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Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Heart-Healthy Lasagna

Mmm, lasagna.  My recipe doesn't alter the classic recipe too much, but adds the healthy kick by subbing turkey in ground beef, using whole-wheat pasta, and low/no-fat cheeses.  It's also better to make your own pasta sauce than to buy storemade (less sodium and other preservatives).  

This is a great meal to make on a Sunday night (ahem, that's what I did) and store for weekly lunches!

1 lb Ground Turkey Breast

1/4 Cup Minced Onion
2 Cloves Garlic, Crushed (or use 2 tsp. Minced)
1 Can (14 oz) Diced Tomatoes
1 Can (6 oz) Tomato Paste
1 Can (14 oz) Tomato Sauce
2 tsp. Dried Basil
1 tsp. Garlic Powder
2 tsp. Dried Oregano
1 tsp. Sea Salt
1/2 tsp. Ground Black Pepper
4 tsp. Dried Parsley
12 oz Whole-Wheat Lasagna Noodles
15 oz. Ricotta Cheese
1 Egg

2 Cups Mozzarella Cheese
1/2 Cup Parmesan Cheese

1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2.  In large skillet, brown turkey meat and minced onion over medium-high heat.  Reduce heat to low, stir in garlic, tomatoes, tomato paste, and tomato sauce.  Add all of basil, oregano, sea salt, and black pepper and 2 tsp. of dried parsley.  Stir to combine and let flavors cook on low, stirring occasionally.

3.  In large stockpot, bring water to boil and cook lasagna noodles to package directions.
4.  Meanwhile, in a small mixing bowl, combine ricotta cheese, egg, and remaining 2 tsp. parsley.
5.  In 9x13 glass baking dish (spray with cooking  spray), first spread 1/3 of the meat mixture on the bottom.  Lay noodles over the top of the meat mixture, overlapping slightly (about 1/3 of the noodles).  Spread half of the ricotta mixture on top of the noodles.  Sprinkle with 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese.  Next, again spread 1/3 of the meat mixture over the cheese layer.  Sprinkle with half (1/4 cup) of the Parmesan cheese.  Repeat layers, next come the noodles, second half of the ricotta, mozzarella, meat and Parmesan.  Then, a final layer of noodles and top with the remaining 1 cup Mozzarella cheese.
6.  Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 20-25 minutes.  Remove foil and bake for another 20-25 minutes,


For freezing:  You can freeze this meal easily also.  One way (how I did it, to save space) s to cool the lasagna in the glass dish, then cut in half.  Put each half into plastic wrap, wrapping tightly.  Then wrap in aluminum foil.  Be sure to date and label it.  You can freeze this for up to 3 months.  To reheat, defrost in refrigerator during the day.  Then, put half the dish into a baking dish and bake at 325 F for about 30 minutes, or until hot.
The second way to freeze the meal is to bake it in a disposable aluminum pan and freeze it directly in that dish (after it has cooked, cooled, and you've wrapped it).  Defrost and reheat the same way as the first method.

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