Easy Healthy Lasagna
It’s time to cozy up with the BEST Easy Healthy Lasagna recipe for dinner tonight. All of the goodness of classic lasagna, but lightened up and packed with protein for a skinny version of the traditional recipe!
This post is sponsored by Hiland Dairy but the content and opinions expressed here are my own.
If you want major comfort and flavor, you’ve got to add this family friendly dish to your list. Easy Healthy Lasagna is the quintessential winter meal that must happen in your life. Let me show you how simple this one is to whip up!
HOW TO MAKE EASY HEALTHY LASAGNA
This lasagna is simple, basic and would best be described by the term, traditional. Just the way my kiddos like it! I changed up the way that I layer it up since I opted to use whole-wheat NO BOIL lasagna noodles (aka.. best idea ever). If the noodles don’t get enough moisture, they don’t cook completely. Crunchy lasagna? No thanks!
I know that layering a lasagna isn’t exactly rocket science, but I can’t tell you how many times I’ve blown it. Please tell me I’m not the only one. Here’s a little help from me to you. You’re welcome.
Lasagna Layering Guide:
- Meat sauce (less meat, more sauce)
- Noodle layer
- Cottage cheese (use half)
- Meat sauce (more meat, less sauce)
- Noodle layer
- Cottage cheese (use it all)
- Meat sauce (use it all)
I even made you a visual!
Lasagna doesn’t fall under the category of “classic health food,” but with a few simple swaps and some careful grocery shopping, you can eliminate all things funky while still using some store-bought shortcuts! You can use any variation of the ingredients listed below. I tried to keep the lasagna as light and full of protein as possible and my husband and kids still raved about this dish.
EASY HEALTHY LASAGNA SHOPPING GUIDE:
Lean ground turkey – I used 93% lean ground turkey. You could even try the Italian seasoned ground turkey, but my store was out when I went to pick up items for this recipe. Even with out the Italian seasoned meat, my lasagna came out super flavorful. Try to get organic, free-range raised in the USA on 100% organic, all vegetarian, non-GMO diet with no antibiotics if possible.
Marinara – You could definitely make your own, but there are some really great store-bought options out there. Look for a variety that is made from all real food ingredients (no weird words) and doesn’t list sugar as an ingredient.
Cottage Cheese – This is where the unexpected superfood, Hiland Dairy Cottage Cheese, makes this Easy Healthy Lasagna so creamy and full of added nutrients and protein for a perfectly balanced meal. They even have a fat free variety available that I usually use for this recipe, but my store was out when I purchased items for this meal. I love that I can use Hiland Dairy Cottage Cheese as a high-protein, tasty snack or include it in recipes like this for a more nutritious spin on an old classic.
Mozzarella – If possible, try to avoid the mozzarella that comes pre-packed and shredded. It contains an ingredient called cellulose (anti-clumping) and you just don’t need it. At my grocery I purchase the mozzarella from the deli and ask them to shred it for me (yep.. I’m lazy like that). Also, if possible, try to use a light cheese variety.
Lasagna Noodles – You guys.. no boil is where it’s at! So much easier than pre-cooking. I use whole wheat oven ready noodles and I’ve never had a complaint.
TIME SAVING LASAGNA TIPS AND TRICKS:
Prep: The meat sauce and cottage cheese mixture can be made up to 3 days ahead of time if stored in the refrigerator.
Make Ahead: Assemble lasagna and cover it with plastic wrap. Do not bake. It will keep in the fridge for up to 3 days. When you are ready to serve, remove it from the fridge and allow it to come to room temperature. You can then bake it according to recipe directions.
Freezer: Assemble lasagna. Place a piece of plastic wrap directly on top of the lasagna. Cover lasagna pan tightly with clear wrap. Store in the freezer for up to 1-2 months. Many times when I make this for dinner, I make two – one to enjoy right away and one to freeze for later.
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TRY SOME OTHER FAVORITE PROTEIN-PACKED HEALTHY DINNER RECIPES
This Easy Healthy Lasagna recipe is the perfect family friendly dish. It has all of the goodness of classic lasagna, but lightened up and packed with protein for a skinny version of the traditional recipe!
- 1 pound Italian seasoned ground turkey or regular ground turkey or chicken (I used the 93% lean ground turkey)
- 16 ounces (2 cups) marinara sauce
- 1-1/2 cups fat-free Hiland Dairy Cottage Cheese
- 1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
- 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
- 6 oven-ready lasagna noodles
- 4 ounces (1 heaping cup) shredded lite mozzarella
- In a large skillet cook ground turkey. Once cooked, stir in marinara sauce, set aside.
Meanwhile, in a medium mixing bowl, combine cottage cheese, Parmesan cheese and Italian seasoning.
Preheat oven to 350ºF and in an 8 x 8 to 8 x 11" baking dish that has been sprayed with nonstick cooking spray, layer 1/3 meat sauce (more sauce than meat), 2-3 noodles, and 1/2 cottage cheese mixture.
Repeat layering process with meat sauce, noodles and then cottage cheese mixture.
One more layer of meat sauce and then top with mozzarella.
Cover with tin foil. Bake for 20 minutes at 350ºF. Remove tin foil and bake for another 10 minutes.
- Let rest for 10 minutes before serving. Enjoy a large serving! Makes 6 HUGE servings!
FREEZER SUGGESTION: I like to double this recipe and store one in the freezer for busy evenings. Try to take it out of the freezer 24 hours ahead of time, to thaw, for cooking time suggested. If cooking from frozen, lasagna will take about 90 minutes to cook.