Paleo Mexican Lasagna
This Paleo Mexican Lasagna is a low carb twist on the traditional comfort food! Layered with zucchini, ground beef in a Mexican-spiced tomato sauce, and almond milk cream cheese…it’s sure to be a crowd pleaser!
I’m sharing this Paleo Mexican Lasagna and continuing on with the Mexican-inspired recipes in the spirit of Cinco de Mayo on Sunday! Although, this dish would be perfect for any time of year. This dish is simple to make, gluten free, Whole30 friendly, and low carb.
I used both zucchini and yellow squash to create the “pasta” sheets, but you can just use zucchini if that’s all you have on hand! Squash lets off a LOT of water, so we eliminate some of that by salting it first and letting it sweat a bit before making the lasagna. This will eliminate having a super watery dish. I used Rao’s Homemade sauce in this because it’s my favorite Whole30 friendly jarred tomato sauce, but you can use any marinara you want!
Also feel free to sub ground turkey or chicken in place of the beef. I’ve found that most stores (even here in middle of nowhere Westminster, MD) are selling Kite Hill cream cheeses now – just check their store locator to see where it’s sold near you! I consider it to be Whole30 friendly, but here is the head mistress’s take on it:
Melissa Hartwig’s Caveat with Non-Dairy “Cheeses”:
“Nut cheeses and dips ARE compliant on the program, with a strong caveat that these should be used with caution, especially if you know you rely on cheese as a comfort or stress-relieving food, OR if cheese is a trigger for other food cravings (like wine or crackers). As with Larabars or almond butter, Whole30 HQ and our Coaches all recommend that program participants use with caution, and think critically about whether including these foods in their Whole30 is a healthy choice, given their contexts and goals.”
Ok…let’s get cookin’!
Paleo Mexican Lasagna
- 6 large zucchini/squash, I used 3 of each
- 1 lb grass-fed ground beef
- 1 24 oz jar marinara or tomato sauce, I love Rao's Homemade
- 1 container Kite Hill Almond Milk Cream Cheese or Ricotta
- ½ onion, diced
- 1 4 oz can chopped green chiles
- 1 tbsp chili powder
- 1.5 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp sea salt, plus more for sprinkling on the zuchinni
- ½ tsp paprika
- dash cayenne pepper, (optional)
- cilantro, for garnish
- Dairy free sour cream, for garnish
- Preheat oven to 350. Spray a 9x12 baking dish or lasagna pan with olive oil or avocado oil. Cut your squash/zucchini lengthwise into thin sheets about 1/8-1/4 inch thick. You should have about 18 pieces total. Place the squash into a colander in the sink and sprinkle liberally with sea salt. (Don't worry - it won't be too salty. This helps the zucchini sweat off some of the water so you don't end up with a watery lasagna!) Let it sit in the sink for 20-30 minutes while you make the sauce.
Make the meat sauce
- Heat a large sauce pan over medium heat. Add the onion and the ground beef and cook 5-7 minutes until browned and mostly cooked through. Add in the marinara, chopped green chiles, and spices. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low.
Make the first layer:
- Once the squash pieces have sweated off some of the water, blot them with paper towels to remove any excess moisture. Add 6-7 pieces of the squash in a single layer side by side so they cover the bottom of the baking dish. Add half of the meat sauce on top of the squash, using a ladle to spread it evenly and cover the squash completely. Cover the meat sauce with about 12 one-inch dots of cream cheese (it's tough to spread, so we are just going to use small dots!).
- Add another squash layer on top, and repeat the same as the above with adding more meat sauce and cream cheese. Finish by topping with a 3rd layer of squash and spray it with a little more oil.
- Bake for 45 minutes. Top with cilantro and dairy-free sour cream. Enjoy!