Holy cow, why would you ever waste a single carb on boring, old lasagna noodles when you can enjoy this keto cabbage lasagna recipe instead??
I mean seriously guys, cabbage lasagna may be the most genius keto creation on the planet! In this dish, cabbage has a similar texture and consistency to pasta, without adding hardly any carbs or calories. It marries the cheese, sausage and sauce together perfectly for one of those low carb dinners the whole family will love.
So turn on that oven, and let’s do this cabbage lasagna thing!
This is one of the low carb recipes that’s extra special to me, as it’s inspired by my Mom’s incredible lasagna recipe. I grew up loving this dish, and knew I had to make a low carb version some day— and a few swaps later, I introduce to you my favorite cabbage lasagna…
How to Make Cabbage Lasagna
In an attempt to make this cabbage lasagna recipe as easy and painless as possible, I cut a few corners to save time (you’ll see what I mean in the instructions below).
Here’s what you should know before getting started:
Cut the cabbage.
I know the quartered/sliced cabbage lasagna noodles look different than regular lasagna noodles — but this saves a ton of time! Plus, after testing this cabbage lasagna both ways, we found it’s easier to cut into cabbage lasagna made from sliced leaves as opposed to whole leaves.
If you’d prefer to use whole cabbage leaves, follow my keto cabbage rolls instructions for boiling and separating the leaves.
Steam the cabbage.
Cabbage is one of those low carb vegetables that has a high water content. If we don’t steam it before adding it to our cabbage lasagna, our dish will turn out soggy and inedible. Plus, steaming the cabbage makes our low carb noodles nice and tender!
This can be done in a steamer, or in a pot with a little water at the bottom.
Sauté the onions.
I know you’re tempted to skip this step, but don’t! Sautéing aromatic keto vegetables (such as onions and garlic) makes a huge difference in mellowing out and bringing together all the delicious flavors of this dish.
Layering the deliciousness together.
Now that our cabbage is chopped and our onions sautéed, it’s just a matter of layering the cabbage lasagna ingredients. Layer the low carb casseroles ingredients in 2 layers of each (sausage mix, cabbage, and ricotta mix) and top with a serious sprinkle of parmesan and mozzarella.
Pop your cabbage lasagna in the oven until it’s heated through and the cheese is nice and melted. No need to cook this cabbage lasagna slow cooker, since it only takes about 30 minutes to bake!
Meal Prepping This Keto Lasagna
Aside from the fact that this keto lasagna is absolutely delicious, we love making it for low carb meal prep, as it’s great to slice up, portion out, and reheat as needed for low carb dinners or low carb lunches during busy weeks.
In fact, I often freeze a few portions of this cabbage lasagna in resealable bags. It’s seriously too good to go to waste! Plus, it’s super simple to reheat from frozen by placing it on a baking sheet and back into the oven!
Gluten Free Lasagna Swaps and Add ons
Maybe you’re missing one of the listed gluten free lasagna ingredients, or maybe you’d like to switch it up and try something different! Either way, here are some potential swaps and adjustments you can make to this dish:
- The sausage. I like using Italian sausage, as it’s heavily seasoned with delicious herbs and spices, but any sort of ground meat will do. Ground chicken lasagna, turkey, even beef would be fine — if you end up swapping the protein, try adding more herbs to your cabbage lasagna (think of the Italian herbs used in sausage and you’ll be good to go).
- “Protein” lasagna. You know I love my protein (this dish is already far from a vegan cabbage lasagna anyway, sorry not sorry!) To increase the protein in this dish, I’ll sometimes double the amount of sausage– easy as that.
- Low carb marinara. If you aren’t on a low carb eating plan, use whichever marinara sauce you prefer. If you’d like to save some additional carbs, use only 1 jar.
- Cheese. Ricotta and parmesan are staples in any regular or cabbage lasagna recipe, so I recommend you stick with those. I also like the addition of mozzarella, but if you only have cheddar or jack available, those will do as well.
- More herbs. Everything tastes better with more Italian herbs! Try adding some of your favorites into the ricotta sauce between layering your cabbage lasagna.
Low Carb Lasagna Variations
With a little creativity, you can make low carb lasagna with all sorts of veggies! Swapping vegetables in cabbage lasagna isn’t as simple as just replacing one for the other — check below for specific recommendations:
1. Zucchini Lasagna
Unlike cabbage lasagna, making zucchini lasagna requires a mandolin to cut thin and even slices — otherwise, your low carb pastas will be undercooked in some places and overcooked in others.
2. Eggplant Lasagna
Instead of steaming eggplant lasagna, you’ll need to “sweat” it. To do this, slice the eggplant into thin and even noodles, then sprinkle them with salt. This will pull out as much liquid from this veggie as possible. Dap them off with a towel, then roast them in the oven.
TBH, both zucchini and eggplant take a lot more work than making this simple recipe, which is why I MUCH prefer this version.
3. Spaghetti Squash Lasagna
Spaghetti squash lasagna is easy — cook your spaghetti squash, make noodles with a fork and layer everything together. When you layer, simply swap your cabbage lasagna noodles for spaghetti squash.
Cabbage Lasagna Recipe
I hope this cabbage lasagna recipe is the low carb lasagna replacement you’ve been searching for! Check out the cabbage lasagna calories below the recipe if you’re interested, and bon appétit!
Low Carb Cabbage Lasagna
- 1 Head Cabbage
- 1 Lb Sweet Italian Sausage casing removed
- 1 Yellow Onion chopped finely
- 4-6 Garlic Cloves minced
- 2 24 Ounce Jar Marinara Sauce no sugar added
- 2 Teaspoons Oregano dried
- 1 Teaspoon Basil dried
- 32 Ounces Ricotta Cheese
- 2 Cups Grated Parmesan Cheese divided
- 4 Cups Mozzarella Shredded Divided
- 1 Cup Fresh Basil Chopped
- 1 Teaspoon Salt
- 1/2 Teaspoon Black Pepper
- 1 Large Egg
- Preheat oven to 350 F and prepare a 9x13” casserole dish with cooking spray.
- Quarter the head of cabbage, then cut each quarter into ½” strips.
- Place strips of cabbage into a large pot with a little water, and boil the cabbage until tender (about 10 minutes).
- Place cabbage in a colander and allow it to drain. Place paper towels on top to absorb as much liquid as possible from the cabbage.
- Cook the Italian sausage in a large skillet, over medium heat. Break sausage into small pieces with the back of your spoon as it cooks.
- Once cooked, remove sausage from the pan to a to a paper towel lined plate.
- Remove most of the sausage fat from the pan, leaving only 2 tablespoons (if there aren’t 2 tablespoons of fat, add olive oil).
- Add the onion and cook until softened, about 10 minutes.
- Add garlic and continue to cook until it’s fragrant, about 1 minute.
- Remove veggies from heat and stir in your cooked sausage and marinara. Set aside.
- In a medium bowl, combine the ricotta, 1 cup of parmesan, 2 cups mozzarella, fresh basil, oregano, salt, pepper, and egg.
- Now let’s layer the ingredients. Start with 1/2 of the red meat sauce, then a layer of cabbage, then 1.2 of the ricotta mixture. Repeat 1 more time, or until you’ve used all the ingredients.
- Top the lasagna with remaining 1 cup of parmesan and 2 cups of mozzarella.
- Cook in preheated oven for about 45 minutes, or until the lasagna is heated through and the cheese on top browns in the corners.
- Allow lasagna to cool slightly before slicing, and enjoy!
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