Stuffed Zucchini- Fresh zucchini cut lengthwise, deseeded, and stuffed with a flavorful mixture of white onion, red bell peppers, chickpeas, and hot sauce, then covered in a mouthwatering vegan cheese sauce. These stuffed zucchini boats are the perfect lunch, side dish, snack, or appetizer!
Everyone has a favorite zucchini dish, whether you're grilling, baking, or sauteing. Summertime is the perfect opportunity to enjoy all of the delicious zucchini recipes floating around. And these stuffed zucchini boats may become your new favorite way to enjoy fresh zucchini!
Stuffed zucchini is not only impressively easy to make but also absolutely delicious! Filled with a delightful mixture of vegetables, chickpeas, herbs, and spices, then topped with a vegan cheese sauce, these zucchini boats are packed with flavor. They are perfect for any occasion. Whether hosting a party or simply looking for a new way to incorporate more veggies into your diet, these stuffed zucchini boats will be a hit with everyone.
Table of Contents
Why You'll Love This Stuffed Zucchini Boat Recipe
Flavorful- These zucchini boats are packed with flavor thanks to the fresh veggies, herbs, spices, and delectable cheese sauce.
Simple Equipment- Unlike other recipes, this stuffed zucchini boat recipe doesn't require any fancy equipment or complicated instructions.
Versatile- Not only are stuffed zucchini a delicious side dish, but they can also be served as a light lunch, appetizer, or sliced into bite-sized pieces for parties.
Hearty- Stuffed zucchini is an excellent option for those who are looking for a hearty and filling meal. The combination of veggies, chickpeas, and sauce will leave you satisfied and full.
Equipment Needed To Make These Stuffed Zucchini Boats
- Small Saucepan
- Large Skillet With Lid
- Stirring Spoon
- Baking Sheet
- Parchment Paper
- Measuring Cups and Spoons
Ingredients For Vegan Stuffed Zucchini Boats
For The Zucchini Boats
- Vegetable Oil
- White Onion
- Red Bell Pepper
- Tomato Paste
- Hot Sauce
- Plant-Based Milk
- Rice Vinegar
- Soy Sauce
- Onion Powder
- Brown Sugar
- Smoked Paprika
- Chili Powder
- Fresh Herbs
For The Cheese Sauce
- Coconut Milk
- Nutritional Yeast
- Tapioca Flour
- Sea Salt
- Onion Powder
- Garlic Powder
- Smoked Paprika
How To Make Stuffed Zucchini Boats
To make the zucchini boats, start by cutting each zucchini in half lengthwise. Using a spoon, scoop out the flesh about ½ inch deep, careful not to puncture the skin. Set the zucchini boats aside and chop up the scooped out flesh.
Next, heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until softened. Add the bell pepper, chopped zucchini flesh, spices, tomato paste, and wet ingredients. Stir until well combined, place lid on the skillet, and cook for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Meanwhile, start making the cheese sauce. In a small saucepan, combine all cheese sauce ingredients and cook until a smooth cheeselike consistency is formed.
Preheat the oven to 410 degrees Fahrenheit and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Add chickpeas to the simmering vegetable mixture and allow them to soften.
When the oven is ready, stuff zucchini boats with the veggie mixture, top with cheese sauce, and cook for about 25 minutes or until cheese sauce is bubbly.
Top with fresh herbs, and enjoy!
What to Serve/Pair with Your Zucchini Boats
These zucchini boats are delicious on their own, but they also pair well with various other dishes. Here are some ideas of what to serve with your zucchini boats:
Serve with a simple salad or some roasted vegetables for a light meal.
For a heartier meal, serve with mashed potatoes, rice, or quinoa.
They would also be delicious topped with avocado, diced tomatoes, hot sauce, or vegan sour cream.
Zucchini boats would also be great as an appetizer! Serve them with tortilla chips and salsa or your favorite dipping sauce.
Popular Substitutions & Additions
- If you don't have zucchini, you could also use yellow squash, eggplant, or portobello mushrooms.
