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Zucchini Lasagna Roll Ups

Zucchini Lasagna Roll Ups

I was inspired to make these zucchini lasagna roll-ups from a bunch of recipes I’ve seen online. I made a simple marinara sauce that simmered for an hour before preparing the zucchini lasagna roll-ups but you can use jarred sauce if you’re rushed for time. I sauteed some onion, sausage, and garlic together, and once the mixture cooled I combined it with some creamy ricotta, egg, fresh basil, parmesan, and nutmeg. I used a vegetable peeler to slice the zucchini very thin so it would be pliable enough to roll them with the filling but you can also use a mandolin. After salting the zucchini, I spread out the ricotta/sausage mixture and a bit of mozzarella cheese on each slice before rolling them up and baking them in the tomato sauce. I kept it on the healthy side but you could make this recipe more decadent by adding extra mozzarella cheese on top before baking. These little zucchini lasagna roll-ups take time to make but they are worth the extra effort. This is a healthy and low-carb recipe that my entire family enjoyed. My daughter and I loved them more than regular lasagna roll-ups, my husband said they were really good and my son liked them but said he prefers roll-ups with pasta. I served these little beauties with steamed artichokes, a crisp salad, and freshly baked bread.

Zucchini Lasagna Roll Ups

How to Make Zucchini Lasagna Roll-Ups

Make the sauce by melting the butter and olive oil in a small Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until really softened, about 10 minutes. Add the minced garlic and crushed red pepper flakes and cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute.

Add the blended can of tomatoes to the Dutch oven. Reduce the heat and simmer for about 45 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove lid and allow to simmer for 15 additional minutes.

Remove from the heat. Taste and season with sea salt and freshly cracked pepper, to taste along with a pinch of sugar if it needs it. Bury the whole sprigs of basil in the sauce and set aside to allow the flavors to mingle for 30 minutes. Remove sprigs before using the sauce.

Prepare the zucchini by slicing it thinly with a mandolin or vegetable peeler. Place the zucchini on a kitchen towel or a few paper towels then sprinkle both sides of all the zucchini with a bit of salt. Allow the slices to sit for 30 minutes while you prepare the filling. This step will remove excess moisture from the zucchini.

Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring often, for 3 minutes, or until tender. Add the ground sausage and cook, breaking up into crumbles and stirring occasionally, for 4-5 minutes. Add the minced garlic and cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute. Drain excess fat from the pan and set it aside to cool.

Combine the ricotta cheese, egg, parmesan cheese, fresh basil, and a dash of nutmeg then season with sea salt and freshly cracked pepper, to taste. Stir until well combined. Add the cooled sausage mixture and mix well.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

Pour most of the tomato sauce in a 10-inch cast iron skillet or small baking dish.

Wipe off the excess salt from the zucchini then spread 1 tablespoon of ricotta/sausage mixture on each zucchini slice. Top the mixture with 1 tablespoon of shredded mozzarella cheese. Roll up and place in the prepared skillet.

Zucchini Lasagna Roll Ups

Place into the oven and bake for 20-25 minutes, or until the roll-ups are heated through.

Remove from the oven and sprinkle the top with fresh basil sprinkled. Serve with parmesan and remaining sauce on the side. 

Zucchini Lasagna Roll Ups

Zucchini Lasagna Roll Ups

Zucchini Lasagna Roll Ups

Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 35 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours 5 minutes
Course: Main
Cuisine: Italian
Servings: 4
Author: Pam

Ingredients

Simple Tomato & Basil Sauce:

  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • ½ yellow onion, diced finely
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • Pinch of crushed red pepper flakes, to taste
  • 1 (28 oz) can of good whole tomatoes, pureed with a hand immersion blender
  • Sea salt and freshly cracked pepper, to taste
  • Pinch of sugar, if needed
  • 3 whole sprigs of fresh basil

Zucchini Lasagna Roll Ups:

  • 3 zucchini, trimmed, sliced lengthwise into 24 ⅛-inch-thick strips *use a mandolin or vegetable peeler
  • salt, to taste
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • ¼ yellow onion, diced finely
  • ½ lb pork Italian sausage
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 cup ricotta cheese
  • 1 egg, well beaten
  • ¼ cup Parmesan cheese, finely grated
  • ¼ cup fresh basil leaves, chopped
  • Sea salt and freshly cracked pepper, to taste
  • Dash of nutmeg, freshly grated
  • ¾ cup mozzarella cheese, shredded

Instructions

  • Make the sauce by melting the butter and olive oil in a small Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until really softened, about 10 minutes.
  • Add the minced garlic and crushed red pepper flakes and cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute.
  • Add the blended can of tomatoes to the Dutch oven. Reduce the heat and simmer for about 45 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove lid and allow to simmer for 15 additional minutes. 
  • Remove from the heat. Taste and season with sea salt and freshly cracked pepper, to taste along with a pinch of sugar if it needs it.
  • Bury the whole sprigs of basil in the sauce and set aside to allow the flavors to mingle for 30 minutes. Remove sprigs before using the sauce.
  • Prepare the zucchini by slicing it thinly with a mandolin or vegetable peeler. Place the zucchini on a kitchen towel or a few paper towels then sprinkle both sides of all the zucchini evenly with 1/4 tsp of salt. Allow the slices to sit for 30 minutes while you prepare the filling. This step will remove excess moisture from the zucchini.
  • Make the filling by heating the olive oil in a cast iron skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring often, for 3 minutes, or until tender.
  • Add the ground sausage and cook, breaking up into crumbles and stirring occasionally, for 4-5 minutes.
  • Add the minced garlic and cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute. Drain excess fat from the pan and set it aside to cool. 
  • Combine the ricotta cheese, egg, parmesan cheese, fresh basil, and a dash of nutmeg then season with sea salt and freshly cracked pepper, to taste.
  • Stir until well combined. Add the cooled sausage mixture and mix well. 
  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. 
  • Pour most of the tomato sauce in a 10-inch cast iron skillet or small baking dish. 
  • Wipe off the excess salt from the zucchini then spread 1 tablespoon of ricotta/sausage mixture on each zucchini slice.
  • Top the mixture with 1 tablespoon of shredded mozzarella cheese. Roll up and place in the prepared skillet
  • Place into the oven and bake for 20-25 minutes, or until the roll-ups are heated through. 
  • Remove from the oven and sprinkle the top with fresh basil sprinkled. Serve with parmesan and remaining sauce on the side. 
DID YOU MAKE THIS RECIPE?Tag @4loveofcooking on instagram and hashtag it #4loveofcooking

 

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Recipe Rating




9 Comments

  1. 4 stars
    Made these for dinner and they were delicious! As we are watching our salt intake, I didn’t salt the zucchini slices but rather stuck them under the broiler in the low part of the oven For ten minutes while I continued put the filling together. This made the slices soft and pliable, removed some of their moisture and gave them a jump start on the cooking process.