I have ALWAYS used low fat cottage cheese instead of the ricotta, helps to lower the fat and calories. I prepare it the same way...no one will know the difference.
In fact my daughter called me the other day, "Mom, I found a recipe to make lasanga with cottage cheese. Doesn't that sound weird?" I said "Dear, thats the lasanga recipe you grew up on." "Really?!!!" She never tasted the difference.
Using a leaner meat like ground turkey or venison really helps - I've used turkey sausage with Italian seasonings to imitate the flavor of lasagne that is made with Italian sausage - turned out really good. My mom always subbed cottage cheese for ricotta in her recipe to save money, but, turns out, if you use 1% or skim cottage cheese, it saves a lot on the fat as well, and you don't need as much of the other cheeses either to get the gooey, cheesy texture. Last idea, I have made a faux lasagne with elbow macaroni, or other kinds of noodles - can cut down on the amount of noodles this way and then the carbs. I don't pre-cook the noodles, just make sure they are completely covered in sauce, and I add a little tomato juice, they cook up just fine in the oven.
I like substituting eggplant for noodles, family won't touch it! I brown the ground beef first then in a colandar, rinse off the fat with Hot water, then layer with noodles and cheese, using reduced fat cheeses.
You can use zucchini strips instead of noodles, skip the meat all together and load it with onions, peppers ,mushrooms,spinach, carrots and any thing else....if you leave out the meat you can still have the gooey cheese, which is my favorite.
Fitness Minutes: (4,113)
255 12/9/13 9:57 P
Great ideas! I will use more veggies, even though the kids and hubby will probably complain. They like the usual cheese and sausage oozing with grease. But I am so sick of the unhealthy way. Thanks...I will use slices of eggplant! Sounds tasty
i like whole wheat noodles. gia russa ones don't taste gross :P
use homemade tomato sauce instead of alfredo or pesto. you don't have to add oil to tomato sauce.
use ground chicken/turkey or better yet make it vegetarian. you can use soy crumbles (morningstar ones are great) if you really like the texture. diced up mushrooms (use a hearty one like baby bellas) are a great fakeout too.
add tons of veggies- frozen spinach is quick and easy- mix it with low fat cottage cheese or ricotta and garlic.
load up on the veggies- diced onions, bell pepper, shredded carrots, zucchini, etc. are all great.
put more filling (meaning veggies) in between your pasta layers and use less pasta (think of it like a pie crust and topper only).
put some reduced fat mozz on top- and add some good quality parmesan (less goes further since it's so flavorful!).
and you can always go for a fun new feel with mexisagna- tortillas v. noodles, salsa, bell pepper, roasted sweet potato, black beans, corn, etc with garlic and cumin. use good cheddar and some reduced fat cheese! :)
Fitness Minutes: (12,387)
35 10/16/13 11:06 A
Use your favorite vegies instead of noodles. I use a combo of spinach, zucchini, eggplant and peppers. Lowfat cottage cheese is a great choice as is a homemade red sauce (use carrots to sweeten instead of sugar). Layering in fewer noodles will also cut the calories. Experiment - and see how healthy and low calorie you can get by with. You might just create a winner. Cooking is an art not rocket science. Enjoy the process.
Skip the carbs.....they just raise your insulin levels which makes your body want to hold onto fat.
Instead of using noodles, use eggplant slices. You can par boil them for a minute remove and start to layer. Ricotta cheese is low fat, has omega 3's for your brain and heart, calcium and protein. Add green bell pepper, chopped onion, and heart healthy black olives as you layer with some ricotta, parm, and tomato sauce. Yummy!
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