Thursday, July 14, 2011

Zucchini Quinoa Casserole

This dish was so easy to throw together. Within 30 minutes it was all assembled - and I was talking on the phone while doing it -- so that should tell you just how truly easy this meal is to make. And the taste you get from it is great! It's almost cheesy, it has just enough flavor, and because it's zucchini, it absorbs the flavors around it, so you don't get that raw biter zucchini flavor I was afraid of. (Just make sure your slices are about hte same thickness so that they cook evenly!)

Make this vegan if you like by using all non-dairy products, or do what I did and realize that it's just so little dairy that you can either go without or just deal with it. I think next time I will double this and freeze the other portion - does anyone know how well zucchini freezes? I may just have to try it and see.
This is originally a Peas and Thank You recipe (have I mentioned recently how much i enjoy this blog?) and she calls it a lasagna, but I felt it was more like a casserole than anything. BUT, if the fact that "casserole" is in the title bothers you because you equate casserole to mystery meat and lots of cheese and not a lot of spices, than think of this as a simple, delicious, non-traditional lasagna.

Served this with some bread and salad - enjoy!

***REVAMPED VERSION can be found HERE***

Zucchini Quinoa Casserole
serves 4-6

  • 2 large zucchini, cut into 12 thin, 1/4 in. thick slices
  • salt
  • 1 c. quinoa, rinsed
  • 2 c. vegetable broth
  • 1/4 c. minced onion
  • 1 t. dried oregano
  • 1/4 c. fresh basil, chopped
  • 1/4 c. fresh parsley, chopped
  • 2 T. non-dairy cream cheese (optional) - or regular if you're not vegan
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 jar pasta sauce (we used garlic and herb)
  • 1/2 c. non-dairy cheese (optional) - or again, regular if you're not vegan
-- Combine the quinoa, broth, onion, oregano, and a 1/2 cup of the pasta sauce in a sauce pan. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and simmer for 20 minutes.
--Meanwhile - slice the zucchini lengthwise (6 slices per zucchini) and lay the slices on a paper towel with some salt to draw out the liquid. Let sit.
-- Once all the liquid is absorbed, stir in the chopped spices and cream cheese if using.
-- Pat the zucchini slices dry and get ready to layer.
-- Layer in an 8x8 baking dish: little bit of pasta sauce, a layer of zucchini, half the quinoa mixture, more sauce, another layer of zucchini, more sauce, the rest of the quinoa mixture, more sauce, the last layer of zucchini, the rest of the sauce, and then sprinkle with cheese if you're using.
-- Bake for 30 minutes at 400 (until the zucchini is soft)


  1. Do you cook this in an 8X8 baking dish?

    1. yes i did. i'll make sure to note that in the directions! thanks for noticing that.

  2. What's the brand of dairy free cheese you use?