Eggplant Zucchini Lasagna with burst cherry tomatoes, creamy pesto ricotta, and fresh basil. This zucchini lasagna recipe is vegetarian, low carb, and perfect for summer entertaining.
Why You'll Love this Eggplant Zucchini Lasagna:
If you're like me and trying to figure out how to use an abundance of summer squash, this recipe is for you. This zucchini lasagna recipe features layers of creamy pesto ricotta, fresh mozzarella, and sweet cherry tomatoes. It's really one of the most delicious uses of ALL peak-summer produce: zucchini, tomatoes, and basil.
And even though it's vegetarian, it's plenty hearty and satisfying. You can serve it as the main entree, or a side dish to complement just about any protein. For example, baked fish, meatballs, or balsamic tofu.
Both kids and adults will love this fresh summertime lasagna. Plus, it makes for some amazing leftovers, so you can enjoy it on repeat!
- Zucchini: You need two large (or 3 medium) zucchinis for this recipe. You want to slice the zucchini crosswise into ½-inch think slices.
- Eggplant: You need one large (or 2 small) globe eggplants for this recipe. Globe eggplants are larger, oblong shaped eggplants with the dark purple shiny skin.
- Tomatoes: One full pint of cherry tomatoes goes into this lasagna, which add a sweet burst of umami. Feel free to use red, golden, or multi-colored tomatoes--whatever looks best!
- Cheese: Whole-milk ricotta and mozzarella cheese make up the cheesy dynamic duo in this recipe. If you prefer, you can use part-skim ricotta, however the whole-milk variety is so much richer and creamier. Alternatively, you can use Kite Hill's brand of ricotta cheese, which is dairy free.
- Pesto: You can either use homemade or jarred pesto for this recipe. If using jarred, I highly recommend DeLallo's brand of pesto, which has the freshest flavor of any I've tried.
- Panko: This zucchini lasagna gets topped with a golden, garlicky panko topper, which adds lots of texture. While the panko topping is optional (especially if you're gluten free), it does really round out the dish.
Step 1: Slice Eggplant and Zucchini
Start by trimming off and discarding the ends of the eggplant and zucchinis. Next, slice each vegetable crosswise into ½-inch thick slices.
Step 2: Bake Eggplant, Zucchini, and Tomatoes
Grease two baking sheets with about 1 Tbsp. olive oil. Arrange eggplant slices in a single layer on one of the baking sheets. Arrange zucchini and tomatoes on remaining baking sheet. Lightly spray eggplant and zucchini with cooking spray, and sprinkle lightly with salt.
Place sheet with eggplant on lower rack and sheet with tomatoes on upper rack and roast until eggplant is browned and tomatoes are blistered, about 28 to 30 minutes.
Step 3: Prepare Pesto Ricotta Mixture
In a medium bowl, combine ricotta cheese, pesto, and ½ tsp. red pepper flakes. Stir to combine, and set aside.
Step 4: Assemble Eggplant Zucchini Lasagna
Drizzle some olive oil into a shallow 2-qt. baking dish. Arrange one half of zucchini and eggplant slices in a single layer (it's OK if there is some overlap), and scatter one half of blistered tomatoes overtop. Next, dollop half of ricotta mixture over tomatoes.
Repeat layering process one more time, using up remaining vegetables and ricotta mixture. Scatter mozzarella cheese overtop.
Lastly, in a small bowl, combine panko, garlic powder, and 1 Tbsp. olive oil; mix with your fingers to combine. Scatter panko mixture over the lasagna.
Step 5: Bake Zucchini Lasagana
Transfer the baking dish to the oven, and bake for about 20 to 22 minutes, until bubbly and golden. Remove from the oven, and let rest for 5 minutes before scattering fresh basil overtop and serving.
FAQs and Expert Tips
Should You Salt Zucchini Before Cooking?
Both the zucchini and eggplant are lightly salted before roasting, which helps draw out some of their moisture. However, you do NOT need to let the zucchini and eggplant rest after salting. Just pop them right in the hot oven, which will naturally evaporate some of their water content.
Is this Zucchini Lasagna Low Carb?
Since no noodles are used in this lasagna, it is naturally low in carbs and rich in fiber. The panko topping does add additional carbohydrates (and gluten), however you can leave it off if you're limiting carbs.
Since this lasagna is meatless, it will last up to 4 days refrigerated.
- To reheat, either nook individual portions in the microwave, or transfer the whole pan back to the oven. If doing the latter, I suggest heating at 300ºF until warmed through.
More Easy Zucchini Recipes
Eggplant Zucchini Lasagna
- Baking sheets
- 2-qt baking dish
- Small mixing bowls
- 1 large globe eggplant
- 2 large zucchinis
- 4 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, divided
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes
- Cooking spray
- ½ tsp. each kosher salt and black pepper
- 1 cup whole-milk ricotta cheese sub cottage cheese
- ½ cup prepared pesto I use DeLallo brand
- ½ tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
- 1 cup grated mozzarella cheese
- ⅓ cup panko breadcrumbs
- ½ tsp. garlic powder
- Fresh basil for garnish
- Preheat oven to 450ºF. Rub 1 Tbsp. olive oil on each of two baking sheets; set aside.
- Cut eggplant and zucchinis crosswise into ½-inch think slices. Arrange eggplant slices in a single layer on one of the prepared baking sheets, avoiding any overlap. Place zucchini slices on other baking sheet, and add tomatoes to any open space that remains. Lightly coat all vegetables in cooking spray, and season evenly with salt and pepper.
- Place pan with eggplant on lower rack and pan with zucchini on upper rack and roast until eggplant is browned and tomatoes are lightly blistered, about 28 to 30 minutes, flipping eggplant once halfway through.
- Meanwhile, place ricotta, pesto, and red pepper flakes in a small bowl; stir to combine.
- Drizzle 1 Tbsp. oil in a shallow 2-qt. baking dish. Arrange one half of zucchini and eggplant slices in a single layer (there should be some overlap). Scatter one half of blistered tomatoes over top, then dollop half of ricotta mixture over tomatoes. Repeat with remaining vegetables and ricotta to form another layer. Sprinkle mozzarella cheese overtop.
- In a small bowl, combine panko, garlic powder, and remaining 1 Tbsp. olive oil. Use your fingers to rub the oil into the panko until combined. Scatter panko mixture over mozzarella, and lightly drizzle lasagna with olive oil (about 2 to 3 tsp.) Transfer lasagna to the oven, and bake at 450ºF until mozzarella is melted and browned in spots, about 20 minutes. If desired, broil during final 1 to 2 minutes for extra browning.
- Remove lasagna from oven and let rest 5 minutes. Garnish with fresh basil and serve.