Zucchini & Summer Squash Lasagna (Gluten Free)
Our All Time Most Requested Recipe Zucchini and Summer Squash Pesto Lasagna
To be honest writing this makes me laugh and brings a smile to my face as I reflect. If you scroll through our recipe series you will notice two squash recipes already, our Summer Squash Fritters and Cashew Ricotta Stuffed Squash Blossom, which was one of the reasons I left the Zucchini & Summer Squash Lasagna out. But how did all these stuffed squash recipes come about?
One summer in Maine, we were blessed with a bounty of squash that was almost too much to handle. The ‘Summer of Summer Squash’ we fondly refer to it as. Our Maine garden was a experimental, dreamy, energy charged space that we went all out in. It was such a different experience coming from the Caribbean to having the crisp Spring start of preparation and the ebb and flow of learning New England seasonal gardening.
Filled with enthusiasm, and perhaps a touch of overzealousness, we planted a wide variety and an abundance of plants. We planted everything and A LOT of it. Predictable in hindsight, the summer squash and zucchini went wild and even though we ended up removing multiple plants we still could not keep up with our harvest. So in true Ayurvedic form of committing to eating fresh local and from our garden, it was the summer we ate more squash than one might imagine possible. If you joined us for an in-person program, you may have too.
This was our initiation into our squash-safari, an adventure that led to the creation of our beloved Zucchini & Summer Squash Lasagna.
The Summer Garden- Zucchini, Summer Squash, Onions, Tomatoes and Basil
There are few things we cherish more than creating wholesome meals with entirely home-grown vegetables. Our Zucchini & Summer Squash Lasagna embodies this sentiment perfectly. If you plan ahead planting a few rows of onions, tomatoes, tarragon and basil alongside your squash monsters you may find yourself loving this delightful dish as much as we do. Crafted with layers of delicately sliced squash, complemented by our Cashew Cream infused with freshly harvested garden herbs, our homemade pesto, and slices of ripe, in-season tomatoes. This dish has become a culinary delight we find ourselves enthusiastically savoring at least once a week, even at the height of the squash season.
Easy to Digest Foods for the Summer Season
If you are familiar with Rutacharya (the seasonal approach to practice in Ayurveda), you may remember that as the heat of the Sun increases throughout the summer season our digestive fire actually reaches its peak capacity and begins to become challenged. This is why you may notice on really hot humid days you don’t feel hungry. The key is to honor this feeling and trend towards eating foods that are light, easy to digest and more sweet and cooling in nature. By replacing traditional noodles and substituting the cool, slightly sweet and bitter qualities of zucchini or summer squash instead we can eat this meal, feel satiated (it’s delicious) and digest it quickly enough to feel light and comfortable on warm evenings before bed. To uncover more Ayurvedic tips for eating fresh seasonal food in your area, reach out to us for a consultation.
Our clients have reported similar experiences:
“Oh my goodness, that was the most delicious dinner I have ever had. Please tell me you hand out the recipe.” – DeeDee
“Carlisle that meal was amazing. Sorry to text you so late but can you give me the recipe before we leave.”– Michelle
“I know I have asked a few times but please send me the Zucchini & Summer Squash Lasagna recipe, I can’t stop thinking about it.”– Sonya
“Could you make that Squash Lasagna again when we come back for our program, it was
my favorite.”– Sarah
We have shared many meals with a lot of joy surrounding them and lots of favorites. However, this recipe took me by surprise, as it was not only thoroughly enjoyed by everyone but also led to numerous requests for the recipe itself. So here you are fam! We hope you make it, share with friends and send us pictures of your culinary creations.
Zucchini Summer Squash Lasagna with Cashew Ricotta and Herb Pesto
Step 1: The Cashew Ricotta
- 1 cup raw cashews soaked for at least 2 hours in hot water
- 1 handful of fresh basil
- 1 large sprig tarragon (optional)
- 1/2 cup oat milk or alternative
- 1 tsp nutritional yeast
- 1/8 cup lemon juice
- 1/2 tsp Himalayan Salt
- Pinch black pepper
Step 2 Garden Herb Pesto
- 1 1/2 cups fresh basil (stems removed)
- 1/2 cup mixed fresh herbs (we grow and love tarragon, parsley, oregano in the mix)
- 1/4 cup pine nuts, walnuts, cashews or sunflower seeds
- 2 TBL fresh squeezed lemon juice
- 4 TBL olive oil
- 2 large cloves of peeled smashed garlic
- 1/4 tsp himalayan sea salt
- Optional add water depending on desired thickness
Step 3 Vegan Parm
- 1/4 cup raw cashews
- 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
- 1/8 tsp himalayan salt
Blend to course powder and store in a clean dry jar or container. Can be kept for up to 2 weeks.
Step 4 Let’s Make Lasagna
It’s super simple!
- 1 large zucchini and summer squash or double if smaller, sliced thin lengthwise
- Cashew Ricotta
- Garden Herb Pesto
- 1 yellow onion thinly sliced
- 1 large tomato thinly sliced with excess seeds removed
- 1/4 cup of vegan parm for topping
- 1/4 cup of breadcrumbs for topping (for a gluten free option use almond meal)
- Pepper to taste for topping
- Dried thyme or oregano to sprinkle on top
- 1 TBL olive oil
- Preheat oven to 375°F
- Prep all vegetables and arrange neatly on a plate making it easy for arrangement
- Spread the 1 TBL of olive oil on the bottom of an 8 by 8 (or close to) baking dish
- Begin with a single layer of zucchini or summer squash (when using both we like to alternate layers making it pretty when sliced)
- Top with a thin layer of ricotta, followed by sliced onion
- Top with another single layer of zucchini or summer squash
- Alternate topping with a thin layer of pesto followed by sliced tomato
- Repeat steps 4-7 until you finish with a layer of zucchini or summer squash
- Spread the remaining pesto over the top layer and sprinkle vegan parm and breadcrumbs over it. (if you consume dairy you can use parm instead of nutritional yeast)
- Bake for 45 minutes covered with aluminum foil (we use a baking sheet to reduce waste). Remove cover and continue baking until top is crispy (roughly 15 minutes).
- Let lasagna set for at least 20 minutes before slicing to hold form.
We love to serve ours with a garnish of fresh garden flowers including nasturtium, oregano, savory or thyme flowers, calendula petals or anything else in season! Try with a drizzle of balsamic reduction! Pair with the Garlic and Ginger Sautéed Greens for an extra veggies boost and most of all enjoy.