Zucchini Boats- A Healthy Accompaniment

The other night I got together with my friend to work on some recipes that were low-fat.  She is being very conscientious about trying to eat more fresh veggies and low-fat proteins.  However, like most of us, she has a limited repertoire of recipes for this type of food.  It is sometimes tricky to make low-fat foods taste yummy.  (I HATE veggies! I only eat them because I’m an adult and I think I need to)  Learning to cook fresh veggies and incorporate flavors and seasonings to enhance their better qualities can be an art!  So I like to think that we took on an art project!

One of the veggies that I love to love is zucchini.  This is probably because it is starchy and doesn’t have a very strong flavor.  (Not sure either how much vitamin value it has!)  This veggie makes a perfect background for a lot of other flavors.  You can sautee it, bake it, fry it, roast it, toss it in soups, puree it for sweet breads/cakes, or in this case…stuff it!  I love this recipe.  It is easy and very versatile.  You know I change things up depending on my mood.  This can make a great side dish or even a main dish.  It doesn’t even have to be vegetarian.  Ground sausage would be a delicious addition.

Here it is…

Stuffed Zucchini Boats  (about 185 calories each)

4 medium zucchini (short, fat ones are better than long, thin ones)

½ yellow onion

1 red or yellow bell pepper

1 clove garlic, minced

Olive oil

4 oz Crumbled feta (can use reduced fat)

I package Uncle Ben’s ready rice (I use whole grain brown.  You can use whatever flavor you want!)

  1. Cut a hollow out of the middle of the zucchini using a downward motion with your knife in order to create a shell.  Use a spoon and continue to carefully scrape out the inside of the zucchini.  Reserve and chop the zucchini you cut out.  Put the zucchini boats into a baking dish.
  2. Finely dice the half of the yellow onion and the bell pepper
  3. In a skillet (one that has a lid), heat a little olive oil.  Once the pan is warm, add the chopped veggies and the minced garlic.  Sautee them until they start to soften and turn a little golden.  Stir in half of the package of ready rice to the veggies with 2 T of water.  Pop a lid on the skillet and let the rice steam until it warms through and gets fluffy.
  4. Add half of the feta and stir it into the veggie mixture.
  5. Salt and pepper the zucchini shells.  Then divide the veggie filling equally between the zucchini “boats.”  Sprinkle the tops of the “boats” with the remaining feta.  Pop the zucchini into a 375 degree oven for 20-30 minutes until the shells are tender to the touch or a knife inserted into the side pierces easily.

If you are going to add sausage to the filling, brown the ground sausage with the veggies, after they have softened a little and before you add the rice.  (Adding the water won’t be necessary)  Enjoy!!

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One thought on “Zucchini Boats- A Healthy Accompaniment

  1. So good! My dad was just telling me the other day this is one of his favorite meals my mom used to make him and we were both appalled that in my years under their roof she never once made it for me, and I love veggies! She added ground beef but I think sausage or ground turkey would be great also! Looks delish! 🙂

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