Giant Stuffed Zucchini

http://greenlitebites.com/2008/08/06/giant-stuffed-zucchini/
stuffedZucchini_main1

You know you’ve done it before. Got a little busy, forgot to check the garden for a few days and then WOWZA you have a zucchini child on your hands.

Now most people shred those bad boys up and make zucchini bread but I want to try something a little different. I’ve seen recipes for stuffed zucchini before but they were never really stuffed, more sliced in half and topped. I decided to really STUFF one and I couldn’t be happier with the results! Even the husband liked it!! Giant Stuffed Zucchini

  • 1 extra large zucchini
  • ½ Vidalia onion chopped
  • 5-6 cloves of garlic chopped
  • 8 oz of lean raw ground turkey
  • ½ tsp dry basil
  • 3-4 cups of baby spinach loosely chopped
  • 4 tbsp tomato paste (66g)
  • ¼ cup quick oats (20g)
  • 2 tbsp parmesan cheese (10g)
  • Non-stick cooking spray
  • Kosher salt & Pepper

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

Cut the zucchini in a ‘V’ shape strip longwise and pop out. Using a spoon scoop out the seeds and scrape a bit of the flesh out creating a cavity (see image below). Set aside.

In a nonstick skillet over medium heat brown the turkey with the onion and garlic. Sprinkle with the basil and a bit of salt & pepper. Once brown add the spinach and keep turning until it cooks down. Remove from heat.

Place the tomato paste, oats, and cheese into large bowl. Add the turkey mixture from the skillet into the bowl and combine. The stuffing will be thick.

Scoop the stuffing into the zucchini cavity. Really pack as much as you can in there, you want it quite solid. Return the ‘V’ shape piece and spray with a bit of non-stick cooking spray and sprinkle with kosher salt.

Place on the cookie sheet and back for about 30 minutes until Zucchini is tender to the touch.

Cut in thick slices using a serrated knife and serve!

Giant Stuffed Zucchini cutGiant Stuffed Zucchini beforeGiant Stuffed Zucchini after

Approx Nutritional Information per serving
Servings Amt per Serving
3 1/3 of the recipe (about 3 thick slices)
Calories Fat Fiber WWPs
188 3g 6g old: 3 new: 5
Sugar Sat Fat Carbs Protein
5g 1g 20g 24g
26 comments »»
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26 Comments and 0 Replies

  1. LeeAnn

    This looks good, but I could never get my husband or kids to eat this! LOL
    By the way, I love your sites! You are very motivating.

  2. Denise

    LOL! I just love the zucchini baby! I was serious laughing out loud there, for a minute. A former neighbor of mine absolutely LOVED it when she found an overgrown zucchini, because she always made a veggie lasagna with the zucchini (baby…haha!), cut cross-wise into long, thin lasagna “noodles” Maybe you can concoct your own version of this, eh, Roni?? I never sampled her recipe, but the idea always intrigued me. Unfortunately, my zucchini plant isn’t very successful this year. : (

    Thanks for the giggles…what a great way to end my day!

  3. kyree90

    That is one HUGE zucchini! I can’t find ‘em that big at the store, but I still plan to try this recipe. I bet it’s another keeper. And I love that I could eat a whole half of the zucchini and still only eat 6 Points.

  4. Leticia

    Yum-O! Thanks for the idea!

    I recently made stuffed bell peppers using pretty much the same meat combination, squash, cabbage, stewed tomatoes, etc and they were EXCELLENT. I had extra bell peppers so I added some spaghetti sauce with chicken and mozzarella cheese to another couple of bell peppers and those were very good as well. And super low on points. Thanks for the zuchinni idea…I know I’ll be trying it.

  5. Kristi

    Omgoodness, this looks absolutely delicious! Now I am going to have to hunt all over Austin to find a zucchini baby (too funny!) in order to make this. This just looks divine! I love how creative and inventive you are! It’s so much fun to see what you will come up with next! Thanks again!

  6. Jessicq

    Zucchini baby, That is hilrious! My sister’s friend bestowed 3 of those bad boys on us. They were as big as my baby! He’s 3 months old! I, made bread. Needed this recipe last week! My mom did a lasagna. She’s allergic to wheat, so it was perfect for her. It must have been good, since there were no leftovers for me to try!
    P.S. According to the Betty Crocker Cookbook, the bread is 2 pts a slice! Not bad for something sweetish!

  7. Jessica

    I spelled my own name wrong! How embarassing! I calculated the bread points using the nutrition info with the recipe

  8. Jimena

    Roni, I would love to have my own garden and veggie children! LOL =) I just have no idea how to get started. I live in south Florida and do not get along with all the bugs and lizards. I think that is one thing that keeps me from starting my own garden (silly but true.) Anyways, if at all possible…can you just point me in the right direction? Thanks!

  9. Liz Rosenbaum

    WOW! I just made this tonight for dinner and it was fabulous! Even my kids enjoyed it – and the best part is, now I know what to do with those ginormous zucchini’s in my garden!

  10. Lisa

    I was at the Farmer’s Market yesterday, when I came across a table FULL of “zucchini children”! I was so excited, and said to my husband, I can finally make Roni’s recipe! I’m off to buy the other ingredients, and am looking forward to making this!

    Thanks for sharing!

