Don't Pass Up the PASTA!
Pasta has gotten a very bad name lately. It normally is high in carbs and light on nutrition, but it is just so satisfying!
The trick to this recipe is a very thin whole wheat pasta which requires no advance cooking. We have replaced 2 layers of this lasagna with thinly sliced zucchini to mimic the pasta layers. This nets out to less than one ounce of pasta per serving.
Here are some healthy versions of pasta dishes. Lots of new pastas on the market have increased protein, fiber, whole grains and some even made out of lentils and chickpeas!
I find that I can use half the pasta in a dish and double up on the veggies. A spiralizer really helps in shredding veggies for pasta dishes.
- 4 ounces thin uncooked Whole Wheat Lasagna
- (Delallo Whole Wheat works well)
- 4 cups (1 quart) marinara sauce (homemade or store-bought)
- 1¾ cups ricotta cheese (14 oz. approximately- low or full fat)
- ⅓ pound Chicken Italian Sausage,
- raw (approximately 2 links) sweet or hot
- 1 10-oz. box frozen chopped spinach,
- thawed and squeezed dry
- ½ cup freshly shredded parmesan
- 1 egg, lightly whisked
- ¼ cup chopped onions
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- ⅛ tsp. grated fresh nutmeg
- 2 medium zucchinis, sliced lengthwise in ⅛ inch strips
- 2 cups shredded mozzarella, skim
- Preheat oven to 350?.
- Spray an 8x8-inch casserole with nonstick spray. Pour in ½ cup marinara sauce and spread it out. Set aside.
- In a skillet, brown crumbled chicken sausage. Add remaining marinara sauce and ½ cup water to the pan. Simmer for 10 minutes.
- In a small bowl, combine spinach, ricotta cheese, egg, parmesan, nutmeg, onion and garlic.
- Place one layer of uncooked lasagna noodles over marinara in a casserole dish. Break the noodles to fit.
- Add ⅓ of cheese spinach mixture and spread evenly. Top with ¼ of the meat sauce. Spread evenly. Sprinkle with ½ cup mozzarella.
- Top with a layer of zucchini strips. Top with ⅓ cheese spinach, ¼ meat sauce and top with ½ cup mozzarella. Top with remaining zucchini strips, remaining spinach cheese, ¼ of the meat mixture.
- Top with 2 layers of lasagna noodles, the remaining meat sauce, and one cup mozzarella.
- Top casserole with nonstick (or foil sprayed with oil to avoid sticking) foil and bake for 40 minutes. Remove foil and bake for another 20 minutes until bubbly and brown.