There are many reasons to avoid lasagna…it’s complicated to prepare, a four-digit calorie count, the silent g, the loud g (luten), square meals aren’t your thing.

What if I told you delicious lasagna can be gluten-free, low cal possible and you can whip it up rather quickly, and remarkably quickly when you consider the 120-second leftover reheat?

a few ingredients

Let me take a moment to address GF for those of us who do not need to medically avoid gluten. A few weeks back, we told you about a simple elimination diet we tried to help cleanse our bodies of holiday food evils. What surprised us most about this week-long effort, was it’s effect on cognition and energy. We concluded that gluten has been a culprit in our eating habits.  Who knew? Ever since, we’ve been conscious about gluten intake, which led to working out this recipe with GF pasta.

cheesy

Obvi, if you’re a gluten glutton, make this with the noodle of your choice. I dare my doubting friends who insist that their kids can tell the difference between wheat pastas and GF, and you know who you are, to try this recipe for the family.  True, GF thin noodles or shape pastas can fall apart. We found this rice-based product at Whole Foods, which promised not mushy on the box – not the most glib sales pitch, but clear.

easy

Regardless of your noodle party preference, the remainder of the recipe found first in Cooking Light and tweaked ever so slightly in my kitchen, is worth it.  Most healthier versions of lasagna rely on additional vegetables or bland protein such as turkey.  This classic recipe reduces calories by using lower fat cheeses and beef coming in at an impressive 375 calories per serving.

healthy

Our recipe works for about 4-6 servings or more if you have tiny eaters or if you cut into square-averse triangles.  I say, double up the recipe and freeze the remainder.

square meal, square deal

skinny classic lasagna

preptime: 20 minutes                                            servings 4-6

baketime:  40 minutes

  • 1 1/2 cups fat-free ricotta cheese
  • 6 oz part-skim mozzarella cheese, shredded (about 1 1/2 cups)
  • 1/4 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves, divided
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 Tbsp finely chopped fresh oregano
  • 5 garlic cloves, minced and divided
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 12 oz extra-lean ground beef (93% lean)
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper
  • 1 (25-oz) jar lower-sodium marinara sauce
  • Cooking spray
  • 6 gluten-free lasagna noodles, cooked
  • 1 oz Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, grated (about 1/4 cup)

1. Preheat oven to 375°.

2. Coat a broiler-safe 11 x 7–inch glass or ceramic baking dish with cooking spray

3. Combine ricotta, 1/2 cup mozzarella, 2 Tbsp parsley, butter, oregano, 1 garlic clove, and egg; set aside.

4. Place ground beef in a large non­stick skillet over medium-high heat; sprinkle with peppers and remaining 4 garlic cloves. Cook for 9 minutes or until beef is browned, stirring to crumble.

5. Drain (you don’t want mushy noodles). 

6. Return beef mixture to pan; stir in marinara sauce, and remove from heat.

7. Spread 1/2 cup meat sauce in bottom of baking dish.

8. Layer with noodles.  Recipe suggests:  “cut bottom third off each noodle to form 6 long and 6 short noodles; cut short noodles in half to form 12 pieces. Arrange 2 long noodles along outside edges of dish; arrange 4 short noodle pieces along center of dish.” which seemed like Pythagorean’s theorem, so I layered across, not up the sides, without overlap, and had ample noodle coverage for each layer.

9. Top that first layer of noodles with 1 cup meat sauce, then add another layer of noodles, then all of ricotta mixture, and 1 cup meat sauce. Arrange the remaining remaining noodle pieces on top.

10. Spread remaining meat sauce over top noodles.

11. Sprinkle evenly with remaining 4 oz (1 cup) mozzarella cheese and Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese.

12. Cover with foil coated with cooking spray.

13. Bake at 375° for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake for an additional 10 minutes or until bubbly.

14. Preheat broiler to high. (Keep lasagna in oven.)

15. Broil lasagna for 1 to 2 minutes or until cheese is golden brown and sauce is bubbly.

16. Remove from oven; let stand 10 minutes. Sprinkle with remaining 2 tablespoons parsley; cut into 6 pieces.

crunchtimewarp:

  • Use pre-chopped garlic and pre-shredded cheeses.
  • Use 3/4 tsp dried oregano instead of fresh.

recipe adapted from Cooking Light magazine and provided by your friends at crunchtimefood.com

1 Comment

  1. Suchi says Feb 18th 2015 9:01 pm

    Sherri, just wanted to say hi! I had a great time with you over the weekend. I love to cook and and love cooking high quality tasty food. I had to check out your blog! Love it!!! Can’t wait to check your recipes.
    Best,
    Suchi

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