Blogger Extreme Food Makeover by Stephanie Zielinski, A Cookie A Day

After August 31st, 2017, this page will no longer be updated or monitored. Please find us at our new and improved website, Thank you!

Blogger: Stephanie Zielinski
Challenge: Lasagna

When I saw my assignment for the cooking matters Extreme Food Makeover Challenge I was pumped! Lasagna!!! Back in May Ian celebrated his First Communion, and his dish of choice to serve to our guests….lasagna. I made enough lasagna to feed the small army I like to call our family. The kicker, however, is that the lasagna I usually make is loaded with heavy cheeses, noodles and sauce. Not the most balanced meal.

I decided to make over my normal recipe by adding fresh veggies and using low-fat cheeses and whole-grain noodles. I then paired it with a simple salad and finished it with a delicious healthy cookie. Since we were leaving for a soccer tournament up in Traverse City (where I am currently writing this) I had to use a lot of ingredients I had on hand. Luckily, I had made a pot of tomato sauce this past week so had some stored in the freezer.

My submission for Cooking Matters Michigan’s Blogger Extreme Food Makeover Challenge:

Eggplant Zucchini and Portobello Lasagna with Meat Sauce.
Mixed Greens and Michigan Apple Salad
Power Peanut Butter and Sea Salt Cookies

Eggplant Zucchini Portobello Lasagna with Meat Sauce
(this recipe can easily be adapted to a vegetarian dish by using a tomato sauce)

Eggplant and mushroom lasagna by Stephanie

1 tablespoon Olive Oil
½ Onion
1 Clove of Garlic
1 medium sized Eggplant
1 Zucchini
1 cup of Baby Portobello Mushrooms
Fresh Thyme, Oregano and Italian Parsley
2 Cups of Tomato Sauce (I used a homemade meat sauce but any tomato sauce will work)
2 Cups Low Fat Shredded Mozzarella
½ Cup of Mascarpone Cheese
1 box of Organic Whole Wheat No Boil Lasagna Noodles

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees
2. Chop onion, and garlic.
3. Heat a large pan, add olive oil, swirl to cover the bottom of the pan
4. Add onion and garlic, cook over medium heat until onions are a golden color.
5. While onions and garlic cook, chop eggplant, zucchini and mushrooms
6. Add to pan and cook 3-5 minutes
7. Chop and add fresh herbs
8. Remove veggies from heat
9. In a bowl mix together cheeses
10. Add a little sauce to the bottom of a 13×9 baking dish
11. Lay noodles overlapping on the bottom of the pan
12. Cover with 2 ladles of sauce, veggies then cheese.
13. Top with another layer of noodles
14. Repeat steps 12 and 13 until noodles are finished.
15. Top with a final layer of sauce, veggies and cheese.
16. Cover with foil and bake 30-45 minutes until cheese is bubbly.
17. Let cool cut and enjoy!

Mixed Green Salad with Michigan Apples

Mixed Green Salad with Michigan Apples by Stephanie

Red Leaf Lettuce
1 Large Michigan Apple
2 Mozzarella String Cheese Sticks
Lemon Wedge
Salt and Pepper


1. Chop and wash lettuce
2. Wash and chop apple, add to lettuce
3. Cut string cheese into cubes and add to lettuce and apples.
4. Squeeze lemon wedge over salad
5. Salt and Pepper to taste

Power Peanut Butter and Sea Salt Cookies

Power Peanut Butter and Sea Salt Cookie

2 Cups of Natural Peanut Butter
½ Cup Agave
2 Eggs
Sea Salt

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
2. In a large bowl, mix Peanut Butter, Agave, and eggs together.
3. Place in refrigerator for 15 minutes
4. Roll dough into balls and place on cookie sheet
5. Using a fork make cross stich pattern
6. Bake for 8-10 minutes
7. Remove from oven and add sea salt to the tops of the cookies
8. Cool on cookie sheet for one minute then remove to a cooling rack to complete cooling.


14 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Kelsie Blowycky  |  September 17, 2012 at 9:55 am

    I am a sucker for desserts….Power Peanut Butter and Sea Salt Cookies

  • 2. Andrea  |  September 17, 2012 at 10:11 am

    Lools delicious! That looks like a must try!

  • 3. Anita Lankin Caponi  |  September 17, 2012 at 10:13 am

    They all look delish! Creative makeover Stephanie

    • 4. dorothy hernandez  |  September 17, 2012 at 12:32 pm

      Just to make sure … this is a vote for Stephanie?

  • 5. Anna Longe  |  September 17, 2012 at 10:23 am

    I love portobello mushrooms!

    • 6. dorothy hernandez  |  September 17, 2012 at 12:30 pm

      Thanks for the comment! Just want to make sure … you are putting in a vote for Stephanie, yes?

  • 7. lmclas01  |  September 17, 2012 at 10:47 am

    I can’t wait to try to make the cookies! The lasagna looks great, too. Nice work!

    • 8. dorothy hernandez  |  September 17, 2012 at 12:31 pm

      Thanks for the comment … just want to make sure you are voting for Stephanie or are you just saying how fabulous it is? Nothing wrong with the latter but I want to make sure to count a vote if there is one. 🙂

  • 9. Eileen  |  September 17, 2012 at 1:35 pm

    This is definitely a vote for Stephanie!! This all looks incredible -she had me at peanut butter salt cookies -YUMMY!

  • 10. chris  |  September 17, 2012 at 1:56 pm

    I am voting for Stephanie Zielinski. Great use of agave!

  • 11. michelle  |  September 17, 2012 at 2:18 pm

    Always looking for a healthy alternative to my favorite dish….this looks very yummy!

  • 12. lmclas01  |  September 17, 2012 at 2:20 pm

    I’m voting for Stephanie!

  • 13. Christine Champion  |  September 17, 2012 at 3:52 pm

    I’m voting for Stephanie! Sounds yummy, now I’m hungry!

  • 14. michelle  |  September 17, 2012 at 8:07 pm

    I’m voting for Stephanie!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Trackback this post  |  Subscribe to the comments via RSS Feed

%d bloggers like this: