Summer brings a glut of zucchini and other summer squashes, whether or not you grow them yourself. There’s your neighbor who leaves them on your doorstep, your coworker who puts a free bin in the lunchroom, and the tempting nature of the piles at the farmers’ market. After you’ve made zucchini pizzas and enough zucchini bread to fill a chest freezer, get stuffing. Here are 11 stuffed zucchini boat recipes we love.
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If you’re unfamiliar with zucchini boats, let me tell you why they are dreamboats:
- They’re easy to make and almost couldn’t require any less preparation.
- Many variations are low carb and/or gluten free.
- Unlike a real boat, zucchini boats are extremely budget-friendly.
- They’re completely customizable. You can top your zucchini base with any fixins that float your boat (see what I did there?!).
- They’re scalable. Pop one in the oven for yourself or prep a full fleet for a crowd!
Pro tip: If you have a melon baller, it’s great for scooping out the zucchini halves too!
Now that you know the ropes, here are 10 recipes to get you started. Here’s hoping it’s smooth sailing.
Let’s start simple. This first boat resembles garlic bread, but with zucchini subbing in for the bread (OK, there are still breadcrumbs for crunch; for a totally gluten-free option, this Parmesan Herb Zucchini Boats recipe has similar flavors). For some extra zest and texture, add sliced tomatoes on top. A close cousin to this recipe uses mozzarella in place of parmesan. While this changes the flavor game, I recommend waiting to add the mozzarella until the last five minutes of oven time so that its melty gooey-ness doesn’t get too out of control. Get the Crispy Parmesan Stuffed Zucchini recipe.
Armed with tomatoes, cheese, and any toppings you desire, it’s easy enough to improvise a simple red pizza atop your zucchini. But if you’re interested in trying your hand at a white pizza, check out this recipe, which calls for stuffing your zucchini with ricotta, mozzarella, garlic, and a blend of spices. Get the White Pizza Zucchini Boats recipe.
Ground chicken and zucchini are the new peanut butter and chocolate — there are endless ways to combine this delicious duo. To get you started, here’s a recipe that only requires four ingredients: zucchini, chicken, wing sauce, and mozzarella cheese. Or for more of a “chicken parm” variation, swap the wing sauce for pasta sauce and garlic. Get the Buffalo Chicken Zucchini Boats recipe.
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Lentils can catch a ride with pasta sauce on a zucchini boat too! Along with lentils, this Italian-inspired recipe fills your boat with onions, spinach, and mozzarella. Get the Lentil Stuffed Zucchini Boats recipe.
Using ground turkey is another easy way to add some protein to your boat. This recipe involves sautéing turkey with onions, mushrooms, and peppers before garnishing with feta cheese. Get the Turkey, Veggie, and Feta Zucchini Boats recipe.
Before we sail on from the flavors of the Greek isles, here’s a protein-packed vegetarian option that calls for quinoa mixed with olives, tomatoes, and feta. Get the Greek Quinoa Zucchini Boats recipe.
Vegan sausage stars in these Italian-accented zucchini boats with marinara sauce. Get the Easy Vegan Zucchini Boats recipe.
Now we’re getting fancy. Since this vegan recipe requires the additional step of preparing a sauce, it’s a bit more labor intensive. But I imagine that the commingling flavors of peanut, coconut milk, and red curry paste will reward you for your efforts. Get the Thai Red Curry Zucchini Boats recipe. (And for a similar meatless version, try this Thai Tempeh Zucchini Boats with Peanut Sauce recipe.)
For this vegan recipe, you essentially make a simple cashew cream to cook the quinoa, before spooning it into hollowed-out zucchini halves. Sandwich the squash halves together and grill until slightly charred on the outside, and feel free to mix in additional tidbits to the filling. Get our Quinoa-Stuffed Grilled Zucchini recipe.
Header image courtesy of Brian Macdonald / DigitalVision / Getty Images