Zucchini Quinoa Lasagna

I’ll be honest: I haven’t done much cooking this summer. Between busy weekends, spending a lot of time with RM and cooking with him, having things after work and really just not having motivation to cook in the heat, I’ve been subbing out real meals with easy substitution meals (eggs have been a big hit here). But, a few weeks ago I made time on a Sunday night to make a recipe I found in the Hannaford’s “Fresh” Magazine. Have you ever read through one of those magazines? They are free with a purchase of $20 or $25 or more and always have the best recipes in them!

The recipe was really easy to follow and not overly labor-intensive (does anyone else feel like Cooking Light recipes are super labor intensive??) and I was a big fan of all of the ingredients!

zucchini quinoa lasagna


Zucchini Quinoa Lasagna

Ingredients (from Hannaford’s Fresh Magazine- Zucchini Quinoa Lasagna)

  • 2 large zucchini
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • 1/2 cup tomato sauce
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 11/2 tsp. dried oregano
  • 2 Tbsp. reduced-fat cream cheese
  • 1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper, or to taste
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped
  • 1 (23 to 26 oz.) jar marinara sauce
  • 1 (8 oz.) pkg. part-skim shredded mozzarella cheese



1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Prepare the zucchini: Trim ends. Use a mandolin slicer or very sharp knife to slice zucchini lengthwise into long, flat noodles.

2. Layer zucchini on paper towels and sprinkle with salt, then cover with more paper towels to absorb moisture. Let noodles sit while you prepare the quinoa.IMG_7748

3. In a large saucepan, combine quinoa, broth, tomato sauce, onion, garlic, and oregano and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Once boiling, cover and reduce heat to low. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until liquid is absorbed, about 15 to 20 minutes.


4. Gently stir in cream cheese, pepper, and basil until incorporated.

5. Assemble the lasagna: Pour enough marinara in the bottom of an 8-by-8-inch pan just to cover the bottom. Wipe zucchini slices dry and lay about 4 slices over the sauce. Spread half the quinoa in a layer over the zucchini, then sprinkle with a third of the mozzarella cheese. Top with a third of the remaining sauce, then another layer of zucchini, remaining quinoa, half the remaining cheese, and half the remaining sauce. Top with a final layer of zucchini. Pour on remaining sauce and sprinkle with remaining cheese.




6. Cover pan with foil and bake until zucchini is tender and cheese is brown and bubbling, about 35 to 40 minutes. Remove foil during the last 5 to 10 minutes of cooking so cheese will brown. Let rest for 10 minutes, then slice into rectangles and serve.

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Source: Hannaford fresh Magazine, May – June 2014

The only thing that I would change about this recipe is subbing out the 2 tbsp of cream cheese for a wedge of Laughing Cow Cheese. I thought the quinoa/cheese/sauce mixture was a little bland and think that by adding a flavored cheese the flavor would have been intensified. I would also add more seasoning to the mixture to jazz it up.  Otherwise, I followed the recipe pretty much to a T and really enjoyed eating it throughout the week.

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Although there’s protein in quinoa, if you wanted to add a little extra you could certainly add in some ground chicken or turkey or beef- I think that would be delicious!

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If you’re looking for other lasagna recipes, check these out:
Summer Squash and Zucchini Lasagna
Caramelized Onions, Mushrooms, Kale & Ground Turkey Lasagna
Butternut Squash, Kale and Goat Cheese Lasagna! (the pictures aren’t showing up in this post for some reason- I have to fix it!)

The Zucchini and Summer Squash Lasagna recipe is quite possibly the most popular recipe on this little blog!

zucchini quinoa lasagna 5

Questions for you: What’s your favorite type of lasagna? Do you like the traditional version or do you like to change things up? Where do you get most of your recipes from?

Caramelized Onions, Mushrooms, Kale & Ground Turkey Lasagna

Well, well, well. I have quite the recipe for you today! I’m not sure if I’ve mentioned it before, but I’m not a big fan of Italian food. It’s not that I don’t like it, it’s just that there are so many other things I’d rather eat instead of a big ol’ bowl of pasta. It’s just not something that fills me up and keeps me satisfied.

But, last weekend I got a craving for lasagna. My dad had given me a big container of his homemade sauce and I had been keeping it in the freezer for a time when I knew I’d use it all up. Lasagna was the perfect dish to do that!

Although this lasagna has real noodles instead of vegetable noodles (and, ps, my Zucchini and Summer Squash Lasagna post is probably one of the most popular posts I’ve done. It amazes me to see how many people have repinned it on Pinterest. Seriously. It’s crazy!), I think it’s still relatively healthy since I used whole wheat noodles, part skim ricotta and kale. That makes it healthy, right? 😉

Caramelized Onions, Mushrooms, Kale & Ground Turkey Lasagna

lasagna 2


  • 1/2 – 3/4 lb of lean ground turkey. You can use beef if you’d prefer, or leave the meat out entirely if you want to make it vegetarian!
  • 1 small onion
  • 2 cups of chopped mushrooms
  • 2 big handfuls of kale, rinsed chopped
  • 1/2-3/4 of a container of part skim ricotta (or whatever type you want)
  • 2-4 cups of sauce
  • whole wheat lasagna noodles (I think I used 6 in mine)
  • 1/4-1/2 cup shredded mozzarella
  • seasonings to taste (I used sea salt, pepper, Mrs. Dash, Pampered Chef & oregano)



1. Pre-heat oven to 350*. Brown the ground turkey. I added seasonings as well. I also got to use my new meat utensil that I got from my Pampered Chef party… loved it! If your lasagna noodles need to be cooked before you bake the lasagna, do that now as well.


2. While the meat is cooking, chop your veggies. When the meat has finished cooking, remove it from the pan and add in your onions. I “caramelized” my onions by adding about a tablespoon of honey and a tablespoon of brown sugar, BUT, Elle, who blogs over at Nutritionella recently posted an amazing looking breakfast skillet recipe in which she caramelized onions and if you want REAL caramelized onions, follow her instructions 😉 Once the onions are mostly caramelized, add in the mushrooms. Lastly, add in the kale when the mushrooms have softened.

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3. When the kale is finished cooking, you’re ready to start assembling the lasagna!

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4. I baked mine at 350* for about 30 minutes. Once it looked bubbly, I broiled it for about 5 minutes to get that pretty browned top.

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This was the perfect meal for a Sunday night and as I’ve re-heated it a number of other nights this week, I can say that it only gets better! Casseroles are my favorite “Sunday Night Meal” to make because they are so easy to heat up when I get home from the gym and am starving AND they continuously taste good throughout the week. Some leftovers don’t re-heat well, but casseroles, soups, etc. re-heat so well.

I hope you enjoy this- let me know if you try it!

Questions for you: What’s your favorite type of lasagna? Do you make your own sauce? Kale- yay or nay?