This filling dish of turkey-stuffed zucchini boats is a great way to get in some extra veggies while also enjoying a hearty meal. The recipe is simple, yet it packs an impressive flavor punch that will leave you feeling satisfied.
What Are Turkey-Stuffed Zucchini Boats?
Stuffed zucchini boats are hollowed out zucchini filled with a variety of ingredients, such as ground meat, cheese, vegetables, and grains. The possibilities for stuffing combinations are endless. You can serve stuffed zucchini boats as an entrée or side dish.
For turkey-stuffed zucchini boats, you slice the fresh zucchini in half lengthwise and scoop out the pulp to create hollowed-out “boats.” Then you stuff the zucchini boats with ground turkey, onion, garlic, and seasonings and top them with cheese.
Turkey-stuffed zucchini boats are healthy because they contain lean protein from the ground turkey, vitamins and minerals from the zucchini and onion, and heart-healthy monounsaturated fat from the olive oil. Serve them with rice, quinoa, or your favorite side dish for an extra layer of texture and nutrition.
Ingredients You’ll Need for Turkey-Stuffed Zucchini Boats
- Big zucchini
- Ground turkey meat
- White onion
- Shredded mozzarella cheese
- Garlic cloves
- Olive oil
- Cracked black pepper
- Dried oregano
- Dried thyme
How to Make Turkey-Stuffed Zucchini Boats
- Preheat the oven to 395 degrees F.
- Wash the zucchini and cut off the woody stems. Cut the zucchini in half horizontally to create the boats.
- Remove the pulp inside the zucchini halves with a tablespoon. Be careful not to dig too deep, or they will break. Set aside the zucchini pulp.
- Peel and finely dice the white onion. Mince the garlic cloves.
- Heat the olive oil in a pan. Add the minced garlic and diced onion. Cook on medium heat for 7 minutes until golden and fragrant.
- Add the ground turkey meat to the pan and season with salt, cracked black pepper, dried oregano, and dried thyme. Cook until the turkey is browned and separated.
- Fill the zucchini boats with the cooked turkey.
- Top with shredded mozzarella cheese. Transfer the filled zucchini boats to a baking tray.
- Bake at 395 degrees F for 20 minutes until the zucchini boats are soft and the cheese is melted.
Tips and Variations for Turkey-Stuffed Zucchini Boats
To make the best turkey-stuffed zucchini boats, keep the following tips in mind.
- Try to find fresh and firm zucchini for your boats; fresher zucchini will have more flavor and hold up better when baking.
- Choose large zucchini so you can stuff them with plenty of the meat mixture.
- Substitute ground beef, chicken, or any meat of your choice for the ground turkey.
- Make the zucchini boats vegetarian by using vegetarian crumbles or cooked quinoa instead of ground turkey.
- Get creative with ingredients like grated carrots, cabbage, diced tomatoes, peppers, or olives.
- Make Mexican-style zucchini boats by adding black beans, corn, and taco seasoning. Serve with sliced avocado, cilantro, pico de gallo, and sour cream.
- Try Mediterranean zucchini boats by adding fresh spinach and feta cheese. Sprinkle with pine nuts for an extra crunchy topping.
- For a vegetarian option, stuff your boats with sauteed mushrooms and onions before topping with grated mozzarella cheese. Add fresh basil for an extra pop of flavor.
Turkey-Stuffed Zucchini Boats FAQs
What other vegetables can I use in place of the zucchini?
You can use many kinds of vegetables in place of the zucchini. The most popular choices are yellow summer squash, eggplant, and bell peppers.
Is this recipe gluten free and dairy free?
This recipe is gluten free because all the ingredients used are naturally gluten free. The only ingredient that contains dairy is the mozzarella cheese. To make the dish dairy free, eliminate the mozzarella cheese or use a non-dairy cheese.
What can I serve with this dish?
Good side dishes for these stuffed zucchini boats are rice, such as this Instant Pot basmati rice, or a simple side salad with healthy salad dressing. Finish the meal with a slice of crusty French bread or this keto focaccia bread.
How do I store leftover turkey-stuffed zucchini boats?
You can store leftover turkey-stuffed zucchini boats in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 5 days.
Other Turkey Recipes
- Easy Greek Turkey Meatballs
- Pit Boss Smoked Turkey with Maple BBQ Rub
- Best Ever Healthy Turkey Burger
- Sweet & Savory Fennel Chickpea Turkey Ragout