Eggplant Lasagna

There’s a new trend going around, if your into social media or hashtagging you’ve probably heard of it – “Meatless Monday”! The idea is to dedicate the day or at least one meal to eating vegetarian. I haven’t fully committed to the trend, as I sometimes forget and in turn end up practicing “Meatless Tuesday” or “Meatless Thursday”, but I do try and have a least one vegetarian day!

Not only to give my GI tract and digestion a bit of a break but also to support the environment! Tons of waste enters the water stream as a result of the growth and production of animal protein. Not to mention the amount of land dedicated to animal plants! It takes less square footage to grow a variety of vegetables than to house 100’s of cows or pigs! Just think about it!

This eggplant lasagna is the perfect hearty dish to kick start your “Meatless Monday” journey! I promise no one will miss the meat!

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Eggplant Lasagna
(serves 4-6)
3 medium eggplant, ends trimmed, thinly sliced lengthwise
4 zucchini, thinly sliced lengthwise
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 yellow onion, diced
1 cup crimini mushrooms, diced
1 teaspoon minced garlic
2 cups low-sodium marinara sauce
1 teaspoons dried oregano
1 tsp dried basil
1 tsp chili flakes
salt and pepper to taste
1 cup grated cheese (optional)

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Preheat the oven to 325°F.
Lightly spray a baking sheet with olive oil cooking spray. Arrange the eggplant and zucchini slices in a single layer on the baking sheet. Broil (or grill) the eggplant for about 8 minutes or until tender and very lightly browned. Set aside to cool.

To prepare the sauce cook bell pepper, onion, mushrooms, and garlic over medium heat for about 5 minutes, until the veggies are soft. Season with salt and pepper. Add the oregano, basil and chili flakes and cook for another minute. Stir in the marinara sauce and let simmer for 5 – 10 minutes, stirring frequently. The sauce will be thick.

Lightly coat an 8″ x 8″ baking pan with olive oil cooking spray. Set aside.
To assemble the lasagna, spread some sauce on the bottom of the prepared baking pan. Layer on 1/3 of the eggplant slices, top with some sauce, and then 1/3 of the zucchini slices. Repeat with the remaining sauce, eggplant slices, and zucchini.
* if using cheese sprinkle a small amount on each layer of sauce and a little on the very top

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Bake for about 20 minutes or until bubbly and lightly browned. Let stand for 5 minutes before serving. Serve with a green salad.

Enjoy!

xo Deanna

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