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If you crave lasagna, this Low Carb Lasagna with Easy Meat Sauce and Cabbage Noodles is sure to become a regular in your family dinner meal rotation! We promise you won’t even miss the carbs.
Lasagna is always a family favorite and there’s no reason you can’t fit it into a ketogenic way of eating. If you think about it, the flavorful part of lasagna (or any pasta dish) is the sauce and other add-ins, not the pasta itself, so you aren’t missing anything!
And by using other non-traditional noodle replacements (like cabbage leaves), you also bump up the nutrition factor. We think your whole family will love our Low Carb Lasagna with Easy Meat Sauce and Cabbage Noodles!
Making Keto or Low Carb Lasagna
There are a few easy tricks to making keto lasagna that will make sure it’s every bit as delicious (if not more so) than regular lasagna. Start with a homemade meat sauce, which is easy to make and well worth the little bit of effort. Use your favorite low carb noodle substitute, and be sure to add plenty of cheese (grass-fed whenever possible)!
Low Carb Noodle Ideas
Here are a few of our favorites low carb alternatives to using noodles:
- Bell pepper
- Sliced deli meat
- Egg crepes (lightly beat egg and cook it in a skillet as if you were making an omelet, but don’t fold it)
- And of course, cabbage!
Easy Meat Sauce
Like any pasta (or pasta-inspired dish), the key to success is in the sauce. Homemade meat sauce is fast and easy to make:
- Brown ground beef in a skillet with onion and garlic. As soon as the onion and garlic starts to cook down, it’ll start to smell pretty amazing.
- Add tomato product (we use tomato paste here), liquid (we love our bone broth or beef gelatin!), and any herbs or seasonings you like (we use this Italian herb seasoning).
- Let it do its thing! Just let the sauce simmer; as it cooks, some of the liquid will evaporate off and the flavor will intensify. It’s magic.
- We like to finish our meat sauce with a splash of red wine vinegar to brighten up the flavor!
Benefits of Grass Fed Beef Versus Grain Feed Beef
Whenever possible, we recommend eating grass fed meats and dairy (as well as organic, at least for the Dirty Dozen). It’s commonly said that eating grass fed meat is better for you, the animal, and the planet.
Grass fed beef is more nutrient dense than grain fed beef, with grass fed containing more conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), omega-3 fatty acids, and precursors for vitamins A and E. Additionally, grass fed beef has less fat and lower levels of dietary cholesterol than its grain fed counterpart. (Read more about the health benefits of grass fed beef on Dr. Axe and Perfect Keto, and read a nonpartisan article on the topic on The Washington Post.)
More Keto Casserole Recipes:
- Keto Easy Chicken Cordon Blue Casserole from The Keto Queens
- Low Carb Cheesy Leftover Chicken (or Turkey) Jalapeno Popper Casserole from An Edible Mosaic
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Low Carb Lasagna with Easy Meat Sauce and Cabbage Noodles
- 1 1/4 lbs 570 g 85% grass-fed ground beef
- 1 medium yellow onion diced
- 4 large cloves garlic crushed
- 1 1/2 cups 355 ml beef bone broth
- 6 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1 tablespoon dried Italian herb mix
- 3/4 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
- 6 large cabbage leaves
- Olive oil spray
- Preheat the oven to 400F; lightly spray the inside of an 8 by 8-inch casserole dish with olive oil.
- For the meat sauce, preheat a large skillet over medium to medium-high heat. Once hot, add the beef and onion, and cook until the meat is browned and the onion is softened, about 6 to 8 minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook 1 minute more.
- Stir in the bone broth and use a wooden spoon to scrape up any brown bits that have formed on the bottom.
- Add the tomato paste, herb mix, salt, black pepper, and red pepper flakes, and bring up to a boil.
- Turn the heat down slightly and let it simmer until the liquid is evaporated, about 10 minutes, and then stir in the vinegar. Set aside.
- Mix together all ingredients for the cheese mixture and set aside, reserving 1/4 cup shredded mozzarella and 2 tablespoons freshly-grated Parmesan for topping.
- Meanwhile, bring a large pot of water to a rolling boil. Once boiling, add the cabbage leaves and boil until tender, about 5 to 10 minutes. Remove the cabbage leaves, let them cool, and then pat dry. Cut each leaf in half and remove the tough inner stem.
- To assemble the lasagna, spread out 1/4 of the meat sauce in the prepared casserole dish.
- Arrange 2 cabbage leaves (4 halves) in a single layer on top of the meat sauce. Top with 1/4 of the meat sauce and 1/3 of the cheese mixture. Repeat this layering process 2 times.
- Sprinkle the remaining 1/4 cup shredded mozzarella and 2 tablespoons freshly-grated Parmesan on top, and bake (uncovered) until the casserole is bubbling, about 25 minutes.
- To brown the top more, broil for a couple minutes.
If you like this recipe, check out our Freezer-Friendly Family Dinner Recipes e-book!