Recently I have been dipping into this whole low carb Keto fad. I have never considered it until now because I consider myself a fairly healthy vegetarian. But lately I have been feeling a bit heavy, sluggish and dull.
Not to mention I have gained a couple extra pounds. And when you are five feet tall, that really shows! I have tried low calorie, low fat, smaller meals, less meals, only whole grains, so lets see how this does!
I downloaded the Fatsecret App to take a look at the carbs I am taking in on a normal day and boy was I surprised! A normal day not worrying about carbs might have consisted of this-
Breakfast- oatmeal, and banana
Snack-Snack bar or apple
Lunch-Rice, quinoa, or wrap and veggies plus more fruit
Mid day snack- “healthy” snack bar or yogurt
Dinner- A carb like pasta or rice, vegetarian protein typically being beans, healthy fat mix, and maybe banana ice cream or 1 cup of low calorie cereal for dessert. And of course, a glass or two of wine or beer.
Sometimes I would have a cheat day and have ice cream out with my daughter or a scone from the local bakery. Those cheat days were becoming more frequent. Not good!
I am not saying all carbs are bad, but I have been taking advantage of them over the past couple months and need to re-set.
Craving pasta and cheese promoted me to make this dish. I bought the zucchinis from a local farmers market, and everything else from the Dillons down the street. I use coupons and Ibotta for pretty much everything so the whole pan costs about $7 to make and it was about 2 meals for 2 people. So about $1.75 per meal! And you can be novice to make this. Its SO freaking easy!
Ingredients you will need to gather:
*4 zucchini’s spiraled. I use a cheap spiralizer I bought from Amazon:
*1 cup of butternut squash, also spiraled or julienne cut.
*1/2 jar of spaghetti sauce. I used Prego light smart
*1 cup whole milk ricotta. I used the Dillons organic brand. Its my fav!
*1 cup whole milk mozzarella. I used Sargento. Fresh would be fantastic too.
*1 T minced garlic
*1 T Italian seasoning
*1 t of salt and pepper each
Olive Oil Spray for the pan
Now for the making:
*Heat oven to 375 degrees
*Spray a 9×13 pan, or similar size with a good amount of oil spray
*In a large bowl mix the spiralized veggies with about 1/2 jar of sauce, garlic and seasonings. The squash will give off a lot of water while it cooks, so half a jar of liquid works great. Save the other half for something else like another portion next week!
*Coat the zucchini and butternut squash well with the sauce mixture and move to the oiled pan.
*Dallop about 6 portions, 1/8 cup size of the ricotta cheese throughout the dish. As you see in my pic, I did it on all sides. I like semmintry 🙂
*Last but not least, sprinkle the mozzarella cheese over the whole casserole.
*Cover with foil, bake about 30 minutes. After 30 minutes take foil off and bake another 10 minutes until the cheese starts to get that light brown baked bubbly yummy look. Enjoy!
Please give your self a little treat and enjoy this with a 5 ounce glass of wine. The barefoot line is what I have been liking lately. Its a perfect combo!
As far as net carbs goes, I have calculated what a LARGE serving (almost 1/4 of pan) would be about in my app. Keep in mind this does include wine. You can replace the squash with more zucchini to reduce the carbs even more. I am a fan of the sweetness of butternut squash though.