This healthy riff on lasagna uses strips of zucchini instead of lasagna noodles for a vegetable-packed dinner that's fun to make! Use a vegetable peeler or mandolin to quickly slice the zucchini into uniform thin strips—this will ensure easy rolling and even cooking.
2 large zucchini, trimmed
2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
½ teaspoon ground pepper, divided
¼ teaspoon salt, divided
8 tablespoons shredded smoked mozzarella cheese, divided
3 tablespoons crushed almonds
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1⅓ cups cottage cheese
1 (10 ounce) package frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
1 clove garlic, minced
¾ cup low-sodium marinara sauce, divided
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
To make ahead: Prepare through Step 6 and refrigerate for up to 1 day.
This is a complete meal.
Position racks in upper and lower thirds of oven; preheat to 425°F. Coat 2 rimmed baking sheets with cooking spray.
Slice zucchini lengthwise to get 24 total strips, about ⅛ inch thick each.
Toss the zucchini, oil, ¼ teaspoon pepper and ⅛ teaspoon salt in a large bowl. Arrange the zucchini in a single layer on the prepared pans.
Bake the zucchini, turning once, until tender, about 10 minutes total.
Meanwhile, combine 2 tablespoons mozzarella and 1 tablespoon crushed almonds in a small bowl. Set aside. Mix egg, cottage cheese, spinach, garlic and the remaining 6 tablespoons mozzarella, 2 tablespoons crushed almonds, ¼ teaspoon pepper and ⅛ teaspoon salt in a medium bowl.
Spread ¼ cup marinara in an 8-inch-square baking dish. Place 1 tablespoon of the cottage cheese mixture near the bottom of a strip of zucchini. Roll it up and place, seam-side down, in the baking dish. Repeat with the remaining zucchini and filling. Top the rolls with the remaining ½ cup marinara sauce and sprinkle with the reserved cheese mixture.
Bake the zucchini rolls until bubbly and lightly browned on top, about 20 minutes. Let stand for 5 minutes. Sprinkle with basil before serving.