- For a bit more of a protein punch, you could add tofu, tempeh, or seitan.
- You could also add other vegetables to the filling, such as corn, diced potatoes, kale, or spinach.
- Add some heat by adding more chili powder or red pepper flakes to the filling mixture.
- Make it extra cheesy by adding vegan cheese shreds to the filling.
How To Reheat & Store Vegan Stuffed Zucchini Boats
What Is The Best Way To Store Stuffed Zucchini?
Leftover stuffed zucchini boats keep best when stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
How Long Will Homemade Stuffed Zucchini Boats Last In the Fridge?
If stored correctly in an airtight container, these zucchini boats will last for up to 4 days in the refrigerator.
Can I Freeze Stuffed Vegan Zucchini Boats?
Yes! Zucchini boats freeze really well. I like to individually wrap them in plastic wrap or foil and then place them all in a large freezer bag before freezing. Zucchini boats can be frozen for up to 3 months. Allow them to thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.
How To Reheat Stuffed Zucchini Boats?
Stuffed zucchini boats can be reheated in the oven or microwave.
To reheat in the oven: Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Place zucchini boats on a baking sheet and heat until warmed through, about 15-20 minutes.
To reheat in the microwave: Place zucchini boats on a microwavable safe plate and heat for 1-2 minutes or until heated through.
Stuffed Zucchini Boat FAQs
Can I make these zucchini boats ahead of time?
Yes! You can stuff the zucchini boats up to a day in advance and store them, covered, in the refrigerator until you're ready to bake them.
Do I need to peel the zucchini boats?
No, you don't need to peel the zucchini boats. The skin is edible and adds some extra nutrition and fiber.
What's the best way to cut the zucchini for these boats?
I like to cut the zucchini in half lengthwise and then scoop out the seeds with a spoon. You could also cut the zucchini into quarters lengthwise to make them perfect appetizer size.
Can I use fresh chickpeas for this recipe?
Yes, you can use fresh chickpeas for this recipe. If using fresh chickpeas, you'll need to cook them until tender before adding them to the recipe.
I made my cheese sauce too thick. Is there a way to fix it?
Yes. If your cheese sauce is too thick, simply add a little bit more non-dairy milk until it reaches the desired consistency.
Do I use a specific plant-based milk for these stuffed cucumber boats?
You can use any type of vegan milk that you like for this recipe. I usually use almond or cashew milk, but soy milk would also work well.
Vegan Stuffed Zucchini Boats
- 2 medium zucchini
- ½ tbsp vegetable oil
- 1 small white onion chopped
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 small red bell pepper diced
- 15 ounce can of chickpeas drained
- 1 tbsp tomato paste
- 1 tbsp hot sauce
- 4 tbsp coconut milk
- 1 tbsp rice vinegar
- 1 tbsp soy sauce
- 1 tsp onion powder
- 1 tsp brown sugar
- ½ tsp smoked paprika
- ½ tsp cumin
- ½ tsp salt
- ½ tsp pepper
- ½ tsp chili powder
- Fresh herbs to garnish
- ¾ cup coconut milk
- 3 tbsp nutritional yeast flakes
- 2 tbsp tapioca flour
- ½ tsp sea salt
- ½ tsp onion powder
- ½ tsp garlic powder
- 1 pinch smoked paprika
- In a small sauce pan mix and cooked all ingredients for cheese sauce
- Cut zucchini in half lengthwise. Cut center flesh out about ½ inch deep and save flesh for later.
- Chop up scooped out zucchini flesh.
- In a large skillet, heat oil and add onion, and cook for 4 minutes.
- Add bell pepper, zucchini flesh, spices, rice vinegar, soy sauce, tomato paste, hot sauce, and milk and stir together.
- Put the lid on the skillet and cook for 10 minutes. Stir occasionally.
- Meanwhile, make the cheese sauce.
- Heat the oven to 410° and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Add chickpeas to the skillet and cook a couple more minutes.
- Stuff each zucchini half with the mixture. Top with cheese sauce and cook in the oven for 25 minutes.
- Top with fresh herbs and serve.