Zucchini Boats- Stuffed Zucchini Boats are a delicious way to use up your beautiful summer! Soft with a smooth beef sauce and cooked till tender. Serve this simple recipe with a side salad and garlic bread for a complete family dinner! Bake until it is soft and the cheese is melted and bubbling. These simple meal is simple, fresh, and delectable way to display peak-season summer squash. Lemony mixture that contains the scooped zucchini flesh. This dish works best with medium-large zucchini (larger squash = more stuffing space), so it’s one you can keep making as the season continues and the squash become larger. I sincerely hope you enjoy it as much as we do! A quick and easy low-carb supper that the whole family will appreciate!
Zucchini Boat Recipe:
Zucchini boats are a cheap and filling meal. They transform the simple zucchini into a delectable dish.
While there are as many ways to stuff a zucchini as there are squash to contain the filling, I like this recipe because it is bursting (literally) with Italian flavors.
Fresh basil, tomato, bell peppers, lean Italian turkey sausage, and Parmesan cheese make up the stuffing, which is a delicious blend of Italian classics and summer vegetable heroes.
The topping consists of whole wheat breadcrumbs, olive oil, fresh basil, and Parmesan cheese.
These zucchini boats are substantial and flavorful, yet still light.
This stuffed zucchini dish just takes a few common ingredients and can be made in about 30 minutes. Here’s all you need to know:
- Of course, zucchini! I filled the shells with a zucchini-loaded filling and utilize it in two ways.
- The filling is held together by the egg.
- Coarse breadcrumbs give the filling a wonderful substance – the top toasts while the middle stays wet.
- Parmesan cheese gives a melty, cheesy texture as well as umami taste.
- Garlic gives it a kick.
- With delicious, juicy bites, cherry tomatoes dot the filling.
- Pine nuts provide crunch and richness to the dish.
- The lemon zest and thyme add a bright, fresh finish.
How To Make Zucchini Boats:
- Preheat the oven and prepare the baking dish: Preheat the oven to 400°F. Nonstick cooking spray a 13-by-9-inch baking dish.
- Hollow out the zucchini: Using a spoon, scoop out the cores of the zucchini, leaving a 1/4-inch rim on both edges to form boats. Drizzle with 1 tablespoon olive oil and season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Bake for 15 minutes in a preheated oven.
- Meanwhile, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large pan over medium-high heat. Sauté the onion for 3 minutes.
- Brown the sausage, then add the garlic. Add the sausage chunks and fry through, breaking up the flesh as it cooks. Cook for 1 minute more after adding the garlic.
- Remove from heat and toss in the tomatoes, 1/3 cup panko bread crumbs, and Italian seasoning.
- Fill the zucchini boats: Sprinkle 1/3 cup parmesan over the zucchini boats, then divide the filling among them.
- Topping ingredients, toss, and sprinkle over: Combine the mozzarella cheese, remaining 1/3 cup parmesan, and remaining 1/3 cup panko bread crumbs in a small mixing basin. Mixture should be sprinkled over zucchini boats.
- Bake zucchini boats in a preheated oven for 10–15 minutes, or until soft. Serve warm, garnished with parsley.
Tips And Tricks:
- For this dish, you can use mild or hot Italian sausage, turkey sausage, or even ground beef.
- This dish may also be made using yellow squash or hollowed out tiny eggplants!
- While I usually use mozzarella cheese in this meal, you could also use parmesan, fontina, or provolone.
- Utilize all of the filling and topping, stacking it high if necessary.
- Bake twice, once before and again after filling.
- To test for tenderness, pierce the zucchini with a knife.
- If they are too large to fit in one baking dish, simply use another small baking dish.
- Squeeze as much water as possible from the zucchini flesh before adding it to the filling. You don’t want it to be dripping wet! Any larger zucchini chunks should be cut into little pieces before being added to the seedy, pulpy guts and pressed through a kitchen strainer.
- Take care not to scoop too much. Make careful to leave a strong border of zucchini flesh around the filling to support it. Your stuffed zucchini boats will be fragile if you scoop too much.
- You can make your own breadcrumbs. Better bread Means better bread crumbs, so for this recipe, use a nice baguette or loaf of crusty bread. Tear it up and pulse it in a food processor to make coarse crumbs for the filling. Enjoy the leftover bread on the side!
- Serve with pesto on top. These filled zucchini boats are delicious on their own, but a sprinkle of pesto takes them to the next level. Make your own pesto or, in a pinch, use store-bought pesto.
This is an Italian-style filled zucchini, but there are many more delicious ways to stuff your squash!
- Mexican: Combine 1 pound mince beef, 16 ounces tomato sauce, 4 ounces chopped green chilies, 3/4 cup black beans, and 1/2 cup corn to make a filling, then top with cheddar cheese and bake.
- Asian: Prepare the filling for my chicken lettuce wraps, then put it into the zucchini and bake.
- Vegetarian: Combine sautéed onion, 2 cups cooked grains such rice or quinoa, 1 chopped red bell pepper, salt, pepper, 1 1/2 cups shredded cheese, and fresh herbs to make a filling.
