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You’re going to love the cheesy, meaty, and saucy layers in this easy keto zucchini lasagna recipe! Much like eggplant lasagna, zucchini noodle lasagna swaps out the flour pasta for nutritious veggie noodles, making it a great keto, low carb, and gluten-free option. Make this zucchini lasagna with meat ahead for a quick dinner that’s sure to satisfy.
What Is Zucchini Lasagna?
This is a no noodle zucchini lasagna! It’s got the traditional layers of lasagna, but instead of traditional pasta sheets, we’re using long, thin strips of zucchini for a keto-approved lasagna that’s just as delicious.
(If you want a more traditional pasta feel, make this keto lasagna instead.)
Why You’ll Love This Keto Zucchini Lasagna Recipe
- Comfort food flavors
- 3 savory layers
- Easy to prep ahead
- Healthy low carb meal the whole family will love
- Just 5.3 grams net carbs per slice
Zucchini Lasagna Ingredients
This section explains how to choose the best ingredients for zucchini noodle lasagna, what each one does in the recipe, and substitution options. For measurements, see the recipe card below.
For the zucchini noodles:
- Zucchini – Thicker zucchini works best, because it makes wider slices for the noodle layer. But any size you can find will do; you just might need more zucchini if yours is very small.
- Olive oil – Olive oil imparts traditional flavor, but you could also use avocado oil if you prefer.
- Sea salt
For the meat sauce:
- Garlic – Use fresh garlic or jarred for convenience.
- Meat – I prefer 85/15 grass-fed ground beef, but any kind you have on hand will work. You can also use ground chicken or turkey if you prefer.
- Marinara sauce – Be sure to use a sugar-free marinara sauce, since many brands have added sugar. You can also change this up by using a pesto sauce, which I did in my original version of this zucchini lasagna recipe, but now I much prefer marinara.
For the cheese filling:
- Ricotta cheese – Use full-fat ricotta for best flavor and texture, and the lowest carbs.
- Parmesan cheese – Use a grated, not shredded, parmesan cheese.
- Egg – Use a large egg.
How To Make Zucchini Lasagna
This section shows how to make zucchini lasagna with meat with step-by-step photos and details about the technique. For full instructions, see the recipe card below.
- Slice zucchini. Use a mandoline to slice zucchini into thin sheets, about 1/4 inch thick.
- Roast zucchini. Arrange zucchini slices in a single layer and brush with olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Roast until soft and mostly dry.
TIP: Dry noodles completely. Pat zucchini with paper towels to soak up extra water or oil.
- Cook meat sauce. Heat oil in saute pan and saute garlic for 30-60 seconds, just until fragrant. Add ground beef and cook for about 10 minutes, until cooked through. Stir in marinara sauce and remove from heat. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Mix cheese filling. Stir together ricotta, parmesan, and egg until combined.
- Assemble. Arrange a layer of zucchini slices on the bottom of baking dish and top with half of the meat sauce. Dollop with ricotta cheese mixture (use half), then spread. Top with half of shredded mozzarella cheese and repeat layers.
- Bake. Since the layers are already cooked, this doesn’t take long. Just bake until the cheese on top is melted and golden.
Tips For The Best Zucchini Noodle Lasagna
- Use a mandoline to slice zucchini. This ensures that your zucchini lasagna noodles are a uniform thickness, so they cook evenly. It’s tough to get the same consistency with a knife.
- Don’t overdo the olive oil on the zucchini noodles. We want them to somewhat dry out during the roasting process, so that the zucchini lasagna doesn’t end up wet. If there is too much oil, the water doesn’t escape as well from the zucchini. Just a light amount of oil is fine.
- Roast the zucchini in a single layer. Make sure the pieces don’t overlap, because this will trap moisture. And, don’t forget to pat them dry at the end.
