. But if you don’t have any monster zucchinis to use, you can still make the grilled zucchini lasagna with thick slices of smaller zucchini. Just be sure to make the slices thick enough if you’re using small zucchini. And if you use smaller zucchini you can make this zucchini lasagna any time of year!
What if you don’t have an outdoor grill?
You can grill the zucchini for this low-carb version of lasagna on a Stovetop Grill Pan (affiliate link) if you don’t have an outdoor grill.
Want more low-carb lasagna ideas?
Lasagna is always a treat for anyone who’s limiting their carbs, and I’ve got a great collection of Ten Amazing Low-Carb Lasagna Recipes with delicious ideas from blogs around the web!
How to Make Grilled Zucchini Lasagna:
(Scroll down for complete printable recipe plus nutritional information.)
- I use lengthwise slices of zucchini about 5/8 inch thick.
- Brush the zucchini slices on both sides with olive oil, adding a sprinkle of Italian Herb Blend if you’d like.
- Grill on the first side until you have nice grill marks, about 3-4 minutes. Then turn and cook a few minutes on the second side, until the zucchini is partially cooked but not completely soft.
- I used to make this with my Sausage and Basil Marinara Sauce, but now I’d use Rao’s Pasta Sauce (affiliate link) which has only 20 carbs in the whole jar. Use a sauce with meat or a meatless sauce, whichever you prefer. Simmer the sauce a few minutes to evaporate some of the water so you have a thick sauce.)
- Spread the cooked zucchini out on a large cutting board and use a paper towel to press down and remove as much liquid as you can.
- Beat the eggs and then mix in the cottage cheese. (Don’t skip the eggs; they help hold this together.)
- Spray the baking dish with olive oil or non-stick spray and then make a layer of the grilled zucchini.
- Cover that with half the sauce, about 1 cups of the thick sauce, or a little more if you didn’t simmer it.
- Then make a layer with half the cottage cheese mixture, followed by a layer with half the cheese.
- Repeat to make another layer each of grilled zucchini, sauce, cottage cheese-egg mixture, and cheese.
- Bake at 400F/200C for 30-40 minutes, or until the lasagna is bubbling and the top is starting to brown. I baked mine uncovered so water would evaporate, but you can cover with foil towards the end of the cooking time if it starts to look too brown.
- This will be juicier than regular lasagna, so let it sit at least 10-15 minutes before cutting.
More Recipes to Use Zucchini:
Weekend Food Prep:
This recipe has been added to a category called Weekend Food Prep where you’ll find recipes you can prep or cook on the weekend and eat during the week!
Grilled Zucchini Lasagna
Thick slices of barely-grilled zucchini replace the noodles in this Grilled Zucchini Low-Carb Lasagna.
- 4 large zucchini, cut into lengthwise slices about 5/8 inch thick (see notes)
- olive oil, for brushing lasagna slices
- Italian Herb Blend, for sprinkling zucchini before grilling (optional)
- 24 oz. Rao's pasta sauce, simmered to thicken the sauce (see notes)
- Italian Sausage and basil to add to the sauce (optional)
- 2 cups cottage cheese
- 4 eggs
- 2 cups grated Mozzarella cheese
- 1 cup coarsely grated Romano or Parmesan cheese
- Simmer sauce for a few minutes until the sauce is thickened and reduced a bit, adding some cooked Italian sausage if you prefer, then stir in the chopped fresh basil if using.
- Preheat oven to 400F. Brush grill with olive oil or spray with grill spray and preheat to high heat. (You can only hold your hand there for a few seconds at that heat.) You can also make this with a stove-top grill pan (affiliate link) that doesn't need to be pre-heated.
- While grill heats, cut zucchini into slices about 5/8 inch thick.
- Brush both sides of zucchini lightly with olive oil and sprinkle with Italian Herb Seasoning (affiliate link) if using.
- Grill zucchini slices until they’re lightly browned on both sides, but not fully cooked, about 3-4 minutes per side.
- Remove the zucchini slices to a cutting board and press lightly with a paper towel to absorb some of the moisture. (Put zucchini between two pieces of paper towel if it seems especially juicy.)
- Beat eggs in small bowl, then stir in cottage cheese.
- Spray heavy ceramic or glass deep lasagna dish with non-stick spray or olive oil.
- Then make a layer of lasagna slices, a layer with half the sauce, a layer with half the cottage cheese-egg mixture, and a layer with half the cheese.
- Top with second layer of grilled lasagna slices, sauce, cottage cheese-egg mixture, and remaining cheese.
- Bake 30-40 minutes, or until cheese is melted and browned on top and mixture is slightly bubbling. (I leave it uncovered so some liquid can evaporate, but you can cover it for the last part of the cooking time if you don’t want the top quite so brown.)
- Let sit at least 10-15 minutes before cutting, then cut into pieces and serve hot. (This will be a little juicier than regular lasagna, letting it sit for a few minutes will help with that.)
