Stuffed Zucchini Boats

Zucchini! totally embracing my love for zucchini with this recipe. Zucchini, stuffed with ground beef, sun dried tomatoes, pesto and cheese, YUM! We visited grandma’s house with the kids last weekend and she sent us home with plenty of zucchini for us to experiment with. We tried this recipe out while we were there and decided to make it again when we areived home.  It tasted soooo good!  The ones we had at grandma’s house were topped with arugula and cheese. My mother is passionate about essential oils, so the zucchini was brushed with a mixture of black pepper, rosemary and basil essential oils.  This added a great flavor to the zucchini!  If you have these oils, feel free to use them.  Arugula is a very durable vegetable and does just fine under heat. It will hold it’s flavor and add a fresh taste to your zucchini if you have it on hand.


Here is what you will need:


Two rather large Zucchini halved length-ways and shelled (if you don’t have large ones, pick the biggest one you can find) make sure to keep the pulp from the zucchini as you scoop it out!

1 lb ground beef

1/2 Large red bell pepper

2-3 Tablespoons sun dried tomatoes  (I didn’t really measure, they just filled the palm of my hand)

1 Cup oats

1 egg

1 1/2 Teaspoon salt

1/4 Teaspoon garlic powder.

1 1/2 cup zucchini pulp you removed from the zucchini when shelled.

1 teaspoon pesto per halved zucchini (topping)

Dusting of choice cheese ( I used an Italian blend)

Pepper to taste

Prepare your boats first, because you will use the seeds and soft center of the zucchini in your stuffing. Nothing goes to waste!

Use a spoon to scrape, creating a channel down the middle of the zucchini. Place the pulp that you remove from the zucchini in a blender cup along with the sun dried tomatoes and bell pepper.

Pulse until smooth. Create your stuffing by first blending the meat with the egg. Once combined, add your blended zucchini mixture, oats, and season with salt, pepper and garlic powder.

Fill the channel you created in the zucchini with the stuffing, brush with pesto and cover with a dusting of cheese.

I wrapped my boats individually to make them more portable after cooking, but they can be placed directly on a pan. I believe cooking them wrapped in foil also encourages even cooking temperatures.

Place on middle rack in oven and bake for 25-30 mins at 350 degrees. Your meat should be cooked, but your zucchini should still be firm. Over cooking can cause your zucchini to become mushy.

Once golden brown on top, remove from oven, cool slightly and serve.