  11. Lisa

    No pressure, my dear. I’ve made tons of your recipes and with great success…it’s just that this one was a challenge, since I don’t have a garden, and couldn’t find any HUGE zucchini until now!

    I know I’ll like it, I haven’t been disappointed yet!

  12. Lisa

    This was SOOOOO GOOOODDD. I didn’t have as large as a zucchini as you did, since I bought it from the Farmer’s Market, so we halved it, and scooped out the insides to make two “boats”. I also used Trader Joe’s “94/6 Lean Ground Beef” which had better nutritionals than the Lean Turkey they had on hand. Not sure how it compares with your points calculations, but it seemed pretty reasonable.

    Thank you for sharing this, my husband and I both loved it.

  13. roni

    I’m SO glad you liked it! Points will probably be very similar. Lean ground turkey and lean ground beef are both about 1 point an ounce.

  14. Jan

    okay… I had a good sized zucchini… maybe a 6 month embryo, not a full-blown child.

    I wanted to make it with what I had on hand, since a trip to the store is a 30 minute jaunt, not counting shopping time.

    I used ground pork and added a little Italian seasoning (to make it taste like sausage)… I had spinach in the garden….

    Anyway, it turned out really good, and dh (dear husband) said I should make it again. Took longer to cook, which is weird, because my zucchini was only about 10-12 inches long…. I went 10 mins longer, then upped the temp to 400 and went 12-15 more. The bottom was EXcellent, the top and sides, pretty al-dente.

    I think next time I will wrap it in foil, and open for the last 10-15 mins. The bottom was amazing. Serving was a disaster. 1st 2 slices were beautiful (on his plate….) mine looked like rattatoui (sp?) but tasted good.

    Thank you again for something to do with zucchini that is delicious and doesn’t involve canning or freezing!

    :) Jan

  15. roni

    Jan- Glad you tried it! I actually liked the zucchini a bit firm (I guess you can kind of tell by the photo!) so I can see the extra cooking that is needed. Last time I made it I cooked it a bit longer and I did like the bottom as well. I think wrapping it in alum foil is genius!

  16. Mme_Libn

    I wanted to thank you – this turned out great! It’s a definite keeper.

    I made one variation to the recipe, since I don’t have a dishwasher and try to keep bowls, pots, and pans to a minimum – I used a small bowl to combine the tomato paste/oatmeal/cheese mixture, then added that to the pan with the ground turkey mixture, once it was off the heat.

    OK, one more variation. Since my local grocery store sells ground turkey in a 20 oz. package, I thought, why not cook up the whole thing? I put as much as would fit into the zucchini. The rest made wonderful leftovers – similar to what my mother used to call “hamburger gravy” when we were growing up. Since this already had ground turkey and seasonings, just a little added broth made for a nice gravy atop toast or mashed potatoes – one of my favorite comfort foods.

    Again, I will definitely be returning to this recipe. Thanks.

  17. robin

    Made this tonight and cannot keep my spoon out of the leftovers that I can’t fit in the Zuke!! It is wonderful!! I may use the leftovers to spoon into my sweet banana peppers and freeze. It is soooo good!

  18. Wendy

    Last year a friend of my daughter-in-law was trying to get rid of giant zucchinis and plunked one on my door step. As there is only me and my veggie hater hubby at home it sat in the fridge for about a week until I got around to looking for a recipe to use it before it became non-edible. That’s how I discovered your website. I absolutely love this site. This recipe was so awesome. I ate it 4 nights in a row (hubby wouldn’t even try. Oh well, his loss). I could’ve eaten for a week straight and never tired of it. I can’t wait till zucchini season this year.

  19. Wendy

    I’ve made it twice and really liked it. Since my hubby is not an adventurous eater, he won’t even try it ;o(( So last time I made it I divided it into serving sizes and wrapped each in saran and then tin foil and froze them, then whenever I wanted it for dinner I just reheated them from frozen re- wrapped in just the tinfoil. Lately I have had a craving for this, but have been unable to find zucchini large enough to stuff. I have tried 3 or 4 medium sized zucchini and it works very well. But all that is in the store right now are zucchini that are about the size of a dill pickle, which is way too small. Do you suppose this recipe would work with eggplant?? Maybe I would just have to bake it a little longer??

  20. Wendy

    So, I tried making this with an eggplant, and it turned out great! I found th longest eggplant I could find. It was about 1 1/2 lbs. I sliced it lengthwise and cut out some of the meat, (which I used in a stir-fry with bok choy and mushrooms)leaving about 1/2 – 3/4 inch thick boat-like shape. I filled it with the stuffing from this recipe. Then I placed it in an aluminum baking tray which I placed on a cookie sheet for strength. I added about 1/2 cup of water to the aluminum tray, (because eggplant isn’t as watery as zucchini, I was afraid it would turn out dry if I didn’t do this). Then I loosely covered the eggplant with parchment and then tin foil. I baked it at 375 for 45 minutes then removed the coverings and baked an additional 15 minutes to get a kind of crispy top on the filling. It was excellent, cooked just right.

  21. Lori

    Made this last night with the zucchini child we were given from a friend’s garden. It was wonderful! The rest of the family aren’t very fond of zucchini but they tried it and ate all the filling. I love your receipes. Thank you.

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