- This keeps very well in the fridge for several days and it might even be better re-heated, because some of the juice absorbs into the zucchini when it’s refrigerated!
- I would not recommend freezing.
I've used my Sausage and Basil Marinara Sauce many times to make the sauce for this lasagna but now I'd probably use Rao's Pasta Sauce (affiliate link) for even less carbs. You can add cooked Italian Sausage and chopped fresh basil to the sauce when you simmer it if you prefer. (Nutritional information does not include optional sausage and is calculated using the low-carb sauce I recommend.)
You need enough zucchini slices to make two layers, be careful not to cut the zucchini too thin.
It’s important to use a dish that’s fairly deep for this recipe. I used my new lasagna pan that was 12.5″ x 10″ and 3″ deep, which worked perfectly.
This recipe created by Kalyn.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 289Total Fat: 17gSaturated Fat: 7.7gUnsaturated Fat: 7.4gCholesterol: 137mgSodium: 999mgCarbohydrates: 12gFiber: 2.5gSugar: 7.9gProtein: 21g
Nutrition information is automatically calculated by the Recipe Plug-In I am using. I am not a nutritionist and cannot guarantee 100% accuracy, since many variables affect those calculations.
Low-Carb Diet / Low-Glycemic Diet / South Beach Diet Suggestions:
Grilled Zucchini Lasagna will be much lower in carbs than traditional lasagna when it’s made with low-sugar pasta sauce like Rao’s Pasta Sauce (affiliate link). However even low-sugar sauce has some carbs and there are carbs in the cottage cheese, so this recipe is probably not Keto. For anyone who’s following the original South Beach Diet, this should be made with reduced fat dairy products for South Beach. This does have a fairly generous amount of cheese, so even though this would be okay for any phase of South Beach, it’s probably a personal choice treat for Phase One.
Find More Recipes Like This One:
Check out Summer Squash Recipes for more ideas to use that zucchini or use Oven Dinners to find more recipes like this one! Use the Diet Type Index to find more recipes suitable for a specific eating plan. You might also like to follow Kalyn’s Kitchen on Pinterest, on Facebook, or on Instagram to see all the good recipes I’m sharing there.
64 Comments on “Grilled Zucchini Lasagna (Video)”
Do the seeds have to be removed from the zucchini?
I haven’t ever made this with zucchini that had huge seeds, and I’m guessing zucchini with large tough seeds wouldn’t be suitable for the recipe. Small tender seeds will be fine. I haven’t ever removed the seeds.
I would like to know if I can use ricotta cheese instead of cottage. It is less soupy. Do you think it would work out?
Yes, I think ricotta cheese will be great in this.
I have made this twice now using Ricotta and all I did was reduce the eggs by 1. It is a delicious recipe, thank you Kalyn.
Ed, so glad to hear you are enjoying it!
We made this last night and it was absolutely delicious! Pretty much followed your recipe exactly – no Rao’s (my favorite marinara), unfortunately, but the bought sauce we used was still delicious – except we lost electricity about half way through (our neighbor managed to mow down the electric lines. How? That’s anyone’s guess.). When the electricity came back on, we forgot that the oven heats up with both the bottom and top heat sources. We ended up with a very brown cheesy crust on top. And it was a happy mistake because it was absolutely delicious! This will be a regular, especially in summer when the garden bounty of zucchini is almost overwhelming. Thank you!
That sounds like quite an adventure! So glad it still worked out and that you enjoyed it!
I make this several times each summer. It’s a family favorite. ‘This year there were reasons I did not want to grill. I just seared the slices on my stove top flat grill. No grill marks, just browned, but who cares? No one sees the grill marks anyway. Definitely better 2nd day.
And I used chicken Italian sausage too. 1/2 hot and 1/2 mild.
So glad you’re enjoying the recipe! Thanks for sharing your tips!
Made this last night and it was SO delicious. My teenager daughter and husband loved it too. I made it with Italian chicken sausage and minced chicken (1/2 and 1/2). Will definitely be making this again, thanks!
So happy to hear you enjoyed it!
Could I prepare this ahead of time, and freeze it? Then bake later.
I haven't frozen it, either cooked or uncooked, but truthfully I don't think the zucchini will freeze that well.
Amazing! Loving it!
looks great! and healthier with zucchini that oasta!
Katherine, I'm glad the improved instructions are helpful. Yes, you could use ricotta but I would still mix the eggs into it because they really help hold this together.
Thanks for re-posting this. It clarified some things for me. However, one question. Why cottage cheese and not ricotta? Would it change anything if I use ricotta?
I did it with 1/2 ricotta, 1/2 cottage cheese, and the eggs as instructed. Worked fine.
It might work without the egg, but the layers just won't stay together quite as well. I think it would be worth a try!
I would love to make this, but my son is allergic to eggs. Any suggestions?