This White Lasagna Recipe with Zucchini and Ground Beef is a delicious make-ahead family dinner! It's creamy, rich, hearty, and mouthwatering delicious. You get layers of noodles, zucchini, ground beef mixed with herbs, seasonings, and creamy cheese, plus a silky white sauce in every layer.
Prepare the zucchini by cutting it into long strips from stem to stem that are about ¼ inch thick. They will resemble the size of lasagna noodles. You should get 4 long strips per zucchini.
Mince the garlic, chop the parsley, and measure out the fennel seed, oregano, salt, and pepper. Then add all to the ground beef in a large mixing bowl. Mix to combine.
Preheat a large pot or dutch oven on medium-high heat and add in a teaspoon of Extra Virgin Olive Oil. Add the ground beef mixture and break it up. Let it cook for 5 minutes, stirring halfway through until it gets browned.
Stir in the cream cheese until melted and combined. Turn off the heat and stir in half (4oz) of the mozzarella. Set aside off the heat until ready to the assemble.
Make the White Sauce. First, warm the milk slightly in the microwave or in a pot. Preheat a separate medium sauce pot on medium-low heat and add the butter. Once the butter is melted, whisk in the flour and let it cook for 1-2 minutes. Slowly whisk in the milk until fully combined into a smooth thick mixture. Slowly whisk in the broth. Stir in the salt and remove from the heat.
Preheat the oven to 400 F degrees.
Before you start to assemble, make sure that your lasagna noodles are ready. If they are no-boil noodles, you are set. Otherwise, you need to par-cook them in boiling water for just a few minutes so they are pliable.
Layer 1 - Start by spooning a thin layer of the white sauce onto the bottom, just so the pasta sheets don’t stick to the bottom. Then add the first layer of lasagna noodles. Layer white sauce over the noodles and then top with HALF of the beef mixture. Next, top with a layer of HALF of the Zucchini strips (usually 4 strips), and then more white sauce.
Layers 2 - Repeat - Add a layer of noodles, white sauce, the remaining half of the beef mixture, and the final layer of zucchini strips and more white sauce. Sprinkle the remaining mozzarella cheese and parsley on top.
Cover your lasagna with aluminum foil and then bake on the center rack for 30 minutes. Remove the cover and bake for another 15 minutes. For the last 5 minutes, I turn the broiler on to get a nice browned top. Let rest for 15-20 minutes before cutting and serving.