Zucchini Lasagna

Serves 4-6

Gluten and Dairy Free


4 medium zucchini

1 pound ground beef

24oz of marinara sauce (I used Rao's)

8oz vegan mozzarella cheese (I used Miyoko's)

1/2 chopped onion

3 garlic cloves, minced

2 tablespoons olive oil

1/4 tsp red pepper flakes

1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese

1 cup chopped fresh basil

salt and black pepper

for the pesto

1/3 cup pine nuts

2 cups of basil

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

3 garlic cloves, minced

Juice from half a lemon (about 2 tbsp)

1/2 tsp salt

2 tbsp water (add as needed to blend)


  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Slice the zucchini into thin ribbons (ideally using a mandoline slicer), and line slices on a large baking sheet covered with paper towels. Sprinkle salt on each layer of zucchini and top it with another layer of paper towels. Repeat until you have sliced all of the zucchini and press down on the layers to absorb excess water.
  2. Bake the zucchini in the oven on large baking sheets for 6-8 minutes (you can also cook them on the stovetop for a few minutes to drain excess water).
  3. Meanwhile, heat a large skillet over medium heat and add the olive oil, garlic, diced onion and red pepper flakes. SauteƩ for about 5 minutes or until fragrant, and then add the meat and 1 teaspoon of salt. Brown the meat by using a wooden spoon to break it up into small pieces. Once fully cooked, drain the meat into a colander and add then add the meat and entire jar of pasta sauce back into the pan and allow it to simmer for a few minutes.
  4. For the pesto, add the pine nuts, basil, olive oil, garlic cloves, lemon juice salt and water to a food processor or blender and blend until smooth. Add additional water as needed until you reach a thick, creamy consistency.
  5. Brush a 9x13 baking dish with olive oil and line the bottom of the dish with zucchini slices.
  6. Add about cup of the meat sauce on top and spread it evenly across the layer of zucchini. Add another layer of zucchini on top and then spread the dairy free cheese across the whole layer. Top with another layer of zucchini and then spread 1 cup of pesto on top. Add the final layer of zucchini and then top with 1 more cup of the meat sauce.
  7. Bake uncovered for 40 min and allow it to cool for 10 min. Top with shredded parmesan and basil leaves and serve warm.