A method of drilling a subsea wellbore includes drilling the wellbore by injecting drilling fluid through a tubular string extending into the wellbore from an offshore drilling unit (ODU) and rotating a drill bit disposed on a bottom of the tubular string. The method further includes, while drilling the wellbore: mixing lifting fluid with drilling returns at a flow rate proportionate to a flow rate of the drilling fluid, thereby forming a return mixture. The lifting fluid has a density substantially less than a density of the drilling fluid. The return mixture has a density substantially less than the drilling fluid density. The method further includes, while drilling the wellbore: measuring a flow rate of the returns or the return mixture; and comparing the measured flow rate to the drilling fluid flow rate to ensure control of a formation being drilled.