Grain Free Lasagna Recipe
- Posted on September 1, 2016
- in All Recipes (Gluten|Grain|Soy Free), Blog Posts, Dairy Free Recipes (+Gluten|Grain|Soy-Free), Low Carb & Keto, Main Dish Recipes (Gluten/Grain/Soy/Dairy-Free; Paleo), Paleo Recipes, Vegetarian Recipes
- by GGF Gourmet
This time of year always feels like such an abundant blessing. The tiny seedlings and tender plants that were planted in my garden just a few months ago are suddenly bursting with their full harvest.
And just as I have come to enjoy sharing out the abundance of my gardens, others are doing the same with me. I laugh every time I receive something out of the ordinary, because I’m careful to plant only the things that I really like in my own garden (on purpose!) Occasionally I’ll be forced to venture into new territory, and I’m often pleasantly surprised with the results. Such was the case with this eggplant, gifted to me by a friend.
The last time I “messed around” with eggplant, I was less than thrilled. The texture in the middle is a struggle for me, and the taste is just, well, “meh.” How could I use it differently this time, I wondered!
Grain free lasagna? Yes! I was genuinely surprised and pleased at how well it became the “noodles” for a grain free lasagna! I love to make meals that can be prepared for the week ahead, and this one is a definite winner!
Since I’m always trying to sneak in an extra dose of veggies, I was also surprised to find that eggplant is actually a fruit (insert sad face). However, eggplant is rich in fiber, low in starch and also considered low carb, so when comparing “noodle” options, this one ranks pretty high (insert happy face!)
One note: I wasn’t sure if I was supposed to peel the eggplant or not, so I chose not to. The skin is a bit tough, but after roasting it was tender enough to use in the lasagna without being too chewy, plus the bulk of the antioxidants and nutrients are housed in that deep purple layer of the skin. Try to get it from an organic farmer so that you don’t have to be concerned with pesticides (buying local is always best!)
- Are you dairy-free or strict Paleo? Use a cashew cheese base instead of the cottage/ricotta mixture.
- Avoiding nightshades? Use sliced zucchini in place of the eggplant, and make a white sauce instead of marinara.
- Are you vegetarian? Use ground zucchini in place of the meat sauce.
Let me know if you enjoy this recipe!
-Jen of The GGF Gourmet
- 1-2 eggplants, sliced 1/2"-3/4" thick (need a yield of 8 slices)
- 2-3 Tablespoons olive oil
- 1 15-16 oz. container ricotta or cottage cheese (drained)
- 3 eggs
- 1/2 cup parmesan cheese
- 2 Tablespoons oregano
- 2 teaspoons sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 cup fresh spinach leaves (optional)
- 1 cup marinara sauce (time-saving tip: use Aldi's organic basil spaghetti sauce - it's grain free and soy free!)
- 1-2 cups meat sauce (I use our family recipe, but you don't have one, just brown some ground beef, oregano, and garlic salt; add some fresh or canned tomatoes and simmer for an hour)
- 4-5 slices of mozzarella, Monterey jack or other white cheese of preference (shredded is fine, but shred from bar cheese - the commercial varieties often contain corn starch, potato starch, or other fillers to keep it from sticking together)
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Arrange sliced eggplant on cookie sheet, using parchment paper if available.
- Brush slices of eggplant with olive oil on both sides and sprinkle with salt & pepper.
- Roast for 10-12 minutes; turn slices over and roast for another 10-12 minutes or until soft and lightly golden browned.
- While eggplant is roasting, prepare an 8x8 baking dish by greasing lightly with olive oil.
- Place 1/2 cup of marinara sauce in the bottom of the dish.
- In a small bowl, combine the ricotta/cottage cheese, parmesan cheese, oregano, sea salt & black pepper; set aside.
- Once roasted, lay 4 of the eggplant slices on top of the marinara sauce in the baking dish and lower the oven temperature to 350 degrees.
- Add about half of the ricotta/cottage cheese mixture on top of the eggplant slices, followed by a layer of meat sauce.
- Place leaves of fresh spinach across the meat sauce (optional but delicious!)
- Lay another 4 eggplant slices on top of the meat sauce, followed by the rest of the ricotta/cottage cheese mixture.
- Add the rest of the marinara sauce on top.
- Top with sliced or shredded cheese, and sprinkle with oregano, sea salt, and pepper.
- Bake in oven for 40-45 minutes or until cheese is melted and lightly browned on top.