Summer Squash Lasagna FinishedI don’t know about yours, by my fridge has been overflowing with zucchini and yellow squash lately.  It’s been in the CSA share every week now for the past 5 weeks or so (hey, I’m not complaining).  And, every time I opened the refrigerator door, they were staring at me.  Two weeks worth of summer squash making me feel guilty for neglecting it so long.  I knew we needed to figure something out and fast! Summer squash won’t last forever.

Oh man, did we concoct the perfect answer.  Dare I say one of the most satisfying ways to use up tons of zucchini and squash in just one dish? Actually, it was the ratatouille dish we made last week that got me thinking what other uses I could find for the mandolin this summer. Why didn’t I think of this sooner?  It makes perfect sense! Use long, thin slices of squash in place of lasagna noodles, of course.  Keep this a carb-friendly, gluten-free lasagna, except that I really don’t know anything about being carb-friendly or gluten-free.  (Though I am friendly to carbs, because nothing beats a loaf of fresh, warm, homemade bread.)

Latticed Cooked Summer squash lasagna

I’ll tell you one thing about this lasagna, you won’t even miss the noodles.  The squash slices hold up well and keep the layers separate from each other.  Plus, they provide that same type of texture you would expect from the average lasagna noodle.  And, the flavor is still much like the traditional lasagna, filled with meaty and cheesy goodness.  We’re just adding plenty of extra vegetables to make this dish a tad bit healthier.  And so much prettier! Don’t you just love a good lattice?  It makes the dish look so much more rustic. Your dinner guests will oooh and ahhh as you pull this one out of the oven!

Sauced Up Summer Squash lasagna

And, if you don’t have a jar of sauce on hand, or if you’re like the Big Flavors and prefer the taste of homemade sauce, this quick and easy marinara sauce is perfect. It’s not your Italian Grandma’s all-day Sunday sauce, but when the pasta craving hits, it is great in a pinch.  And you probably have all of the ingredients on hand.  Just pop open a can of tomatoes, add onion, garlic, wine, and sugar.  Let it simmer away on the stove for an hour, and you’re done.  Couldn’t be simpler!  Deliciously sweet and thick, ready to top any pasta or summer squash lasagna.

summer squash slideshow

Summer Squash Lasagna in Quick Marinara Sauce

Serves 6
Prep time 45 minutes
Cook time 1 hour
Total time 1 hours, 45 minutes
Meal type Main Dish


Marinara Sauce

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 small onion (diced)
  • 2 cloves garlic (minced or pressed)
  • 1 28 oz can San Marzano tomatoes (quickly pulsed in blender or food processor)
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1/4 cup red wine
  • 1/3 cup fresh basil


  • 10 - 12 small zucchini/summer squash
  • 1lb ground meat (we used a combination of ground beef and chicken sausage)
  • 1 large bunch swiss chard (tough ends removed)
  • 1lb mozzerella cheese (shredded)
  • 2 tablespoons parmesan cheese


Marinara Sauce
1. In a saucepot over medium heat, add olive oil. Once hot, add onions and garlic. Cook until softened about 2-3 minutes.
2. Add tomatoes, sugar, red wine, and stir to combine all ingredients. Cook over low heat for about one hour, stirring occassionally. 15 minutes before serving, add in basil and season with salt and pepper, to taste.
3. Prepare swiss chard for lasagna, by blanching in boiling water for 20 - 30 seconds, just until wilted. Drain and set aside. Prepare zucchini & summer squash by slicing the length of the squash on a mandoline into 1/8" slices.
4. Spray bottom of a heavy lasagna pan with non-stick spray. Layer squash slices on bottom of pan, making sure to overlap the slices slightly. Then sprinkle a thin layer of cheese on top.
5. Next, create a layer of swiss chard, laying the leaves flat and covering the cheese layer. Finally, add a layer the ground meat.
6. Repeat the layering process - squash, then cheese, then swiss chard, and then ground meat, until your ingredients are used up.
7. Finally, add on the top layer of squash, assembling in a lattice formation. Brush with olive oil, season well with salt and pepper.
8. Cover with foil and bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Remove the foil and sprinkle parmesan cheese on top, bake for another 30 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool slightly before serving. Serve with quick marinara sauce or pesto sauce.

So, next time the lasagna craving hits or your fridge is filling up with summer squash, give this version a try. It’s a great gluten-free, carb-friendly way to get more veggies in your life!

Need more zucchini recipes?

Finished Zucchini Pesto Pasta with ChickenZucchini Pesto Pasta Salad with Chicken 

Cooked RatatouilleSummer Squash Ratatouille 

Shared with Strut Your Stuff Saturday, Weekend Potluck, Scrumptious Sundays, Southern Sundays, Melt in Your Mouth Monday, Mouthwatering Monday, On the Menu Monday, Simple Living

Share the Big Flavors!

11 Responses to CSA Chronicles: Gluten-Free Summer Squash Lasagna

  1. WOW! That’s a beautiful dish! GRRREAT way to use up that squash. Thanks so much for linking up at Weekend Potluck!

  2. Excellent use of squash! Love this idea. Thanks for sharing on Southern Sundays! Have a great week!

  3. Diane Balch says:

    Great summer recipe even if you are not gluten-free because it really uses a lot of zucchini. Please share this on foodie friday today. I have quite a few gluten free blogs that participate in this party. I think you will like it.

  4. Congrats! Your dish is a featured recipe on today’s Southern Sundays. Hope to see you again this week!

  5. Wow! I love this lasagna. It’s simply gorgeous, especially the lattice work on top. Perfection! And how in the world did you get that picture perfect slice?? I’m jealous. My slices are always a delicious mess. I adore this recipe and the use of veggies in place of pasta. Lovely!

    • Mrs. Big Flavors says:

      Thank you! The perfect slice takes patience and therefore was the Mr. who plated this dish!

  6. Diane Balch says:

    Congrat, you beautifully healthy lasagna is being featured today on foodie friday. Stop by and get your Featured button and enjoy the recipes.

  7. Love this idea! I’ve seen zucchini used as a substitute for long spaghetti, but never thought of using it for lasagna noodles. I’m sharing this because it’s such a great idea!

    • Mrs. Big Flavors says:

      Thank you! It tastes just like regular noodle lasagna but so much lighter and healthier!

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