This is a gluten-free and vegetarian lasagna that is much lighter than traditional lasagna, but has all the flavor!
1 1/2 pounds zucchini (I used 6 small zucchinis–if yours are larger you’ll need less)
1 cup quinoa, rinsed well
2 cups water
1 (15 ounce) can tomato sauce
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil, plus a few extra leaves cut into strips for the topping
1 teaspoon dried oregano
8 ounces fresh mozzarella, sliced (or use shredded mozzarella)
salt and pepper, to taste
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
Cut the ends off of your zucchini and slice it length wise into the shape of lasagna noodles. If your zucchini are exceptionally large, you may need to cut it in half width wise first. Lay the zucchini on a clean towel and sprinkle with salt. Let them sit while you prepare the quinoa. This draws the water out of the zucchini so your final dish isn’t too watery.
Place the quinoa and water in a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and cover. Allow to simmer until the water is absorbed, about 12-15 minutes.
In a small bowl, combine the tomato sauce, basil, and oregano. Reserve about 1/2 cup of this and add the rest to the cooked quinoa. Taste and add salt and pepper to taste. (I added 1/2 teaspoon salt and about 1/4 teaspoon pepper. It depends on the saltiness of your tomato sauce.)
Spread 1/4 cup of the reserved tomato sauce to the bottom of a 9×13 glass baking dish. Then add a layer of the zucchini noodles. Top the zucchini noodles with half of the quinoa mixture. Top this with 1/3 of the cheese. Add another layer of zucchini noodles and top with the rest of the quinoa mixture. Add another 1/3 of the cheese. Add one more layer of zucchini noodles and top with the rest of the tomato sauce and cheese.
Bake, covered, in the preheated oven for 30 minutes, until the zucchini is tender and the cheese is melted. If you’d like to brown the cheese, turn on the oven’s broiler for the last few minutes of cooking time. Top with the basil strips, if desired. Enjoy!