Zucchini Bake Lean and Green

I’m always on the lookout for easy-to-make, one-batch lean and greens that don’t require a trip to the store. I’m a huge fan of zucchini and I always have a few in my fridge. When I chanced upon this recipe from Joy Filled Eats’ instagram feed, I thought it would be perfect for Optavia 5&1. With a few mods, it absolutely is!

Ingredients:

  • 170g shredded zucchini {3 greens}
  • 7 {14T} egg whites {1/2 Leanest}
  • 3/4 cup 1% cottage cheese {1/2 Leanest}
  • 2 wedges original Laughing Cow {2 Healthy Fats}
  • ¼ cup unsweetened almond milk {1/4 condiment}
  • ½ tsp salt {2 condiments}
  • 1T reduced fat Parmesan {1/2 condiment}

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Shred zucchini {peeled or unpeeled is entirely up to you} and place in paper towels to squeeze out as much of the water as possible. Removing the water is a critical step—don’t skip it!
  3. Spray a 9″ x 9″ baking dish and then sprinkle 1/2T parmesan on the bottom. This helps to keep the bottom dry.
  4. Place the shredded zucchini in an even layer in the dish
  5. Blend your egg whites, cottage cheese, Laughing Cow wedges, salt, and almond milk in a blender until smooth. Then pour over the top of the zucchini.
  6. Top with another 1/2T of parmesan
  7. Bake until golden brown and cooked through, around 35-45 minutes.

Entire batch equals one complete Lean & Green.

A few tips:

  1. This is a really large portion, so I often make it in the AM and then eat it in two servings throughout the day. So I end up eating 7 times on those days.
  2. If you’d like to use this as a side dish, you can eat 1/2 of the dish and then supplement with 1/2 of a Leanest and 1.5 Greens.
  3. I saw a question on Joy Filled Eats’ Insta asking if you can use ricotta instead of cottage cheese. You definitely can, but as much as I LOVE ricotta, I really think this dish is better with the cottage cheese.
  4. If/when you store it in the fridge, I recommend placing a paper towel on top and then covering with foil. That way, any moisture is captured in the paper towel instead of collecting in the dish.
  5. This would make an AWESOME Thanksgiving side dish. It’s super light and goes with just about anything.

PS. You’ll see I have a few different baking dishes in the pics. I’ve made it a few times and ultimately, I like the square or rectangular dishes the best. The round one wasn’t big enough, but I had the best lighting that day, lol.

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