Replacing the pasta with zucchini in this Skillet Zucchini Lasagna recipe makes a delicious, easy-to-assemble, gluten-free dish for family meals.
One of the things I love most about summer, along with garden flowers, is the great selection of fresh fruit and vegetables. Going to our farmers market is truly a delight. Here in the midwest, it’s zucchini season, so I figured it was the perfect time to whip up some zucchini lasagna.
Zucchini lasagna is the same as traditional lasagna, except the pasta is replaced with long slices of zucchini. The bigger the zucchini, the bigger the slices! This can be a vegetarian dish by eliminating the meat in the pasta sauce. It’s also gluten-free.
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Skillet Zucchini Lasagna Tips:
- If you don’t have a cast iron skillet, any baking pan can be used.
- I used a jar of Prego pasta sauce, but any kind of sauce (especially homemade) would be good.
- The measurements listed in the recipe card are guidelines. Just adjust the ingredient amounts to the size of your pan.
- I sliced my zucchini with a large knife. It’s a little tricky to slice the zucchini the long way, so take your time and watch your fingers! If you have a mandoline slicer, that would work as well.
- When you place the paper towel over the salted zucchini slices, the moisture will start to soak through immediately. Press the paper towel into the zucchini to drain out even more moisture.
As always, I want to be completely honest about this recipe. It is delicious. It has so much taste and the basil gives it a lovely freshness. It is not, however, the prettiest thing to serve. It’s definitely necessary to let the lasagna rest for at least 10 to 15 minutes when it comes out of the oven. It’s also vital that you don’t skip the first step where the zucchini slices are drained on paper towel. Even with doing these two things, there is still extra moisture that appears when you cut the first piece. That’s just the nature of zucchini. After removing the first piece, let it drain for a minute or two, and then continue to cut your pieces.
When I was doing my research for this recipe, I read where some cooks grill the zucchini slices before they assemble the lasagna. This sounded like a lot of extra work, so I chose to skip that and take my chances. This skillet zucchini lasagna has a lighter, fresher taste than a traditional recipe and using zucchini eliminates the pasta, plus adds a helping of vegetables. And in my book, those are two very good things!
Skillet Zucchini Lasagna Recipe
- 4 medium zucchini
- 1 24 oz. jar pasta sauce
- 1/2 to 1 lb. ground beef, chicken, or turkey if desired
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 heaping tablespoon Fresh basil chopped
- 1 16 oz. container ricotta cheese
- 1 Egg
- 3/4 cup shredded parmesan cheese
- 3 cups shredded mozzarella
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Slice zucchini the long way, about 1/8 inch thick.
- Place zucchini slices on paper towel. Sprinkle liberally with salt. Cover with more paper towel. Let sit for 10 minutes.
- While zucchini is draining, prepare sauce.
- If you are using meat, brown it in a saucepan and drain. If not, go to the next step.
- Combine meat (if using,) pasta sauce, garlic powder, and chopped basil. Stir to combine. Set aside.
- In a medium bowl, combine ricotta cheese, egg, and parmesan cheese.
- Lightly coat a 12 inch heavy skillet with olive oil.
- Spread half of the pasta sauce/meat mixture on bottom of skillet.
- Add zucchini slices in one layer.
- Spread half the ricotta mixture over the zucchini.
- Top ricotta with half the mozzarella.
- Repeat the layering steps: sauce/meat, zucchini, ricotta mixture, mozzarella.
- Bake covered for 25 minutes.
- Remove cover and bake 10 minutes more. Cheese should be lightly browned and edges should be bubbly.
- Remove from oven and let sit 10 to 15 minutes.
- Slice and serve.