Turkey and Fresh Basil Lasagna

Happy October!

It’s finally cooling down here in New Jersey (today it was only in the 60s). Each year, without fail, when cool weather arrives I always get excited to cook warm, melty comfort food. This chilly fall day was no different, so I whipped up a lasagna for the first time ever based off this low calorie recipe on Madame Deals. This recipe is lighter than traditional beef lasagna: It features whole grain noodles, ground turkey and part-skim cheeses. I’ve already had two helpings and after I finish this post I am going to eat a third (woops). Lawrence also just confessed this is his favorite thing that I’ve ever made… so yeah, you should try it out.

Aww yiss.
Aww yiss.

TURKEY AND FRESH BASIL LASAGNA

Serves: 6-8 (or if you pig out like me, 4-6)

Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes (35 minutes prep time, 35 minutes cook time)

Ingredients: 

  • 10 whole grain lasagna noodles
  • 1 lb. ground turkey
  • 1/2 cup skim milk ricotta cheese
  • 1/2 cup 1% milk fat cottage cheese
  • 8 oz. shredded skim milk mozzarella cheese
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 1/4 cup minced garlic (you can add more or less depending on your taste… I added a ton because I effin’ love garlic)
  • 3/4 cup fresh spinach leaves
  • 1 cup original/plain pasta sauce
  • 14 oz. crushed tomatoes
  • 1 cup (or one small package) fresh basil
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

Supplies:

  • Large pot (make sure it can fit the lasagna noodles)
  • Medium/large skillet (I used my cast iron <3)
  • Medium mixing bowl
  • 9 x 13 baking dish
  • Nonstick spray
  • Olive oil

Instructions:

  1. Cook the noodles according to the instructions on the package. After cooked, drain, rinse with cold water, and set on cooling rack so they don’t stick together.

    BOIL EM!
    BOIL EM!
  2. Brown ground turkey, along with some salt & pepper, in an olive oil-coated skillet. Drain and return to pan.IMG_5005
  3. Add garlic, pasta sauce, crushed tomatoes, onion, spinach, half of the fresh basil, and some more salt & pepper, if desired. Simmer for 10 minutes or until spinach is wilted. Turn off heat.

    Saucy!
    Saucy!
  4. Mix cottage cheese, ricotta cheese and remaining half of fresh basil in the mixing bowl.

    Here she is.
    Here she is.
  5. Preheat oven to 375, then spray your 9 x 13 pan with your nonstick spray.
  6. Put a layer of meat sauce on the bottom of the pan,IMG_5016then add a layer of 5 noodles,
    Accidentally dropped some cheese on 'em before the picture. I'm only human, dammit!
    Accidentally dropped some cheese on ’em before the picture. I’m only human, dammit!

    followed by a layer of your cheese sauce and 1/3 of your bag of shredded mozz.

    CHEESY GOODNESS!
    CHEESY GOODNESS!

    Add another layer of noodles, sauce and cheese, making sure you keep one-third of the bag of mozzarella for later on.

    Ready for some oven action.
    Ready for some oven action.
  7. Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes.
  8. Remove from oven, take off the foil, and sprinkle the remaining mozzarella on top. Return to the oven, uncovered, for 5 minutes.
  9. Remove from oven. Admire melty, bubbly, cheesy goodness. Then, PIG OUT!!! (Or shall I say, turkey out!)IMG_5026IMG_5023

Again, this was SO TASTY and I highly recommend you try it out. You could probably use ground chicken and of course, ground beef. Feel free to pull an old switcheroo on any of the ingredients – playing around with food is always more fun!

OK, I’m off to go eat a third serving and love every second of it.

Goodnight!

Note: Sometimes when you cook turkey, it gets dry. However, this recipe contains so much cheese that the turkey is so moist and yummy. Fear not, for moist turkey shall be created!

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2 thoughts on “Turkey and Fresh Basil Lasagna

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