- Don’t salt the beef. This is different from almost every other recipe that requires cooked ground beef. The marinara has salt, the cheeses are all already salty, and we are salting the zucchini lightly to help get rid of moisture during roasting. The meat doesn’t need extra salt.
- Dollop the ricotta/parmesan mixture in small pieces. This part can be a little challenging to spread, so small pieces make it easier. If you dump it all in one spot in the center, it will be more difficult. The mixture does go into the ground beef below a little as you spread, which is okay.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is zucchini lasagna keto?
Yes, each slice of this zucchini lasagna recipe has just 5.3 grams net carbs. The full nutrition stats can be found below the recipe card.
Is zucchini lasagna gluten-free?
Yes! Because we’re using zucchini as the noodles, this zucchini lasagna is gluten-free.
How to make zucchini lasagna not watery?
A common complaint with low carb zucchini lasagna is that it ends up watery. The key to avoid watery zucchini sheets is to roast them in the oven and pat them dry before assembling the lasagna.
Store any leftover zucchini lasagna in the refrigerator for 3-4 days.
You can also prep ahead by roasting the zucchini noodles, making the meat sauce, and/or stirring together the ricotta cheese layer ahead of time.
Or, assemble the zucchini lasagna and store in refrigerator for a few days or freeze before baking. It can go straight into the oven from the fridge or even the freezer, but you’ll want to bake it at 350 degrees instead of 400, so that the entire dish has the chance to heat through before the cheese on top browns.
Can you freeze zucchini lasagna?
Yes, you can freeze the zucchini lasagna for 2-3 months.
Reheat the lasagna in a 350 degree F oven for best results. You can also microwave it, as it’s not prone to drying out.
More Keto Zucchini Recipes
If you like this lasagna recipe with zucchini instead of noodles, you might also like some of these other low carb zucchini recipes:
Reader Favorite Recipes
The recipe card is below! Readers that made this also viewed these recipes:
Keto Zucchini Lasagna Recipe
The BEST keto zucchini lasagna recipe — EASY and flavorful! See how to make zucchini noodle lasagna that’s cheesy, meaty, saucy, and NOT watery.
Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Tap underlined ingredients to see where to get them. Please turn Safari reader mode OFF to view ingredients.
Tap on the times in the instructions below to start a kitchen timer while you cook.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F (204 degrees C). Line an extra large baking sheet with parchment paper.
Use a mandoline to slice zucchini lengthwise into thin sheets, about 1/4 inch thick.
Arrange the zucchini on the lined baking sheet, in a single layer. Brush both sides with olive oil (use about 2 tablespoons), then sprinkle both sides lightly with sea salt.
Roast the zucchini slices in the oven for 15-20 minutes, until soft and mostly dry.
When done, remove the zucchini from the oven but leave it on at 400. Pat the zucchini with paper towels to soak up any extra water or oil.
Meanwhile, heat the remaining tablespoon of oil in a saute pan or cast iron braiser on the stove over medium-high heat. Add the garlic and saute for 30-60 seconds, until fragrant.
Add the ground beef. Cook for about 10 minutes, until browned. Stir in the marinara sauce and remove from heat. Taste and adjust salt/pepper if needed.
Meanwhile, stir together the ricotta and parmesan cheeses. Stir in the egg.
Arrange a layer of zucchini slices at the bottom of a 9×13 casserole dish. Top with half of the meat sauce. Dollop small pieces of the ricotta cheese mixture, (using half of the total amount), then spread. Finally top with half of the shredded mozzarella. Repeat the layers a second time, with shredded mozzarella last on top.
Bake for 15 minutes, until the cheese on top is melted and golden. Garnish with fresh basil, if desired.
Serving size: 1/12 of the large casserole dish (1/12 of entire recipe)
Amount per serving. Serving size in recipe notes above.
Total Carbs 6.4g
Net Carbs 5.3g
Nutrition facts are provided as a courtesy. Have questions about calculations or why you got a different result? Please see our nutrition policy.
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