Kalyn's Kitchen

Grilled Zucchini Lasagna

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!

Grilled Zucchini Low-Carb Lasagna with Italian Sausage, Tomato, and Basil Sauce found on KalynsKitchen.com

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! 

Grilled Zucchini Low-Carb Lasagna process shots collage

How to Make Grilled Zucchini Lasagna:

(Scroll down for complete printable recipe plus nutritional information.)

  1. I use lengthwise slices of zucchini about 5/8 inch thick.
  2. Brush the zucchini slices on both sides with olive oil, adding a sprinkle of Italian Herb Blend if you’d like.
  3. 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.
  4. 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.)
  5. 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.
  6. Beat the eggs and then mix in the cottage cheese. (Don’t skip the eggs; they help hold this together.)
  7. Spray the baking dish with olive oil or non-stick spray and then make a layer of the grilled zucchini.
  8. Cover that with half the sauce, about 1 cups of the thick sauce, or a little more if you didn’t simmer it.
  9. Then make a layer with half the cottage cheese mixture, followed by a layer with half the cheese. 
  10. Repeat to make another layer each of grilled zucchini, sauce, cottage cheese-egg mixture, and cheese.
  11. 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.
  12. This will be juicier than regular lasagna, so let it sit at least 10-15 minutes before cutting.

Grilled Zucchini Low-Carb Lasagna with Italian Sausage, Tomato, and Basil Sauce found on KalynsKitchen.com

More Recipes to Use Up the Zucchini:

Slow Cooker and Instant Pot Zucchini Recipes ~ Slow Cooker or Pressure Cooker
Instant Pot Ratatouille
Low-Carb Salads with Zucchini
Flourless Zucchini Muffins
Six Spectacular Low-Carb Soups with Zucchini 

Weekend Food Prep:

This recipe has been added to a new category called Weekend Food Prep  to help you find recipes you can prep or cook on the weekend and eat during the week!

Grilled Zucchini Low-Carb Lasagna with Italian Sausage, Tomato, and Basil Sauce found on KalynsKitchen.com

Grilled Zucchini Lasagna

Yield 8 servings
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 40 minutes

Thick slices of barely-grilled zucchini replace the noodles in this Grilled Zucchini Low-Carb Lasagna.

Ingredients

Ingredients:

  • 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

Instructions

  1. 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.
  2. 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.
  3. While grill heats, cut zucchini into slices about 5/8 inch thick.
  4. Brush both sides of zucchini lightly with olive oil and sprinkle with Italian Herb Seasoning (affiliate link) if using.
  5. Grill zucchini slices until they’re lightly browned on both sides, but not fully cooked, about 3-4 minutes per side.
  6. 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.)
  7. Beat eggs in small bowl, then stir in cottage cheese.
  8. Spray heavy ceramic or glass deep lasagna dish with non-stick spray or olive oil.
  9. 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.
  10. Top with second layer of grilled lasagna slices, sauce, cottage cheese-egg mixture, and remaining cheese.
  11. 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.)
  12. 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.)
  13. 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!
  14. I would not recommend freezing.

Notes

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.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

8

Serving Size:

1

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.

If you make this recipe I'd love to hear how it turns out. Leave a star rating or share on social media with the hashtag #KALYNSKITCHEN, thanks!

Grilled Zucchini Lasagna thumbnail image of finished lasagna on serving plate

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 Zucchini Recipes for more ideas to use that zucchini or use Oven Dinners to find more recipes like this one!Use the Recipes by Diet Type photo index pages to find more recipes suitable for a specific eating plan. You might also like to Follow Kalyn’s Kitchen on Pinterest to see all the good recipes I’m sharing there.

Pinterest image of Grilled Zucchini Lasagna

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    75 Comments on “Grilled Zucchini Lasagna”

  1. Wow…this looks so good..can’t wait to try this. Thanks, eileen

  2. What a grand idea….and hey…as long as there’s italian sausage…I’m all over this!

  3. Kalyn, this is a wonderful substitution – I’m always looking for stuff that replaces rice and flour.

  4. love this idea – now I just wish I had a giant zucchini to need to use up!

  5. That’s a great idea. Never heard of it, but definitely worth a try. It really does look great.

  6. this sounds amazing. I just found an Italian deli in my town that makes the most delicious hot Italian sausage, and I still can’t get enough of the summer’s zucchini. i might have to set aside time this weekend to make this.

  7. This is a naturally gluten-free lasagna alternative- what a fab idea, Kalyn! And it sounds rich without being heavy.

  8. Ooooh, a lovely gluten free lasagna dish. I love how cheesy it is and the step of grilling zucchini just makes it all the better. YUM!

  9. Hey, we’re channeling each other! I did it with grilled eggplant. Should have thought of zucchini, too. Yours looks good! 🙂

  10. This sounds good! My husband is working on losing weight so he's eating a lower carb diet. I'm always on the lookout for new recipes. Thanks for sharing this simple & creative idea! I'll try it the next time I get a zucchini.
    ~ Leanne

  11. What a great idea! I’m kicking myself for not planting zukes this year.

  12. Wow, that looks delicious!

    AND…I gave you an award! Check out my site.

  13. Very clever idea! I think this is going to feature on our dinner table soon.

  14. Peter, it really is delicious. Even the parents gave it a thumbs up.

    Maria, thanks. Glad you’re enjoying the eggplant.

    Cathy, it’s a great substitute for noodles.

    Carolyn, you need a rather thick sauce or it will be watery. I think grilling the zucchini adds a lot. I have frozen it, and it’s definitely better freshly made but not too bad frozen as long as you use a thick sauce and grill first.

    • I’m so glad I can freeze it if the sauce is thick and the zucchini grilled, which I always do. It is a delicious recipe and I want to put it in individual freezer dishes to take to a friend going through chemo. Then she can pull one out when she is hungry. I have made this several times and love the recipe as I do many of yours. I love your focus on veggies.

  15. Back some years ago when the idea was first circulated to use zucchini instead of pasta, I tried a recipe or two and was very disappointed. But I think it was the SAUCE I was disappointed in. Now that just the hint of Autumn is in the air I am ready to do more of this kind of cooking. Kalyn – have you frozen this? Does the zucchini become watery when you do? Thanks for the reminder to make this casserole, and I’ll definitely use your method – particularly of grilling the zucchini (more flavor). Thanks!

  16. WOW now that is my kind of lasagna – Love that you use Zucchini as the super star instead of the high carb counterpart. Very creative and what a wonderful blend of flavors.

  17. Great looking lasagna! I love the use of zucchini!
    And we are in love with white eggplant now. Thanks again!

  18. Very creative and no flavour is compromised here!

  19. Tanna, I think you will have to blame me! When I made this recently I was sure I’d already posted the recipe, but nope, it wasn’t there. So now the idea is officially recorded on the blog.

  20. Not sure if I should be upset with my mind or with you. If I’ve seen this here before then we can blame my sieve like brain. If you’ve just been keeping this underwraps, then I’ll blame you. Zucchini becomes pasta – radically wonderful!!
    Beautiful lasagna serving Kalyn.