- Making Gluten-Free. Make your breadcrumb topping with gluten-free bread.
- For Dairy Free. Omit the Parmesan and replace it with nutritional yeast.
- Make a Vegetarian Dish. Leave out the ground turkey for vegetarian stuffed zucchini.
- How to Make Keto. Omit the breadcrumbs and use keto-friendly Italian sausage for a keto-friendly stuffed zucchini.
Hollowing Out Zucchini:
After cutting each zucchini in half lengthwise, hollow out the zucchini by removing both the seeds and the center flesh as shown below.
- To begin, I remove and discard the seeds with the tip of a tiny spoon or a melon baller. Small zucchini earlier in the season may contain very few seeds, but bigger zucchini later in the season may have numerous.
- Scoop out the center meat once the seeds have been removed. I save this for the zucchini filling.
- I hold the top of the zucchini with two fingers while scooping out the meat. When scooping, use just enough pressure to remove the flesh but not so much that you cut through the bottom.
Can You Freeze Zucchini Boats?
I don’t advocate freezing zucchini boats since they will become mushy when thawed. Having said that, the meat filling for these boats may be frozen for up to 2 months. Simply defrost the mixture before spooning it into fresh zucchinis, then top with cheese and bake.
- The microwave is the quickest way to reheat zucchini boats.
- Individual portions (1–2 boats) can be reheated in the microwave for 1–2 minutes on a microwave safe dish.
Storing and Leftovers:
To keep. Refrigerate leftovers in an airtight storage jar for up to 3 days.
How to Reduce Carbs?
- To reduce the carbohydrates in this dish, leave out the panko bread crumbs.
- Make sure to thoroughly drain the tomatoes.
Is Zucchini Good For You?
Zucchini contains a variety of minerals including folate, Vitamin B6, potassium, manganese, Vitamin C, and Vitamin K. Zucchini is minimal in calories, carbs, and fiber. Zucchini also fights inflammation, helps digestion, boosts thyroid function, and is good for your eyes.
This dish is an excellent way to introduce vegetables to your children. You can even make your zucchini boats ahead of time and keep them covered in the fridge until you’re ready to bake them.
What To Serve With Zucchini Boats?
These filled zucchini boats are delicious as a main course or as a side dish. If you use three medium zucchini, this recipe serves six as a side dish; if you use two giant zucchini, it serves four as a main course and a side dish. They’d go well with a cool gazpacho or watermelon gazpacho, this simple summer pasta salad, pesto pasta, or any of these wonderful summer salads:
- Broccoli Salad
- Salad with Rainbow Orzo
- Salad with grilled corn
- Salad with Fennel and Peaches with Mint and Pesto
- Salad with Eggplant and Roasted Tomatoes
- Avocado and Strawberry Salad
MORE DELICIOIUS RECIPES HERE:
- 4 medium zucchini
- 1/2 tsp dry Italian seasoning
- Season with salt and pepper to taste
- 2 tsp olive oil
- 1 pound mild Italian sausage casings removed
- 1/2 cup finely diced onion
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 2 cups marinara sauce
- 3/4 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
- 1 tbsp. chopped parsley
- cooking spray
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Cooking spray a big rectangular baking dish.
Trim the stem ends of the zucchini after cutting it in half lengthwise. Scoop out the flesh of the zucchinis using a spoon.
Sprinkle the zucchini shells with the Italian seasoning, salt, and pepper. Place the zucchini in a baking dish and set aside.
In a large skillet over medium-high heat, heat the olive oil. Cook the sausage for 4-5 minutes, breaking it up with a spatula.
Cook for a further 4 minutes, or until the onion is softened. Cook for 30 seconds after adding the garlic.
Salt and pepper the sausage and veggie combination.
Bring the marinara sauce to a simmer in the pan and boil for 5 minutes.
Fill the zucchini shells evenly with the meat mixture, then top with the shredded cheese.
Bake for 25 minutes, or until the zucchini is soft and the cheese is golden brown.
Garnish with parsley before serving.
The quick and easiest method to grate cheese! Before you begin, shred one whole wedge of Parmesan cheese in your food processor. Cut the wedge into bits and pulse in a food processor equipped with a steel blade until ground. 12 cup is needed for the recipe, so measure it out and set it aside. Refrigerate the remaining for up to a week. You'll always have freshly grated Parmesan on hand! Then proceed with the filled zucchini, skipping the washing of the processor bowl in between.
TO STORE: Refrigerate leftovers in an airtight container for up to three days.
TO REWARM: Place the stuffed zucchini in a casserole dish and reheat in the oven at 350 degrees F until warmed through. If the breadcrumbs begin to brown too quickly, tent the dish loosely with foil. This recipe may also be reheated in the microwave.
Nutrition InformationServing Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 572Total Fat 39gSaturated Fat 14gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 28gCholesterol 78mgSodium 1611mgCarbohydrates 25gFiber 5gSugar 14gProtein 30g