Italian Stuffed Zucchini Boats

Stuffed Zucchini Boats on a plate with fresh basil.

5 from 1 reviews

Want a quick dinner to make that is healthy, delicious, and will be loved by everyone? Then make Stuffed Zucchini Boats! Fresh zucchini is stuffed with a simple-to-make meat sauce, topped with cheese and then baked in the oven for the best low-carb, gluten-free, hearty dinner!


  • 4 medium to large zucchini, washed and dried
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 3 large carrots, peeled and finely diced
  • 1 pound grass-fed beef or ground turkey
  • 1-(15 oz.) can diced tomatoes
  • 1 (6 oz.) can tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes, more to taste
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt, more to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper, more to taste
  • 1 cup fresh baby spinach (optional)
  • ¼ cup fresh basil, minced
  • ⅓ cup shredded mozzarella (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 400ºF
  2. Cut zucchinis in half down the middle so you have two pieces. Using a spoon or a melon baller, scoop out some of the flesh from the center to make a boat. Set aside for another use or discard.
  3. Place zucchini on a rimmed baking sheet and lightly brush with olive oil, and a sprinkle of salt and pepper and place in the oven for 10 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile prepare the filling: In a large high-sided saute pan, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium heat. Add garlic, onion and carrots. Let cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes until onions are translucent and the carrots begin to soften.
  5. Add ground beef to the pan and cook until no pink remains, about 5 minutes.
  6. Add diced tomatoes, tomato paste, italian seasoning, red pepper flakes and salt.
  7. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to medium and let rapidly simmer for 10 minutes.
  8. Stir in the spinach, if using, and the fresh basil. Taste and adjust seasoning.
  9. Add filling to each zucchini boat, and sprinkle with mozzarella cheese, if using.
  10. Place back into the oven for 10-15 minutes, or until you can easily pierce zucchini with a knife and the cheese is melty.


Save the zucchini flesh to use in smoothies! You can freeze it for up to 1 month.



Lexi's sharing her top secrets to prepping ahead of time and quick meals!